A Fare-well To Peter Green

By Bernie Bell

Peter Green died on Saturday – 25th July 2020.  He was 73 years old – that’s not a bad age to get to.

These days, everyone expects to live to be 100 – anyone I’ve known who reached 100, wasn’t having much of a time of it.

73 is no’ bad, especially considering that he could easily have gone sooner – say 40/50 years ago.  He was very much part of the drugs culture of the late 60’s and early 70’s – he was lucky to survive that time. Like Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin – he could have been dead a good while ago – was lucky to have cheated death – and still be going strong, making his music.

My general impression of Peter Green is  – a good natured, good hearted man. Easily led. No harm to him and a lot of good – inspiration, creativity, sensitivity, awareness.

He came to Orkney to play at the Blues Festival years ago  https://theorkneynews.scot/2020/07/23/orkney-blues-festival/ , and I’m told that his main interest was to go fishing. After all the rock ‘n’ roll years, the extreme way of life, he liked to have a peaceful time, fishing, on Orkney.

This man wrote what I consider to be my anthem ‘Oh Well’ ……

……as well as how many other exceptional songs, and the music to go with them.

When people think of Fleetwood Mac, they tend to think of the later Fleetwood Mac, with Stevie Nicks floating about in front – no – that’s not what the words Fleetwood Mac say to me – my Fleetwood Mac, is Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac.

He’s one of those people, of a time, who produced music to take you out of yourself – some have already gone – Jimi Hendrix, went far, far too soon, and Janis – the same. And now, those who lived through it all, are starting to leave us, too.

When Lemmy passed, I played ‘Ace of Spades’ over and over, turned up to 11, bellowing along.  For Peter Green, I think I’Il play ‘Albatross’ …..

……– beautiful – mystical – Peter Green.

I lit a candle to help light him on his way, but I think he’ll be ok – there was no harm in him, and there was a lot of good.

He was kind-of on borrowed time – I hope he was happier in that time, than in the earlier years of his life.

Fare-well Peter Green, and may your God go with you.

Peter Green Fleetwood Mac Bernie

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3 replies »

  1. A stupidly good guitarist and such an emotive singer in his prime.
    I truly loved his sound.
    To me, his best is the Green Manalishi (With The Two Pronged Crown)- such an ominous threatening song with utterly unpredictable riffs and a shuddering primal beat thrown in to boot.
    Oh Well is definitely up there- I play it at any boozy evenings I manage to be dragged to, and his straight blues was also excellent.
    When he threw the head up and vanished he had passed That Guitar on to a teenage Gary Moore, who also continued to use it to devastating effect throughout his life, but Peter wrung such sweet notes out of it, particularly on “Man Of The World”
    Unfulfilled promise- we got the best at the start.

    • I have to be feeling reasonably robust to listen to ‘Man Of The World’ – otherwise – the lyrics are too much for me.

      You do realise, that you’ve let yourself in for playing ‘Oh Well’ for me, next time…………

      I’ll mention – listening to Peter Green playing that, now reminds me of Coop playing it – wrong way round, I suppose, but……….

      • Nice to see Coop being remembered too, probably as talented as the best of them 🙂

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