|PLANT TALKS SHRUBBISH!
Regarding the interview with Robert Plant (May 2005, Take 96), I must take issue with Plant over the crass comment he made about Procol Harumís late drummer BJ Wilson, where he stated that Wilson wasnít in the same league as John Bonham.
I certainly agree that John Bonham was an incredible, dynamic drummer, but so was BJ Wilson.
Come off it, Percy. Do you really believe that Jimmy Page would have even considered approaching Wilson if he didnít think he was a top-league drummer? Surely Page must have seen Wilsonís ability when he worked with him on the 1968 sessions for Joe Cockerís With A Little Help From My Friends album.
Furthermore, even the late great Cozy Powell once commented after seeing Procol live back in 1970 that perhaps a few so-called heavy metal drummers should check out BJ Wilson and perhaps they could learn a few points on technique.
Perhaps Plant should check out the 10 Procol Harum albums that Wilson worked on, particularly Broken Barricades, Grand Hotel and Exotic Birds And Fruit, which is probably Wilsonís finest work with the band. However, to really appreciate Wilsonís talent was to witness him playing live, as he never played the obvious and was one of the most powerful, inventive and unorthodox drummers that ever lived. He didnít just play drums, he orchestrated them.
Sadly, BJ Wilson died in tragic circumstances in 1990 and I am in no doubt if Procol Harum had made it into the ranks of the Top 10 bands of the era (in terms of sales and public attention) then Wilsonís reputation would have surpassed many of his peers. Rest in peace, Barrie BJ Wilson.
Dan Kirby, Sidcup, Kent
HEAVY AS LED
Kevin Doyle, Cheetham, Manchester
Thanks, Jill, for the typing
Personalmente ho seguito con molta attenzione la vita musicale dei Led Zeppelin e la carriera 'solista' di Plant. Vale la pena di notare come, indubitabilmente, la sua possente voce - nota distintiva dei primi L.Z.- sia notevolmente "sfiorita" fin dai tempi di The song remains the same (1972/1973), ne' pare che il cantante si sia mai impegnato seriamente per recuperarla, preferendo deviare spesso il discorso sulla sua pretesa ricerca vocale 'orientaleggiante' che contraddistingue -ufficialmente- molti suoi dischi nonche' la reunion con Jimmy Page del 1994.
Proprio questa carenza ha sospinto a mio avviso i Led Zeppelin - e alcuni miei amici musicisti sono d'accordo con me- a ricercare, per compensazione, riff musicali sempre piu' pesanti e ripetitivi, costringendo inevitabilmente lo stile di Bonzo - inizialmente potente ,si', ma anche vivace (crispy)- a seguire la scia dell' "heavy per l'heavy".
Sotto questo profilo, invece, BJ ť' stato piu' ... fortunato, potendo contare su un gruppo direi in costante e feconda evoluzione come i Procol Harum.
Antonio Costa Barbť
BJ's page at BtP