RORY GALLAGHER is no apologist for anybody, most of all himself. Yet he quietly confesses with a wry shrug and acquiescent grin, that he is an “outsider looking in” on today’s happenings in rock.
Hotfoot from the US on completion of six weeks of gigs — part of the current six-month world tour — MM managed to sandwich in a chat with Rory before he set off again for Germany. He’s in Germany now for another ten days or so, and then will be back for an extensive tour in November/December.
“Music is something that grows, it’s not something that you have to keep shocking the public with or shocking newspapers with, or thinking it’s time you changed the style of dress. It just doesn’t show progression and progression is something that you feel yourself, and the audience can feel it. It’s not when it’s up to your manager or your make-up artist to make it look like you’re sounding new. I keep touring and writing songs and working on sessions and unless I’m very unlucky I’m sure I’ll hardly digress.”
“I have ideas though to make, let’s say, off-the-beaten-track albums — an acoustic album is one thing I’d like to do — and maybe do an album with off-the-beaten-track instruments. But I see doing albums in terms of the stage and the band. I rarely use guys who aren’t in the band at the time. If people come and see a concert there’s no point not being able to do something you’ve recorded.”
And so Rory was feeling like the outsider of rock? “I guess I am really. But I don’t want to be a cynical outsider. I just seem to be a little bit uninvolved with it. I seem to be too hung up and worried about this song or that song, which may be a deficiency and maybe I should get more involved with the glamour side, but I don’t think so.
“Some people think you could easily be a bigger star.”
Further, everybody seemed to think that Rory was anti-single.” It was tending to become a trademark of his but it was not intended to be that way.
He wasn’t specially interested in them, but in his own words, not false enough to say he didn’t buy singles himself. And in any case be reckoned that a piece of plastic with two of an artist’s songs on it was healthy
“But it’s all the baloney that goes with it. Name me any artist that hasn’t gone through the whole schemozzle, It’s the pop image I don’t like.”
The forthcoming five-week tour of England, Scotland and Wales should prove as popular as any past, perhaps even more so.
Rory’s new album “Tattoo,” now being released, should get things cooking and Rory stresses how much he and the band, — Lou Martin, Gerry McAvoy, Rod de’Ath — are in good shape and “tight condition “ after America.
A new departure for Rory in the long term would be the achievement of his ambition to write a film soundtrack, and he has made one or two contacts in the field who may help him later on — “not a Hollywood picture” he emphasizes.
“The music from ‘State of Siege’ by Miklos Theodorakis: it’s not beyond me to do something like that. “And for instance the music from ‘Little Big Man’ was all John Hammond, just harmonica and guitar. I’d prefer to write something for a film that would involve guitar — just get somebody to put it together and so on.
Obviously you’d have to involve yourself with it completely and I guess it would be quite time-consuming You might write the incidental music, a few songs or something, but I’d like to get into something a bit stronger than that.