He ( Bill Collins ) had played in a dance band with Paul McCartney´s dad or something like that ,
so he had this connection with The Beatles; and one day he decided to go down and see them - they
were recording Sgt. Pepper, I believe - and try to get them to listen to our tapes. Our manager was
an older gentleman, and I think he was on acid at the time, so I´m sure Paul McCartney
remembered his visit. Anyway, when The Beatles formed Apple, our manager took a bunch more
of our tapes down, and finally after a long time, John Lennon and George Harrison decided to sign us up.
Actually things were going OK for us until we made our second album, and signed with an American
manager. We´d started making money by then, and he started saying he could get
us much better deals than we had with Apple - super deals and all that. The thing was, he was
pocketing all of the money himself. That was what killed Pete, really. See, we´d make our last album
with Apple and signed a deal with Warner Bros. and we´d got a lot of money up front -
except the manager pocketed it all. We were living on monthly salaries, and finally we started to
wonder what was going on. I mean, we´d had hit records, and we were rehearsing in this little studio
and getting those little salaries. So we started investigating a little bit, and we found out that,
well, all wasn´t right.
At first Peter didn´t want to believe it. He was always a stubborn kind of person. Once Peter gave
his trust and his heart to someone, that was it. He believed in them. But it finally dawned on him that
he was getting screwed. And the night he finally admitted it was the night he committed suicide
We did some tours ( The Dodgers ) and made some records and were nearly successful. But I didn´t
get on very well with one of the guys in the group, so I left. I was still writing songs, but I´d pretty
much given up on the music business. I went to work with a neighbour of mine who was in the
pipe-insulation business, putting fiberglass linings around hot water pipes so they didn´t lose
their heat. You had to watch out that you didn´t get the stuff in your eyes. It was not that hard, really,
just a fact of life, What was weird, though, was when the guy would introduce me to other construction
workers, tell them I used to be in a famous band, and try to get me to sing. And sometimes
we´d be working in rich people´s homes, and there would be a piano, and the guy
would try to make me play a tune while the other construction workers listened. It was highly embarrassing.
I was just trying to make an honest buck.
It was a carpet business, and I went to work for him laying rugs for a bit to raise some money. But I
was writing songs at the same time and trying to get myself a deal. It was kind of difficult, though.
One of them was a bit of a Sherlock Holmes and he found out where Joey lived, knocked on his door,
and told him he wanted to be his drummer. Joey was intrigued, I guess, and started playing with
them. After a while he phoned me and said he had a good thing going, and he thought we should
start up Badfinger again. First thought was “Oh, no, not again” I told him the best thing to do was
to exchange tapes of what we were doing, and see if we were still compatible be fore we
The drummer, it turned out, wasn´t too experienced in the studio, so we had to give him the sack. That
left just one guy from Chicago, and two guys from England, and i think the guy from Chicago
felt a bit out of place. He saw the album through almost to the end, and even wrote a couple of songs
for it. Then he left. He didn´t want to be in the group if his friend couldn´t be.
And you know, I think the business about Pete - the idea of the rock´n roll business driving Pete
to suicide and all - scared him too. He didn´t want to take a chance on getting involved in something
Have I managed to avoid getting screwed? Oh no, I never got paid for a lot of the stuff I did with Yes.
But you´re fighting a brick wall. At one point I had three lawyers working on the case - until I
found out that one of them was working for the other side. But you can only spend so long at that,
before it starts taking a toll on your music and driving you crazy. Three years ago I just said, “OK, That´s
it, I quit.” and bought a plane ticket for the States.
So far, we´ve sold records to our fans, the people, who remembered us. Now we´ve got to try to sell
ourselves to the other people.
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