Friend to the blog Darren M. pointed me to this story on Imelda May on Spinner.ca, where she talks a little about how she met Jeff Beck, and how their collaboration came about:
How did you meet Jeff Beck?
Well, Darrel had already worked with Jeff before, through the Big Town Playboys. They did an album together. But Jeff didn’t know that we were together. Do you want to hear the full story?
Well, I was walking through the park one day and I found a tiny little baby crow. And nobody would take it in, nobody would rescue it. I was ringing all these animal rescue centers and they said, “A crow?! No.” I didn’t know what to do, so I brought it home. And we fed him, Darrel and I. Darrel named him Dave. And we fed Dave by hand, fed him bread. It took me two hours to find out what to feed him. Darrel was online trying to find out. He eventually grew from a little bruised, little baldy thing into this beautiful grown crow. He used to sit on my shoulder and we’d bring him to gigs, because you can get someone to mind a dog, but you can’t get someone to mind a crow when you go on tour.
So we’d bring the crow with us and he’d sit on my shoulder and we had a little cat box for him, for in the car. We’d let him out and he’d fly around the gigs. I was trying to get him to fly. I wanted to release him back to the wild, because he was healthy. He started to get very tamed, though. He’d fly up into a tree, wait through the gig, fly back down. I’d go “Dave!” and then he’d fly back down to me. He wouldn’t go to anybody else. So he was pretty safe.
So then we had a gig and Jeff and his wife Sandra were there, a Jools Holland gig. And then it came about, Sandra his wife — this is a weird story, I know, but it’s weird how life works — Sandra rescues animals. And I didn’t know what to do with Dave, because he was getting too big. People would say, “Put him into a zoo or something,” and I’d say, “No way, I wouldn’t,” though he was getting huge. So she said, “I’ll take this crow, I’ll take him off you.” And then we got to chatting, and Jeff goes, “Oh, you two are together?” And then she said, “Come back to the house, I just happen to have an aviary free, if you want to have a look at it.” And then we went back to the house and had brandy and a little jam session and Jeff said we need to work together, that we should record and go on tour. [Laughs] I don’t know how to get around that full story!
So, if wasn’t for Dave the crow, we probably never would have worked together. It’s weird how life goes.
I love it. Also, if you’re into Imelda May’s music, she has recently released a new album, titled Mayhem.