Dear Robert Wyatt,
Moondog somehow got confused with you tonight, and I cannot imagine why, Consequently, and not for the first time, you became top of our after-dinner agenda.
I reminisced about seeing you and Soft Machine in the early 70s at the Queen Elizabeth Hall. I told Mrs Monk about this experience and also about how my girlfriend, Christine, was so enamoured with Deep Purple, that I was obliged to agree to see Deep Purple against my wishes, on the subsequent evening, in order to get her to agree to see Soft Machine the day before. Christine arranged the front row seats for Deep Purple so she could get up close and intimate with the good looking Ian Gillan, I remember a bevy of naked dancing girls surrounding The Band that was intent upon puncturing my ear drums beyond reason.
Mrs Monk has just told me that she also saw Deep Purple that same winter at the Royal Albert Hall. This is perhaps what girls did in 1971, but why did she keep this a secret for twenty seven years until tonight?
Not only did Christine fall prey to the charms of Deep Purple lead singer, Ian Gillan, but her girlfriends boyfriends seemed inspired by the naked groupie-pulling-power of heavy metal.
You will be insulted but I have to report that Soft Machine were dismissed by Christine as “ugly”, and I do mean physically ugly. You should not be offended by this non-musical assessment of your performance because your face was not exposed to public view since you were completely hidden by a bevy of drums and long hair for the entire concert, which comprised of a complete and immaculate set of Soft Machine 3, an undoubted masterpiece. I am familiar with every note.
I have never purchased a Deep Purple Album, and Christine and I parted ways in 1971 soon after this concert, due to musical differences, and the arrival of the present Mrs Monk, an American national, who joined me in Wimbledon soon thereafter.
When we met she introduced me to her agenda of Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, and Peter Brooks. I offered her Italian and French movies at the NFT and of course, Soft Machine III. I became acquainted with her strange American hip agenda of avant-garde theatre, Shakespeare, Steinbeck and other American, poets, She in turn embraced unequivocally the alien and much maligned genre of Canterbury Rock, (Prog Rock), and particularly the output of yourself.
Subsequently Mrs Monk has pursued your career diligently and expectantly, She has just told me that that you have just had a birthday.
Happy birthday Robert Wyatt