Greg Lake on interview with Gustavo Lutteral for I-Sat cable channel (August 21st., 1997)
(Edited for clarity by your WebMistress)
Lutteral: Greg, what is the balance of the concerts you are playing in Argentina?
GL: The balance? We'll be doing one more show tonight, ah, as you know we played two shows a week or so ago, and we'll have one more tonight.
Lutteral: Which were the worst things and the best things? This is a question that I had already asked to your companions, on the two gigs.
GL: I think they were great, I mean, I enjoyed them very much. I think the whole band, you know, had enjoyed it.
Lutteral: What is the secret to keep you together after all these years? In my opinion you are playing better than ever.
GL: I think Emerson, Lake & Palmer have a special chemistry. That it just has a very special and individual sound. And for some reason we have a way of balancing each other, you know, there are different things we bring into the band which make it colourful, and sometimes quite dramatic. And I think that is what the people like about the band.
Lutteral: Do you see each other besides being touring?
Lutteral: Yes? What is your pastime when you are not together doing music? Do you play cards, do you go to the cinema, have dinner with your wives?
GL: We would do anything like normal people would do. But mainly, when you are on a tour like this, you spend so much time together, you know, when you've finished, it is good to see somebody else, but it is good to meet each other socially, for dinner, or watch a film, or go to the theatre, just different things. Ordinary things, ordinary people do.
Lutteral: Do you have that kind of relationship for example with the other groups you were involved with? For example with the people of King Crimson?
GL: Yeah! I'm still very friendly with the boys of King Crimson. We actually all met up the other day in New York, to launch a new album which is called 'Epitaph'; some of the old live recordings from King Crimson.
Lutteral: Yeah, it is already here.
GL: Is it already here?
Lutteral: Double CD.
GL: (laughing) Things happen fast in Argentina! Well, you know, I keep good relationships with them and it's one of the very nice things about both bands, is that the people are very nice and the friendship endure over the years.
Lutteral: What are the memories about those days with King Crimson? Another very important band in the progressive rock era.
GL: Well, it was kind of magical and enchanted time, the music of King Crimson came from the time. Where is music today? It's made for the time, for the media, for marketing, for MTV, and for.... then, the music came from the time; it was part of the culture, and it was a sort of poetry of the, of the feeling of the time, and in London at that time, you know, it was all based in fashion, King's Road, ah, and the underground music movement, where which really began the progressive music thing. And, it was just a wonderful time, and people were looking for a new freedom. And new ways to express themselves. They were tired of the 1950's conformities, you know, the parents telling them what to do, and anything. And they become teenagers, and music was the form of their expression. That's how they expressed themselves, through music.
And all that sort of wonderful songs that The Beatles wrote, ending up, I suppose, probably with the great of all, that's the song 'Imagine' by John Lennon. Tremendous vision.
Lutteral: Great song. Greg, even though Palmer and Emerson have their solo careers, you probably are the most successful solo artist out ELP.
How do you manage and handle your solo career - put it aside for a while and get involved again with the band?
GL: I did things as a solo artist, when the band is not active, but really, you know, I sing in a band, that's what I am, I don't look upon myself as having a solo career, but I don't think you can really do two things, but I sometimes do little things, I write something.
Lutteral: Actually you had launched a live record with King Biscuit Flower Hour.....
GL: I'd formed a band with a guitar player called Gary Moore, and we recorded the live concert in London. Years afterwards, somebody played me the tape, I'd never heard it!
Lutteral: Oh, really?
GL: They played the tape and said 'had you heard this one?', 'No, no'; we played it and thought 'Wah! That's good!' You know, it was one of those really special nights, we played well, the sound was good, the audience was great, everything worked out well. And they said, 'Would you considered releasing it?' This company King Biscuit had done a series of these concerts. I said 'Sure.' I think is a nice record to listen to.
Lutteral: Greg, to round up this interview, what are your plans after this tour, after touring America, and going back to Europe? Where do you live, I think you live in England?
GL: Yes, I've got a house in London.
Lutteral: Do you plan to record a new album for ELP?
GL: Yeah. Throughout the winter, I think we should be recording new music.
Lutteral: Will it be like the short format of songs you'd been doing for the Black Moon album?
GL: I don't think so. I think it's going to be a conceptual record. There are a number of ideas we've got, we're working at the moment. I hate to talk about records before they are made.
Lutteral: Yeah, I can imagine.
GL: Because it always changes, you know, if you say you are going to make an album like this, and you say how it is, three weeks later it's completely changed.
Lutteral: What do you think about the new movement, of groups like Arena, Pendragon, Par Lint Project. Are you familiar with these groups?
GL: I think any music that stretches out to be different, is good, because otherwise you keep hearing more or less the same songs, done in the same way, and everything is more or less the same. And I think it's a great thing that people are trying to reach out and do something different and bring to the public something new. Otherwise, we'd all be listening to the same songs.
Lutteral: The song remains the same.
GL: The song remains the same, and the video changes, even they became the same, you know. So yeah, I really do welcome the new thoughts in music.
Lutteral: Greg, thanks a lot, I know you have to be playing in a couple of hours. Thank you.
GL: It was a pleasure, thank you.