Robb Weir, guitarist of Tygers of Pan Tang, tells 130dB a story. He met Gary Moore in the studio and just read what happened.
Robb, Tygers of Pan Tang: “While recording the spellbound album at Morgan studios in Willesden, north London in ’81 we had finished up for the day and were having our usual ‘after recording’ drink and discussion in the bar downstairs when Gary Moore walks in to join us. The back story to this was Chris Tsangarides our producer had worked extensively with Gary and they had become good friends. John Sykes was a huge fan of Gary’s and asked Chris if he could meet him. Gary met us all and we all got on like a house on fire! He was at the studio quite a lot and even brought amps and guitars for John to try. On this occasion Gary dropped by as we had arranged to go out to Dingwalls, a rock venue on Camden lock in west London for a bit of a ‘knees up.’ It was always going to be messy, we started drinking this drink I invented which was a shot or two of vodka in a wine glass topped up with white wine. Let me tell you this sorts the men out from the boys! After a few of these Gary, John and I jump into a taxi and proceed down Willesden high road where Gary stops the cab outside a general dealer’s and disappears in. Seconds later he appears with a full case of 24 Holstein Pils larger cans. We crack open some cans in the back of the cab and the madness starts… ‘Here mate, do you want a can?’ Gary asks the cabbie. He was a large Jamaican with incredible dreads (dreadlocks). ‘No man, I’m drivin’ but I’ll have one for later?’ said in a broad Jamaican accent ‘Here have two!’ Gary passed him two cold cans of Pils. About 200 hundred yards from Dingwalls Gary spotted several girls he knew and shouts out the window to them. They were on their way to the venue as well and Gary stops the taxi and they pile in for a lift. More cans were cracked open and the party starts in the back of the cab! I’ve got to tell you I’m not the world’s biggest drinker but I’m trying to keep up at his point and starting to fail miserably! As the cab pulls up at the front of the venue the car door opens and all 8 of us, Gary, John, me and five girls literally fall out onto the pavement laughing like hyenas!
Once inside the club we head for the bar and Gary as generous as ever buys the drinks. To be fair I knew I wasn’t going to last long, my head was spinning already. There was an act on the stage which was quite interesting, ‘Nash the Slash!’ Nash was a guy who wore a full white head mask and a top hat and played electric violin, specialising in covers of the day like ‘Smoke on the water.’ Quite surreal, quite brilliant! After about 10 minutes I took myself off to the toilets where, when I looked into the mirror the reflection I saw said to me, ‘You’re pissed, go home!’ I didn’t even say goodbye, I just left, got into a taxi and tried to tell the driver where I wanted to go. ‘Port flow face please, no, no, Pisstoe place please!’ You could just tell what was in the taxi driver’s eyes, another bloody musician who can’t hold his drink! I tried again, ‘Portland Place please,’ there, made it.
The taxi was a Triumph 2000 TC, (don’t you remember daft things?) As the journey progressed I started to feel sick, I mean really sick…. We pulled up to the front door of the very posh apartments we were staying in hired by MCA our record company and I spewed all over the dash board and front window of the car. I remember thinking, where have all those carrots come from! The apartment’s concierge opened my door and I fell out straight into the gutter. I lifted my head, smiled and threw up all over his shoes! ‘Sir appears to be a tad unwell then?’ and with that he man handled me into the building, called the lift, dragged me in it, wiped his shoes on my shirt sleeve arm, pressed my floor button and as the lift doors closed wished me a pleasant evening! The next day I woke up in the bath with my head inside a plastic bucket and I was very wet. Don’t ask I have no idea what happened! We had a meeting at ‘Cream’ that day, who were putting together the Spellbound album cover at the time. We were choosing photos, I had alcoholic poisoning! I was ill for days! John and Gary….perfect!”
Robb Weir, Tygers of Pan Tang