1977: Ian Gillan’s turbulent year
The only problem with that was that they were all Weather Report fans. That’s where the jazz came from.
I listened to Clear Air… the other day when I knew I was going to do this interview and it’s an interesting album. The music’s quite mental and there are no boundaries at all, because no one really bothered to set them.
But my Christ, there’s not one backbeat from beginning to end on the entire record.
There are very long tracks on Clear Air…, too. Just three per side (in old vinyl album terms).
I didn’t mind that at all. In fact, I look forward to doing it again one day. The optimum sound value for a vinyl album was 38 minutes, so you had 19 minutes per side. If you went over that, you were really diminishing the quality, certainly at the bass end.
There were never any targets for commerciality with the Ian Gillan Band; we knew we were outside the standard pop acceptance areas. We just went in and jammed, really.