July 29, 2001

Backstage with The Rolling Stone's Bill Wyman

Backstage with The Rolling Stone's Bill Wyman

Not so much of an interview as an impromptu 1:1, I caught up with the legend Bill Wyman at the Cambridge Folk Festival and came  face to face with ‘The Quiet One’.

What does a Rolling Stone do for entertainment after leaving one of the greatest bands in rock ‘n’ roll history? Join up with more legendary names, release a double album and do a European tour, of course!

With some of the biggest names in the musical industry including Georgie Fame, Albert Lee and Gary Brooker, Bill Wyman and his Rhythm Kings couldn’t fail to excite the audience. And excite them they did.

From the moment they stepped on stage the atmosphere was electrifying but they made it seem so easy that it could have been a jamming session in Abbey Road studios on a Sunday afternoon rather than a show in front of 14,000 people.

But Bill lived up to his dower reputation and neither he nor the band would agree to talk to any members of the press. After the performance, however, I shot back-stage and managed to secure a 1:1 with the great man himself.

Bill told me that he had very much enjoyed performing at the festival and was looking forward to going to America for the next part of their tour.

But when I asked if the Rhythm Kings would be gracing our doorstep again he said: “They won’t book us again ‘cause we sell out and the councils only book those that don’t. They don’t want to make money, they want to lose it and get a bigger budget next year.”

Let’s hope he’s wrong and we are privileged to see another great performance in the future.