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Hunter Davies in conversation with 'Digger'
---Excerpt that mentions Brian---
... Brian was so hard to pin down and Brian was being eased out of their lives. And Brian, though I didn’t really know it at the time - he was always canceling me and he was always letting me down – I had dates. And of course I didn’t know what was happening. He was so bunged up to his eyeballs with drugs and was on sleeping pills.
D: He didn’t really seem to know what he was at, when he first met you there when you first went to talk about the book.
H: That’s right, he was fairly dopey then. But he was out all night on the razzle,
(noun, UK, INFORMAL - "on the razzle" means enjoying yourself, visiting bars and dancing, etc: - "I was out on the razzle last night, and I'm rather tired this morning.")
or whatever and then was getting depressed, getting off on pills and then sleeping it off all morning so he wasn’t there a lot of the time. When he eventually turned up, when I saw him in Chapel street, he was – I couldn’t really understand why he cancelled it and why he was – I’d heard rumours but he always looked, despite the life he was leading, he looked absolutely immaculate. He always had startlingly clean shirts on and ties and polished shoes and lovely suits and he never looked knackered ( tired ). But the life we now know he was leading, it wasn’t physically having a bad effect on that - it’s just that he was letting things slide inside.
D: Do you think nobody knew what was going on in truth?
H: Well, Peter Brown knew. But The Beatles didn’t know because they were leaving the nest. They were moving off. They were still friends with Brian, still loved him but they were really in charge of their own destiny. I mean the Sergeant Pepper thing, we know, Paul was the major influence there. Not Brian, not George and then when Magical Mystery Tour came along that was Paul as well. So Brian was taking a back seat. And that was probably adding to his depression realising they were moving
away from him.
D: And he had Cilla also pulling the plug because she thought she wasn’t getting any attention.
H: Yeah. Brian was absolutely helpful to me. And I went down to his house in the country – I was invited for the weekend but decided not to stay the night ( laughs ) for various reasons. It was late at night – I’ve never revealed who the other person was who was there but we had dinner at Brian’s house and there was a famous showbusiness personality there, also gay, and late at night they were ringing London wanting boys to be sent down and they were too late ringing – it was a sort of a call boy number he had where he paid a fee. So all this was happening and I thought "Oh no, I’m not going to stick around, I’ll go back to London". But his house was beautiful in Sussex and the dinner was amazing and he was very hospitable and totally helpful.
Hunter Davies is the author of The Beatles, The Biography (the first authorized version)
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Last update 17th September 2000