Peter Beckett is a guy whose name is met with respect within the Westcoast/AOR-genre.
Not only being original member of "classic" Westcoast act Player, but also having played together with Little River Band, Airplay and Think Out Loud (together with another semi-legend of his own, Steve Kipner) just to name but a few.
Peter Beckett was born in Liverpool, England, and lived there during the Beatles rise to fame. Later he moved to London.
"I spent almost ten years there (in London). I was there during those so called "Swinging London" days. I now live in L.A. where I have been since 1974."
Peter's first contact with music though was through the radio (where else?).
"I began taking an interest in music in the early sixties when my older brother started bringing home the latest records and playing radio Luxembourg."
Among his early influences, was obviously the Beatles:
"Being from Liverpool, it would be hard not to have been influenced by the Beatles, whom I saw play at the Cavern a couple of times when I was very young."
Except for the Beatles, Crosby Stills Nash, Hall and Oates "Abandoned Luncheonette", "Hotel California" with Eagles, and the early Peter Gabriel stuff, belong to Peter's early musical influences.
"These days I'm in love with the band World Party. Vocally I was very influenced by Paul Rogers and Lou Gramm."
Now Beckett has released a second Think Out Loud CD together with Steve Kipner, this time on the MTM label titled "Shelf Life".
-The first Think Out Loud album had a more genuine album feel over it, while this album doesn't sound as focused as the debut. Gives an impression that this is merely a collection of demos, am I correct?
"The first Think Out Loud album was a very expensive endeavour. We used all the best people etc. This one is really a collection of songs that Steve and I have written over the last ten years, either together or separately."
-Who is playing on the album?
"The book is scarce on info, including all of MY publishing information. I was away on tour when this booklet was put together. I have complained and have been assured that it will be corrected for the next printing. Also there should be more musician info."
-Will there be any more Think Out Loud-CDs further on?
"I do not know if Steve and I will record again. Maybe if we get a hit. I really like the first Think Out Loud CD.
For the time the production was amazing. My favourite album though is the Beckett solo CD although the production on both records sounds a little dated today, but then what would you expect???"
-Having written with so many various writers over the years, is there any one in particular you enjoy working with?
"I always enjoy writing with Kipner, we have been friends for 25 years. Bob Marlette is a talented guy. Another favorite co-writer is Steve Plunkett (Autograph)."
-What about the future?
"I am about a quarter of the way through a new Beckett solo effort which is very much in a Liverpool, back to my roots, vein."
-Why didn't the complete original line-up of Player participate on the "comeback-CD" released in 1996?
"The reason the new Player CD comprises only Ronn and I, is that J.C. has a country music career, and John Friesen has vanished into the depths of middle America.
There will be another Player CD Hopefully this time we can get a European release.
Player was recently nominated in the L.A. music awards for best produced independent record. We performed live at the show, and the band included Elliot Easton of the Cars on guitar, Burleigh Drummond of Ambrosia on drums, Tony Sciuto of L.R.B. on Keys and Ronn and myself. The reviews were amazing and we've had several offers since that night. This could turn into something soon."
Ok Peter, concludingly: are you raised on radio?
"I was raised on radio! Radio Luxembourg and later radio London. I am in the middle of writing a book and it starts out in Liverpool, with me listening to my older brother's records. He always had radio Luxembourg on and sometimes I would sneak into the front room, pull down a mirror from the wall, put it in the chair, and mime with a tennis racket "guitar" to the mysterious sounds from across the channel, coming through the old radiogram. I was hooked!!!"