The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #132312 Message #2995133
Posted By: MikeofNorthumbria
28-Sep-10 - 08:23 AM
Thread Name: Boring, Bleating Old Traddy (Peter Bellamy)
Subject: RE: Boring, Bleating Old Traddy (Peter Bellamy)
This thread has been a revelation, with a lot of fascinating and (to me) unfamiliar information about a man I thought I knew pretty well. (thanks to all the contributors -this is Mudcat at its best.)
I met Peter shortly after he arrived in London in early 1965 (or was it late '64?) and saw quite a bit of him until I left town in the autumn of '65. We were acquaintances rather than buddies, but in those days we talked (and argued) quite a bit, mostly over coffee in Bunjies. On one occasion, having found himself inadvertently double-booked, Peter passed the less lucrative gig on to me and my then singing partner. (The fee was two quid – between us, not each – plus a plate of spaghetti Bolognese and a cup of coffee on the house. Luckily, one of us had a day job!)
How bitterly ironic it is now to think of Peter having an embarrassment of offers at the beginning of his career, and contemplating an almost empty diary when he was a respected artist with a distinguished body of recorded work behind him and plenty of fire still left in his belly.
The roots of this tragedy seem a little clearer now, thanks to some of the illuminating postings here. I always knew Peter could be difficult sometimes - you didn't have to know him very long to find that out - and that he enjoyed winding people up. No doubt this tendency didn't help his career. I hadn't realised until now just how much his uncompromising musical stance had alienated listeners who might, in time, have learned to appreciate what he had to offer.
But he could not be other than who he was, or pretend to be what he wasn't. He was one of a kind, and we're all poorer for his early departure.