Evening All Hey, back in 89' I was temping for Phonogram Records off Bond Street in London. Crap job but I met a lot of people. I got chatting to the (admittedly rather gorgeous) secretary to Richard Bates who was then the senior A+R man. I told her I was into Steely Dan in big way and she informed me casually that Richard was Gary Katz's UK manager or something.....cant' remember now......Anyhow, she said that Mr Katz was coming over that Tuesday to discuss a new project with Richard and would I like to meet him?
Would I like to meet him....................would I like to meet GARY KATZ?.......................WAS SHE MAD!!?
I eagerly accepted her come on (yeah.............. right) and she slotted me a coupla minutes with them both which was just about as shitscared a boy could be made to feel...
She pulled out a dark vinyl LP from her desk and said, "if you like Steely Dan then you might like this (handing me a copy of Strange Kind Of Love LP) it's produced by Gary Katz and has Jeff Porcaro from TOTO and Dan on it."
I looked at it and thought, "No, I want Dan free stuff, get it me now!"
I took it home and played it. Hated it except for the intro git riff to Jocelyn Square which I had heard a few times on the radio but never remembered the artists name. I noticed that the plain sleeve was signed by a few people. (Turned out to be all of the band and a few jokers at a party......DOH!)
Cut a boring story short, I went blind in my eyes from a virus on my retina and didnt meet Mr Katz after all. If that secretary is reading this she'll know I'm telling the truth cos I went in to ask her out a week or two later and walked straight into a coffee table and I think blew my chances.....
To round off my story, I got burgled whilst on holiday and all my CD's and records were stolen. Yes, my signed LP too.
Strange Kind Of Love is my all time favourite album and some twat with no musical sense has my signed copy in his/her sticky mitts!!!
I want it back......I went blind for that Album!! you hear? I went blind thinking about that secretary as well but that's unprintable.....
OCTOBER 9TH 1990, LABATTS APOLLO, LONDON.
TOTO gig , freezing night, broken ankle, hanging round stage door waiting for band to show. Got bored , foot killing me, girlfriend tired, decided to see how far we could get inside the building etc.
Halfway up stairs, band comes down, excellent photo opportunity!! Snaps ahoy!! Outside Autograph session ensues, band slightly overawed by reception.
Now as I mentioned to you before, by this time my beloved L & M album had gone the way of a tea leaf (thief). Insurance payout meant CD spree in HMV. Only when I bought the CD did it have a musician listing.........Jeff Porcaro from TOTO did all the drumming! OH..........MY.........GOD! I might be a guitarist but he is undoubtedly the master of the drums.
So I hesitated not and asked him about the sessions with Love and Money, whereupon he took me by the arm and we slipped away from the crowd and he then enthused about the fact that no-one had ever asked him about that album. (I think it was probably the fact that as there was no liner notes in the LP......no body knew anything!)
He said (and I lie not) that he thoroughly enjoyed recording the James Grant songs and wished there would be another chance to work with him again. He said he was a superb song writer and arranger and that more people should be made aware of the album as it had sold "fuck all" in the States........
A writer/ member of the TOTO fan club was earwigging our chat and asked "who the hell are James Grant"...........and we both looked at him with a look translating as "call yourself a fan" and then smiled at each other and Jeff laughed.
"See" he said. And the likes of you and I and a million fans........did.
There are many moments in our short lives that haunt us to our last breath and this was one of them. Little old me sharing a private joke with the truly great Jeff Pocaro about the truly great James Grant.
Just thought you might like to know about it. Feel free to print it if it you like and who knows, Mr Grant may read it and laugh too. And that idiot Fanclub twatt may read it, remember it ..............and cringe. Oh yeah............I've got the pictures on my wall.
Thanks for reading,
Glen Ferris (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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