Sunday, 3rd April 2005 in Road Trip U.K. 2005.
Neil has promised to be at Abbey Road Studios for the film festival. He plays ‘I must be in Love’ and ‘Back in ’64’ on Saturday before we all watch ‘A Hards Day’s Night’, the Beatles first film, which has the flimsiest excuse for a plot I have ever seen- actually no, I had seen some pretty flimsy ones in the Elvis movies way before that. On Sunday Neil tells the Bonzo story about Abbey Road and sings ‘Cheese and Onions’ playing, he says, the best piano he has ever had the good fortune to encounter. It does sound amazing. Afterwards ‘Yellow Submarine’ is shown, which I don’t think is a patch on the Rutles version (very biased of me.) However it is edifying to hear how Yellow Submarine was made. It had a premier date before it had even been started. There were no computers in those days so every single cell was hand drawn. Neil and I remember this well because a large part of Goldsmiths, the Art School we were at, was involved. The Beatles were not particularly keen on the project, which had been decided on a few years before. So it was an uphill task for the director and producer to initiate interest and to keep the project going.
Roger McGough, another very old friend, was at Abbey Road on Sunday with his wife Hilary. Strange, but very nice coincidence to have met each of The Scaffold on this tour. It turns out that Roger wrote some of the funny bits of dialogue for Yellow Submarine. Every time we meet we discuss the possibility of Neil and Roger working together as they did in Grimms. Neil’s words and music and Roger’s poetry compliment each other perfectly. It is just a question of dates. When Neil can make it, Roger can’t and vice versa. It will happen someday- apart from anything else, they look good together!
So now it’s all rush to get things washed and sorted before we head for New
Jersey, and then to New York. And we will be bringing T-shirts, buttons and the new CD to sell at the Fest For Beatle Fans. [Is that 2 words or 1?]
Thanks to all of you who have been reading this road-diary. Many people said they enjoyed it, and I enjoyed recording the ups and downs. The only difficult bit has been trying to extract ‘thoughts for the day’ from Neil Tom and JJ. In the end it was easier to use poems from Tom’s book for his ‘thoughts’ which, of course, they are. JJ’s every thought was to create ‘the beautiful thing’ around him –being the group’s ambassador, making everyone from receptionists to sound crews to guys and gals who worked in the many services we stopped at, feel good. So he was excused from having to put this ‘beautiful thing’ into words.
So now it’s bye- bye from me and Tom and JJ and a special ‘au revoir’ from Neil
“Why is it whenever I go to France I get déjà vu?”