Brian was very gracious. He had changed into a T-shirt that stretched over his bloated body and the irony struck me: it was a Jack Daniels T-shirt. He told me how Marc Bolan said ‘you’ll never beat Bolan!’ when he met them at Top of the Pops. That “sudden”, intoxicating lifestyle has destroyed so many talented, but ill-prepared, young musicians/artists and it hurts to now know that he, too, succumbed to it..”like a candle in the wind, never knowing who to cling to ,when the rain set in” (and I would’ve like to have known him, but I was just a kid…)…really! Legal fees being another as he was trying at that point to get royalties he said were owed to him from those 15 million sales of Sweet singles. Was it leechy managers plotting to fill their own pockets? ‘He can’t sing’. On more than one occasion, I found myself thinking, “God, I wish I’d known he was in such bad shape”, as if there was something I could’ve done as a mere stranger, a fan, but a caring (solvent) human being nevertheless. By the end, a throng of about fifty people were up dancing, but in a very pissed nightclub way, not in a rock roll idiot dancing way. I had to admit, there was some truth in this but did not see why it should foster a dislike for old Lou. ... Nicola Connolly Interview. Girl politely put on hold for later, I asked him about those Top of the Pops appearances. We want Sweet!’ emulating the record. Steve and Andy are great too. Brian was great when I interviewed him. The rest of the band followed suit in 1982 following the release of … Was it unchecked excessive behaviour? I am a dedicated fan since the beginning of the career Sweet – so for over 40 years. I found it interesting that he’d given an autograph to a young Joan Jett (I’m so jealous, now). Sweet always had and have a huge amount of followers in Germany. It was like I was not there. Glad you liked it. Did Brian feel it would all go on forever then? Blagging my way in was easy. I came back later with a borrowed tape recorder. No! I never realized how much I missed them until late this past Sat. Like Norma Desmond remembering the heyday, the golden time, the plush carpet of success. This was Brian back from the dead I was talking to. I felt really bad – almost like I had betrayed Brian, who had given his time to give me a very open talk. Of course, they lacked ‘rock cred’. It was horrible and at the same time fascinating. Get him the right producer. Legal fees being another as he was trying at that point to get royalties he said were owed to him from those 15 million sales of Sweet singles. There are a lot of fans of the music still out there! It felt like a Slade gig for about thirty glorious seconds. Was it lust for riches? Thanks for sharing this in a way that told the truth, but still retained his dignity. I know he wasn’t an angel (although he looked like one at times), and he brought a lot of his pain on himself with poor life choices but, so much of it, I think, was the result of naiveté and the “sudden” imposition of a lifestyle, for which, he was, tragically ill-prepared (and who wouldn’t be). ‘He can’t sing’. He actually shook from time to time and was taking medication to control his spasms. He looked ten years older than his age at that time: 45 (as he told me). Yeah! This is a far more important and eternal story than a Mojo career report on the successful stadium-filler’s latest extravaganza. What can i say, seeing him was thrilling and shocking the same time.He looked like dreaming of the glory days when he was singing, staring into the nothing.The band backing him was truly bad. Even Alvin Stardust at the height of his brief fame. It seems that interview I did all those years ago has served a positive purpose! Laura C has already summarized everything in detail, there’s almost nothing to add. I truly hope, with all my heart that, above & beyond all the fan adoration and industry BS, he truly felt loved before he left this world and that he’d finally found a peace and a genuine sense of belonging with his family. Over the years, as I evolved musically, I lost touch with my “first love” but I’d still catch a glimpse of them in so many other great bands – Queen, Def Leppard, Aerosmith, Foreigner (tell me the intro to Foreigner’s Long, Long Way From Home doesn’t sound like Sweet!) It was horrible and at the same time fascinating. ‘Fantastic…but all the touring, being in demand. She worked her way to a lucrative rock career, while I took a left turn into jazz fusion. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 220.127.116.11 05:45, 16 February 2007 (UTC) Australian 1990 tour. I felt sorry for Brian. Brian said: ‘They left me high and dry, no pay off, nothing. His glorious looks had been ravaged by illness and alcohol abuse. I had to pinch myself: this was a bona fide proper pop star sitting across the table from me, pint of orange juice in his hand. In an interview with Focus in the Mix, Sweet bass player Steve Priest said Connolly’s hard partying lifestyle took its toll. What a shame there were no publications who could see the truths bared here. There was something incredbily charasmatic about that man – loved by so many still to this day. Brian did indeed get a very bad deal from the music industry. You are to be congratulated on your truly compassionate article on once talented star. And i think Brian was like an angel, as well as Mick Tucker. It’s like in their song Lost Angels, they were probably lost in fame, and that’s why they fell. The court fool who can no longer rise a laugh or hide his pain behind the mask of his profession. Great but strange’. He looked slightly menacing in his catsuits and leather gloves too. She and I were doing about the same thing, musically, at the same time, just on opposite coasts. He told me a story of how he gave an autograph to a girl when she was only about 15; Sweet were playing a gig in Los Angeles. Was it leechy managers plotting to fill their own pockets? No! They had an almost pre-punk ‘let’s wind up the parents’ attitude about them. Back on benefits, staring into the void of feeling terminally useless I decided the only option for me was to become a music journalist. Brian was not a fan of Lou Reed. Thank you for your kind words. The calibre of Sweet as musicians is not in doubt: they could rock heavily with the best of them. We were a heavy rock band that just happened to have hits’ . Do you act wisely, seek counsel, invest it, look after it, or do you go gaga ape-shit and party like there’s no tomorrow? I felt very sad for Brian. You never forgot that bit and that’s what makes a real big difference, well done …….again. ‘We got Hell’s Angels at our gigs. The band came on for an encore. Connolly and the Sweet had just had a top ten single in the UK with ‘Love Is Like Oxygen’, their album Level Headed made the top sixty and they played a sell-out concert at the Hammersmith Odeon in London. When we split from Chinn and Chapman we had a hit with our own song and that felt good’. ‘Andy (Scott) and Steve (Priest) were always asking for an A side and got frustrated. As Brian sang, his voice was surprisingly strong. Brian Connolly, it seemed to me, was almost an innocent who entered the gilded palace of rock n roll sin. Brian seemed to me to be a victim of the nastier side of the music business – the one that uses up stars and then leaves them broke – as Brian was at that time. The band came onstage to a puny attempt at pyrotechnics. Always searching for interviews on Brian i read yours with great enthusiasm. He disappeared back to his hotel – actually more like a cheap traveller’s bed and breakfast place, not a plush five star place – shook my hand and said ‘we’ll speak later…enjoy the show’…. Their golden-haired singer, Brian Connolly, snapped microphone stands over his knee as Scott blew him kisses. ‘You don’t have time to stop and think. Thanks again to culturedebunker! He was very relaxed, ushering away pestering fans – women now in their thirties perhaps – who had adored Brian back in the heady glam rock days. Brian had been a great subject to interview. I phoned the venue, told them I was a freelance journalist and that I wanted to interview Brian Connolly. I closed my eyes to imagine Brian on stage. I had loads of tape to look forward to listening to. I remember the way my own Father was treated when his speech became slurred and his movement affected after a stroke and it brought back painful memories. Sweet were seen by some as being the more gimmicky side of the 70s, but those singles were great and many people of my age group have fond memories of them on Top of the Pops. First it was hooray but after a few Songs the Band got heckled. It was appalling timing as Sweet had just scored their first big hit there with ‘Love is like oxygen’. Was it lust for riches? . The fat lasses down the front stood up and cheered; their boyfriends just laughed. In a radio interview, Connolly reported that singing was a large part of growing up since there was no television, and that he was regularly called upon to sing for family and friends. Like a lot of those 70s pop stars, he doubtlessly gorged himself at the banquet table of fame and his working class background probably ill prepared him for the shock to the system that fame brings. Brian Connolly was also incapacitated somewhat and marketing the album and new band would of been difficult. I choked up on more than one reading, and that god-awful Channel 4 interview that brought me to tears. And if felt good, damn good, to know I was still capable of feeling that way 43 years later! He should’ve been fired that night. “A lot of the songs were really up there – and he smoked like a chimney,” the Sweet bassist said. It felt strange. He just spent money as if he was one and then of course, the tax man came knocking at his door when the hits dried up. He also claimed that his ex-band members cheated him out of money when he was kicked out of the band. More information... People also love these ideas When I first teamed up with the band in 1970 Brian was the leader. I suddenly had an impulse to tell Brian I would write some songs for him. What a wonderful connection, it just saddens me that it didn’t happen for him earlier in life, when, I think, he needed it most. The Wildean ‘portrait in the attic’ aura that surrounded him. I asked him if he had met other musicians who had been influenced by Sweet. Brian told me how Sweet used to get Pans People to advise them on makeup. I didn’t know about the biography. I just feebly nodded, wanting to protest but didn’t. The stupid player had not worked. was my must ask dumb question. We could play!’ Realising Brian had missed the point, I apologised for some strange reason. See more ideas about Brian connolly, Brian, Cool bands. Thanks…I would like more fans of Sweet to read this…Brian gave a great and candid interview…I have never actually seen anything elsewhere like it…. A person acting as Brian’s protector/manager vetted me. My band life, getting paid for what I loved to do, was coming to an end and I had to think of a way to blag my way back to the real world – a place I had hoped was left behind when I signed a record deal four years earlier. It was like watching an ageing stripper baring nothing more or less than a lifetime of exploitation. When we split from Chinn and Chapman we had a hit with our own song and that felt good’. I was also drunk and those rock ‘n’ roll fairies mentioned earlier were flirting with my reason. Frank Torpey later explained in interviews that Brian Connolly was trying to get a German recording deal. Its no wonder the others wanted him gone. Nah, don’t think our readers would be interested’…, Sounds: ‘We do not commission unsolicited articles. Connolly has credited the Everly Brothers as being his earliest musical influence. He was fostered, aged two, by Jim and Helen McManus of Blantyreand took their family name. In a radio interview, Connolly reported that singing was a large part of growing up since there was no television, and that he was regularly called upon to sing for family and … His previous bands include Basczax and The Flaming Mussolinis. We were a heavy rock band that just happened to have hits’ . They stopped returning my calls’. The interview took a brief nosedive when I said that Sweet were almost like a punk band in their attitude. Frank Torpey later explained in interviews that Brian Connolly was trying to get a German recording deal. Of course, Brian was the only original member; the others hired lackeys, proficient and clinical, pay roll musicians doing a job. The group sold over 50 million albums… He told me how he was ‘getting well’ but that being kicked out of the band sent him over the edge. We learnt a lot from them’. Except the reality is, Brian was never a millionaire. Evening Gazette: ‘We don’t use freelance stuff – sorry’. I put them straight and said ‘I’m here for Brian’. I hung around in the sound check and felt a teenage thrill at hearing the band run through ‘Hellraiser’. He moved to Middlesex and joined Wainwright’s Gentlemen, replacing Ian Gillan. If you have to say anything, say nothing at all by E F Fluff, Alan Savage Interviews The Sweet's Brian Connolly (May 1989), The Season of Strangers Discussing My Pubic Hair by Kristin Garth, THE DUPONT CIRCLES: In Search of the Family Gredunza, The Season of Strangers Discussing My Pubic Hair by Kristin Garth. I really did feel he had been dealt a rotten run of cards since the last days of Sweet. From Australia: During the 1990 tour it was revealed Brian Connolly was using a passport with the name McManus on it! Bio: Alan Savage is a Middlesbrough, U.K, born singer and songwriter. I was not lying. Brian, a man who obviously had had a lot of female attention was very polite to her. The two got on very well and Torpey subsequently invited Connolly to go into the recording studio with him, as an informal project. He also revealed that not everyone in the band felt this way. and, of course, the hair band revolution of the 80s, just to name a few, and ALL of them owed a debt of gratitude to the band who laid the groundwork. Brian also blamed bad management and all manner of behind the scenes skulduggery conspiring against him. Here he was, manfully trying to be the idol he used to be, having a bunch of wannabe scheming jerks on his pay roll. But hearing is believing and those records still sound great today. I don’t think he ever got them. Such stupidity comes from desperation and to be honest, I was old enough to know better, but the rock n roll fairies were still dancing in my head. The gig over, it was time to meet Brian for the interview. There’s a little bit of Sweet in all of us. The more I learn, the more I believe the one resounding theme of his life (besides extraordinary talent) was, sadly, abandonment, by his mother, by his band, by the industry and ultimately, by a once adoring public. He also claimed that his ex-band members cheated him out of money when he was kicked out of the band.