Brando's Feature: Interview with Tom Evans



Tom Evans, 1969 Badfinger's Tom Evans (an interview)

by Apple
Magic Christian Music Songbook, 1969, page 18

"Basically", admits BADFINGER Tom Evans, speaking with the dry edge on his voice that lets you know it's true, "I'm very introvert. I hate walking into strange rooms or crowded offices ... I get paranoid because I worry about who's looking at me. It makes me seize up. I forget what to say."

"But put me on a stage, and I'm completely the opposite. It's me who's got the advantage, me who knows what comes next."

"People tell me I'm ruled by my star sign, Gemini. I don't know. I was born on June 5th and that's about the strength of it."

"I'm in the music business for good. I couldn't get out of it now. It's flowing in my veins. I started in Liverpool with the Calderstones, the local teeny bopper group, one of the local idols. That was around 1966."

"I can tell you this, Liverpool will never happen big again. Not like in the days of the Mersey beat boom. The scene's gone progressive, but the Liverpool people are still sitting back dreaming about the past."

"Badfinger's bag? We're just a rock'n'roll group. I'm not ashamed of it. Sometimes it's easy to go along with the musical snobs, easy to forget out there in the public."

"We've been through a lot to find where we are today. We came into Apple and we were the Iveys, and we had to say 'hold on now, where are we?' We were influenced so much by all this superiority."

"Now ... well now, we've been through all that, and we've jammed around and found out that you've got to play within your capabilities. It's no good pretending you're something you're not. Not to the public."

"In Badfinger, we try and channel our surplus creative energy into good songwriting. The moods come and go, but 12 months we were writing two a week and now there's 200 or 300 songs in there."

He pauses, frowns.

"In the past, though, they were nothing songs. That's the honest thing about it. Twelve months ago, we just hadn't found our right level. Maybe they were good for the time, but they're not good for now."

"Between joining Apple and getting our big push in 'The Magic Christian', we only had one record out. That was 'Maybe Tomorrow', and it climbed half-way up the American charts but did nothing in Britain."

"That period depressed me more than I can say. I hit bottom. I began to think that maybe we weren't really good enough, even with Apple behind us. What I came to realize was that the fault was entirely ours. We sat back. We thought it would just happen. We'd come to Apple and it was the big pop star thing, we didn't need bother, effort."

"Now, we know better. It's not just being pop stars, it's a living, a place to channel your mind into. You don't sit back. The world doesn't owe you any favours. You have to keep plugging."

"Not having money, that's what depresses me ... Getting so much for a gig in the past and thinking it was the big time, then watching it have to stretch because we had to pay the rent and the expenses and the travel. We spend a fiver a week in pocket money, that's all. I mean it."

"I hope all this doesn't sound too miserable. I feel down sometimes, sure, but I'm not that way all the time. I love music, I love the potential, the atmosphere. Once you've picked up a guitar and played three chords, it's hard to stay away from it again."

"Once, in Liverpool, I sold all my equipment and more or less gave up. Then I saw all the groups going around, saw their equipment, and I was back. It got a hold on me."

"Musically, I can't stand anything monotonous. Led Zeppelin does some exciting things, but it gets to be a drag after a while. I like to stay pretty close to the blues thing."

"I know where I'm going now. Acid taught me that, but I could just as easily have been a fitter in a factory. That's how I started out. I even did a degree course in engineering."

"What I'd like people to know about BADFINGER is that when we were the lveys, I don't think we were worthy of being with Apple."

"But tell the people we've changed. Tell them we've had a year in the studios, and a year of finding ourselves and where we're aimed."

"Tell them we're a heavy pop group. BADFINGER."


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