Manchester music writer Richard Houghton is compiling a live history of the Faces, capturing people’s memories of seeing them live. Here he explains to SMILER a bit more about the book and how you can get involved.
Q: What’s the idea behind the book?
A: I’ve done books on The Beatles, the Rolling Stones and The Who using the same concept – telling their story in the words of fans, and I want to try and do the same with the Faces. I want to capture the excitement of seeing them live through people’s memories, not through press reports but through the eyes of fans.
Q: Are you a Faces fan?
A: Absolutely. I was just a bit too young to catch them live myself, as I was 15 in 1975 and living in rural Northamptonshire when they came to an end. I really discovered their music the following year. I saw Mac, Ron Wood, Kenney and Rod individually over the years. The nearest I got to seeing Ronnie Lane was on Top of the Pops. I saw them at the Royal Albert Hall with Mick Hucknall on vocals, although I wouldn’t call that the Faces, and I saw Rod, Ron and Kenney at Hurtwood Park. That was brilliant, and they warmed up what was a very chilly evening. I just wish they’d done it while Mac was still alive.
Q: Are you still interested in hearing from Faces fans?
A: Absolutely. What I ask people to tell me is – how did you discover the Faces music? Where and when did you see them? How old were you? How did you get tickets? Who did you go with and what do you remember of the show? What I’m interested in is the personal stuff. If people have a crystal clear memory of the evening, then great. But sometimes it’s the other things that people recall – missing the last bus home, their mate passing out because they necked too many beers in the pub beforehand or whatever.
Q: So is it just Faces concert memories you’re interested in?
A: No, it could be other memories, just as buying particular albums or singles.
Q: When will the book be published?
A: I’m hoping the book will be out towards the end of 2019. I have around 200 memories of seeing them so far but I need a few more. So I really would like to hear from as many people as possible, however brief the memory.
Q: How long should the stories be?
A: They can be any length at all, so it could be 50 or 60 words or it could be several hundred.
Q: Where should people send their stories?
A: I can be reached at email@example.com. And if people don’t want the bother of writing their memories out, then if they drop me a line and send me their contact details I’m happy to have a chat with people over the phone.
The Faces – The Day I Was There will be published by This Day In Music Books in late 2019.
Photo Josh Emmett