Messages from Greg
To all my friends and fans everywhere, I would like to wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happy and healthy new year to come. We live in difficult times right now and for many people this year has been a particularly tough year, especially financially. Of course, even these problems pale into insignificance when compared to those who have perhaps lost loved ones or have encountered some life threatening illness or injury etc.
If you are one of those fortunate people who are more or less OK with all your loved ones around you then now is a time for celebration and to feel thankful for your good fortune. It is also the right time to consider and care for those who have been less fortunate and who would be more than happy to exchange no end of financial hardship just to have their loved ones restored to them or for their wounds to be healed.
Christmas is one of those times that allows us to give for no other reason save for the fact that it is Christmas, so try to reflect on your own good fortune and if you can, help those who are less fortunate and I guarantee you, that the Christmas you get, will be the Christmas you deserve.
December 21, 2010
To all those wonderful people who sent me their birthday greetings this year, I thank all you once again from the bottom of my heart. I attended Ringo's birthday earlier in the year and saw the same joy he felt from seeing all the people who came out to wish him well. This is one of the great things about being an artist, where you feel the closeness of an enormous family that literally extends to every corner of the world.
I think it is true to say that this past year has really turned out to be one of mixed blessings for me. There was certainly some great moments of joy, but also some moments of real sadness for me as well.
When it finally got off the ground, the duo tour I did with Keith became great fun and although I believe this will now be just a "one off", I do intend doing more shows like this myself at some point in the future. I really did enjoy the intimate atmosphere and being able to communicate with the audience on a one to one basis.
The other big highlight of course was the High Voltage festival in London where ELP performed what will almost certainly be its last ever performance. Again the show was a really moving and emotional event, with so many people attending there that we had known over the years. Again there was some very difficult stuff to deal with, especially on the technical front with dreadful monitoring and complete technical chaos occurring, just before we went on stage.
However, despite all that, the bottom line was that the audience were absolutely fantastic and I very much regret that ELP will not be able to tour the world with this show, as I personally believe that this is what the loyal and long suffering fans of ELP really deserved.
Anyway there it was, a year of mixed blessings, one which I look back on with both with pride, but one which is also tinged with a touch of sadness and regret as well.
However, the future beckons and I am currently developing some new and extremely exciting ideas which I hope to announce early during the coming year.
Thank you once again for your wonderful birthday wishes and please do know, that whilst I cannot reply to each one personally, I do read each and every message and always take a moment to reflect on what is being said.
I believe that 2011 will be a fantastic year for me and indeed for us all, and I hope to see you all in person as the new year unfolds.
Very best wishes,
November 15, 2010
Ringo's Birthday Party
Just took a day off from ELP rehearsals to join Ringo for his 70th birthday celebration in New York with his new All Starr Band.
It was great to see him again and we had a lot of fun at the end of the show when everyone went up on stage to join him performing With a Little Help from My Friends. It seemed like the entire world had turned out for the event including Yoko and even Paul who came on right at the end as a surprise driving the audience into an absolute frenzy.
It was a terrific show and as always it was wonderful to spend a little time with Ringo and to hear him play.
Went to the party afterward but couldn't stay long as I had an early morning flight back to London to continue rehearsing with ELP for the High Voltage show in London on the 25th. Rehearsals are going extremely well and it is great to hear the sound and feel the energy of ELP once again.
Hope to see you all in London on the 25th, however, if you can't make it no worries because the show will be filmed and recorded so at least you'll be able to see it that way.
Anyway, as Ringo would say, Peace and Love.
July 8, 2010
On the passing of Barbara Skydel
I was deeply saddened by the news I received today about the passing of our good friend and life time agent Barbara Skydel.
I began working with Barbara way back in 1969 with King Crimson and later on with ELP. Apart from being a wonderful agent Barbara was a very gracious and kind person who always tried to make people happy, a very fortunate blessing when it comes to trying to reconcile differences between artist managers and promoters, both of whom of course have different interests. Barbara was what I would term an old school agent in that she cared about the artists and the development of their careers and not just about the bottom line as is the case with a great many agents today.
I think most people looked upon Barbara as a mother figure, someone who was nurturing and like almost everyone in the music business we all respected her enormous experience and expertise. She would often come to shows when we played in New York and I remember how it was always a pleasure to see her smiling face.
I see her not only as a kind friend but also as someone who helped manifest an entire era of world class music from the late nineteen sixties to the present day. From the Who to ELP, and from Bruce Springsteen and too many others to name, one of the truly great women who made the music business in the USA one of the most important economic generators of its day.
Barbara and I did not talk every day or even every week for that matter, but the moment we got on the phone it was as if not a moment had passed since our last meeting. Barbara Skydel was a truly class act and I, along with countless others will miss her deeply.
June 10, 2010