Monday, December 10, 2001

Hells Angels, helicopter transported John Paul Jones to Bath Festival in 1970 (interview part 5 of 22)

This is the fifth part of the transcript of my interview with John Paul Jones, conducted Dec. 10, 2001.

SPS: Let me take you to the Bath Festival, June 28, 1970. You were almost late because you were out with the Hells Angels and Julie Felix.

JPJ: We couldn't get there! To be honest, we couldn't get there. I think Peter Grant spent nine hours in a car getting down there, and it was looking like … the report would come back with the [place?] … you couldn't get near the festival. So I had an idea. I rented a helicopter. [inaudible] We all lived up in that area in [Hartfordshire?]. And so at Denham Airport, 10 minutes away, I called him up. I looked in the yellow pages. "Can you get a helicopter?" It was like some decently cheap price too – cheaper than a hired car, for some reason. We got in there, and then they said, "The problem will be landing." 'Cause I think for every thousand feet you have to be a thousand feet away. I said something, and they said, "Don't worry, we'll fix you a transport when we get there." So we ended up, we landed in a field [inaudible]. There's nobody about. [inaudible] But suddenly all these bikes just rolled up, just the helicopter just taking around, going, "Oh, wait a minute," you know. And all these Hells Angels appeared in the field on their bikes, and said, "We're your transport." And so it's just like, we got on the back of a bike and just rolled straight through to the stage. It's a great entrance, I have to say. I was carrying a mandolin. I had a cowboy hat on. [laughs] Peter Fonda.

SPS: And they gave you a leather jacket as a souvenir?

JPJ: No, I had this silly... I remember the jacket. It was this silly shiny thing with picks and tapes, real hippie stuff, it was great.

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