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Maureen Paton

Maureen Paton

Maureen Paton began her journalistic career in 1974 as an editorial assistant on The Story Of Pop, a Phoebus Publishing partwork whose assistant editor was former Record Mirror/NME writer Richard "The Beast" Green. There she wrote features on King Crimson, the Doors and Don McLean (as Maureen Harney) and the Bay City Rollers (as George V. Scott – at the suggestion of The Beast).

In 1976 she became the first female staff journalist on Melody Maker, hired as a sub-editor but also contributing album and gig reviews and interviewing John Surman, John Stevens, Nico, Marianne Faithfull, Mickey Baker, Mike Heron and The Flying Lizards among others. 

She joined the Daily Express in 1979 where she became a full-time showbusiness writer and theatre and TV critic before going freelance in 1998 to write for every national broadsheet (except, so far, the FT) and the middle-market papers. Her music interviews have ranged from Tony Bennett, Joan Baez, Rhianna, Boy George, Mick Hucknall, Dizzee Rascal, Alison Moyet, Alanis Morissette, Girls Aloud, John Legend, Paloma Faith and Michael Bublé to the Bay City Rollers' notorious manager Tom Paton (no relation) among others. She is also the author of Alan Rickman: The Unauthorised Biography and The Best Of Women: The History Of Women Of The Year.

14 articles

List of articles in the library

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Johnny "Guitar" Watson: Johnny Guitar Watson: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by Maureen Paton, Melody Maker, 27 November 1976

THE GUITAR HERO stakes is such an overworked concept that it seems almost poetic justice to overact it outrageously to the point of parody. Johnny ...

Nico: Return Of The Pagan Exile

Interview by Maureen Paton, Melody Maker, 29 April 1978

Nico, in London for a one-off gig last Monday and to record an album, talks to Maureen Paton. ...

The Bay City Rollers: Bay City Rollers manager Tam Paton (1999)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 6 March 1999

The Rollers' Svengali talks about how hurt he is by his ex-charges' indifference to him; about how the band broke up and didn't even play on their own records; about their shoddy financial affairs and personal problems, and about his incarceration in the '80s.

File format: mp3; file size: 39.4mb, total interview length: 41' sound quality: **½

Rufus Wainwright (2005)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 14 September 2005

The younger Wainwright talks about fighting his destiny to become a musician; his musical family background and traditions; his and sister Martha's childhoods, and his relationship with his father and mother; coming out and homophobia; HIV and AIDS, and his own promiscuity and addictions; his school days; his strengths and weaknesses, and his relationship with Martha.

File format: mp3; file size: 45mb, interview length: 46' 50" sound quality: ** (phoner)

Donny Osmond (2007)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 23 February 2007

The now-veteran Mormon popster remembers his days touring the UK in the '70s, being pursued by screaming girls; on being a father and grandfather; his new album Love Songs of the '70s; narrowly surviving his surfing accident; being a poster boy for clean living; nearly losing everything in 1980; on his religion, and staying fit.

File format: mp3; file size: 44.4mb, interview length: 46' 16" sound quality: ***

Blur's Alex James (2007)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 25 April 2007

The Blur bassist/cheesemaker on being rebuffed by Faye Dunaway and writing his autobiography... plus he looks back on Blur, his family and personal life; talks about being a (sort of) farmer; about rubbing shoulders with the West Oxfordshire glitterati; about pals like Damien Hirst and about London's clubland; about his love of P.G. Wodehouse and his great friend Marianne Faithfull... and quitting booze.

File format: mp3; file size: 61.4mb, interview length: 1h 03' 59" sound quality: ***

Mark Ronson (2007)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 13 June 2007

... in which Maureen Paton takes a cab ride round the childhood haunts of the producer/DJ. After talking slightly sheepishly about his "mid-Atlantic drawl", Ronson recalls his family background; growing up surrounded by rock'n'roll and rock musicians; being tucked in bed by Robin Williams; his fondness of vintage music and production; producing Amy Winehouse; being a performer and DJ — at P Diddy's birthday party! — and being a school chum of Sean Lennon's.

File format: mp3; file size: 48.6.5mb, interview length: 60' 38" sound quality: ***

Rihanna (2007)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 22 August 2007

The "Bajan Beyoncé" talks about her big hit 'Umbrella'; her upbringing in the West Indies; her mother and brothers; her discovery by Evan Rogers and signing to Def Jam; her dad's cocaine problem; her collaboration with Justin Timberlake... and her hair and make-up tips!

File format: mp3; file size: 42.4mb, interview length: 44' 12" sound quality: ***

Dizzee Rascal (2007)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 30 November 2007

The Grime pioneer takes a cab drive around his youthful stamping ground of Bow: remembering his childhood; times in and out of school; his scrapes with the law; starting to make music, pirate radio and the nascent Grime scene; his stabbing in Ayia Napa... and addressing the Oxford Union!

File format: mp3; file size: 75.6mb, interview length: 1h 18' 42" sound quality: ***

Simply Red's Mick Hucknall (2009)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 20 January 2009

The Ginger soulster talks about the impending end of Simply Red; his winery in Sicily and salmon river in Ireland; his recent lifestyle changes; Manchester and the Gallagher brothers; his art-school days; his partner Gabriella and his daughter; his father and absent mother; the Labour Party and the Iraq war; the music scene today, The X-Factor, and his alienation from it all.

File format: mp3; file size: 50.6mb, interview length: 52' 44" sound quality: ***

Alicia Keys (2010)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 21 January 2010

The R&B songthrush talks about her new album, The Element of Freedom; how she copes with fame; her spirituality; being a New Yorker; her family background; being blessed with love, and about her future plans in film and sound production.

File format: mp3; file size: 29.2mb, interview length: 30' 23" sound quality: ****

Status Quo's Francis Rossi (2010)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 17 November 2010

The Quo co-frontman talks about why he stays on the road; his family; playing solo; his relationship with Rick Parfitt; meeting the Queen; being on Coronation Street; playing Live Aid, and his luck to miss National Service.

File format: mp3; file size: 34.7mb, interview length: 36' 07" sound quality: ***

Marianne Faithfull (2014)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 16 July 2014

The grande dame talks about her new album Give My Love to London; her relationship with manager/ex-lover François Ravard; sleeping with Keef; her friendship with Anita Pallenberg; on Broken English; her family; her Sydney suicide attempt; not seeing Jagger anymore; on Paris, fashion, and becoming a Commandeur Of L'Ordre Des Arts Et Des Lettres.

file format: mp3; file size: 53.6mb, interview length: 55' 50" sound quality: ****

Engelbert Humperdinck (2017)

Interview by Maureen Paton, Rock's Backpages Audio, 17 November 2017

The former Arnold George Dorsey talks about his voice; his rivavlry with Tom Jones; his new album The Man I Want to Be, and its dedication to his wife, Patricia, and her struggle with Alzheimer's; riding his Harley down the PCH; doing Bruno Mars and Ed Sheeran songs; his chilren, and duetting with his granddaughter; his signature song 'Release Me', and his wish to have duetted with Elvis.

File format: mp3; file size: 30.4mb, interview length: 31' 38" sound quality: ****

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