Animal Change — Full Story

WHILE ALAN Price was relaxing at home in Newcastle, Dave Rowberry, the man who is taking his place with the Animals, was working hard rehearsing with the group in a London club.

I met 24 year-old Dave in the London Cavern, Holland Park. He already has the regulation Animal non-haircut and takes his music but very seriously.

Gerry Mulligan was blowing ‘My Funny Valentine’ on the juke box as Dave told me: “I like him. I’m a great modern jazz man. I played with the Ronnie Scott organisation for a time when he opened a lot of clubs round about.”

“I’ve got no worries about joining the Animals,” he said confidently. “I think I can contribute a lot to the group.

Dave met Eric when he went to Newcastle University. He thought the jazz scene would be non-existent there and he could get on with his studies. Then he met Mr. Burdon and was back where he started.

“When Alan didn’t come to Sweden, we knew he wouldn’t be coming back,” Chas stated. “Eric suggested we ask Dave to take his place and we agreed. He’d played with Eric and John in Newcastle, so we knew he was okay.”

Japan

Alan phoned from Newcastle and said: “I can’t take any more travelling. I just had to leave at that time. There was Japan and everything coming up and I couldn’t face it.

“A lot of people thought it was a big show, that I was trying to prove something, but it wasn’t like that at all. It’s worse than rough when you don’t like flying.

“I haven’t done a thing since I’ve been home, it’s great. I’ve been playing tennis and scrabble and watching TV.”

Of his future, Alan commented: “I’ll get some work somehow. I’ll help on recordings and things like that. I don’t know how I stand at the moment. I don’t know if I’m going to get money from them or anything. I’ve still got a contract with Animals Ltd.”

And of Dave, Alan told me: “He’s a great guy, he’s a friend of mine. He knows his stuff inside out, there’s no loss with me out.”

For Alan’s sake, let’s hope things work out okay. And let’s wish Dave the best of luck with the Animals.

© Richard GreenRecord Mirror, 15 May 1965

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