Subject: Fish 2000 - "Everyday Hurts" Paul Young 1947 - 2000
Dear Freaks, Fishheads, Fans and the Company,
I had expected to write a glorious account of our Bosnian invasion complete with all the adventures and hilarity you'd expect from such a mission in my first contact with you all for a while. The telephone call early Monday morning from John Crawley at Hit and Run changed all of that.
At around 6.30pm on Saturday 15th Paul Young collapsed and died from a heart attack at his home in Manchester. He had been spending a couple of weeks relaxing with his wife Pat and that afternoon they were out buying garden furniture and a BBQ. When they arrived home Paul complained of chest pains and they both went for a lie down upstairs. Shortly after Paul went to the bathroom and was extremely ill. Pat went in to check he was alright and discovered him lying on the floor. He was dead before the ambulance arrived.
The autopsy revealed that he had died from a heart attack and that it was not the first. Many of us who knew Paul were very aware of his lifestyle and the warnings that he had been given by doctors re his seemingly never-ending party mode. I'd seen him many mornings looking like a glove puppet left out on a motorway in the rain and heading straight to the bar for that dog of the pack that had ravaged him up until a few hours before. In the SAS band we were blood brothers and other members crossed themselves when they heard that we would both be in the same line-up on one of our weekend trips. I was looking forward to this weekend's Malta show and especially the day off with Paul in some bar that needed our custom and flame. Needless to say that will now not happen and the empty seat on the plane will remind us of a terrible loss. The funeral is on Friday in Manchester and as the SAS band sit round a pool somewhere in Malta we will all be thinking of him.
I had known Paul since about 1983 when we had met up at parties and backstage areas to discover we had the same zest for hard living. At that time he was lining up the gig with Mike and the Mechanics after the collapse of his previous band Sad Cafe. The story is perhaps familiar. Heavy legal costs from the Sad Cafe split and bad luck had left him with nothing and the Mechanics gig was to prove a lifeline to him and Pat and their three children. History declares the outcome and Paul went on to re-invent himself and introduce his flaming charisma and soul to a wide audience through his contribution to Mike Rutherford's band. I met him often during that time and when he began working with the SAS band we grew ever closer. We were so alike in our travels through life and we discovered a great friendship. We were always last to leave the bar in the morning and that was to head for one of our rooms for a nightcap. Over the years there are a collection of stories - some unprintable - of our adventures and all will be sitting on that empty seat on the flight to Malta together with an unopened bottle of brandy.
Paul's last recorded performance with the SAS band was the Shepherd's Bush Empire this year. The album is now a testament to Paul, and having talked to Spike and others we are agreed that we should make a special effort to have this performance recognised. The album is in aid of the Mercury Phoenix trust and I would ask you to help in any way possible to help bring the album's attention to as many people as possible.
It has been sad to notice the complete lack of awareness from the media to Paul's demise. This was one of the finest frontmen and singers from the history of the British music scene and his immense personality, glowing charisma and outrageous positivism in the face of a world of grief and bad luck always gave myself and others so much energy. As Pat told me yesterday she expects any moment to see his smiling cheeky face peer round the doorway with another pathetic excuse for being away without leave. We will all feel like that for a long time. The man is and will always be irreplaceable and like many others who have experienced the whirlwind that was Paul Young we will sorely miss him.
If you would like to support the Phoenix Trust SAS album it is available through the Fish Information Service merchandise service now or from retail outlets from September. Information is printed below. Spike, the SAS band and myself would sincerely appreciate your support with this album.
1. Blinded by the light - Chris Thompson
2. All I need is a miracle - Paul Young *
3. Every day hurts - Paul Young *
4. Big area - Mark Shaw
5. Fire - Arthur Brown
6. My Generation - Leo Sayer
7. Time warp - Richard O' Brien
8 I just wanna make love to you - Stevie Lange
9. 2-4-6-8 Motorway - Tom Robinson
10. Every Time you go away - Paul Young
11. Hammer to fall - Tony Hadley
12. Just good friends - Fish
13. California Man - Roy Wood
14. Radio ga ga - Roger Taylor
15. Show must go on - Chris Thompson
"The video is really long - about 2 hours at the moment. Looking good so far. History of the SAS Band - rehearsal footage - sound bytes from crowds through the years - some old bits of footage - mixing of the album footage - plus the whole concert." - Bridge Recordings
We are now taking orders for both the video and the album through the FIS merchandise service. When ordering please quote SAS01 for the album and SAS02 for the video. Both items are 16.50 UK pounds each including post and packaging. Video is only available in PAL format at the moment. ie not compatible with the USA.
Email 19th July 2000