Pamela Poland goes back in time
DW: I recently wrote to my heart throb, the former Columbia Records’ singer, Pamela Poland.
Salutations Mistress Pamela
I wonder could I nudge a memory or few out of you about Barney? Anything is good – what he wore, looked like, said, did – anything. The readers are quite fanatic about his person, not having experienced him live and feel they would have a better handle on his cleverness if only they could have met him. Have a go, I’m sure you have something, and your clever way with words would be so ducky.
Just to remind you, Barney and I met you in 1967 on your way to find your dog Canina and Italy. It was at our LA friends, Gary and Carol Russoff’s flat, whom we had met a few months before in the ‘Front Room’ Indian restaurant on North End Road and we used to visit for entertainment, hashish, and tv.
Pamela: Oh wow!!!!!
DW: Then I seem to recall we then met you randomly in Holland Park walkin’ the dawg. Barney and I were quite a funny act in those days and we amused you.
Pamela: That you did.
DW: Then in one day in ’72 Barney phoned and told me you were at the studio with Gus Dudgeon… I was the Squeek for a few days. We got on well and you enticed me to Mill Valley, California, where we had an adventure.
Pamela: You know, you did ask me this in the first letter some days ago, and this aging brain is not coming up with anything specific. I kind of remember what he looked like, but mostly I remember this very colorful, artistically FREE individual – highly creative, very original, but the *biggest* impression being this “free” quality – not held back by social constraints, formulas or pre-disposition. I really appreciated that about him. Remember how I used to do these long vocal jams in live performance? I used to have a similar kind of fearlessness as a singer, and I think Barney, you and I recognized each other as kindred spirits in that regard. We let our creative passions loose on the world without fear of criticism, because we knew we came here to *express* ourselves. And in your and Barney‘s case, that expression was also done with whimsy and delightfully good cheer.
If there‘s anything from the above you find useful, take of it what you will, Mr. Wills. If not, I‘m afraid I cannot serve your purpose because of too many years and fried brain cells gone “under the bridge. lovingly, p
DW: Just as I thought, you came up with the most apt insight, I’ve been trying to think what I forgot – and you ‘membered it, spot on. Barney had transcended his Tranmere Road, Whitton upbringing for sure. Thank you Pamela.