“Conversation without frontiers” - Daryl Easlea chats to TWR about his career in the music industry and his work on Peter’s story. Photograph by Tony Sleep.
I thought it might prove interesting to get a bit of the background behind this project and Daryl very kindly agreed to answer some questions for us, so over to you, Daryl…
TWR: You have been involved in the music business for along time now, Daryl. How did you get started? Tell us a bit about your back story…
DE: I loved Pop from the age of four, worked in record shops from when I was thirteen, wrote my first sleeve note at thirty one, signed up for Record Collector at thirty four and had my first book published when I was thirty eight. Now I am in my fifties and get up to all sorts of capers! TWR: Yes, but we can’t talk about those in a family magazine like TWR, Daryl!
TWR: When did you decide to begin work on Peter’s biography and what made you choose his story in particular?
DE: It came from a conversation with my editor at Omnibus, David Barraclough. Because I had written about Chic and Sparks, he had no idea of my strong and often overwhelming Prog side.
TWR: Did you approach Peter for an interview?
DE: When I wrote the book, Peter was at the start of his year off but I wanted to ensure Real World etc were aware I was writing it.
TWR: How did you go about drawing the elements of his story together?
DE: I divided the book into three: The first part is my take on the Genesis story through the lens of PG; the second is still moderately linear - pop star goes solo and establishes his career. The third, after the freedoms granted of So, was just fascinating, as being a pop star is only part of his makeup.
TWR: What was the most difficult element in a project such as this?
DE: Knowing when to stop. You could go on forever!
TWR: You updated the initial book fairly soon, did you think there was sufficient going on to warrant it?
DE: With Peter there is always something going on; the fact he hasn’t recorded an album as such since Up doesn’t mean that he has stopped working. He has spent much needed time with his family in the past few years but he has also been up to a good deal. He seems very comfortable with his past, yet resolutely not hitting the nostalgia button. And there is plenty of Pern!
TWR: Would you consider a book on any of the other guys in the band, and if so, whom?
DE: It would have to be Tony; not only is he one of the most accomplished musicians in the UK and, as you know, his bone-dry sense of humour is absolutely second to none.
My thanks to Daryl for taking the time to talk to us and if you haven’t already read his book on Peter, get hold of it, as it is an excellent read.