1972-1977

How I joined: I recorded my first album with Tear Gas after leaving the Dream Police. After about a year of gigging the band was struggling to keep up our gear payments to McCormack’s Music. Our manager, Eddie Tobin, told us if we didn’t do something soon the band would split up. But he had a suggestion: “Remember Alex Harvey, that guy we supported at the Marquee in London a few months ago? He’s looking for a band…” We’d be put on a retainer of £15 a week – double our current wage – and we’d get the gear paid off. After the meeting, as Hugh and I waited for the train home, I remember saying, “Well, at least it would keep the band together.”

What we achieved: We always knew SAHB was good but I don’t think we realised at the time how good. I suppose one of the things I’m proud of is the fact that after our first appearance at the Reading Festival, in 1973, we were fifth on the bill – the next year we were on the top spot.

What I remember: There are so many tales to tell about SAHB… but one I remember, with some trepidation, was after a seminal gig at the Penthouse, Scarborough in 1973. We’d had a particularly good night and felt that everything was coming together, and we all got pissed. On the way back to London we had the bright idea to strip naked and run through the fields by the side of the road. You know, as you do! It was daylight by this time and we got back in the bus stopping later at a garage in a little village. It seems there were a couple of bikers filling up from one of those 24 hour pumps you could put notes in. Chris and I got out, still naked, and found ourselves both on a bicycle that Chris had found lying in a garden. We went cycling around the village with everyone laughing their heads off… except the bikers. Seems one was seen taking a knife out of his belt. I suppose, if I was in his position, I’d have done the same thing, unless of course, I was used to encountering naked, drunk, Scottish, cycling, laughing rhythm sections on a regular basis.

What you should hear: Midnight Moses from the album Framed and Next from the album Next