Donal Gallagher Interview Realising Notes from San Francisco
By: Brady Lavin
.....In ’75 when the Stones approached him, that was very much a straightforward one, but the difficulty was that they contacted Rory in very early January. He agreed to go to Rotterdam and record with them, but at that time their mobile [recording studio] kept breaking down and having technical difficulties.
So it backed right up into a Japanese tour that Rory was due to go out on at the end of January. Eventually he did go over and do four nights with them in Rotterdam, and Rory was welcomed into the Stones by their manager at that time. Rory refused to have any representation come with him. I wanted to go over with him for the sessions, but he said, “Oh, I’m only having a jam session, nothing serious.”
Also, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards weren’t talking at that time, and it was very much driven by Mick to get the band back on the road. Rory was the natural replacement for Mick Taylor because that was the rule at the time. It wasn’t finding a guitar player it was finding a replacement for Mick Taylor.
It came to the last evening, and Rory had recorded something like four tracks with them, which later were on the Black and Blue. Mick said, “We’d love to have you, but you need to have a conversation with Keith. So would you please go up to Keith’s room, he’s waiting to discuss things with you.” So Rory went up and Keith was comatose in the bed. Rory went back every half hour throughout the night, and Keith never came around, so Rory just packed his bags and got on the plane the next day.
The whole thing was left wide open; it was very much an ambiguous situation.
Rory then had gone on to Japan, and in time, the agents for Rory in London had put out a press story. The agent was terrified of Rory joining the Stones, so he put out a story saying that Rory refused to join the Stones and left for Japan. I don’t think they followed up thereafter.....