to Wake hosted by Phil Strongman,
23rd March 2005 at 100 Club, London.
& text ©Phil Strongman
Life In Music. Producer, musician, composer, eco-activist
list above is incomplete. Add 'studio innovator' to that list, add 'indie label
pioneer' , add 'hash chef', add 'cocktail mixer', add 'comedian', add 'new age
visionary', add 'world music pioneer', add 'good friend'. Add all those, and a
dozen more, and you still haven't got anywhere near the complete Dave Goodman.
that shocking day - one month and several lifetimes ago - when his wife Kathy
Mannell first told me the news, I've been trying to sum it all up in a few words,
what Dave meant to me - and to many hundreds of others, everyone from the people
next door to Malcolm McLaren, Rainbow George and Hopi Indian elder Roy Littlesun.
does it come down to. As a human being? Well, although he had a few faults - and
Dave wasn't always a saint, especially after that second bottle -he scores in
that most important category; someone who could love and be loved. And who did.
The heart that killed him was a big generous heart.
as a musician? Despite his far sighted - and brave - attempts to push all things
Green, and solar-powered, up the agenda, it is music for which he'll mainly be
remembered. For there's no one like Dave now - whose career could stretch from
beat to psychedelia to jazz-funk to reggae to punk to Glastonbury, from teenybop
idols like Michael Jackson and Len Zavaroni to the 'heaviest ever version' of
the Sex Pistols' 'Anarchy In The UK', from being a soap opera actor and themes
man on West Indian TV to building a 'Rainbow bridge' with a new generation of
also genuinely believed in the best of the Sixties' Dream - namely that music
could, and should, help change the world - and for the better. Somewhere, somehow,
he believes it still. And that, like the rest of the list, is well worth celebrating.
As Malcolm so succinctly put it last month, 'Long Live Dave Goodman!'
by Provoked Fanzne, February 2005
following interview was conducted the week before Dave's sad passing, and has
been kindly submitted to God Save The Sex Pistols.
Fanzine: In 1976 did you think the music scene was dire until the Sex Pistols
Goodman: In 1973, a lot of bands had to come off the pro circuit (i.e. cabaret
and colleges) due to the (social) depression. By 1976, a lot of them were playing
in pubs. In London, you could go out any night of the week for free and see all
kinds of excellent musicians play experimental rock, including myself. Boring
and tame. A lot of the leading musicians seemed to have trouble hearing themselves
on stage. I eventually realised that it was because they had their heads up their
arses. Here and there you would see someone exciting like The Count Bishops, Kilburn
& The High Roads & The 101ers but mainly it was nostalgic. The Sex Pistols
changed all that. Mostly because they were young and didn't give a shit.
managed to catch the Sex Pistols' first gig supporting the 101ers. Did you think
then you'd go on to produce them?
was at this gig that I offered to help them with other gigs, and I also recorded
them live, so maybe subconsciously I did.
later went to almost every gig they played. What made you go back to see them
again and again?
were hiring my PA and I was mixing their live sound.
Rotten was shouting to crowds that there should be "more bands like us"...and
you witnessed the crowds getting bigger, and the likes of Siouxsie and Billy Idol
were attending and then forming bands...did you get the feeling it was going to
take off in a big way?
did feel it and saw it!
bootleg) Spunk...was that what the first album was originally to be called?
It just appeared
called that. No one has ever owned up to putting it out. I wish I did, but it
was probably McLaren.
was it to work with the band, including Malcolm and Sid. What was the feeling
like working within the regime?
the early days, it was less of a regime, more a bunch of mates. Malcolm rarely
showed up at the studio or gigs. He was busy in the office promoting. I never
really worked with Sid although I mixed a version of My Way. I knew him more before
he joined the band.
the Notre Dame gig to be filmed for overseas television?
did two Notre Dame gigs. One was filmed for a Janet Street Porter documentary
and the sound didn't come out too well but you see bits of it here and there.
The second one I don't know if it was filmed or not. I seem to remember that some
Italian TV people were there.
did the sound on the Chelmsford Prison gig. What was that like and what other
sessions did you produce that later came out, either bootleg or official?
reason Chelmsford got recorded was because they were using my PA and I would have
a four track set up to use for echo. I would just record the gig through the desk
and often erase it later when I needed more tape. The reason the bass is so low
was because it wasn't miked-up as it was loud enough in the hall.
was quite dangerous to be at the back of the hall amongst all those lifers, psychos
and rapists etc. and many of them tried to get me to smuggle things out. I recorded
nearly all the gigs but ones that survived are Nashville, 100 Club, Screen on
the Green, 76 Club Burton on Trent and that's about it. A lot of tapes were stolen
on the Anarchy Tour.
you ever involved when they did any TV work?
had the good sense to realise that we needed to take our big PA along to the TV
studios to make sure we were loud enough. No one used to do this in those days.
So there we were, blasting the walls down, upsetting all the union crews. This
happened on the Young Nation show and So It Goes. Malcolm also used to invite
the likes of Siouxsie and Sid etc. for support.
think Chris Spedding once said to Chris Thomas that he should check out the gig
at Screen on the Green, and Chris more or less told him he couldn't be bothered
because they were appearing on So It Goes shown early on the same night. What
did you think of both of them as producers?
spent an afternoon in the studios with them and the results were OK, but to me
fairly conventional. Malcolm was disappointed and thought they sounded better
live. So I stepped in and spent a lot of time getting the grooves right then adding
overdubs. To me it was more psychedelic and futuristic. Remember, I'm working
on a shoe string budget with only four tracks to start with. They were quick to
learn, especially Steve and we worked long and hard into the night to perfect
those first seven tracks. It obviously impressed EMI enough to sign me up as producer,
but before I could finish the Bible Quotations Anarchy, busy bodies up at EMI
sabotaged my career and Thomas stepped in.
version of Anarchy I felt was weak and when he heard my demos, he was quoted in
NME as saying "They're great, release them, who needs me?" He even called
me from the studio a few times to ask me how I got this sound or that. You could
have asked what happened to all the money but that's another story. I was very
glad to have been involved with what I believed for a while to be the greatest
band in the universe.
by Provoked Fanzine
Provoked Fanzine / Phil
Singleton / www.sex-pistols.net
All rights reserved.
Not to be reproduced without permission.
notes written by Dave Goodman
early mixes prior to Spunk, raw, unpolished monitor mixes, out-takes and final
backing tracks to sing along with, plus multi-track wave files to mix your very
own versions of Anarchy in the UK and Pretty Vacant.
have been many different versions of most of these recordings released throughout
the history of the Sex Pistols, some licensed but many pirate. Some good quality,
but most astoundingly poor. Some of these releases have been a financial lifeline
to members of the band, plus myself as producer, during a time when our royalties
were frozen, due to the Lydon & Others versus Glitterbest/Matrixbest Ltd.
history of these master tapes is a fascinating one. Let me take you on that journey.
Denmark Street Sessions:
Recording dates: mid July 1976
A two roomed abode behind a shop in London's Denmark St W1 (Tin Pan Alley) .
Format: 4 track. Producer: Dave Goodman.
been the Sex Pistols' live sound engineer for a couple of months, when Malcolm
played me a tape of a session they did with Chris Spedding producing. They recorded
three songs, 'Problems', ' Pretty Vacant' and 'No Feelings'. Malcolm felt that
Chris hadn't completely captured the band's raw energy. He said they seemed lost
in such a big studio and needed a more intimate setting. I invited them to my
studio in Feltham, Middlesex close to the end of the Piccadilly Line going West.
With the help of my dad, I had built a fairly professional 4 track studio in a
16ft by 8ft garage with a 10ft by 6ft shed connected to it for a control room.
It was in my parents' garden and I called it the 'Four Track Shack'. I gained
a lot of experience there and was confident I could come up with some
it was decided I would bring my recording equipment to Sex Pistol Central, where
I set up for a full week's recording. Their Denmark Street rehearsal room was
about 12ft square with cork tiles on the walls to deaden the sound. You climbed
up a ladder to Steve's bedsit where you encountered a bed, electric fire and all-important
kettle. I put the mixer on the end of Steve's bed and ran a talk-back mike down
to a set of monitors below. For my own monitoring, I'd brought along my much loved
pair of Acoustic Research AR2AX speakers and hooked them up to my trusty Quad
303 amp. A big clear British sound to be sure. You must have sorted monitors!
For effects all I had was tape echo, reverb and Steve's flanger/phaser pedals.
This set up was pretty similar to what we used live.
ten years as a professional musician, playing bass with the likes of Ben E King
and touring with the Jackson 5 etc, one thing I had learnt was the importance
of getting the groove right on the backing track. If the backing track ain't happening
man, no amount of overdubs will make up for it. We all had to be patient and persevere,
I was looking for Magic! During 7 long hot stoned enjoyable days we recorded 7
songs. In the evenings when the others had gone home to their mums' cooking, Steve
would sit down and, encouraged by me, start adding guitar overdubs. A crash chord
here, a fuzzed lick there. We worked well together and he was quick to catch on
to some of my ideas. By the end of the week, we'd managed to fill up all the tracks
on the tape recorder.
needed more tracks so I booked a day in Riverside Studios, 78 Church Path W4,
and transferred the four tracks onto eight, overdubbed lead vocals, a few more
guitar bits, some handclaps, backing vocals and even a kettle. Finally, I booked
a day in Decibel Studios, 19 Stamford Hill, N16 for a few last minute overdubs
and the crucial MIX.
version of 'The Denmark Street Sessions' is the first mix or "unrefined mix"
as I prefer to call it, and not the later mix that appears on the SPUNK-NO FUTURE
UK-THIS IS CRAP albums. These are the mixes that helped get them the EMI deal.
used to blast this tape through my PA at those early gigs, including the 100 Club.
It sounded sublime to me and I was proud to have been part of its creative process.
For my ideas, time, trouble and equipment, I was rewarded with a producer's royalty.
'I Wanna Be Me' from these sessions was chosen as the b-side to their first release
you have now is a shiny new digitally remastered alternative to SPUNK-NO FUTURE
REALLY ARE REMASTERED FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTER TAPES.
me these are the Sex Pistols at their best. A lovingly crafted, pulsating din.
John may try to get you to believe that no one listens to the bass on a rock record,
but having Glen in the band gives these tracks an extra depth and brilliance.
These recordings are of great historical significance and should be played at
least once a year for the rest of your life, very loudly. Invite your neighbours
round and scream at the sheer absurdity of life. Let off some steam - they were!
their slowest and most spacious song, my choice of long reverbs and dubby tape
echo enhanced its sub-aqua atmosphere. We tried it out at
but this up-tempo version is the one for me. The main riff is borrowed from the
Kinks' 'All day and all of the Night' and the choppy skanking guitar shows a reggae
influence. The whole mix is pretty 'dubbed' - I mixed in live echo and reverb
effects as the mood took me. On a previous runthrough John made this incredible
noise by sucking air in through the side of his mouth. It sorta sounded like an
early analogue synth or a theramin maybe. "Lets feature it" I thought,
so John got the honour of performing the first mouth music solo in Punk Rock history.
also had the wacky idea of having this voice on the beginning that sounded like
it was underwater. When I heard someone say "put the kettle on" that's
exactly what we did. Steve had a go at speaking down the spout of a half full
kettle. If he got the angle right, then his voice would come out sounding bubbly,
if not, he would get a mouth full of water. I eventually did it myself and loved
the effect. It's easy to tell this mix from the SPUNK-NO FUTURE UK-THIS IS CRAP
mix. On the end, the morse code guitar goes up in pitch, whereas on SPUNK etc
it stays even. There has been a lot written about this song, especially in John
Savage's informative 'Englands Dreaming' & 'Classic Albums.'
V1 (Lazy Sod)
track is a direct statement of who they were. "We like noise, it's our choice,
it's wot we wanna do - we don't care, 'bout long hair, we don't wear flares -
I don't work I just speed, that's all I need." It's the manifesto for change.
The mould had been broken by this song alone. The opening line "You're only
29, got a lot to learn", I took as a reference to Malcolm, who was 29 at
the time. The lyric continues, "but when your business dies you will not
return." Is this Johnny the prophet singing here? On later recordings he
changed this line to "but when your mummy dies, she will not return."
And then comes the classic chorus hook, "I'm A Lazy Sod" sung three
times in succession, rounded off with a final "So Laaazey!" On the final
chorus, the middle line gets changed to "Not a lazy pseud" and is pronounced
by Glen's high backing vocal. It's in answer to a John Ingham live review, where
he refers to "Seventeen" as "I'm a Lazy Pseud". The whole
song ends with a final squeezed out "Laaazzzy!" from John, followed
by a subdued crash from the band, emphasising their laziness. There's no obvious
way of telling this mix apart from its SPUNK etc alternative, other than it's
a bit faster and seems to have more bollocks!
V1 (Suburban Kid)
anti -love song if ever there was one. A virulent rant, full of blind anger and
utter nihilism. A dig at 'Suburbanites' - Johnny doesn't "like where we came
from, it's just a Satellite of London, and when we look him in the eye, we must
remember that he wants to die, hey babe, he loves us babe, he loves us babe, he
loves us. He's in love, really in love, can't we feel it? must be love, chocolate
box". These are stunningly original lyrics, and the freshness of the music
makes for a totally new sound. With yet another hooky chorus,
this recording could have easily been a hit single. I got John to double track
his voice in a whisper. (An old Bowie/Cockney Rebel trick.) It sounds very menacing,
especially on headphones. When he gets to the line "looking like you just
came out of
hell", my partner (in the PA hire company) Kim Thraves got
me to exagerate the whispered HELL. Spine chilling! The best way to differentiate
between this version and the one found on Spunk etc is the final chord on the
guitar, which on Spunk pans back and forth quickly from speaker to speaker.
Wanna Be Me' V1
theory that some music journalists are frustrated musicians was well and truly
vocalised in this song. "You wanna ruin me in your magazine, you wanna cover
us in margerine." And Mr Rotten's clever word play with lines like "to
realize, to have real eyes" and "typewriter god, black and white king,
PVC, platform boots, you wanna be me". An extremely astute observation of
the make and break power that some journalists wield. To obtain ever further levels
of guitar distortion, I resorted to the old trick of overloading the input on
the desk. A bit like those 60s fuzz boxes. I love the instrumental build up in
the middle where there are five guitars all complementing one another. We developed
a formula, Steve and I. Once the band, minus John, had been recorded in stereo,
added another rhythm guitar, sometimes chugging, sometimes ringing. On
the remaining spare track we worked in some crash chords and lead licks that fitted
with the vocals. I would usually mike the guitar up with at least two mikes, one
close and one further away pointing at a hard surface - in this case the flight
case that Steve's Fender Twin lived in. This is the very version that was the
B-side to their first single 'Anarchy in the UK' on EMI. The first 70,000 pressing
of the disc miscredited Chris Thomas as producer.
the feedback that I got about this B-side (which had been recorded for less than
£50), I knew a lot of people loved it. It still sounds great today and here
it is once more, lovingly re-mastered from the original master tape.
this really is a rare one! For some reason, whoever was behind the original SPUNK
bootleg, decided to leave this recording off altogether and used my later 'Gooseberry
Studios' version instead. It never found its way onto the 'Mini Album' or 'This
is Crap'. When Malcolm was after the EMI deal, I was invited there to play this
tape to Terry Slater and Nick Mobbs. As well as being impressed with the band's
sound and proficiency, they felt that this song 'I'm so Pretty' (as they kept
calling it) would make a great first single. Of course it would but when you've
got a song called 'Anarchy in the UK', there's really not a lot of choice. The
idea to overdub a ringing riff on the intro was definitely mine. If you listen
to the previous version they did with Chris Spedding, it's chalk and cheese. There's
only one guitar for a start and that's heavily dampened, swimming in pingy reverb.
On this version, however, there are four guitars playing the riff, with one of
them in a higher octave. I reckon someone ought to release this as a single while
such things still exist. There is a later mix of this recording floating around
on various albums claiming that it's re-mastered from the original master tapes
but that cannot be. For a start, the quality is poor and there are bits missing.
Some sound like they've been copied from vinyl. Anyway, you can always tell this
alternative mix by the ending. This first mix has no talking on the end, but the
later mix has John saying "Do you wanna do that again?"
in the UK' V1
song had just been added to their set and turned out to be a bit of a problem
to get down. I still feel that it's too slow. I mean, a song about anarchy has
to be manic doesn't it? You can hear John attempting to push the beat forward
with his voice. It's like he's fighting to get out of a plodding stodge. I kept
on at them to play it wilder, but Glen insisted it should be steady. Malcolm popped
in to see how things were going and he too had a go at psyching them up. In the
end we had to settle for this take. It has character and yes, the handclaps were
my idea. Vivienne turned up and loved the lyrics, especially the line "I
wanna destroy the passer-by" she took it metaphorically rather than literally.
"Yes all those people sittting on the fence, they need edutaining."
Again, there's no easy way
to tell the difference between this version and
the one on SPUNK etc.apart from this one sounds faster and more powerful. This
recording never found its way onto 'This is Crap' either.
no mistaking John's sentiment here. "No feeling for anybody else, except
for his beautiful self." The lyrics have a certain 'Clockwork Orange' senseless
violence to them. Two references to kicking someone in the head. "Look around
your house you've got nothing to steal, kick you in the brains when you get down
and kneel and pray to your god." There's a nod towards Steve Harley in the
line "come up and see me and I'll beat you black and blue, yeh hey, (impersonating
Steve Harley) I'll sell you your blues." A double reference to both 'Make
me Smile' and 'Psychomodo'. This is the version that was the B-side to 'No Future'
on A&M. The guitars are dominated by phased crash chords that swirl back and
forth between the speakers when you stand in the middle. This frightening ditty
ends with the line, "God has gone away, be back another day, see his picture
hanging on your wall." And that's the end of this session, 23min 23 sec of
pure energy and psychotic psychedelia.
the EMI & A&M deals Malcolm suggested I should take the band into a studio
for a few days to take their minds off things and maybe get a few new decent recordings
to tout around. Within days of being dumped by EMI, they had written a new song
about the scenario and called it simply 'EMI', They had yet to record their new
punktastic pop song 'No Future' or 'God Save the Queen' as it later became known.
I decided to use Goosebury Studios, a stone's throw from their rehearsal gaff.
They could literally carry their equipment there and did. The studio had 16 tracks
and had been host to all sorts of seminal bands over the years. Malcolm was in
Paris pulling together the French record deal and an American news crew were in
town making a documentary on Punk to be shown nationwide on NBC news. I'd bumped
into them at the Roxy when they filmed Eater. I agreed to let them in on our session
for an hour in return for a few bob that we could all spend down the cafe later.
the first day, when I arrived Steve and Paul had already set up and were busy
felt-tipping 'Guitar Hero' over Steve's Fender Twin amps, (he's now got two).
Glen arrived and behaved like a Sex Pistol. He showed no signs of disenchantment
and seemed to get well into it. These mixes are the rough monitor mixes that were
done at the end of the day, before we took the tape to Eden Studios to add a few
more overdubs and mix. Sometimes rough mixes come out with a character all of
their own and these three mixes are no exception.
transatlantic pop song. Rotten wasn't exactly impressed with the New York punk
scene and let the world know it through this rant. "You're just a pile of
shit, coming to this, poor little David, sealed with a kiss, still out on those
pills, cheap thrills". A possible reference to David Johansen , singer of
the New York Dolls, a band his own manager Malcolm McLaren once tried to manage.
This mix lacks a few overdubs but its sheer power makes up for it. You can hear
John on the end say "I get tired with the fucking end of that".
speed at which this song materialised was phenomenal. They would get the last
word on the EMI saga after all. My partner in the Label label, Caruzo, wandered
by the studio and was immediately taken by this song. He really wanted to release
this on 12 inch for Malcolm and the band, on a one-off interim licensing deal.
It would have been brilliant and given the fans some product in between major
labels. We badgered Malcolm who needed time to think about it but eventually rang
back and turned our offer down. He said he wasn't confident in our distribution
setup, although we'd managed to shift over 15,000 of Eater's first single 'Outside
Views'. This mix is again lacking a few overdubs but its rawness is delightful.
in suspension, you're a liar" li li li li li li li lie (sings Glen) we've
been sussed, our bullshity ways have to stop! I want to live in the now!"
Thank you very much for this song John. "You should have realised, I know
what you are, you're in suspension, you're liar, liar, lie, lie lie". Again,
this is a rough monitor mix of work in progress but boy does it rock, right from
its false start. The Sex Pistols wrote some fucking brilliant songs!
Vocals, hand claps and mouth music: John Lydon (Rotten)
Guitars, backing vocals
and hand claps: Steve Jones
Drums and hand claps: Paul Cook
backing vocals: Glen Matlock
Production, arranging, engineering and kettle:
Assistant engineers, Kim Thraves, Neil Richmond (Riverside),
The above information is an abridged version of the sleeve notes for the proposed
Band The Sex Pistols Experience
received the following letter from Dave, February
Singleton / www.sex-pistols.net
All rights reserved.
Not to be reproduced without permission.