The Thirsty Ear Radio Show
Note: This was probably done in 1978 or early 1979 since the LP "Read My Lips" is referred to (though not by name) and most of the songs featured are from that album; "Fearless" was clearly not released yet, since it was not mentioned and no songs from it were played. I have endeavored to keep the full flavor of the experience as much as possible, so have included comments in square brackets. One gets the impression of a young Tim flexing his performing muscles in every direction possible. Peter Gordon was a great interviewer (wish there were more like him) because he didn't say too much, just drew Tim out and let *him* talk!
Peter Gordon: Hi. My name is Peter Gordon, and welcome to "Thirsty Ear". Today's show presents an artist whose presence was felt on stage well before any musical endeavors. Tim Curry's underground film, "The Rocky Horror Picture Show", which co-stars Meatloaf, has gained him a cult following. After that film, Curry had a brief stint on Broadway with the same show, and today "Thirsty Ear" is able to present him live in concert. We'd like to thank A&M Records for making this show possible. And now, Tim Curry.
[cut to "I Will" live - slower, if possible than the album versions, and with the typical added speaking he often does]
Peter Gordon: Did you think ten tears ago you'd have two careers going at once, meaning the music and the acting career?
Tim Curry: Well I hoped so, yes, I mean in as far as there was any real thinking-out of it from the beginning, that was exactly what I wanted to happen, yes.
Peter Gordon: Hmm...
Tim Curry: Because, partly because it didn't seem to be possible. I think it's a very hard thing to do, in fact, because, I think particularly in America you're always very much encouraged to specialize. Actors are, even. They're not in England, but in America you know you have a hit with a particular kind of a character. And there's a very strong pressure for you to market that as a kind of personality and American actors are encouraged to be personalities in a way that English actors aren't.
Peter Gordon: Hmm. More the talk shows, more the lights?
Tim Curry: Yeah. All the da-da-da, and 'Well it's wonderful to see you Merv', and 'Yes I *do* always wear a black velvet jacket.' 'I *do* have this haircut' or 'I *do* have these smoldering eyes,' or whatever. And they get stuck with it, but they make fortunes and sit out by their swimming pool and *bore* you to death. [Peter laughs]
Tim Curry: The people on the business side in the music business are kind of different from the theatre business. I think it's partly because there are different pressures on the industries. Records have a much more kind of currency, somehow and you have to sort of run with them while they're hot, and you have to generate heat for them. And so the record people are the most incredibly *enthusiastic* people, which is wonderful, which is very new to me. Theatre is a very much more kind of sedate operation, really, in terms of personalities, I think. Musicians are funnier than actors on the whole. [laughing somewhat]
Peter Gordon: Are they?
Tim Curry: Their lifestyles are kind of different. I've spent a lot of time around musicians, anyways, so I was aware of that, but clearly staying in one world rather than another, one very much sees a difference. That's certainly different from movie people, who all sort of wave you good-bye at ten o'clock in the evening because they're getting up at six to go in front of a camera. It couldn't be *more* different than musicians who're just about getting up, when they're going to bed. So yes, it is a completely different world, really. But that's kinda nice, that's one of the attractions.
[cut to "Harlem On My Mind" live - you can just *see* him doing this one]
["Celluliod Heroes" live - absolutely *not* to be missed! Oh - to have been there! You can tell what a performer he is here. Almost brings tears to the eyes... O.K. - back to business.]