Questions - you got 'em; answers - we got 'em

9 - Brixton 93, pop, Mike Oldfield, Papa G, The Aviator & UK tour


Dear Ian,
at the concert at brixton acadamy in '93, was there a bet with other band members as to whether 'Anyones Daughter' would be well received by the fans, as you seemed to turn and say something to Blackmore. I was near the front at the time and noticed 'gloating' !! p.s wifey says can you please supply milkcrate at concerts for those who are vertically challenged as she couldn't see a thing at the N.E.C in 98. cheers!!

Best wishes to you,

Dear Peter,
'Gloating' eh? Ah yes. I wonder what that could have been about. I'll see what we can do about the milk crates.
Cheers, ig

From: gerard florentino

well gillan, i am from the north of mexico hope you get to come someday again,i have one question and please dont get me wrong we really like you but we think or i think that many of your works are not for you songs like she took my breath away,or nothing but the best are other thing,for other people,if you want to try new things its ok but why pop,the jazz works that you did in the 70s were great but that was music with roots the problem is not you doing only rock the you can do anything,but for your fans do it with roots we really would like to see you doing jazz,blues,gothic,anything but please not pop,well thats all hope you dont get me wrong and you have the last word anyway we will love you,see ya and good luck

Well Gerardo,
That's an interesting observation. I can't agree with you about 'She took my breath away'. Rock 'n' Roll embraces a wide range of, what would you call it, styles? When I was a kid, Buddy Holly was just as much Rock 'n' Roll as Little Richard and you couldn't get two more opposite styles. Without balance and texture music becomes uni-directional and too reliant upon the limited life of the genre. Look at 'Heavy Metal'. It's an element of rock music which has isolated itself and although there have been, and still are, some terrific heavy metal bands, it seems to me that it has beaten itself into a corner. There's no point shouting at people all the time, they lose interest in what you're trying to say. 'She took my breath away' may be pop to you, but to me it is a very sexy piece of work. As for 'Nothing but the best' I think you may have more of a point, although it was never thought of as pop during the conception. It was one of the first songs I wrote in a new writing relationship with Steve Morris and I think it displayed perhaps a tad too much enthusiasm. There you have it, music appreciation is a matter of taste and each to his own. Within DP I am bound to the family feeling and our musical output is directed by that. Outside of the band I am free to experiment with all kinds of stuff, and that gives me a better perspective, which I think is healthy. I hope we get to your part of Mexico one day and I love you too.
Cheers, ig


Long time U.S. fan [32] years. Last time I saw you solo was the Gillan tour of 1979 at Painters Mill Md.
My question is What did you have to do with the Mike Oldfield album " Earth Moving ". . In the liner notes he gives thanks to you but I don't see or hear you on the disc at all.
Any ideas, cheers Bill

Hi Bill,
Thanks for the memories. I hear rumours that we may be touring the States in May/June. No details yet but watch this space. As for the Mike Oldfield album. I did get an invitation from Mike to visit him at his home studio. He had some ideas he thought would suit me and we worked at it for some hours, but it didn't answer and we left it at that.
Cheers, ig

From: "Martin"

Hello Ian, hello everybody!
Dear Papa G, let me send you a lots of love and greetings from the cold, winter Poland here! I have the questions ringing in my mind, I can't stand it any more (...who wants to live in a telephone box ??? :-) ) - Master, could you please answer?

1) I'd like you to know that I find your '76 - '82 achievements amazing. The fact is that the greatest thing in it (except excellent vocals :-) ) for me was Colin Towns - his composing, stunning arrangments, and unlimitable abilities in playing keyboards. Unfortunately, while you started solo recordings back again in '89, you've never got to work with him again. Now it seems like you're considering recording a solo album. (hurraah !!!). Could you tell if you still have any contact with Herr Towns, and if there's any chance to work with Colin again? (suggested line-up for the band: The Loudest of Ians, Colin, Steve Morris, John Gustaffson and Mark Nauseef - still it doesn't have to mean getting back to IGB formula :-) )

2) If IGB mentioned - I'd be very happy to know how do you find this music from the perspective of 2001! I've talked it over with my fan-friends - we love "Clear Air Turbulence", musically it's a real feast for ears and souls!

3) I listen to a lot of DP materials and groups related to Deep Purple Family (e. g. Ronnie Dio, David Coverdale, and RB - n o t particularly Rythm 'n' Blues :-) ), but still the most brillant text of all here is "No Laughing In Heaven". The song itself not only allowed you to show acting talents (it's always been a kind of a 'little drama' played on stage, wasn't it ?), but it forced me to think and suffer - 'cause it seems, like there's no better future for us than Inferno! Could you share your attitude to afterlife with us, are you really that pesimistic about what's after...?

4) For us here in Poland "Mr Universe" is your greatest solo album of all. Back in '79 you did almost every song of it on stage except one, that all of us hold dear - "Fighting Man". I don't think it was vocally difficult then, so why was it never played live ? 5) Back to RAH, London '99 - I felt a little surprised to hear what of your solo careeer you played with the Sympho's! I've been crossing my fingers to hear my beloved "On The Rocks" (imagine Jon's Hammond intro here - (...)) or "Born To Kill" - you know - this strong - orchestral-like stuff. Could you tell us some more why you've picked up "Via Miami" and "TWGISTB" ? I know it's quite a lot, but I'll be in seventh heaven, if you answer anything of it! I hope to see you live again in Wroclaw (remember the first Polish "Toolbox Tour" concert ?), don't forget to come to Poland while promoting new LP's!

Thank you very much Ian, take a care of yourself - all the best to you!

Yours faithfully -
Martin Karski (22), Polish DPFC,
Wroclaw, Poland

Hello Martin,
Papa G eh? Nice one. Thanks for your comments and questions. I agree with you about Colin Towns he is a very special person. Johnny Gus was one of my heroes and I still think he was something of a giant. However there is no chance in answer to question 1. I look back with affection and some mixed feelings to the Clear Air Turbulence period. I have negative feelings about Chris Blackwell, the owner of Island Records, who never wanted us on his label in the first place, I discovered later. But then I was lucky enough to play table tennis with Bob Marley a few times at St. Peter's Square, in West London. Overall I love the record, but I had different ideas to the rest of the guys about the way we should have been headed and after 'Scarabus' we went our different ways.

3) How do you write a song like this without upsetting people? Look in Wordography and soon you will find 'No Laughing in Heaven'

4) As far as I remember we were doing 'Child in time' and you may notice a certain similarity. At the time there was more of a demand for 'Child' than 'Fighting Man'.

5) The stuff I did at the RAH was a) a song with Roger, so we chose 'Via Miami' from 'A on P' and b) a track from 'Dreamcatcher' which I didn't write. But I think 'That's Why God is Singing The Blues' is one of the most sensitive lyrics I've ever heard. More to the point there wasn't enough time or budget (don't forget these were charity shows) to give my stuff the luxury of an orchestral arrangement so I picked material that was easy for everyone to play. Yes I remember the 'Toolbox' tour it was excellent. Of course I won't forget Poland, in fact I plan to spend New Year 2001/2 with friends in Poland.
Cheers for now, ig

From: (Charlie Jeffreys)

Hi Ian,
What is the background to "The Aviator"? Does it relate to flying (Steve's influence perhaps?), or is it more to do with just a feeling - a state of mind? Perhaps it could feature in "Wordography" before long.
Cheers, Charlie

Hi charlie,
Yes keep your eyes on the 'Wordography'. In a nutshell we have an aviator playing guitar and as I fly a lot too (in my dreams) a scenario emerged that was suitably surreal and give me a chance to exorcise some of my own demons.
Cheers, ig

From: (Eileen)

Hi, I am Eileen from Gourock I would like to know how to find out about any up and coming concert dates in the UK.
Cheers DP fan.

Hi Eileen,
A tour in the UK is long overdue in my opinion. Unfortunately there is nothing planned this year as far as I know. I genuinely hope we can rectify the situation with some dates next Spring.
Cheers, ig

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