Peter Green, August 19 - September 1, 1999
About a year ago I bought a CD called "The Enemy Within'". It said Peter and Mick Green. It had some really far out sounding tunes on it. The personal was Mick Green, Gypie Mayo, Ed Deane, and I don't remember who else at this point. Can you tell me where this took place at, whether it was recent, is this an actual release, was it within' the time frame of your first solo career? It's a very interesting strange sort of CD, but it has no date on it, and not much information on the recording itself. Any info would be appreciated. (Jeff Baer, Thorofare, New Jersey, USA)
It was something I did with my brother Micky. It was quite a while after I left Fleetwood Mac, but it was recorded here in England. I am doing some more stuff with my brother at the moment.
Peter, of all music you have composed my “all-time favorite” is the 2nd part of “Oh Well”. It is simply beautiful and always brings to me very dear and very personal memories from the past. My question to you: did you ever perform the “Oh Well part 2” live? (Andrzej, Sittard, Netherlands)
No, I never did. I played nearly all the instruments on "Oh Well" It would be a difficult thing to re-create live.
I don't mean to monopolize your time, but how often do I get to talk to Peter Green!!! Just a few questions...Did you and Danny ever write songs together or did you each develop your own material before bringing it to the band? I've read you attended some Jimi Hendrix sessions, did you ever get a chance to casually jam with him? How were you, Danny, Jeremy and John received by the Chicago blues players during your recording in Chicago and on the Otis Spann and Eddie Boyd albums? FINALLY...Do you have any input on all the recent Fleetwood Mac releases( Boston Tea Party, Vaudeville Years, Show Biz Blues, Shrine 69) and the ones still set to be released. How do you feel about them coming out? THANK YOU VERY VERY MUCH for your time..... (Terry, Avon, Colorado, USA)
Danny and I didn't write together. I guess we had different styles, but we did play our stuff to each other . I did get up and jam with Jimi one night in 1968 in a London club called The Bag O' Nails. We all had a great time doing the Chicago Blues stuff. I don't know what you mean by input but I like most of the stuff that's out especially "The Vaudeville Years".
Hi, first I want to thank you for inspiring me, and opening my mind to a wider variety of music. I'm a fifteen year old bassist, and it feels great to educate my parents and bass instructor about the amazing Peter Green. I noticed that at the Rock and Roll Hall of fame induction you and Stevie, looked like you were pals. I was wondering if you really were friends, if so when did you get to know each other? I also wanted to know if the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction, and the Rumours era reunion brought you closer to any of the members of Fleetwood Mac (John especially) (Megan Marden, Washington, Connecticut, USA)
That was the first time I had met Stevie and we got on fine. I like her voice a lot. I see quite a lot of Mick but the Hall Of Fame was the first time John and I met up in twenty years.
Back in 1969, Fleetwood Mac along with the Grateful Dead opened The Warehouse in New Orleans; the same night the Dead were "Busted Down On Bourbon St". The Warehouse is long gone but the House Of Blues is rockin'. Any chance of The Splinter Group doing a show here? Even better, a Mac reunion? How would you feel about having your face plastered on the ceiling of the House Of Blues along with all the other great bluesmen who are there now? (Tom Scott, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA)
We hope to be playing the House Of Blues sometime later this year. I don't think I rank up there with all those great bluesmen and I'm not sure they'd want me there.
Thank you so much for answering my questions! I have a few more. When and how did you meet Christine McVie?Did you know her before she married John? Did you see her in Chicken Shack?Which album is the first to have any of her playing on it? (I read that she played on some albums before she joined the band) Thanks=:-) (Vianna, Alexandria, Virginia, USA)
I met Christine when I went to see Chicken Shack play. John met her at the same time as me. She first played with Fleetwood Mac on the "Kiln House" album.
Hello Peter, I am a very big fan and Collector of your music. It is my intention to find a publisher, and to do a Photographic Discography of your work. Martin Celmins has offered me encouragement, and suggests that my work would serve as an addendum to his Peter Green Biography. This is not a money thing with me, but a labour of love. Is this something that you and your management would endorse? You and I met briefly in Seattle last year, and again in Vancouver a few nights later. You may recall that I delivered a message to you from Barbara (from Philly), who would still very much like to say hello to you, after all these years. A question or two: Specifically, on which tracks did you play on the Country Joe McDonald LP: 'I Wish You Would'. I can only say with all certainty, that I can hear you on "Only Love Is Worth This Pain". Are there others? Mick Fleetwood, who claims you played on "Brown Eyes" on the 'Tusk' LP, also suggests that you played on the Jo Ann Kelly Self titled LP. Do you recall? If so, on which tracks? Mick also lists you as playing with The Troggs on their self titled LP. The cover also credits 'Peter Green' as being featured on acoustic. Can you confirm this for me, and tell me on which tracks you play, if at all? There are many more questions I would like to ask, but do not wish to hog all of your time. We are all very happy that you are back, as strong and as creative as ever. You have a great band, and I hope that you keep it together. I look forward to your next North American Tour. Perhaps we will get the chance to say hello again. Good luck with everything. All of my best to you... P.S. please say hello to Martin Bell for me. (Don Brown, New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada)
I don't recall too much about the recordings you are referring to. It was all during the time that I was having mental problems. It's a possibility that I did play on all of them though.
I feel compelled to say that your music has been an inspiration to me for quite a few years now and I'm glad that you're back on the scene on a regular basis. Where do you see your music headed in the future? What type of projects would you like to do? I look forward to the reunion with other original Fleetwood Mac members. (Anonymous)
I would like to do some of the Sonny Boy Williamson stuff. I would like to improve on my harmonica skills. I think there will be a Robert Johnson part two, may be next year.
Hi Peter. Its really great that you are doing this for you fans! I was wondering-- what do you think of the music that Fleetwood Mac made after you left. With artist such as Bob Welch, Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham and Rick Vito, for example? (Jeff Bechdel, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA)
It's different but I like it all the same. I watch their videos sometimes if they are showing on VH1 or MTV. I like Stevie's voice and Rick Vitos/Lindsey Buckingham's playing.
The question that begins, "I feel compelled to say that your music has been an inspiration to me for quite a few years now..." was mine. I hope that you can add my name and info to it. Thanks. (Eric E. Poe, Odenville, Alabama, USA)
I still can't see a question here, but I am glad that you are inspired by my music.
Mr. Green, thank you so much for taking the time to answer everyone's questions. You have a great fan following around the world, and I'm sure everyone, like myself, is absolutely thrilled that you are feeling well and playing and performing once again. My question is of a personal nature - I hope that is alright. I'm curious about your daughter - how old is she now, and what sort of relationship do the two of you have? Thank you so very much again for taking the time to do this! (Lori Aimino, Indiana, Pennsylvania, USA)
I am curious about my daughter too. I haven't seen her since she was a little baby.
Hi Peter, it is indeed a pleasure to be asking questions to one of my true guitar heroes - thank you so much for affording me the opportunity to do so! Peter, I got into your music through listening to Gary Moore, who I am a huge fan of. What did you think of Gary dedicating his "Still Got the Blues" record to you and what did you think of his cover of "Stop Messin' Around" and his album "Blues for Greeny"? How much did Gary Moore influence your return to guitar playing? Do you ever regret selling your '59 Les Paul to him? Rory Gallagher covered a couple of your songs on "Rattlesnake Guitar" What did you think of his mandolin version of "Leaving Town Blues" and would you ever cover one of his songs on a possible tribute album to Rory Gallagher in the future? Finally, I live in Montreal, Canada. Will you be doing a cross Canadian tour anytime soon? (Jeff D'Costa, Montreal, Quebec, Canada)
I see quite a lot of Gary, he and his wife Jo are good friends with Mich, and he comes along to see me if I am playing in London. He didn't influence my return but I like his music and I went along to see the "Blues for Greeny" concert that he did. "No I don't regret selling my Les Paul to him. I thought Rory's version of "Leaving Town Blues" was the best track on the album, maybe I will return the tribute one day.
Mr. Green(baum), I must say that you're one of my greatest musical influences and I'm happy that your playing again. By the way, do you keep in touch with your daughter Rosebud Samuel Green(baum)? (K. E. Gil, Stevenson Ranch, California, USA)
I haven't seen or heard from Rosebud for many years. I thought she might turn up at one of our concerts when we were in America last year. Mick Fleetwood is helping me to look for her.
Yet, another question popped into my head and I couldn't resist asking. With the obvious WEALTH of incredible tunes you've played & recorded over the years and add to that the great NEW tunes, how do you go about choosing what songs you'll include in your live set?? And yet another question, do you pretty much stick to the same set for the duration of a tour, or do you change the set depending on the venue? (Steve Denison, Long Beach, California, USA)
When we started the Splinter Group everyone put forward ideas for the live set. Now we usually play some of my favourite stuff and tracks from our albums. We do keep the same set throughout each tour and just add different ones if we are doing encores.
Did you have any idea that Fleetwood Mac (and your music) would be just as successful thirty years after the band started out? (Thomas Powell, Wolverhampton, West Midlands, England)
No, not really. You never think thirty years on when you are young.
In my opinion, one of your greatest songs is "Black Magic Woman," which was made famous here in the US by Carlos Santana. Unfortunately though, because of his chart success with that song, most people believe that it is HIS song and give him the credit for it. I personally think your version is far superior to his. Does it bother you at all that another artist receives credit and praise for a song you wrote? (Victoria Ogawa, Vacaville, California, USA)
No, it doesn't bother me, I really like the Santana version of it.
I have admired you and your music since you were with The Bluesbreakers. I went to concert in Osaka. It was great and I was very excited. So, would you like to come to Japan again? How did you enjoy Japan? How did you feel about Japanese fans? I hope that a next tour will be longer than the last time. Thank you very much for your time. (Katsuyuki Ota, Osaka, Japan)
It was my first visit to your country and I would love to come over again. Maybe spend a bit more time there this time. I really enjoyed playing to the Japanese fans.
Dear Peter, this is not another question to you. You have already taken enough questions from us all the inveterate admirers of your talent and music. I just want to say a few words on this unique Q&A session which is just coming to the end and in which I had a great pleasure to participate. More than thirty years have passed since I first heard your tunes on “A Hard Road”. Many years and a hard road indeed. We grew older, our hair being not so dark and shaggy as it used to be, our bellies being somewhat bigger than they used to be. We have lived through the days of happiness and the days of suffer. You have suffered a lot. Does suffering make one a better man? I strongly believe it does. Every fan has a certain image of his idol. This Q&A session, your answers to our questions, have all confirmed to me the correctness of the image I had: not only of a great composer and guitarist whose music brings unforgettable moments to thousands of us, but first of all of a sensitive, modest, good human being. Should all the people be like you, Peter Greenbaum, the world would definitely be better! Dear Peter, it was great to have this electronic talk with you. From the bottom of my heart I wish you happiness. I sincerely hope you will reunite with your daughter and will keep enjoying the life for many, many years to come. God bless you, Greeny! (Andrzej Stankiewicz, Sittard, Netherlands)
I guess everyone should know suffering to enjoy peace. Thanks for your message.
Hello Peter! It is very nice being able to talk with you. I was wondering: with all of the turmoil in your life, what kept you going and kept you focused to stay in the music business? Thank you! (Jo, Larksville, Pennsylvania, USA)
I didn't keep going. I had a lot of mental problems and couldn't even pick up a guitar for many years. Mich came and got me about four years ago and invited me to live with her. Slowly with help from the likes of Nigel, and Cozy I started to relearn everything again. I'm still learning.
Hi again! Can you tell us how it feels to be doing live gigs again? What is your favorite part? (Jo, Larksville, Pennsylvania, USA)
I am really enjoying playing live gigs. I guess the best part for me is travelling to different countries and seeing different cultures.
Mr. Green, first of all I would like to say, that along with Jimi Hendrix you are my favorite musician, also, I really enjoy your recent works, the Soho sessions and Destiny Road. From the new album on the song called Big Change is Gonna Come, I was curious if you were thinking of Sid Barret during the solo? Also, I had the oppurtunity to see you at the Odeon last year for the Robert Johnson tribute, and altough I didn't get the chance to meet you I was the one during the jam session that was encouraging you to play while you were sitting next to the drummer, and when you finally did it seemed to me that Bob Weir cut you off, what was that all about? (M.D., Findlay, Ohio, USA)
I didn't write Big Change, the keyboard player Roger Cotton did. Maybe he was thinking of Sid Barret. I wasn't aware of being cut off by anyone at the RJ tribute.
Can you tell the differences working with the musicians in Fleetwood Mac, Kolors and Splinter Group? What is your opinion on the "Rumours" incarnation of Fleetwood Mac and What was your favorite song during your tenure with the Mac? (Anonymous)
Yes, of course I can tell the difference. I liked Rumours a lot. I don't think I really have a favourite.
Peter, will you be doing a cross Canadian tour soon? There are a lot of fans up here that would like to see you and who did not get a chance to when you toured the US last year! (Jeff D'Costa, Montreal, Quebec, Canada)
We hope to tour the states again later in the year and I'm sure we will include some more Canadian dates. I hope so.
Hello once again Peter. I asked the question if you had "input" into the new releases of older material. I was just wondering if the record companys contact you about choice of material or songs used etc. Did Martin Birch have any role, big or small, in determining the sound of the Fleetwood Mac records? You seemed to use him alot as engineer. By sound, I mean guitar tone, band sound etc. Did you and Danny work at your guitar tones or did they just come naturally. Finally, although your really known for your guitar playing, noone seems to mention that you are a terrifically soulful singer. The live Mac recordings really show this, do you have any singing influences. Thank you for letting all of us asking questions invade your privacy so graciously for this whole month. I'm looking forward for your return to the States. (Terry, Avon, Colorado, USA)
The record companies put out what they want to. Sometimes I get to hear them before they are released, not always. Of course Martin Birch did have a big role to play in the production of the overall thing, that was his job. The singing came naturally although I guess I was heavily influenced at the time by all the great black blues singers. No one in particular.
Mr. Green, please tell me more about The Splinter Group, and your possible tour info.... (Bc, Laurel, Maryland, USA)
If you look on our new website you can get all this information. (www.petergreen.net)
You have worked with three great drummmers Mick Fleetwood, the late Cozy Powell and now Larry Tolfree? What is it like working with them and did you get along with either of them? (Anonymous)
I've enjoyed working with all three of them. Mick is a good friend. Cozy was one of the nicest blokes I ever worked with, and Larry is still in my band.
Peter, could you tell us a few words about your everyday life in the non-touring periods? How much of your time do you devote presently to mastering of the guitar playing and to rehearsing? What do you like to do most in the time when you do not play? Do you have any specific hobbies, like reading, fishing, collecting stamps, going to the countryside etc.? (Andrzej, Sittard, Netherlands)
I live in Mich's house, I have a room filled with guitars, CDs, T.V stereo player etc. If I'm not working I go out to visit friends, guitar shops, restaurants or family. I spend a lot of time practising guitar. I do like fishing. I like to look at old cars and motorbikes. I also collect African and Eastern art objects.
Any plans to tour old continent, perhaps including small countries like Holland? (Andrzej, Sittard, Netherlands)
We have played in Holland a few times in the last three years and we maybe coming back there later this year or early next.
Peter, I know that much of the public impatiently awaits the moment you will start writing music again. I wonder what you think about it. Do you experience it as a kind of pressure on you? Do you feel you would enjoy composing again (or maybe you have already started)? (Andrzej, Sittard, Netherlands)
I haven't written anything in a long time, but if I get inspired by something, who knows. Mich's daughter Kim writes some good lyrics and I might put some music to them one of these days.
Hell-o Pete. I hope you are well. Would you ever think of playing World in Harmony with Nigel and the group? My next question is did you ever listen to the Time line up of the Mac with Dave Mason, Bekka Bramlett, and Billy Burnette? That's all Pete-- take care my friend. (Bill Seamans, Buffalo, Minnesota, USA)
I haven't thought about it but anything's possible. Mick sent me copies of the stuff that Bekka and the boys were on. Worth a listen, especially Bekka's voice.
End of Q&A
We would like to thank Mich Reynolds, Peter's co-manager,