Mick Taylor - Saturday April 10th 2010 Salaise sur Sanne (France)
Pleased to meet you Mick. You're in France today for a gig in
Salaise-sur-Sanne for a blues festival. What are your first impressions ?
Well, my first impressions on arriving here, today, were beautiful,
it was warm, it was sunny, and it felt like spring and I saw cherry blossoms
and I saw apple blossoms on the trees, so that made me feel good but
I haven't had a moment to myself. I've been trying to get some rest as Marlies,
she's just joined me here, she did my make-up (Marlies laughing), put this scraf
around my neck, and said go down and do an interview.
I haven't even seen the rest of the band that I'm playing with,
they didn't feel necessary to invite me into a soundcheck, so I'm feeling
a bit weird, but that's not unusual for me. I'm often feel like a stranger
in a strange land, although I love France.
I used to live here, but I can't speak a word of French.
Tonight you're going to play with your band.
A very old band, yeah, I'm the second oldest person in the band.
AM : Could you please introduce your musicians ?
If I have to, yeah. The piano player's name is Max Middleton,
apart from being a very good piano player he is a very good gardener,
he's a keen gardener, he likes to make money and he's never bought
me a drink in his entire life. Jeff Allen plays drums, he is a man of
many hats, he is a multi personality. I don't know what he does half the time,
he spends half his day on the phone, making deals and he says he does it
just for fun, but I don't believe him.
Are you ready to wind up the clock with me ?
Am I ready to wind up what clock ? Your clock ? I'm ready to wind somebody up because
people have been winding me up all day long !
AM : I guess you begin to play the guitar very young ?
Very young, yeah, in fact I'm getting tired already now, I'm thinking of taking up
the harp or the piano, it's quieter, I'm getting fed up with the sound of loud twangy guitars.
AM : You had two big influences : the first one was John Mayall who is also on our
Yeah, he is a very hard working man but he is a very average musician !
AM : I guess you learned a lot with him...
I learned a lot about the world, yeah, and he introduced me to lots of beautiful young women
of Los Angeles and San Francisco and it's because of him that I am where I am today,
sitting in a hotel reception room speaking to you on camera.
And your second big influence was The Rolling Stones.
No, no, no, they weren't. My biggest influence has been jazz music and classical music. I just happened to be in the right place at the right time, and I was young, handsome, good looking, and a fabulous guitar player, so I got the job and they have never forgiven me for leaving.
AM : You were part of this band from 1969 to 1974.
The end of 1974 yeah and I never thought they'd last as long as they did but then
I never thought I'd last as long as I have, I hope I make it through tonight's show.
AM : And among all the songs of the Stones do you have one favourite lyrics which comes first to your mind ?
I like "No Expectations" because the older I get the less expectations I have.
Sure, I'm not trying to be funny, I don't think I was very funny actually but
I like "Jumpin'Jack Flash", I like "Moonlight Mile" which I co-wrote.
Could you please tell us the reasons why you left the Stones ?
No, I can't I'm afraid. It's so long ago, that it's lost in the midst of
rock'n'roll dinosaur history, you know. I suppose I must have woke up one
morning and said : it's time to dust my broom and move on !
AM : Are you still in contact with them ?
I did see Mick Jagger and played of one of his songs or one of
their songs and I don't know, yeah, it was great to see him again he
hasn't changed a bit, he's still a skinny.
What is your favourite guitar, as a guitarist ?
My favourite guitar is probably a Fender Stratocaster, most versatile guitar.
AM : If you have the choice to play with two guitarists who will you choose ?
Jeff Beck and Paco pena.
AM : And maybe three ? You're the third one...
As a blues musician you may like to listen to blues music but what kind of other style of music do you like ?
Mozart and Bach and I like French classical music from "La belle
époque", the beginning of the 20th century, Erik Satie, Ravel, George Gershwin.
I like French orchestral music like Berlioz symphonie Fantastique.
I like a bit of opera. I play blues music, I don't know why blues music,
which is an American black art form, comes so naturally to me or at least
it used to, but if I ever get a chance to sit at home, listening to music
I tend to listen to jazz or classical music, it helps me to relax.
You're 61 now, so you did a lots of concerts, all around the world, what is your best gig memory ?
My most memorable gigs, well I think probably playing at Wembley with Bob Dylan in 1984,
playing Hyde Park with the Rolling Stones in 1969, playing with the
Rolling Stones in Madison Square Garden in 1969 and some of my own shows
have been quite memorable, but not as big.
AM : And the worst one, maybe not a good experience with an audience ?
Yeah, the Byron Bay blues festival in Australia in 19..let me get the date right, in 1995.
I had to fly all the way to Australia, which is a 23 hour flight. When I got there,
there was a tropical rain storm and the tent fell down and I was knee-deep in mud and
none of the musicians knew each other so I wasn't playing with a band, so it was chaos...
If someone wants to buy "one" of your album what would you suggest or recommend ?
I would suggest the record that I made in 1979 which is now on Sony records and it's just called Mick Taylor.
Do you have any plans for the future ? What would you love to do ?
I would like to see my children, I would like to get married again and have more children.
I would like to concentrate a bit more on
composing music and I would like to stop touring so much.
I mean I enjoy it, I love it, I love being on stage but it's this part,
not this part specifically, but it's all this rushing around, you know.
AM : Yeah and the waiting.
Waiting, yeah, it's like being in the army, hurry up and wait, you know.
AM : So that's it Mick.
AM : Thank you very much for your time.
It's been a great pleasure, let me give you a kiss.