When Verden Allen’s mum died, it left a void in his life that he decided to fill by reuniting Mott the Hoople.
The legendary UK rock band had been separated for decades when the founder member and organ player did what most fans thought was impossible.
“People have tried before and failed, but in 2009 everyone wanted to do it,” Verden recalled.
“I’d been looking after my mother, but unfortunately she passed away and I found I had nothing to do, so I put a lot of effort into putting the band back together.”
After meeting up with vocalist Ian Hunter, who agreed to the reunion, Verden gathered the rest of the band for five 40th anniversary dates in London.
“I was worried how we would sound, but it was fresh.”
Now they’re coming back to stage again, and this time they’re heading north.
“I fondly remember playing many nights in Glasgow the Maryland Club in the early days, Strathclyde Union, Kelvin Hall, and Green’s Playhouse.”
Mott’s big single, All the Young Dudes, was penned by fan David Bowie, who also produced the band.
“We could tell he was going to be great he had an aura about him, yet was very easy to work with,” Verden continued.
Soon after the band’s biggest success in 1972, Verden decided to walk away.
“It wasn’t an easy thing to do, but I thought it was the only way I could progress. With hindsight it’s different.
“I had songs I wanted to do, but Ian had taken over songwriting and I felt frustrated that I couldn’t get my songs across to the band.
“I think the record was still in the charts when I left.”
Verden continued playing in his own bands but nothing matched Mott’s level of success.
So he’s happy to be out on the road with the boys again especially as it lets him perform on his 55-year-old Hammond CB organ.
“I don’t use it with my own band because it’s so big, but I’ll be using it for Mott it’s part of the image.
“It takes four people to lift and needs to be oiled every now and again, but it has a great sound and presence on stage.”
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