Brando's Feature: Interview with Mike Gibbins

Mike Gibbins, 1969 Badfinger's Mike Gibbins (an interview)

by Apple
Magic Christian Music Songbook, 1969, page 14

When BADFINGER drummer Michael George Gibbins opens his mouth to speak, the words race from his throat and sometimes never make it to the world outside. "I don't really like to talk too much," he says. "I like to think".

Sometimes almost-painfully shy and withdrawn, drummer George confesses: "I'm not a very good conversationalist. I let other people have most of the running, except if they come on strong. Then I speak up. Maybe I'm just lazy.

"A lot of the time I tend to get quietly unhappy, like just before 'Come And Get It' was released and we were having it hard and I hadn't been eating. Not eating depresses me. Being broke depresses me. And I've had both.

"It's not that we're extravagant in BADFINGER. It's just that somehow, when we've got money, we owe it. I'm not money-mad, though. It's not cash I want. It's the things I want to get with it.

"Another thing about me is, the way I get embarrassed. Every time I look at myself from the outside, I get embarrassed. I'm my worst critic.

"I believe in reincarnation. I wouldn't say I believed in God, but I do believe in Good. And that's the same thing.

"I've changed in many ways. I haven't got the hang-ups I had a year ago ... it's the things I've taken that helped. Now, I've got some idea where I'm going.

"But I'm still a very sensitive person. Words could wound me more than some people, even though I'd try not to let it show.

"Strange the way I got into the music business ... I started in a military band back home in Swansea. I went into the lot, Army cadets, Navy cadets, Air cadets; I tried them all. I wanted adventure, Scouts' honour and all that.

"First of all I joined the Sea cadets and I tried bugling, then I got fed up with that and went into the Army cadets' because they had a good band. That's where I started drumming. When I left it took me a long time to get rid of bashing the drum the military way.

Mike Gibbins, 1969 "I don't live music. Sometimes I get blocks about it, and I'm into something else. I'm not like Pete ... he lives and breathes music. I'm not kidding you man, he goes into a studio and it gets hot and horrible in there but he won't come out. He likes it too much.

"Sometimes I get really knotted down, really frustrated, because I want to progress as a drummer but it just doesn't happen. I can THINK new things, but they don't always show. Then it knocks me down so much, I just can't get other things together".

The Quiet World of Michael George Gibbins began on March 12, 1949, and for the record you may wish to know that apart from red hair and freckles, he was once described as having the cheeky but slightly unsure smile of a kid caught pinching the bread and jam.

When he joined his first military band, Mike developed drumming fever and was heard thumping, thumping, thumping on his parents' furniture night and day.

Worried for the safety of his house and home, Dad bought Bread-and-Jam his first set of drums.

It was, indeed, a good day for BADFINGER.

Note: Mike's last name was spelled incorrectly in the songbook, it has been corrected here. For those who have a doubt. I did not conduct this interview. It was taken from the Magic Christian Music Songbook issued by Hansen Publishing in 1969.

Back to Brando's Feature Page
Back to Brando's Badfinger Page