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with all 3 members of Gunslinger - Alan, Cat & Louis
Interview with Alan Davey
took place January 2009 by Glenn Milligan
you were turned onto Bass guitar by the sound of Lemmy's - what was
it about his sound you liked and set you up in good stead for the rest
of your career?
It growled like nothing I'd ever heard before!! Bass played in that
way is far more powerful that a 6 string guitar. It made me snarl my
top lip and turned me into a Bass Monster like a magic spell!! That's
what triggered me to start playing the bass! I had no interest at all
in playing an instrument before that!!
How was it for you as both as an individual and
musician becoming a member of Hawkwind?
Great as an individual, I was a pro musician, exactly what I strived
for. As a musician, I realised straight away, hawkwind wasn`t what a
hoped it would be, ya know, like 'Space Ritual' times, that sound that
all hawkwind fans want! I brought an element of that back to the band
with my style of bass, based on Lemmy's, but without people like Nik
Turner,DikMik,Terry Ollis etc it really missed their input! So I just
got on with it and did my best to do what the fans wanted, I should
know I was one!!
Mind you, a lot of us popular old members are getting "The Hawklords"
together to do a gig at the Roundhouse on March 8th, it's gonna be really
good, just like that 70`s sound of hawkwind everybody wants!!
What are your biggest memories of those early days in the band for either
good or bad reasons?
Playing with Lemmy on numerous occasions are what I remember the most,
the 2 of us Blasting out dirty bass was a thrill and an honour! If it
wasn`t for Lemmy, I wouldn`t have done all the things I've done and
am still doing in the past 25 years!
I`ve lost count of how many bottles of J.D I must owe him!!!
you say are your favourite Hawkwind songs and albums and why?
Top 3 Songs would be, "Time we left"+"It's so easy"+"Spiral
Why, Lemmy`s bass, Simon Kings drums and Simon House`s keyboard/Violin
playing! Same goes for the top 3 albums!
Top 3 albums, "Doremi Fasol Latido"+"Space Ritual"+"Hall
of the Mountain Grill"
about album sleeves? Any ones that stand out that you like a lot and
why? Or ones you didn't for that matter?
Doremi for its simplicity yet strong appearance,like a shield! Space
Ritual, its so unique,the gatefold and live colourful shots!
Didn`t like 'Live '79' cover - it reminds me of a road sign!! 'Levitation'
wasn't that great either!!
What's your thoughts on so many live albums being
released? Do you think it took the importance away from the newer studio
releases or did it highten their importance?
90% of the live releases were nothing to do with the members of the
band, but 1 member released so many it ruined the bands good name as
most of em were crap sounding! A good studio album every year does a
band the world of good - it shows its a constructive unit! The odd live
one of good quality is good too. But when 3-4 live bootleg half arse
quality albums pop out of nowhere every year it ruins things for the
band, - makes it look cheap! hawkwind just did that again last year
with one called "Nights in Space" or something - it's getting
a right slagging off by lotsa fans!! Why release it?
Only for money I suspect is the answer!!
What are you most proud of, of what you contributed as a member of Hawkwind
over the years?
My bass playing. Many a fan send me messages saying thats what kept
hawkwind going thru the 90's. It was all so synthetic otherwise! From
1990-2006 all albums were drum machines, seq`s not alot of REAL FEEL
playing at all! I felt embarressed sometimes and was always aware I
had to do something special to distract from the syntheticness of it!!
We never played the songs as songs in the studio, which is where it
went wrong in the 1st place!! That took the jamming edge out of it right
away!! I`m proud of a lot of my keyboard pieces though - they came out
well and set a nice mood - had alot of HW fans tell me they're really
cool pieces, they were all played by hand in real time!!
What Tours/Concerts/Festival/Venues stand out
in your mind most of all and for what reasons?
'Balck Sword' - it was a spectacular show!! Reading 1986 that was a
gooden!! Lemmy was there - we scrapped our basses together and made
a god awful racket but it went down well as a bit a of fun!! Nottingham
"Rock City" is prob my fav venue - I always had a good gig
there as the sound on stage is so good!!
What was it like being a member of Hawkwind on a day to day basis both
socially and musically?
Socially nothing changed really, I'm pretty down to earth normal guy.
I don't think of myself as a rock star at all. Musical, many ups and
downs. I always did my best to do what I know the fans would want from
a hawkwind bassist (a president set by Lemmy of course!) I put everything
i had into it!! The first time I played with Simon House was a magical
moment for me - what a musician that guy is!! We did 'Hassan I Sabha'
and I was beaming all the way thru it!
Got many cool road stories worth telling that
you can legally or just about legally talk about?
What like getting drunk, ending up in a house in some town ya dont know
with 2 sisters and
having to get a £70 taxi fare back the next morning before the
bus leaves? No, I got no stories like that!!!!!!
Who would you say had the wildest personalities in Hawkwind and how
did you deal with them?
None of em were wild to me - I was probably more wild to them!! People
are easy to deal with if you start off on the same level right!!
Why did you decide to record and release albums
outside of Hawkwind?
Well my first album, "Captured Rotation" which got great reviews
worldwide - were all songs that brock rejected basically!! He didn't
wanna use any of em as hawkwind tracks!! 'Ancient Light', 'The Call',
'Pre-Med' ,'Higher Than Before' etc are all perfect hawkwind tracks!!
That's why I left in 1996 - I got tired of all my songs that I put forward
to be HW songs getting rejected constantly! A bad call on his part,
considering hawkwinds release at the same time 'Distant Horizons' (which
I wasn`t on!) is deemed to be the worst hawkwind album ever!!
How did Gunslinger initially come to be in the
1st place and why did you decide to resurrect the recordings and release
the album last year?
Gunslinger was born in 1979. My cousin, Nigel potter and I had just
started to learn bass and guitar at about the same time so we got together
and something clicked between us! Big time!!
I found out Nigel had a digital studio and so did I! We've always thought
the Gunslinger songs were great songs so we decided to do a couple of
'em and put 'em on our myspace pages for a bit of fun. Thing is, the
reaction from people was so good we decided to do a whole album and
release it. Then we had to do a myspace page just for Gunslinger cause
there was so many messages about it! 'Earthquake in E Minor' was the
album title we had in 1979 too!!
are the original members of Gunslinger not doing the live gigs - are
they involved in other things or just not into performing anymore?
Well Liffy(drummer) has a full time job and a family, so thats a big
responsibility!! Not the time to jack it all in and go on tour eh!!
Nigel, well its a long story, but I'll say he's the best song writer
i've ever worked with The guys` a song machine!!!
What are your favourite songs on the 'Earthquake
in E Minor' album and why? And what influenced them?
"If the bombs dont get ya the bullets will" + "Going
in for the Kill" + "Dont Need You" and "Night Song"
are my fav`s cause they all kick ass!!! Motorhead and Zepplin were the
main influences there!! Also War, the female orgasm, fighting on the
street and selfish bitches!!!
What were your stand-out gigs that you did with
the 2nd line-up of Gunslinger and why did you decide to change the line-up?
Sunil the drummer was immagrating anyway but it was great to play with
him for a while - nice guy too!! The guitarist just didn't work out,
not quite right!!
We got my nephew Louis on guitar now, he's fitting in well, only natrual
I suppose being a Davey as well! He's really pulled his finger out in
the last 3 months and improved no end!! And we got "Cat" on
drums, she's a great drummer to play with and does all the right things.
She's got a good ear for someone so young!! We have a right laugh rehearsing,
trying things out etc. She's added alot of her own idea's to the songs
giving them a fresh sound! We're getting ready for some dates in Belgium,
Holland and France at mo then back for a few in UK. Then back to europe
for bigger tours including Germany and Luxemburg this time!!
are your personal thoughts of the Hawkwind of now, now since you currently
aren't a member of the band? How would you say the band differs without
your physical presence and musicianship?
Well I don't need to have an opinion on this. I get loadsa messages
about it from fans!! For example-They ain't happy - some have left after
20mins saying they sound like a bad tribute band of themselves. Others
say there's a huge hole in the sound only I can fill, others say it
sounds like their going thru the motions! Which is true!! That's one
of the reasons I left!! Their get up and go, got up and went!!
How come you left Hawkwind - are there plans in
the future to return?
Getting the cold shoulder cause ya ask for ya wages, the lies, the back
stabbing, bitching when people leave rooms- it's handy leaving a mini-disk
player running when ya leave the room for 10mins!! When I returned to
hawkwind in 2000, I said if any petty back stabbing starts again i'm
off! They all moan about each other behind each others backs!! Off course,
being the canny one I play along just to see how far the bitching will
go!! It's unbelievable!! peace and love my ass!!!! So I couldn't stand
it anymore and decided i'd leave at the hawkfest 2007 and annouce it
properly as a mark of respect to the fans,ya know, in person! But i`d
already been replaced in April 2007 and none of em had the balls to
tell me,not even a text message! when i went down to rehearse for hawkfest
before I knew I was sacked there was my roadie(who brock wanted to sack
2 years earlier calling him an interfering c**t! Cause he was always
changing pre tour plans!)playing bass and using my bass gear!! The Cheek!!
Then i was offered a guest spot at hawkfest! Ha, what a joke!! God i'm
glad to be out of that band!! Bunch of Yes-Men and decievers!! Brock
lied to the fans at Hawkfest 07. When asked by fans where I was, Brock
said I'd gone fishing. That weekend it was so windy and wet that no-one
could fishing. Proof of what a liar he is.
My mind was made up to "Get
the hell outta Dodge" (leave HW),at my last gig,the Astoria xmas
party 2006. We were soundchecking and not much was happening, Dibs (my
roadie) was reading an article in Terroriser magazine about the 'Meads
of Asphodel', the black metal band I was bassing for at the time and
I was talking to a friend of mind about his daughter who'd just been
in a terrible car accident! When from across the stage brock shouted
out, "Dibs, Alan, turn the f*ck*ng computer on for f*cks sake!"
It was like a tantrum from a spoilt brat!! How rude and arrogant!! Some
of the Astoria crew said to me "What a prat, who does he think
he is!" I realised at that point he had no respect for me!! He
didn't even ask nicely or just ask at all, I couldn't believe it!! That
is what pushed me out of HW for good! I vowed there and then never to
work with brock again!! After the sound check I started drinking Rum
and must have drunk half a litre bottle before going on stage!!
I can't remember any of the gig or what happened afterwards! I probably
played a blinder though!!
Another thing I used to get
p*ss*d off with/embarassed about, was the xmas party Astoria gigs advertising!
It'd always say there's gonna be loadsa special guests etc etc but they`d
be nothing planned at all,it was all just a ploy to sell tickets by
making the fans think something special was gonna happen! Many fans
have mentioned this to me too! They were never any different from the
other gigs on the tour!" I found it to be an embarressing deception!
I'm still waiting to be paid in full for the 2006 tour!! And a few other
things I ain't been paid for!! I`ve done lotsa things for nothing so
the fans get a good show, but I'm not gonna have the p*ss taken out
of me when we got paid good money for a show and end up with a pitence!
Where's the rest gone!
I asked for accounts for
the 2006 tour but never even got an answer! Lotsa money went missing!
Many ex-HW members will tell ya the same story too, I've spoke to lots
of em about it! So it's not just me that got lied to and ripped off!
Hence the many changes of personel.
I hear 1 more lie from brock!
He put a few lies about me on the net last year trying to turn fans
against me by blaming his F**k ups etc on me, but it back fired on him
big time!! He tried to blame some bootleg embargo on me I didn't even
know about!! But he forgot there was a witness who came forward and
informed me that he witnessed brock set this bootleg embargo into action!
The fans aren't stupid though and they started to take the p*ss out
of him by saying stuff like it was my fault that Sheffield Wednesday
were relagated last year and it was my fault the Titanic sunk etc etc!!
It was so funny! There was so many people doing it brock ended up calling
me trying to get me to put a statement out that it was all a misunderstanding!
I told him to F**k off and said to him,"that`ll teach ya to put
lies about me on the net!!" If he's got any sense he'll not try
that again,or else!! He under estimated my popularity,that was his mistake!!
do you miss -both good and bad about not being a member of Hawkwind?
What's the maddest thing you have ever known happen
while being on-stage at a Hawkwind concert?
Seeing Nik Turner playing his Sax while rollerskating across the stage,with
a crash helmut on!! I had a laughing fit and had to sit on the drum
riser while playing thru watery eyes,I couldn't stand up my legs were
shot!! Nik did some funny stuff man! He made me crack up on several
If you could put the ultimate line-up of Hawkwind
together, who would you have in it and why and what songs would you
want them to play?
The Hawklords at the Roundhouse on March 8th 2009 would be it!!! We're
doing space ritual plus some other classic songs HW fans aint heard
for a long time!!
Are there Hawkwind songs that you got sick of
playing, but had to play them because they were fan favourites - if
so, which ones and how did you get around this fact and keep them interesting?
I only got sick of some songs because they were the same every night!!
We had a PC driven seq'er on stage for a while, It was a good idea for
some songs but for others there was no room for jamming, as Richard
HW`s drummer used to put it," It's Karioke HW!" I just wanted
to get rid of the damn thing in the end. It was ruining the band, but
they wanted it to stay. When we got Jason (R.I.P my old friend!) in
the band I saw that as the ideal time to lose the stage PC, as he could
play all the keyboard parts by hand,much better eh!! But no, it stayed
making the band sound boring to me! It made the songs exactly the same
everynight!! HW is suppose to be a jam band isn`t it!!!???
Are you still in touch with members of Hawkwind
on both a musical and social level or is that now part of your history?
I don't mix with back stabbers and yes-men!!
How many bass guitars do you own and what would you say is your favourite
I`ve got 2 Rickenbakers, a new blue one I've recently bought a 4003
model, it's got a lovely thin neck on it, and my old 1964 aged maple
Black one, a 4001 custom that Rickenbaker made for me in 1986 out of
their best wood! The black one is my fav, its really loud!! Its a souped
up mean barstard, It'll get sweet feedback as good as any 1960's Les
Paul guitar! I had the neck shaved a bit to make it thinner and less
wide and 8 extra notes put on for those high E's!! I was told to insure
it for £2200 by someone who knows!!
Tell us about your forthcoming album out in April 2009 'Eclectic Devils'?
What songs can we expect and what will the touring line-up be and for
They`ll be no tour of that album this year, I'm too busy with Gunslinger
to do 2 bands! But ya never know!! It's got more rock songs than my
previous albums, not so much ambient stuff, I'm saving that for another
project!! Simon House plays mellotron and violin on 3-4 songs (he's
done some of his best work on it in my opinion, I'm honoured Simon!!)
Isobel from "Bruise" sings on one, AdryA from Hungary sings
on one (check her voice out! She`s in my top friend!), Louis will lead
gtr on 1-2, James Hodkinson from "Xoo" keys on 2, Josh Dreamspirit
does some audio generator on 2-3, so lotsa outside input, which is cool!!
What happened to the band Bedouin with ex-Hawkwind Drummer, Danny Thompson?
It run its course,and the music biz was odd at that time so we stopped
it, I went back to HW too so time was a factor there!
How did the band come to be and what are your
most memorable times in that line-up?
I had some good songs - again rejected!! So after leaving HW in 1996
got in touch with Danny T as I really like Dan,we`re good mates and
it was fun playing with him again!!
Are there plans to bring Bedouin back ant time
soon or was it simply a studio/live project for a while with a few gigs?
No plans for a return but I've got some good live recordings and dvd
footage I'm planning to release maybe as a dual disc,dvd one side and
cd the other side!
have been your all-time favourite bass riffs to play and why?
School Days by Stanley Clarke, thats the one!! Very clever use of chord
inversions!! A real challenge!! Try it!!
What songs would you say have been the most difficult to master overall?
School Days!! Everything else was a doddle!!
What would be found in the hobbies and interests of Alan Davey?
Speedway Racing - my fave riders being Leigh Adams and Andreas Jonsson.
Also Pike Fishing when I've got time!!
What have been your favourite places to visit
outside of music and as part of a touring band and why?
Tombstone Arizona. Arizona as a state is spectacular!! Death Valley
is a big fav too - so hot ya really gotta be careful in that place!!
But all ya primitave survival insticts come alive when ya there! It's
a real buzz!! I was there last year and was at Furness Creek one dusky
eve and saw 2 coyote's. For some reason I went chasing after them into
the desert for fun!! I was told that was rather stupid as 2-3 will turn
on ya! Well, down the drain went my survival instincts eh!! I certainly
wasn't hungry!! I really love the deserts of south west America!!
What do you think to the current state of the
A mess!! It'll all sort itself out eventually but the government hasn't
helped by not protecting writers/musicians copyrights via the net etc!!
But then they only help themselves eh!!
What are your thoughts to the power of myspace
and facebook and the internet in general? Would you say it was like
a dream of yours that eventually came true?
I don't know nothing about facebook! MySpace is cool though, it levels
the playing field eh!! And ya get to make contact with some really cool
people! Not a dream come true though - it's just there - so use it!
But it sucks you in sometimes!!
If you had the chance, who would you most like to work with in a band
situation, do a vocal duet with and why?
Charlie Parker, Robin Trower, Simon King or/andTerry Ollis, Neil Young,
Dave Gilmour are a few I'd have fun with cause they're all original
at what they do!!
To sing a rock song with Dolly Parton would be cool - She's got a sweet
If you were to write an Autobiography what would you call it and what
would you have on the cover?
I`d call it "Sex and Pike and Rock n Roll!!". The cover -
I'd have to think alot about that!!!
your career and life so far what would you say you are most proud of?
Gunslinger - the songs, the band and the gigs we're gonna do!!
Short interview with Cat Bothwell - Gunslinger's Drummer
January 9th 2009 by Glenn Milligan
How did you
get involved with being part of Gunslinger?
It all happened really quickly, i finished with a small Ipswich based
band and a good friend knew Alan and said that a metal band needed a
drummer, so i learned the album for the first practise with Alan and
Louis and it all went off from there. i had seen the band name Gunslinger
briefly locally but i didnt really what i was in for so it was a but
of a suprise of what was to come.
What are your main influences musically and socially?
Musically i love anything ranging from the likes of Danish pop group
Alphabeat and other bands like Cradle of Filth. it doesnt really matter
what type of music i listen to, in my tastes of music i look for whether
a song matches my mood or current situation. on drums i look for music
that is very metal and rock based and i love listening and playing double
Socially, sometimes my college friends will recommend a song that they
want me to learn or think that it will help me with playing. Im on a
music course at college, so my life is taken up by music. family and
my college friends are very supportive which is a great boost for self
esteem and encouragement.
What's it like to work with an ex-member of Hawkwind
- do you let that fact bother you or do you just get on with the job
in the band?
To be honest, I'm a bit too young to have known anything about Hawkwind
or who Alan is so i guess that i should really have a better look at
the influences of the music that i like. Alan is a very patient and
understanding musician to work with, he has some crazy stories of when
he was touring with all the previous bands. i've also learned not to
ask what the songs are about.
you most looking forward to in the new year with regards to gigs and
whatever else comes along?
This being the most succesfull band i have been in, i am looking forward
to everything, i have never played outside of East Anglia (England)
so everything is so different to the past bands i have been in, i am
looking forward to everything good that comes to us, mostly if we get
to play Sweden Rock Festival.
What else are you involved with outside of Gunslinger?
I go to Suffolk New College and im studying a National Diploma in Music.
I go to local jam nights occaisionally which makes a nice change to
playing with musicians and everything is improvised. I have a job at
the local Co-op which funds the car and going to the cinema. im not
really in any clubs or organisations.
you doing previous to being in Gunslinger and has that set you up in
good stead for it?
My first band was called The Enemy Within, we had all been playing our
instruments for about 2 years and about the age of 14-15 the music was
very simple and being my first band that was the best time of my life,
i think we were more well known for our beach parties than our music.
i was in a couple of cover bands which was ok, i prefer playing originals.
then the last band i was in called Force was with my boyfriend and his
friends, it was great fun too, i had great belief in it and i loved
the music but half the band wasnt interested and prefered to get drunk
before shows and get paid in beer. it turned stale so i left. from my
experience the best things i have learned is dont drink before a gig
you ruin it for yourself, dont get emotionally involved with a band
member it makes everyone else feel like a spare wheel. playing with
different people at jam nights has helped my confidence with my playing.
you cant teach these things, you have to experience the reality.
Interview with Louis Davey (Guitarist of Gunslinger) from
late January 2009 by Glenn Milligan
did you get involved with being part of Gunslinger?
Well it probably started about 4 years ago before there was even a thought
of Gunslinger getting going again! I’d just started playing guitar
and Alan had invited me to go stay with him for a while. I’d always
hoped I'd get the chance to be in a band with him because there aren’t
too many other bassists that play like him! When I first heard the original
recordings Alan and Nigel had done I just loved them so to be asked
into the band was amazing.
your main influences musically and socially?
The first time I heard a Hendrix CD it just blew me away then Zeppelin
followed and that just opened the door to so many amazing bands like
Rory Gallagher, Robin Trower, Motorhead, Sabbath and so many more. Hawkwind
have had a huge influence on me especially the live Space Ritual album.
Socially my friends and family support me all the way so that helps.
like to work with an ex-member of Hawkwind - do you let that fact bother
you or do you just get on with the job in the band?
It was a bit daunting to begin with but the more time I spent with him
he just became 'Normal Uncle B*st*rd! (I won’t go into why I call
are you most looking forward to in the new year with regards to gigs
and whatever else comes along?
Just getting out there and rocking out! I’ve only played a few
gigs before so with all the gigs coming up I just can’t wait.
We all get along really well so there’s going to be much fun had!
else are you involved with outside of Gunslinger?
I’ve got an album ‘Last Chance Of A Lifetime’ which
is nearly finished. It’s just the vocals to do now, I'll get there
eventually! The album has Alan playing bass and keyboards as well as
mixing and producing.
were you doing previous to being in Gunslinger and has that set you
up in good stead for it?
Well, working with Alan on my album has got me used to playing with
him. I have written a lot of music which will slowly get finished but
I’ve pretty much just been waiting to be a Gunslinger!
Big thankyou to all of you - see at a gig or 3!!