Jeff Beck on His Legendary Unreleased 1970 Motown Album

February 25th, 2010 by David Fricke Leave a reply »

Photo: Michael Ochs Archive/Getty
In Rolling Stone’s new issue, Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton sit down for the first time to discuss old rivalries, blues heroes and the secrets of their craft. Here’s more from David Fricke’s conversation with Beck: the guitarist on the legendary, unreleased album he cut at Detroit’s Motown studios in 1970.

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Why did you go to Motown to record? And what exactly did you do?
My producer, Mickie Most, said, “We have to make an album.” I talked Mickie into going to Motown, the Hitsville house. It was one of the last sessions there. I was so privileged. We were more like tourists, kids in a candy shop. I took Cozy [British drummer Cozy Powell]. I said, “I gotta go to Motown, and you’re coming as well.” What the hell was I doing taking a rock drummer, with two huge Ludwig bass drums, into Motown?

They hated us right away. They didn’t want to know. But we loved it there, and they sensed it after a few hours. the first day. When Cozy sat behind the Motown drum kit and started playing like the Meters, they all went, “Oh!” and came flooding back to the studio. It was James Jamerson on bass that day — no rhythm guitar — and Earl Van Dyke on keyboards. That was it, a stripped-down thing. They kept saying, “Where are the dots?” [Meaning sheet music] I said, “There ain’t no dots.”

When Cozy started playing, it was great. James was locking up with Cozy’s drum pattern. Then I looked around — Cozy was wheeling the drum kit out of the studio. They’re going berserk. He has moved the sacred Motown drum kit out of the studio and wheeled this stupid double kit of Ludwigs in. The studio tech came up to ...

Article Source: Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily


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