MetalTalk TV recently caught up with Black Star Riders, Thin Lizzy and former frontman of The Almighty Ricky Warwick, whose sublime sixth solo album ‘When Life Was Hard And Fast’ was released recently to great acclaim.
Interview: Robert Adams
In the second part [Part One is here], Ricky discuses his time with the New Model Army, why The Almighty were signed so quickly, his memories of Paul ‘Bomber’ Jackson and the Donington appearance in 1992, the new ‘Welcome To Defiance’ boxset and why he will never be as Rock ‘N’ Roll as his late father.
How did a teenage boy from Newtonards, rellocated to Strathaven which isn’t the biggest village in Scotland, end up being touring guitarist for New Model Army?
“It’s a long story. I was in a three piece punk band called Rough Charm and I would regularly get the overnight bus down to London from Glasgow with demos and make my way round the record companies. It was brutal.
“I handed my tape to a girl at Abstract Records, who were New Model Army’s label. She liked it and said we weren’t quite there yet and needed some gigs and that we would be perfect to support New Model Army.”
On The Almighty being signed so quickly
“We were signed after only twelve gigs. It helped a lot that we were the Teuchters [colloquial Scottish term for describing someone who is uncouth and rural] and not really part of that Glasgow scene.
“There were a lot of Glasgow bands back then who could really play and these three ruffians from Strathaven came along with more attitude and swagger than all of those bands put together.”
Speaking about original roadie Paul “Bomber” Jackson
“Paul was an integral part of it [The Almighty]. He joined from day one and he did everything. Drove the van, sold the merch, sorted out the fights.
“What I loved about Bomber was that “no” was never an option. Anything was possible.”
On The Almighty’s appearance at Donnington Monsters Of Rock in 1992
That introduction that he [Bomber] gave us was just legendary. I wish I was not as arrogant as I was when I was that age. I wish I had taken a lot more stock of what was happening.”
On the forthcoming The Almighty ‘Welcome To Defiance” box set
“It is to do with licensing. We have been working on this for five or six years. The Almighty had various record labels and management companies and the stuff was a mess.
“My management, Siren, who I have been with for ten years, took this on to sort it out. There are now plans to do a second box set from 1989 to 1993 with all the bonus material on it.”
On why he’ll never be as Rock ‘N’ Roll as his late father
“My dad passed away five years ago and at the crematorium, as his coffin was going into the flames, he had demanded that ‘Free ‘N Easy’ be blasted at full volume.
“It is going in there, tears streaming down my cheeks and just laughing. I was like, you beat me, how can I top that?
“That is the most Rock ‘N’ Roll thing I have ever seen.”