Jacob Zinn :: journalist + photographer

Playboy Interviews Through the Decades – Music

Posted in Magazines, Music, Playboy by Jacob Zinn on July 30, 2010

Hugh Hefner’s landmark adult men’s magazine Playboy is best known for airbrushed photographs of beautiful, young women that fold out from the middle of each issue.

What is often overlooked by teenage readers (but not by a good number of subscribers) is the Playboy Interview, a monthly article that features lengthy sit-downs with today’s actors, politicians, athletes and celebrities.

In this post are a select few excerpts from interviews with musicians from the past five decades, accompanied by links to the entire articles via Playboy‘s website.

’60s: The Beatles – February 1965
PLAYBOY: No, she pointed at you, George, and said, “There’s a Beatle!” And you others said, “That’s George.” And she said, “No, it’s a Beatle!”
LENNON: And you said, “This way to the bedroom.”
PLAYBOY: No, it was, “Would you like us to introduce you to him?”
LENNON: I like my line better.

’70s: Elton John – January 1976
PLAYBOY: What’s your reaction to other countries you’ve played in?
JOHN: I’m not keen on Italy. Germany is very cold. I think Scandinavia is the nicest place to play.
PLAYBOY: Why Scandinavia?
JOHN: ‘Cause they’re clean. I’d never tour a hot-blooded country, like Spain or Portugal. You can’t get a straight answer from anybody there. I’ve never played live in France. They couldn’t organize a piss-up in a brewery! I’ve had nothing but bad experiences in France. I’ve had to do three taping sessions there and they’ve all been disasters. The French are chic but too arrogant and offhanded.

’80s: Keith Richards – October 1989
PLAYBOY: Your involvement with drugs was well known. Did you ever think you were going past your own point of no return?
RICHARDS: I always felt I had a safe margin. But that’s a matter of knowing yourself—maybe just on a physical level. I come from very tough stock and things that would kill other people don’t kill me. […] People think drugs are entertainment. But the cats they look up to who died of drugs—and even me, who was supposed to die but didn’t, yet!—we weren’t takin’ drugs just for fun, for recreation. Creation, maybe. It’s all too complicated for me.

’90s: Pete Townshend – February 1994
PLAYBOY: When did you smash your first guitar?
TOWNSHEND: I was 13. John Entwistle and I were rehearsing together in the front room of my house. My grandmother came in shouting, “Turn that bloody racket down!” I said, “I’ll do better than that,” and I got my guitar—this was a good guitar that I had paid for myself with money I earned from a paper route—and smashed it to smithereens. I said, “Now will you f**king get out of my life?” and she stomped out.

’00s: Metallica – April 2001
PLAYBOY: Is Jason [Newsted] even on …And Justice for All?
HETFIELD: His picture is on it [big laugh]. Someone sent me a joke CD, with a sticker on the outside that says, “…And Justice for All—now with bass!”

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