Thank You Friends!
August 9, 2006
So many talented and amazing souls have sored onstage and in the studio to be embedded in the musical membranes of Love fans all over the world. I remember listening to Da Capo in ’88 and just thinking nearly every song should be a hit song. And I figured everyone (esp. Arthur!) must have been a genius in that group. But that was when a Group was a group. No matter how well, how reverent, 1993-2005 Love With Arthur Lee played the music, we would never be mistaken for the original band. And to Arthur, that was precisely the point; He wanted Love’s music to be presented in a more fresh light and we did our best.
Playing with cats like Arthur Lee, Johnny Echols, Jay Donnellan, Melvan Whittington, Robert Rozelle, Robbie Kreiger, John Sterling, Robyn Hitchcock, Graham Coxton, Michael Stuart-Ware, Nash Kato, Len Fagen, just to name a few…i had no idea in 1988 i’d be sharing the stage with guys like that. Baby Lemonade were very fortunate in that respect. Of course, we also saw some of the ugly business and when you see how much people cheat and take advantage in the music business (heck, ANY business) it hardens you up fast; The guy who smiles and pretends to care is steady planning to rip you off behind your back (heck, in front of your back!) and Arthur was fairly hip to that in some respects, and in other respects, he got taken advantage of by people who stroked his ego and pretended to be his friend. it happens to the best of us. True friends have your best interest at heart. Arthur usually had our best interest at heart (esp. 2002 & 2003.)
So many people added to the music and legend and even if I didn’t get to play with or meet all of them, I respected all of them. The most amazing of them all was/is Johnny Echols. I could listen to Johnny play guitar and sing his tunes all day. That July 2005 tour brought us and him closer together. We all suffered heavily. Arthur suffered heavily. And it’s funny; Sometimes Love fans got things a bit backward. Someone wrote to me saying,” So, What did Arthur do around that time (of the tour), was he sick then? What did he do?” So I told them that ol Arthur bought a $40,000 car, that’s what he did! Paid for it in CASH, brother! And Johnny, bless him, didn’t have to do that tour. Johnny suffered for it. But he did it because he was moved by the love and warmth British fans showed all of us on the previous tour he’d done with us.
We were family on that tour and I really wish Arthur had come along and seen that. We BBQ’d on a hill outside the Stables Theatre in Milton Keynes. We BBQ’d in Frome. We BBQ’d in Ilfracombe for crying out loud! Have you ever been to Ilfracombe? We went to Germany and got treated like sh*t by the Promoters. We put up with so much Bull on that tour we may as well have been matadors. But the underlying theme, the magic of it all was the music of Love and the genius songs that Arthur, Bryan and Johnny brought to life along with the amazing contributions from Michael, Snoopy, Don and so many others. You could never replace a God-Gifted talented, singer, writer, and performer like Arthur Lee if you wanted to. And, speaking for myself, I can take just about anything except someone messing up Love’s priceless music. So, sometimes my anger was really that of a Painter who sees somebody eating a Big Mac on a Rembrandt; it ain’t right!
And what went hand in hand with the music and musicians was the “above the rim” support Love recieved from Magazines in countries over the world; promoters who took a risk with us (Glenn Max at RFH), managers (Like Glenn Povey and Gene Kraut) our crew (Bent, Kose, Troels, Fraser) our friends like Scottish Keith, Irish barry, Ringo, Richard, Stu harris, Hilary, Caryne, The new guy, Chris U., Chris Jones, Tina, Lizzy, Gill, Sharon (and her cat, Randle RIP!), John E (esp. John E!), Cavan, Dukie, Scully, Fritz from Ohio, KD from SF, Brad from Seattle AND Tampa, Josiah, The Furry Animals guys, Teenage Fanclub (and their families!) and the Belle and Sebastian band that loaned us amps and drums EVERYTIME we came to Scotland, Davie Robertson (guitar tech from heaven), Chris Helm and friends, The Lemon Trees’ Marge in Aberdeen, the bloke who owns the “GReen man pub” in London, our crazy friends all over Spain (Ingrid and her posse!), the best bar in the world – Madrid’s TUPPERWARE…all the fish and chips we could handle….all those AMAZING Swedes that played with us (too many to name!), the LA ensemble (you rock, ladies), the ever unpredictable yet lovable, Probyn Gregory, Bruce Solar who used to book us in the gool ol US of A, the fine folks at rhino records and gee, a host of others. the list goes ON and ON and ON!
We wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for you.