The Ian Grant interview

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theraven1979
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The Ian Grant interview

Post by theraven1979 » 27 Sep 2005, 22:45

Big thanks to Steveareno for this one he`s done an excellent job on this - hats off!! Lot`s of juicy info for us to discuss as well!!!

THANKS Steveareno, Ian Grant and to those few that took the effort to get some questions together. Hopefully, those who didn`t get involved now see that if you make the effort you`ll get the results!

There are some pics to accompany this interview which I will sort shortly.


Gizzard

• How did you feel when all the bands equipment was stolen after not re-insuring them ?
• Jet knew the gear wasn’t insured. I told him when I resigned, Even if I hadn’t, you’d think they or their tour manager would have checked before going to USA. No, I was the scapegoat for this,
• How close(or not) did Hugh come to rejoining the band.
• Only he really knows this. He did say to me once, “how can I join the band again when they exist with a new singer.

Jim (web-site creator)

• Would he consider trying to organise another one off reformation? If at first you don`t succeed....!
• Again, only he knows this and they do still exist with Paul etc.
• How did the Stranglers compare to managing some of your other bands like Big Country for example ?
• They were my first band I was involved with that were successful and hence, I have fond memories. Can’t really compare bands. Not in a sentence anyway.
• In the early days did you think the Stranglers would last longer than a few months? Were you surprised they made it until 1990 ?
• Didn’t really think about it. I just got on with the job.
• Obviously you`re into what Hugh`s doing at the moment! But what do you think to the Stranglers of today ?
• All power to them for carrying on. I have never seen them without Hugh though.
• Which band member was the most difficult to manage/work with ?
• I loved them all.
• What infuriated you most about The Stranglers ?
• Jet insisting printing 1000 Strangled in French. I think we sold 20 LOL
• What really happened when you approached Hugh and JJ regarding a reform? Why didn`t something come off ?
• Hugh just wanted to move on. His relationship with JJ had broken down I guess.
• At what point did you think the Stranglers were at their peak ?
• I guess that would be Golden Brown era.
• Would you do it all again ?
• Oh, most definitely.
• Would you consider writing a book about your days with The Stranglers and Big Country ?
I have been for years. I have tons of memorabilia to draw from. Hughs letters to me from Pentonville would fascinate you all. And my tales. I have told them many a time. The riot in Portugal is one of my favourites.
•


Organ Grinder

• What influence did drugs have on the bands image and sound in the early years ?
• A lot.
• Who decided to cultivate the image of outsiders/nasty men in the early days ?
• I’d say we at Albion and Alan Edwards. The band then lived out their own publicity. I think JJ was THE punk. Only eclipsed by Sid.
• Were the band much different away from the spotlight in terms of behaviour and
approachability ?
No. They were the real deal. LOL. JJ had a softer side than he would often let on though.
• Which band member did you most identify with in the early days and why ?
• All of them. JJ crashed at my Off License for ages. Jet and his lady Sue went on holiday with me and my wife in 77. So, I guess I was a little closer to them initially but it was Hugh I approached re: leaving Albion. That took place in Llubjiana in Yugoslavia on B/w tour.
• Was the fact the band had a keyboard player pivitol to their success in your opinion ?
• Yes, but so was the rumbling bass, the driving rhythm & the guitar sound.
• Did Jet ultimately have the final say in band decisions even though you were managing them at the time?
• He was the one who paid most attention to business within the band.
• What was the most frightening situation you found yourself in whilst on the road?
• Cascais in Portugal. That was crazy.
• What is the funniest story you can recall from your time
on the road with the Stranglers?
Too many to mention in this form.
• What were your initial thoughts when the band were
incarcerated in Nice on riot charges?
Here they go again. It had a lot to do with my resignation.
• How did your family members view your involvement
with a "notorious" punk band?
Loved it. They enjoyed seeing me being successful.
• Did any of the band members wear pyjama's in bed ?
• How would I know? LOL



Crass

• Do you have any exclusive photos of The Stranglers that we can download to this site?
Not until my book is published. I wish I had a digi cam in those days.
• Do you have any juicy exclusive stories about the band tucked away, ready to divulge to us?
• See previous answer.
• The band seemed to treat you like shit, vis-à-vis backstage at The Lyceum 1980. What's your take on that?
• Don’t remember that to be honest. Guess I only remember the good times which I think is the best way to be in life.
• Grant-Edwards had our demo tape and contacted us to manage us around ‘86. You already had The Cult on your roster, fine - and Big Country - who I thought at the time were a bit... erm, un-Skids, shall we say. So I didn't bother with it. Should I have? Would we be popstars today??!!
• Not sure which band you are referring to. And it’s a hypothetical question.

Aib

• Were you apprehensive about the band's darker less "commercial" sound on Black and White?
• Not at all. I loved that album. The sequay into Death and Night and Blood was awesome. When JJ starts pumping the bass riff. Wonderful stuff.
• What was the best bit of management advice you gave to the band? and did they act on
it ?
• Stick with me and I’ll make you famous. LOL. And yes.!! LOL even more so.
• Were you satisfied with the way UA handled the band's recordings ?
• Oh indeed. How can I look back and be critical. It worked didn’t it.

Paulinblack

• Would you like to manage Hugh or The Stranglers again ?
• I work with Hugh anyway and Yes!
• What would you do to reinvigorate Hugh's/Stranglers careers ?
• Put the original line up together even if for one gig as per Floyd and Live8. Sorry Hugh.
• Are you going to release Hugh's live performances from earlier this year ?
• Hopefully.

Doninblack

• If The Stranglers were awarded some sort of lifetime achievement award (as they rightfully
deserve) could you see the original line-up appearing together to collect it, and on such an occasion, would they play live together?
I would hope so.
• What is your favourite Stranglers memory?
• Many many. If pushed, I would say, the day Rattus Norvegicus went in at 4. Dai leapt onto his desk and punched the air.
• What is your favourite album by The Stranglers and by Hugh?
• The first 4 and Elysian Fields.
• You have mentioned in the past that you will be writing a book about your experiences in the music business over the years. Would you consider writing a separate book solely on your involvement with The Stranglers and Hugh?
• If there was the demand and I had the time maybe.
• Would you get involved in trying to get some of the older Stranglers live material (e.g Rockstage, Chorus (Paris)) released on DVD?
• I’D LOVE TO. It would be a labour of love.

Snakehips

• How did u meet, get paired up?
• They had been courting Dai and Derek a few months
Before I became a partner at Albion and D & D said
We have seen this crazy band. They keep coming here and
Taking the piss. They are at the Nashville Rooms tomorrow and if you go and see them and you like them, lets take them on. I did.
• Why did u go sep ways?
• They were losing too much money and I was fifth partner financially. Plus two of them doing heavy drugs made them a little hard to manage.

FromtheNorth

• Does a particular genre of music entice you into managing a group or is it the cut-throated business approach and would your mangerial methods of the late 70's/early 80's work in the current climate ?
• I have to like the music and the people. I was a bit of a rebel in my youth so managing them was something I related to.

Steveareno

• Where & when was the first time you saw the band live ?
• Nashville Rooms opening for Viv Stanshall. End of 75 I guess.
• How did you meet your Albion Agency colleagues, Dai Davies & Derek Savage ? Is any contact still retained ?
• Derek had booked a band from Brighton I managed. Yes, I stay in touch with both of them. I invited Derek to Hughs book launch last year.
• What was your first indication that something significant was occurring in the music worls back in 1976 ? Did you see The Clash or Sex Pistols during this period ?
• Front page of News of The World. Yes and Yes. I booked the Pistols initially.
• Any particular memories of the band @ the famous old pub venues such as the Speakeasy, the Nashville or Red Cow ?
• Loads. Too many to mention. I do remember debating the merit of punk rock with Mitch Mitchell at Speakeasy, He didn’t approve.
• Was the entire gig @ the Hope & Anchor Front Row Festival (Nov. 1977) filmed ? Only two tracks have ever surfaced (No More Heroes & Something Better Change).
• I don’t remember it being filmed. Oh no.Is my memory failing me? Better get that book finished.
• Why did you split from Albion in 1978 & go it alone with Black & White Management?
• Long story. Dai and Derek got less and less interested in the band and I was doing all the work whilst they were Empire building.
• Did you think Nice in 1980 would finish the band? Were you @ the gig, if so what memories of it do you have?
• Yes and No, I wasn’t at the gig but spent 5 days down there trying to get them out of jail.
• Was the split from the band in 1980 acrimonious? Did your contact with the band then cease or did you keep in touch with them?
• Yes it was at first because as I say, they scapegoated me. I work with Hugh and occasionally see the others. Last time was Midem in Cannes during 1999 or was it 2000?
• You always seem to be blamed for not insuring the band’s equipment, which was stolen in Nov. 1980 (after you had parted company with the band). What’s your take on this?
• Already answered this one above.
• Is that you in the ‘Who Wants the World ?’ video ?
• Yes.
• How did you end up managing Hugh in the early ‘90’s (shortly after he left the band) ? Were you surprised that he’d actually left the band ?
• He asked me to. Which was odd because I was going to manage the band again. I know JJ was up for it but ironically. Hugh wasn’t.
• Did you try & instigate a reformation of the band when you were managing Hugh ? Do you think they’ll ever get back together again ?
• Yes I did. Maybe for an awards bash. Hall of Fame or something but, this is really a question only they can answer.
• Do you keep abreast of what the band & Hugh are up to these days? Have you heard Norfolk Coast or Beyond Elysian Fields respectively?
• Yes a little. I have not heard Norfolk Coast. I keep meaning to as I hear it is their best in ages. I released Elysian Fields on Track Records. It hasn’t done as well as it deserves or as I would have liked.
• Any old gems left in your attic (e.g. live recordings from ’76 or a couple of acetates) ?
• Yes. I also have some Super 8 footage from first US tour.


Jim
Last edited by theraven1979 on 28 Sep 2005, 15:24, edited 6 times in total.
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It taught me how to laugh again"

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doninblack
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Post by doninblack » 27 Sep 2005, 23:44

Nice one - been waiting for this... 8)

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adriana
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Post by adriana » 28 Sep 2005, 08:01

This should be insightful, looking forward to this one!

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theraven1979
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Post by theraven1979 » 28 Sep 2005, 08:30

BOING!!
"I bathed in sun and walked in rain
It taught me how to laugh again"

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gizzard
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Post by gizzard » 28 Sep 2005, 12:32

Excellent!

Well done Jim and all involved.

Look forward to the book..

:grin:
''I THINK THE STRANGLERS ARE CRIMINALLY VULGAR, VIOLENT AND VORACIOUS, AND I OFTEN WONDER HOW THEY GET AWAY WITH IT.''

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Post by icecube » 28 Sep 2005, 12:51

Very interesting! Jolly good show to all involved, say I

• Any old gems left in your attic (e.g. live recordings from ’76 or a couple of acetates) ?
• Yes. I also have some Super 8 footage from first US tour.


:roll: :shock:

Get the bloody stuff released then!

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Post by Monkeyboy » 28 Sep 2005, 13:22

This is really great.....and begs the question.......
"can we have this as a regular feature on the MIB Forums??????"(please)

There must be loads of people that have genuine facinating stories to tell about the boys from back in the day............perhaps we could have it as a seperate Question and answer section because its really great when us fans get a real chance to ask questions that have always interested us...how good is that........................suggested interviews from me are(hope you have some of your own ideas) .....Dai Davies, Alan Edwards, Geoge melley,Steve Strange Alan hillier,......I suppose its just finding someone who knows how to get in touch but you guys obviously can and you have prooved that you can do it.........really brilliant ...well done everyone who was involved.......

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Post by Olympic Smile » 28 Sep 2005, 13:38

Excellent stuff guys!..........One of the best threads since I have been "Lurking"...................would love to see it as a regular thing too!..................Bruce Gooding would be fun too!

Jeff
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doninblack
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Post by doninblack » 28 Sep 2005, 13:50

Monkeyboy wrote:This is really great.....and begs the question.......
"can we have this as a regular feature on the MIB Forums??????"(please)

There must be loads of people that have genuine facinating stories to tell about the boys from back in the day............perhaps we could have it as a seperate Question and answer section because its really great when us fans get a real chance to ask questions that have always interested us...how good is that........................suggested interviews from me are(hope you have some of your own ideas) .....Dai Davies, Alan Edwards, Geoge melley,Steve Strange Alan hillier,......I suppose its just finding someone who knows how to get in touch but you guys obviously can and you have prooved that you can do it.........really brilliant ...well done everyone who was involved.......
With a little help from Google...

http://ccc-acw.org.uk/page.asp?id=memberdaidavies

Why don't YOU send a polite enquiry to the email address shown. No harm in trying :wink:

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doninblack
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Post by doninblack » 28 Sep 2005, 13:55

Olympic Smile wrote:................Bruce Gooding would be fun too!
...only if you have a link to the spirit world. He's gone to the great gig in the sky.

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theraven1979
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Post by theraven1979 » 28 Sep 2005, 15:19

Monkeyboy - already ahead of you fella - this is happening - I`m in talks to try and get some more Q&A sessions organised


Jim

Monkeyboy wrote:This is really great.....and begs the question.......
"can we have this as a regular feature on the MIB Forums??????"(please)

There must be loads of people that have genuine facinating stories to tell about the boys from back in the day............perhaps we could have it as a seperate Question and answer section because its really great when us fans get a real chance to ask questions that have always interested us...how good is that........................suggested interviews from me are(hope you have some of your own ideas) .....Dai Davies, Alan Edwards, Geoge melley,Steve Strange Alan hillier,......I suppose its just finding someone who knows how to get in touch but you guys obviously can and you have prooved that you can do it.........really brilliant ...well done everyone who was involved.......
"I bathed in sun and walked in rain
It taught me how to laugh again"

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Post by pigeon » 28 Sep 2005, 15:39

Very intresting read. I would of asked him if it was him who i saw selling the peaches deleted sleeve in January it went for 800 pounds in the end and the seller was called Ian Grant and he said he had four copies.

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