This part of the history is taken from a couple of interviews with Roye Albrighton, conducted by Attila Juhasz. These interviews
were first published on Attila's now defunct version of the official Nektar website. The first interview was conducted on
August 30, 1996, and covers the time up to and including
Journey To The Centre Of The Eye.
Roye Albrighton was born in Coventry in the county of Warwickshire, England, on February 6, 1949, son of Arthur and Anne Albrighton.
Well, I started as just about anyone at infant level, then on to what was then called secondary modern. My parents had itchy
feet so we moved around quite a lot, although close to the same area. After secondary, I went on to high school but there was
so much going on in the music scene that I left school at the age of 15. Or was it 14… Any way it was certainly way before
I should have…
Now where haven't I… From when I first started learning guitar, I used to overnight in a phone box… No seriously,
I had to because my father wasn't exactly in favour of me being a musician and so when I got back late from the local clubs
where everybody used to meet and just exchange ideas, he would be waiting for me. So the best thing would be to stay in the phone
box, only because nobody I knew had a spare room. Anyway, I have lived in Stockholm, Sweden, Hamburg, Seeheim, which you will
know from Mo that we all ended up. Then in Munich, on to Morristown, New Jersey. Then New York, then back to Munich, then on
to Regents Park in London. Then back to the States and finally Stafford, England.
I started learning to play guitar at the age of about 10. Only because my brother used to be a television engineer and used to
fix elderly people's TVs for free, and one day one of these people gave him an old Spanish guitar, that only had one string
on it, as a gesture of kindness. Of course, I found it and the rest was history.
I think a lot of music that I have heard has inspired me without knowing it. Of course I loved The Beatles… who didn't.
And Jimi [Hendrix] was an enormous hit with me. He left a mark on my soul that will never be removed. I love musicians' music,
and I love the people's music. I also love the classics. There is some earth shattering stuff that used to come out of those
great composers and I look forward every year to the last night of the proms just to hear Mars and Nimrod played by the local
Playing With Jimi Hendrix
How on earth did you know about the jam with Jimi… Well, that was a story unto itself. I had been playing in a club with
a band in Gothenburg, Sweden, and we all got invited to see The Hollies at an old coffee grinding cellar turned into a nightclub.
At this particular time in my musical life, I was into Jeff Beck in a big way, and being a silly young fool, I used to make it
plain to other people that I was. Except this one night, The Hollies were playing and in walked Jimi, who happened to have his
birthday. I thought I was seeing things. Then behind him was Mitch but no Noel Reading. After a while, it was obvious that Jimi
was going to play a little while, but with Tony Hicks on bass. This I had to see, but a tap on my shoulder from the bass player
of our band and with my guitar in his hand (which he had taken out of our truck) led me to believe that something was going on…
It was and I got ushered to the stage where the band had already started playing, guess what, Red House.
Pre–Nektar Band Rainbows
Wow, Rainbows… Where do you get your info from – the F.B.I.? My god that was a long time ago, but yes it was a four–piece
and we recorded two singles on the CBS label. The first was called Rainbows and the second was a little tune that kept rolling
around in my head called New Day Dawning. Only two singles and then we went our separate ways…
The Birth Of Nektar
It was with this band Rainbows that led me to go to Germany and play at the Star Club in Hamburg, where the resident band was
Prophecy or Prophets. During the day I got so bored, that I used to go down to the club and meet with Ron Howden and we used
to jam together until it was time to open the club to let the early crowd in. A year or so later, I was rehearsing for a part
in the backing band for the London debut of Hair, when I received a telegramme from Mo asking if I would be interested in joining
up with them because the guitarist was leaving.
The Nektar Chemistry
I knew that what we had was a great combination, because it was almost as if we were connected at the hip. In fact it got quite
frightening at one stage… We used to think along the same lines and just go off into a jam around a jam that was based
on a line from one of the songs we were working on… It was all very weird. Communicating like that without speaking a
word or even nodding at one another… But the chemistry was perfect
The First Record Deal
I'm not sure you have this the right way 'round. Our original record deal was set up in Germany by Mo and Bellaphon Records.
Marty Scott didn't come into the picture until our first release in the States which was by then our third album in Germany
[Remember The Future].
Recording "Journey To The Centre Of The Eye"
Recording Journey was to say the least a complete dream. What I mean by that is that we had played the complete album so many
times by then in its entirety [live], that recording it in a studio like Dierks had its moments of bliss and moments of frustration.
Most of the tracks were already arranged. All we had to do was play them. But the sound that we all wanted and knew that we could
get live, seemed to elude us for some reason. That has been plaguing Nektar all through the recording years on every album. We
could just not get the sound we really wanted. After the release of Journey, I think we all felt the same. The sound was at fault,
but we were so excited by this time, because we already had Tab In The Ocean ready for the studio, and we were working on Remember
The Future, which everyone we met said that that's the one… We were on a high and nothing could stop us and the ideas
just kept coming…
Favourite Track On "Journey"
I think my all time favourite track on Journey has to be The Dream Nebula 1 and 2 Although I like all of them, I think even by
today's standards, that was some of the gutsiest and evocative bass playing I have ever heard. Mo used to knock 'em dead
when he used to play that Gibson bass and I have many fond memories of that time.
The second part of the interview with Roye, conducted by Attila on September 5, 1996, covering the time from recording A Tab
In The Ocean until and including the release of Live At The London Roundhouse is found in Roye's Chronicles