Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Peter Green documentary on the BBC

I watched a good Peter Green documentary off the BBC over the weekend. If you didn't catch it the iPlayer version is here.

It was pretty good with the major focus on his time with Fleetwood Mac - which amazingly was less than 3 years in total. Peter Green is in my humble opinion the best white British blues player to come out of that whole 1960s scene. And he was so much more... Need Your Love So Bad, Black Magic Woman, Oh Well, Man of the World, Green Manalishi. The last two showed the dark side of Peter's character which was very troubled and a lot of time is spent in the documentary with other members of Fleetwood Mac about the infamous Munich incident where Peter took some drugs and the others all point to a instant worsening of his mental wellbeing from then on. He ended up very very ill over the subsequent years.

Sadly his recovery whilst dealt with in terms of the start of it was far too quickly glossed over. His work in the 90s etc. with The Splinter Group and solo stuff was very very good, maybe not Fleetwood Mac in their heyday quality but not far off. I obviously never got to see him in the day with Fleetwood Mac but did catch him several times in The Splinter Group and some of those performance when he play instrumental versions of Man of the World (he couldn't sing that one any more) and Green Manalishi coupled with the Splinter Groups material (Destiny Road is very good place to start on them if you don't know them) made them very special gigs. A friend of mine was moved to tears the first time he went with me.

So worth a watch - I just wish more had been said and shown of the material post his recovery as it really deserved it and is a very fitting tribute to the man in so many ways and also an inspiration to anyone who is mentally unwell.


  1. I used to be on 'nodding' terms with Peter Green during the years when he would wander about town dressed like a tramp in an old brown overcoat which he wore all year round. I initially mistook him for a tramp until somebody told me who he was. He used to walk past my place of work every day. I was incredibly pleased when he started to get it back together again, but alas, the talent had long since gone.

  2. I disagree a bit Col - yes he wasn't the force he was in the 1968/1970 but he was still very very good and had the touch.

  3. I love this post! Had no idea that he was a blues man.

    I always learn something musical over here. Maybe after a while, I won't suck at music so much.

    Also, my son has been taking lessons on his Fender Strat for two months now and I am so surprised with his progerss. He is almost jammin on his own, and quite well, I might add.

    So proud.

  4. I loved him with fleetwood mac.
    And I grew up with my dad blasting Black Magic Woman. He is awesome.
    I however didn't know of his personal story.

  5. I saw that doc yesterday. Magnificent it was. I thought Peter's illness was adequately covered though, all members were as honest as they could be without being bitchy which shows the respect that they have for him to this day.
    I saw The Splinter Group a few years ago and it was a fine gig. It's good that Greeny is back doing what he does instead of living in a Croydon bedsit, or summat.

  6. Oh yes and well done on the swimathon! And to Daughter! Big congratulations!

  7. I'm writing from Portland, Oregon in the USA, I've been a long time fan of Peter Green, and would love to see this BBC Documentary, and would be interested in purchasing a copy, or if I could see it on the web, that would be great too, any help, would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank You BBC