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Gonzo Latest News: Joey Molland Interview

Date Published: 19th February 2014

As he releases his new album ‘Return To Memphis’, Jason Barnard speaks to Badfinger legend Joey Molland about his incredible career.

In a new extensive feature read about Joey’s early years in Liverpool, the huge highs and lows of Badfinger, historic sessions with George Harrison and John Lennon, to his solo rebirth.

I’ve heard your new album ‘Return to Memphis’ has a back to basics sound.

Yes, it is basic. I had the chance to go to Memphis, Tennessee and do some guitar work on a session. While I was down there I was reminded about Tennessee and Memphis, the studios and the whole thing. I grew up listening to a lot of rhythm and blues and a lot of Memphis music in fact; so it was great thing to go there. I decided to do the record in Memphis and did it with three Memphis musicians and a Memphis producer. The producer brought in 3 or 4 girl singers, depending on the song, to do back up vocals and harmonies with me.

It’s a very different sound, it’s very simple. It’s me and a trio. Just a couple of little organ and piano overdubs and a little slide guitar on my part. That’s it really; it’s not a big production number. It’s very different to anything I’ve done for 30 or 40 years or so. It’s a great pleasure.

Is the track ‘Hero’ representative of the album?

It is. The producer Carl Wise comes right out of the Stax/Hi Records Memphis music scene. Same with the players, Lester Snell, the keyboard player was Isaac Hayes’ music director for seven years. So there was a lot of in that tradition. They play in a different way in Memphis as they do in a lot of the great cities. It’s not funky, I didn’t go down there to make a James Brown record or anything like that. But it’s lovely the way they play; they have a lovely soft touch. They rest in different places in the music. I really enjoyed myself and I’m hoping that people will at least give it a shot.

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