Transcript: Transcript Beyond the Flames: The Psychedelic Journey of Arthur Brown

Breath of Fresh Air Seg 1

(0:35) Hi, thanks so much for joining me today. (0:39) If you’re a regular listener, you’ll know that my mission is to seek out and chat with (0:44) some of the musical stars of the 60s, 70s and 80s. (0:49) I’m always keen to take your requests, and I follow Mino’s too, in recalling some of (0:55) the songs and artists that shaped my own youth.

(0:58) Were you around for this one? (1:00) I am the God of Hellfire, and I bring you fire. (1:06) I’ll teach you to burn. (1:11) Fire.

(1:13) I’ll teach you to learn. (1:17) I’ll see you burn. (1:23) Fire, from 60s British rocker Arthur Brown, who set the world alight in 1968.

(1:29) The flamboyant and theatrical performer became known not only as the God of Hellfire, but (1:36) as the forerunner of face paint, elaborate costumes and dramatic lighting. (1:41) So many bands have copied him since. (1:44) Let’s meet him, shall we? (1:45) Arthur Brown, how are you? (1:47) Doing really well, thank you.

(1:49) So, everybody knows you for that incredible hit, Fire. (1:53) That was when you had the band The Crazy World of Arthur Brown. (1:57) Tell us a little bit about that band.

(1:59) Well, it came out of a desire to open a multimedia club, because I’d come across various clubs (2:07) in Italy and France, where one club had stalagmites and stalactites, and you sit in amongst them (2:15) all. (2:16) And I just thought, oh, a surreal multimedia club is what I’d like to open. (2:22) But I couldn’t raise the money for it, so I thought, well, I’ll have a multimedia band (2:27) then.

(2:27) So from that came the idea. (2:30) We did a live show, and the visual became important. (2:35) And then started adding costumes and some flames.

(2:39) That was going down well. (2:41) And then Pete Townshend came down and took us to his record company. (2:48) They said, well, we need to hear what we can do in the studio.

(2:51) So Pete took us out to his studio, and we did the demos. (2:56) And then we did the album. (2:58) And by that time, it developed into the story of the person going down, going through the (3:06) flames and all of that, and the world in chaos and stuff.

(3:11) Fire! (3:13) I’ll take you to burn! (3:18) Fire! (3:20) I’ll take you to burn! (3:27) I’ll burn! (3:54) Fire! (4:09) To that kind of lyric. (4:11) So if we make the lyric supported by the costumes, then it becomes a character. (4:18) Then they will probably be able to more accept it.

(4:22) So that was the beginning of the whole theatrical thing. (4:26) And we played down in UFO Club. (4:29) And the other bands that were there at that time were Soft Machine and Pink Floyd.

(4:35) And various other people came down as it got more and more popular. (4:42) Emily tries but misunderstands. (4:48) She’s often inclined to borrow somebody’s dreams till tomorrow.

(4:55) There is no other day. (4:59) Let’s try it another way. (5:03) You’ll lose your mind and play.

(5:07) Free gait away. (5:11) See Emily play. (5:22) Soon after dark, Emily cries.

(5:29) Gazing through trees in sorrow, hardly a sound till tomorrow. (5:36) There is no other day. (5:40) Let’s try it another way.

(5:44) You’ll lose your mind and play. (5:48) Free gait away. (5:53) See Emily play.

(5:58) We went and did the Alexandra Palace. (6:01) And I remember my manager of the day, Kit Lambert, coming to the entrance. (6:08) And it had double doors.

(6:10) So you have one lot of doors, you go through them, there’s another lot. (6:14) He came to the 14-hour technical, a dream. (6:17) The 14-hour technicoloured dream featured Pink Floyd headlining.

(6:22) The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, Pete Townsend, Graham Bond, Savoy Brown and Yoko Ono were also on the bill. (6:29) But back to our story about Arthur Brown’s manager trying to gain entry. (6:33) The bouncer on the door said, well I don’t care who you say you are, where’s your ticket? (6:39) And he said, but I’m his manager, he’s one of the people playing here.

(6:43) I don’t care. (6:45) So at that moment he was asked to deal with another matter. (6:50) So he turned round to deal with that.

(6:52) And Kit Lambert leapt into the doorway and started running for the second door. (6:59) And so the guy ran over and laid him out on the floor. (7:04) Next morning he walked into his office and the people said, you’ve got a big black eye Kit, where have you been? (7:12) He said, I’ve been to a Love Inn.

(7:15) Arthur Brown, who were you before you became the God of Hellfire? (7:19) Where did you concoct all these crazy ideas from? (7:23) Well some of them were concocted in Paris where I did a residency, (7:28) which was the sort of early days of the English R&B scene. (7:53) From town to town. (7:56) I say I think this life is grand.

(8:03) Don’t bring me down. (8:06) I met this chick the other day. (8:10) And then to me, she said she’d stay.

(8:15) I got this bad, bad, illiterate. (8:32) Don’t bring me down. (8:36) The psychedelic scene was creeping in.

(8:39) And because we had a residency and we played every day of the week and twice on Sundays, (8:45) we didn’t get a lot of time to rehearse. (8:47) So we played the same numbers, but we started to elongate and then do little skits. (8:55) And then other things came in.

(8:57) But had you always had this love for theatre? (8:59) Well, when I was little, I played King Alfred, burning the cakes. (9:04) And then at Reading University, I did some drama, but it was also singing. (9:10) And so that went down really well.

(9:13) Although I was singing what I thought was a serious song, but all the audience were laughing. (9:18) So I realised, oh, well, if I enlarged the kind of thing they were laughing at, (9:24) and they laughed even more. (9:25) And then when I was in school, before that, one of our books was Murder in the Cathedral by TS Eliot.

(9:33) And that was a kind of eye-opener for me because they played it under normal lighting (9:40) until it came to the point where Beckett gets murdered in the cathedral. (9:46) And at that point, they turned everything red. (9:50) So the whole of the stage, because it was blood, obviously, from him being murdered.

(9:55) But I just thought, wow, that’s an amazing capacity, (10:00) just to take lights and make people shocked or feel good. (10:44) There were things like that that just popped into my consciousness and I retained them. (10:51) Some of them I did use on stage.

(10:54) If you have a character, then you dress the character. (10:57) And our technology has kept changing and developing the ability to do things visually. (11:05) You were certainly way ahead of your time, weren’t you? (11:08) Yeah, I suppose so.

(11:10) I suppose so. (11:11) There weren’t many people doing anything like that. (11:14) And for instance, in New York, in The Crazy World, (11:17) we put one of the people who’d come up with the small faces as one of their tour managers.

(11:23) But he had such great ideas. (11:26) We put him on the lighting and he just treated it differently to all the other lights people. (12:42) In those days, lighting was just spot and it was very minimal.

(12:53) But he would take the whole lighting console and then bang it in time with the music, (13:00) which nobody had ever seen, and turn on the strobes. (13:04) And so it became a thing that we would just experiment for fun. (13:09) And then if it got a reaction, found the way to put it in so it meant something in the drama.

(13:17) It was equally scary in some part. (13:21) And I began to realise that the dramatic element could then be translated into taking rock song (13:30) and making the structure of the music dramatic as well. (13:35) So that there was a tension in the music and in the lyrics and in the lighting (13:41) and in the way that the thing was sung.

(14:07) Blue time, I’m on its side (14:18) I could cry (14:44) Scrap on me, baby (14:46) Devil, scrap on me (14:50) Devil, scrap on me, baby (14:54) Devil, scrap on me (15:05) That came on the scene and then a lot of people saw that it was being successful. (15:11) A lot of music bands started to experiment. (15:14) Well, of course, you were working in a time where it was really fertile ground, wasn’t it? (15:19) Nothing like that had been seen before.

(15:21) And everybody was really open to all this experimentation. (15:25) So the reaction you were getting was huge, wasn’t it? (15:29) It was, yes. (15:30) And it was equally because the audience was kind of open and expecting things to be done (15:39) that weren’t done before.

(15:42) That enabled us to do things that weren’t there before. (15:46) Rather than the audience going, oh, gosh, why did I do that? (15:51) They said, no, wow, that was great. (15:54) Keep doing it.

(15:56) That was more the early time because later it got to be formalised (16:01) and people did have particular expectations. (16:06) You fought hard and you saved and earned (16:10) But all of it’s going to burn (16:14) Burn, you burn, you turn and burn (16:16) You know you’ve really been survived (16:18) Yes, you turn and burn, you burn (16:19) You fall apart, you fall behind (16:21) Oh no, oh no, oh no (16:27) You’re gonna burn (16:31) Burn (16:33) To destroy all you’ve done (16:38) Fire (16:40) To end all you’ve become (16:45) I’ll give you your burn (16:50) Like a little girl (17:03) Burn, you burn, you turn and burn (17:05) You know you’ve really been survived (17:07) Yes, you turn and burn, you burn (17:11) You fall apart, you fall behind (17:20) I’ll take you to burn (17:24) Fire (17:27) I’ll take you to burn (17:29) It was known as psychedelic rock (17:44) and it was music that dared to go where no other had gone before. (17:47) It was a sound that captivated the hearts and minds of a generation (17:52) igniting a cultural revolution that changed the world forever.

(17:57) More about Arthur Brown’s unique contribution in a sec.


Breath of Fresh Air Seg 2

(0:00) This is a breath of fresh air with Sandy Kaye. (0:04) It’s a beautiful day. (0:08) Thanks for hanging in.

(0:09) We’ve already talked about the time that it was, (0:12) a period of great social upheaval, (0:14) with young people rebelling against the conformity (0:17) and conservative materialism of the post-war era. (0:21) The wild music coincided with the embrace and use (0:24) of mind-altering drugs and the exploration (0:27) of new realms of consciousness. (0:29) Artists like Arthur Brown celebrated the power (0:32) of the imagination and rejected the conventions (0:35) of mainstream rock and roll.

(0:37) Then there were people who took their own direction (0:40) from all of that, you know, like Alice Cooper (0:44) took it and made his heart out of it, (0:47) and he’s got his own artistic approach to it. (0:50) Bruce Dickinson took his way, and various other people, (0:55) even George Clinton. (0:58) George Clinton, yeah.

(0:59) Yeah, he came down to, and he said, (1:02) from then on I knew where I was going, (1:05) because it meant his whole type of extreme stage show was, (1:11) he saw that that was a thing that could be possible now, (1:15) whereas he had been playing doo-wop music, (1:18) because that was what was possible then. (1:21) And this was a different time when people were open (1:24) to ideas, new philosophies, new ways of looking at society, (1:30) new ways of looking at everything, actually. (1:54) And it’s taken me by surprise (2:00) Happiness around me (2:05) You can see it in my eyes (2:09) Now it was just a little while ago (2:14) My life was incomplete (2:20) I’m so dark (2:28) Don’t you know that I just want to testify (2:33) What your love has done for me, everybody (2:48) Were you flattered with them all taking your lead, (2:51) or did you feel like they were just copying you? (2:54) I thought there were some bands that just copied it, (2:58) but mainly they did take it all on their own direction.

(3:03) And of course one of the beauties of what became known as prog rock, (3:07) although it was progressive music to begin with, (3:10) was that each band had their own way that they made music differently (3:18) than anybody else. (3:20) And the sounds of all the bands were different, (3:23) and the kind of structures were different. (3:27) The sounds were different, but in terms of wearing the make-up, (3:30) you were the originator of that, (3:32) and bands like Alice Cooper and Kiss, for instance, (3:35) just took that and ran with it.

(3:37) So although they were making very different music, (3:40) they had copied that whole theatrical look, hadn’t they? (3:45) Yeah, they did. (3:47) But then, you know, if you look at me, (3:50) there were things in, for instance, (3:52) one thing I didn’t mention when you said, (3:54) well, where did you get your ideas theatrically? (3:57) It wasn’t necessarily in theatre, (4:00) or it was a form of theatre like, say, ritual dancing (4:05) on videos made by people going out to see the tribes at that time in Africa. (4:13) And seeing the witch doctors and all of that stuff, (4:18) I was very influenced in my dancing and in the visual type of approach.

(4:24) And so I was watching people doing music, (4:29) but in a different way. (4:31) I wasn’t just watching musical and English and European stuff. (4:36) It was music from all over.

(5:01) Just going back to Fire, the single, (5:04) and that amazing burning helmet that you made your moniker. (5:08) If you could share a couple of the mishaps (5:10) that happened along the way with that as you were experimenting. (5:14) As with lots of things, there are chance things that happen.

(5:18) And I remember we were in Montmartre doing this residency in Paris. (5:24) We used to have some wild parties there, (5:27) and somebody one night, when I woke up and opened my door, (5:31) there was a crown on the floor with candles in it. (5:35) And so I took it down to the club that night and wore it, (5:38) and lit the candles, and everybody… (5:42) And so when we got to do the Fire theme, (5:47) and I’d written the poem that comes just before Fire.

(5:52) I was lying in the grass, and the grass turns to sand, (5:57) and the river turns to a sea, and then it all bursts into flame, (6:02) and that leads into Fire. (6:07) And I was lying in the grass by a river. (6:13) And as I lay, the grass turned to sand, (6:17) and the river turned to a sea.

(6:21) And suddenly the sea burst into flames, (6:24) and the sand was burning. (6:27) And I breathed in, and there was smoke in my lungs, (6:31) and there was fire in my brain. (6:34) And I looked around me, and there were all these shapes (6:37) being sucked into the flames.

(6:39) And they were writhing and trying to escape. (6:41) And I knew that I had to get out. (6:44) And I looked above me, and I saw a shape (6:46) that was smiling down at me and beckoning, saying, (6:50) Come on home! (6:51) I wrote that one when I was probably about 15.

(6:55) So I’d already got that interest in fire and flame and light (7:01) quite early on. (7:03) And my father had introduced me to meditation when I was young. (7:08) So when it came to doing the first album, (7:12) well, that was what was most in my mind.

(7:15) So I put an image of fire on everything. (7:18) Fire can be something that burns you. (7:23) But then the burning can be to get rid of all the crap (7:27) you attach to yourself by what way you think, (7:32) by the way you’re taught, by whatever.

(7:35) So the hellfire flames, that’s what they were to do. (7:40) And of course, it needed figures for that. (7:43) So the God of Hellfire became the song.

(7:47) And then it was like, well, OK, if we’re going to do that, (7:50) then we need to amplify the visual side of it, (7:55) of the character. (7:56) And so because the older pagan religions were into horns, (8:04) et cetera, we had the two horns with flames coming out of them (8:10) before the horns. (8:12) So I was wearing a pie dish because the candles broke (8:16) after a while.

(8:19) And so the dish was filled with petrol, (8:22) and the roadie would throw lighted things into it (8:26) until it exploded, usually. (8:30) There were a couple of mishaps along the way, though, (8:31) weren’t there? (8:33) Oh, lots. (8:35) Yeah, burnt ceilings, stages, my clothes, my hair.

(8:40) It’s one of the gigs. (8:42) My clothes caught fire. (8:44) Another performer had two glasses of Newcastle Brown (8:48) that he was carrying, too.

(8:50) So he put me out. (8:52) With the beer? (8:53) Yeah. (8:54) What was it that intrigued you so much about fire? (8:57) When did the fascination begin? (8:59) Well, it had several things.

(9:02) One is that when I was born, it was the Second World War, (9:07) and we were living in the east end of London. (9:12) The bombing hit that part of London very powerfully. (9:17) So the house we were living in there was bombed, (9:21) and it exploded while my mother had me and my brother (9:26) out in the pram.

(9:27) And suddenly there was this big explosion, (9:30) and the house was gone. (9:31) And everything on that street was in flames. (9:35) And, of course, I only have very fleeting memories of it, (9:40) but the feeling of the people around me (9:43) affected me quite deeply as a child, obviously.

(10:07) Hello, London! (10:15) And then we moved. (10:18) My grandma had a hotel in Yorkshire, (10:21) and that was blown up as well. (10:23) But in the meantime, there was no TV, (10:27) and so a lot of the time I spent listening (10:31) to the grandfather clock.

(10:33) And at night you had to have black curtains (10:37) drawn across the window without any little gaps, (10:41) because if you had little shafts of light coming out, (10:44) the bombers would come and bomb that house. (10:47) So you sit there in the dark and listen to the clock. (10:56) Sometimes you’d have the coal fire going, (11:00) and I used to spend lots of time just looking at the flames.

(11:05) It was very hypnotic. (11:08) How incredible that those experiences (11:10) were to shape your entire life. (11:13) Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

(11:34) Arthur Brown, that very first album that you did, (11:38) when you were becoming the pioneer of shock rock (11:40) and progressive rock, I Put a Spell on You (11:43) by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins. (11:45) Ah, yes. (11:46) Share a little bit about that.

(11:48) Well, it was the version by Nina Simone (11:52) that first got me. (11:54) It was such a wonderful, powerful, moving (11:58) horror song, a terror song, a love song (12:02) that showed me how you could be extreme (12:06) and really full of passion in the performance of things. (12:11) It allowed the full range of my voice to come out.

(12:15) You know, I’d taken classical lessons (12:17) and liked to really throw the voice about, (12:20) and that was a song that allowed you to do it. (12:51) I don’t care. (13:42) Arthur, I wanted to talk to you also (13:43) about the fact that you were one of the first (13:45) rock acts to use the drum machine, (13:49) again being a pioneer.

(13:51) Ah, yes. (13:52) I do like, you know, new ideas. (13:56) So that was in the 71.

(14:02) It was my third band, really, Kingdom Come. (14:05) It was called Arthur Brown Kingdom Come. (14:07) And it was quite an experimental band.

(14:13) Not surprised by that. (14:15) At one time, we’d had a series of drummers (14:20) coming through. (14:21) Some of them were excellent.

(14:22) Some of them couldn’t stand props in the theatre. (14:26) So we came to a point where one of them (14:30) had just run off with our van. (14:33) And the idea came up of, (14:37) why don’t we do it without the drummer? (14:40) Because we had some experimental sound equipment.

(14:44) Everything was changing in the sound world then. (14:47) And so we’d had trouble (14:51) governing the sound of the drums. (14:56) Say, like, the guitarist wanted to play gently (14:59) and the drummer’s whacking away.

(15:02) You quite often can’t hear the guitarist (15:07) because he’s playing softly. (15:09) We thought, well, why don’t we take a machine, (15:13) strip down the band, (15:15) and try and make it like the equivalent (15:18) in rock of a string quartet. (15:20) Not that kind of music, obviously, (15:22) but the simplicity of it.

(15:24) And the fact that with a drum machine, (15:27) you can control the volume on stage. (15:30) In those days, the drum machines (15:31) were not like they are now. (15:33) So there was a lot more limitation (15:34) on what you could actually play.

(15:38) But because we also had the synthesizer (15:41) with patch boards and wires that you put into it, (15:46) but it also had a joystick, (15:48) so we were able to create all these space sounds. (15:52) And the combination of that with the drum machine (15:55) gave us a very unusual sound. (15:58) And then the guitarist was able to be (16:01) either very rooty and lyrical (16:05) or almost vicious.

(16:08) I think the track Time Captives (16:10) really captures that sound, doesn’t it? (16:13) It does, yeah. (16:14) We took a guitar piece (16:17) and then we recorded the five guitars over each other, (16:21) just playing… (16:25) but on different notes (16:27) and interlocked at different times. (16:31) Developed the visual side of it later after that.

(17:35) Arthur’s experimental music tantalised audiences. (17:38) Instead of simple chord progressions and catchy hooks, (17:42) it favoured complex structures, (17:44) intricate instrumentation (17:45) and an emphasis on effects and studio techniques. (17:50) Today, more than half a century later, (17:52) countless bands and artists continue to draw inspiration (17:55) from what he and other pioneers of this ground breaking genre began.


Breath of Fresh Air Seg 3

(0:00) This is a breath of fresh air with Sandy Kay. (0:04) It’s a beautiful day. (0:08) Welcome back.

(0:10) Arthur Brown quickly developed a cult following, (0:13) but the mix of special effects, dramatic costumes and colourful theatrics (0:17) was often highly controversial. (0:20) Arthur was determined to become acceptable to the mainstream (0:23) and to finally make a reality his dream of staging a true multimedia show. (0:28) We decided one thing we would like to do would be a tour of the schools, (0:34) the young people.

(0:36) This one headmaster said, OK, come to my school. (0:39) The pupils were about 11, 12. (0:42) So we put on the drum machine and everything (0:45) and they went absolutely crazy for it.

(0:48) They loved it. (0:49) Arthur, in 75 you appeared in the Who’s Rock opera Tommy. (0:53) You talk about your woman (0:56) I wish you could see mine (1:01) You talk about your woman (1:04) I wish you could see mine (1:09) Every time she starts to love (1:12) She brings eyesight to the blind (1:15) Oh yeah (1:25) You know her daddy gave her magic (1:28) I can tell by the way she walks (1:34) You know her daddy gave her magic (1:37) I can tell by the way she walks (1:42) Every time she starts to shake (1:45) The dumb begin to talk (1:49) Talk, talk, talk (1:51) Talk, talk, talk (1:54) The movie Tommy included a number of celebrities.

(2:04) Anne Margaret, Jack Nicholson, Oliver Reed, Elton John, Tina Turner, Eric Clapton (2:09) and of course Arthur Brown. (2:11) This wasn’t the only time that Arthur crossed paths with the Who. (2:15) That band later covered Fire on their album The Iron Man, (2:19) the musical by Pete Townsend.

(2:21) Since then Marilyn Manson, The Ventures, Death Grips Cathedral and Ozzy Osbourne (2:26) have all covered or sampled that song. (2:29) You contributed vocals to the Alan Parsons Project song Telltale Heart (2:34) and in 1979 you actually moved to Africa and lived there for six months. (2:39) You directed the Burindi National Orchestra, which is a nine-piece rock group (2:43) that played Jimi Hendrix songs as well as local music.

(2:47) Yeah, I really wanted to find somebody (2:51) who could really do the dances with all the knowledge of the witch doctors. (2:58) I never did, but I taught at a school there. (3:02) So I brought in some of the ancient instruments and the older people to play them (3:08) and people were just about to go out and see a blues concert (3:13) and I said, well, do you know where the rhythms come from? (3:17) And they said, yeah, America.

(3:18) They come from around here. (3:22) The original rhythms that they’re playing in the rock bands (3:25) are a lot influenced by all the African rhythms. (3:29) For instance, some of the ones from Burundi where I was (3:33) was what Adam and Ant based their stuff on.

(3:37) Really? (3:38) Yeah, we were very influential on them. (5:47) King of the Wild Frontier was the first single by Adam and the Ants (5:51) to feature the two-drummer Burindi Beat, for which the band became famous. (5:56) It was also the first written by Adam Ant and Marco Perrono (5:59) in what will become their successful songwriting partnership.

(6:03) It was the early 80s and Arthur left the UK to settle in Austin, Texas, (6:08) where he earned a degree in counselling (6:10) and opened a music-based practice. (6:13) He also opened a house painting and carpentry business with Jimmy Carl Black, (6:18) who’d been a former member of Frank Zappa’s Mothers of Invention. (6:21) He and Jimmy later teamed up to release Brown, Black and Blue, (6:25) a powerful blues rock set in 1988.

(6:29) You don’t know how much I love you (6:32) You don’t know how much I care (6:36) When you put your arms around me (6:39) I get the fever that’s hard to bear (6:44) You’re a sweat on my body (6:48) Fire in my soul (6:52) Makes me tear up, fall apart (6:55) So I don’t wanna get well no more (6:58) You give me fever (7:01) When you’re kissing me (7:19) In 2002, you supported Robert Plant on his Dreamland tour. (7:23) In 2003, you worked with Marc Rizzicchi of the band Big Country (7:28) and you released Vampire Suite, an album with him. (7:32) After that album, Arthur became a regular guest at Hawkwind concerts.

(7:36) In the 2010s, a spate of archival live releases dominated his catalogue (7:41) and he continued to tour extensively with Carl Palmer’s Emerson Lake and Palmer Legacy Tour. (7:47) 2022 saw Arthur Brown celebrate his 80th birthday with the release of a new album. (9:22) It’s an album of really celebrating my roots in jazz, rock and blues.

(9:32) So that’s the album, but they’re all different, the songs. (9:37) The title song is The Long, Long Road. (9:43) And it’s kind of the long road that I’ve got in music, the long road in human history (9:48) where they repeat the same errors all the way through (9:54) and end up beating each other up as a way of living.

(9:59) But it is a presentation of it. It is my dream multimedia show. (10:09) And it was what I was wanting to do in that band that did Time Captains, (10:15) but we didn’t have the technology.

(10:18) So today you’ve got the technology to do exactly what you want. (10:22) Yeah, and we’ve got an amazing visual show. (10:25) And what we’ve done is take the music from different periods through my career.

(10:31) And that’s also The Long, Long Road. (10:34) And then we’ve developed it and made it in. (10:37) It is a story and it is a piece of theatre.

(10:41) And I think it’s really beautiful. (10:44) It’s got a lot of energy. I think it’s a piece of art.

(10:48) Some people say art far, but I think this art is beautiful. (10:56) It’s been a long, long road (11:02) The further we come, the further we go (11:09) It’s been a long, long road (11:14) Oh, nothing’s ever changed the more we know (11:22) The future’s open, the past is too (11:36) We’re right in this moment where everything that comes is new (11:48) The further we come, the further we go (11:58) It comes as two CDs and a book, is that right? (12:01) Yeah, it’s got vinyl, CDs, the book and lots of different things. (12:07) It’s a box set.

(12:08) It’s the definitive Arthur Brown collection. (12:10) Well, the box set is not the live set that we do. (12:18) The live set is the multimedia show.

(12:21) And of course, we do some of this new album in that show. (12:26) But this album harks back to when I was mainly involved in jazz, blues and rock (12:33) and brings it into the present. (12:37) So the show has some of it in it, but the show is not the new album.

(12:43) Okay, so it’s called The Long, Long Road. (12:46) Can you point to your favourite track on there, apart from the title track? (12:50) Oh, well, I’d have to say Once I Had Illusions, it’s called. (12:56) It’s quite a hefty piece.

(13:00) Sometimes I feel there’s no blood in my veins (13:07) Sometimes I feel there’s no blood in my veins (13:15) Sometimes I feel there’s no blood in my veins (13:19) Some poison in my lungs and a wasteland in my brain (13:38) Oh, sometimes I feel no ground beneath my feet (13:44) Yeah, sometimes I feel no ground beneath my feet (13:50) My spirit ain’t fine, my spirit’s a sin (14:01) Oh, sometimes the sky rests on the land (14:09) Oh, sometimes the sky rests on the land (14:15) Once you did have illusions, didn’t you? (14:17) And look where they got you. (14:21) Yeah, yeah. I do have to regulate things a little more.

(14:26) I can still get the notes and sing all of that, (14:30) but I have a different way of doing it now. (14:32) I used to do all the throwing myself around and energy. (14:36) What I do now is just let the energy come out by itself.

(14:41) You still love it as much as you ever do? (14:43) Yes. (14:44) Congratulations on all your successes, Arthur Brown. (14:46) I just think you’re wonderful.

(14:49) I’d like nothing better than to have the opportunity to see your new show. (14:54) Let’s hope everybody who’s listening to your program (14:58) writes to somebody and says, (15:00) we need to get this guy over here. (15:03) Absolutely.

Thank you very much for your time. (15:05) And I guess in your case, (15:07) there’s something to be thankful about World War II (15:10) because Arthur Brown, the God of Hellfire, (15:12) wouldn’t have been that without all the fire (15:15) that you saw in your early days. (15:17) Yeah, it’s strange, isn’t it? (15:18) How all that works out in time and history and life.

(15:22) Thank you for taking the time. (15:25) What an interesting man, isn’t he? (15:27) Thanks again for your company today. (15:30) I do hope I can count on you joining me again same time next week.

(15:34) In the meantime, take good care of yourself, won’t you? (15:37) I’ll see you then. Bye now. (15:39) It’s a beautiful day.

(15:43) You’ve been listening to A Breath of Fresh Air with Sandy Kaye. (15:47) Beautiful day. (15:49) Oh, baby, any day that you’re gone away. (15:53) It’s a beautiful day.