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Roger N. N.
My collaborations with Hawkwind and
Farflung are direct results of my interest
in Calvert's lyrical style.
I had been writing letters commenting and making suggestions to Dave Brock for many years concerning Hawkwind's songs as well as continually obsessing an Bob's lyrics.
I had never seen a live Hawkwind show, didn't have any idea what they were like. lt was all just a big mental picture show in my own head with just the music and lyrics to go by... fuelled by telepresent deprivation.

So I finally decided I had to see what lt was all about -
- Hawkwind live!

After dedicating a vacation to the first half of the 1984 Hawkwind UK tour I just started writing lyrics. (If I could pin it down specifically in time to when it was... ah, yeah... I was christened over the head with a bottle-- while in the Navy, but I don't recommend it! Very painful... and you go blank while you're talking sometimes... forget what you were just doing and saying. Or come out of a peaceful empty state of mind and find yourself driving to Los Angeles for no apparent reason.
So I'd guess lt was sometime after this happening and hearing from Bob Calvert.)

Roger N.N. and Robert Calvert, 1986 Writing is sort of like therapy. Since I couldn't afford a psychiatrist - I'd write to Bob. Describe what I was doing and odd thoughts I was having. Wrote lyrics, sent some to Hawkwind.
I did send a few pre- Xenon Codex lyrics to Bob so he could read some of the things I was writing myself (wondering if he' say anything abot them).
He reminded me of them after the 1988 Hawkwind tour when I felt very burned out - he suggested that I might like to take a break from writing lyrics for Hawkwind for a while... maybe find a band for those lyrics I had sent him years ago. I was already planning to take a break then and mentioned this to him.
Bob nodded, smiling knowingly, "A good idea...."

I was told an interesting ANTI-DOTE, Bob showed up at one of the Starfighters' (the name of Calvert's current back-up band at the time) flats and asked to see the Xenon Codex Tour Book.
After looking it over he rang up Dave Brock and indicated he would like to do something with Hawkwind again.
The outcome? Very GOOD... with Bob plotting and planning his next Hawkwind project. I didn't know about this at the time, but got this very excited letter from Bob asking if I could come down to Ramsgate to see him. I was a bit busy and wrote back suggesting I'd drop by in September.
I ended up in Ramsgate in August for his funeral.

Several weeks after Bob's funeral, Jaime Cortinas (member of The Starfighters) asked me if I had any lyrics available that maybe The Starfighters could do. I knew that Bob had mentioned he wanted a sound for his band like a cross between Motörhead and Kraftwerk... so they collaborated on The Dealers of Death. A lyric I wrote prior to moving to England.

This was first played live at the Robert Calvert Tribute Concert and occasionally at later Starfighters qigs.
I decided to hold back on my lyrics Bob refered to earlier for another time. Or when the time felt right. They have yet to surface... Lurking in the SHADOWS, waiting to escape!

While visiting Nik Turner on his 1994 USA tour, I was introduced to Tommy Grenas. We had same common interests and I talked with him about Bob, Hawkwind and some German bands Tommy is into. He's a very nice guy. Friendly, and really into Bob Calvert.

At the second Nik Turner show I attended - Doug Buckley (who wrote the lyrics for Hawkwind's "Out of the Shadows") turned up, so I strolled over and said hello.
We had never actually met each other before this. I got a little animated while talking. Within ear-shot of Tommy, Doug commented on my lyrics for Heads and The War I Survived. Tommy perked up and got excited. "You wrote Heads?" (I'd never brought the topic up... just said I was a friend of Nik's.)
Tommy indicated enthusiastically that he really liked "HEADS" a lot... so I gave him my address. He called me up after the tour and talk for a long time about Bob and music.

A few months later, Tommy sent me a demo tape af the first Farflung album and asked me what I thought of it. I loved it and played it constantly. Told him I thought it was a great album. Eventually he asked if I'd like to collaborate with Farflung - then I got excited! The end result being The Raven That Ate The Moon.

farsun Delving into North American Indian mythology. Melissa Joseph (Calvert's Queen Elizabeth Hall photos) had introduced me to Haida art - and this Trickster figure appeals to me... so the college girlfriend inspires - GREATLY-- even in my haiku poetry!

Just recently Purple Pyramid Records via Cleopatra Records released So Many Minds, So Little Time which has the Raven track on it as well as the original poem I wrote that the song is based on. And of course you've either seen or heard that Farflung backed Nik Turner at the Strange Daze Festival '97 in the USA.

I tend to think of Farflung as a Hawkwind spin-off band or the second coming of Space Rock for the next Millennium. So keep an eye an these guys... they'll take you places you haven't dreamed of.
So I can safely say, I don't expect anything dull... not these guys-- they are way at in deep space! Blazing new trails. <

Roger Neville-Neil - Oct. '97

- photo by R.N.N. & Calvert taken by Melissa Joseph -

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