Saturday, 25 July 2020

Britain is no longer a country for an old musician called Peter Green, no longer a Man of the World

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Peter, who has died at the age of 73 was the blues-rock guitarist who founded the band 'Fleetwood Mac' and withdrew from the world after the success of his beautiful 'Man of the World'. When it was released in 1969, Peter and I were 22 years old. I was a student in Brighton and in love and when I played it on my portable record deck to the lovely Bronwen, it was my equivalent of a John Donne love poem.

Peter was ranked 38th in 'Rolling Stone's' list of the '100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time'. He'd played  in 'John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers' and left in 1967 to form 'Fleetwood Mac'. He had a distinctive playing style and tone, as witnessed in 'The Super-Natural', an instrumental he wrote for 'The Bluesbreakers' in 1967 for their 'A Hard Road' album. It contained his harmonic feedback, shivering vibrato and 10 second sustained notes achieved by him controlling feedback on his Les Paul guitar :[7]

Peter joins the musicians in the sky and Danny Kirwan from Fleetwood who died at the age of 68, two summers ago. He was 18 when he joined Fleetwood Mac in 1968 and played with it until he was fired by Mick Fleetwood four years later. He made a major guitar contribution to Peter's 'Albatross' released in October that year and will always be remembered for his haunting melodies :

Peter struggled with success and his personality changed after taking LSD, which may have caused schizophrenia. He left Fleetwood Mac in 1970 and faded into obscurity, taking a succession of menial jobs and undergoing electro convulsive therapy. He enjoyed a late 1990's comeback with the 'Peter Green Splinter Group', released 9 albums and began to play his 'Gibson Les Paul' guitar again.

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