Rampling Dan Dither (banner)





a pictorial history
with Rampling Dan's lyrics and comments






the quiz

perfect bliss?
hanging out with the guys.

greatest fear?
losing my National Steel.

historical figure?
Blind Bessie Fullerton.

deplore in one self?
my feet.

deplore in others?
their feet.

What vehicles do you own?
In the States a big black old Cherokee, in Wymsey the Land Rover.

Unappealing habits?
Forgetting where I am.

favourite word?
man, man.

book?
The Amtrak timetable.

favourite radio station?
UWAT FM

Song?
That's too hard, man.

Food?
jam roly poly pudding.

Object?
My National Steel.

film?
Les Enfants des Paris.

greatest love?
my work.

What has life taught you?
to stay cool, man.

How would you like to die?
so many ways.

Are you religious?
I'm with the Spirit, man.


Beginnings "hard times,
bad times,
good times too.
never did look back,
never stopped,
heading for the sun,
moving fast."


There was Dave Duttle, Dave "the eye" Smith, Pete Gurney and me, and we used to hang out at the beach and knock out rhythms. People were pretty poor on Rock Island and most ended up in the canning factory but I was determined to get out. At this time I was heavily influenced by the work of Peter, Paul & Mary. It was about this time that I read "Grapes of Wrath" and first heard Blind Boy Parkinson



Busking, Algiers "Under desert stars
the world turns
upside down
and planets whirl
beneath my toes.
god i miss you tonight
joanne."

I came to Europe in '64 and left pretty soon, London was dire - man, those London chicks back then - mean ain't the half of it. The politics stunk so I made for the desert. Algiers, I'm telling you, there were some pretty queer people hanging out in the cafes but the hash was spacey so we would dash in, do a deal and dash out. There was a lot of Bob Dylan about.
Some great sounds were emanating from Finland on pretty obscure short wave stations so me and Dave would smoke a few joints and tune in. We did the lyrics for the 2nd LP, Wee Grains, in four hectic nights.




On stage "Holding your picture
in the palm of my hand
thinking of you back then,
you took yours
and I took mine
and the stars shine bright
in Texas tonight.

take me back to Suzanna
take me back dear lord
where the sun always shines
and papa ain't blue tonight."

We all took off to India in '68 to listen to the Mahaja Rissbi which is when we did the Bombay gig, 150,000 - the biggest! After that we came over to London which was cool by now. Man, those London chicks - they were cool and I mean cool. Most of the guys were stonkers.


Rolling Stone interview "You got a lot of verve
to hang on round the bends,
'cos your feet they just don't touch the floor.
you spent your last resource
on kissing someone's feet
while naked pumpmen painted your front door.
you told the final lie
and we believe it's true
now isn't that an awful thing to do."

The Rolling Stone interview, yea that was a gas, jeez but that guy was spaced out on big words - hell but he did me justice. At the time I was working on my 4 th album, Ribbon Mike & the Big Fist, first of all we used Abbey Road but those guys were so out of it they were zonked out over the mixer desk. Man that mixer desk! it must have stretched from here to Rio. Well, I'm telling you, we got outta there and went down to Cornwall and did the whole thing in someone's bathroom.

Glastonbury, 1990 "forty five years
fortyfive years
so how has it been
oh how has it been?
Oh Georgy my friend
since they tore down the wall
and gave you the street."

Glastonbury 1990 was something else, I mean all those kids mixing it with us guys and dear old Roy Harper still going on about his business. Personally, although the main stage was a gas, it was the set in the acoustic tent that grabbed me. There was Dave and some of the guys from the Amazing Junket Band - I remember Old Dave on the jug. Well we had that taped and put a couple of tracks on "Sundown Meltup", that was when we did the John Peel tapes.

Winnipeg, 1997"Going home mama going home
gonna see the place once more
gonna dance that twostep with old gill
gonna stomp upon that floor."

In 1996 we got heavily into the Canadian Revival which opened up so many new influences. The Winnipeg International Music Festival was an eye opener! Dave stayed on to work with the McFlintlocks and eventually married Suzie. He's doing great stuff out there.

So here I am, Rampling Dan Dither, busy with my music and working on my biography. It's good to be back on Rock Island, dusting down the old place and looking up the friends who stayed behind. I guess it's an age thing but when a man has been all over there's only one direction - home! Which is why I shall be heading for Wymsey as soon as the research for the book is finished."





Rampling Dan Dither's new CD "Rock Island Home" is available now



all lyrics © Rampling Dan Dither


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