Motor Racing And All That Jazz
DURING a recent conversation with Brian Lister, we began to speculate why so many racing drivers have been musical. We reached no conclusions hut the subject seemed so intriguing t hat we started to draw up a list. Brian 1.ister himself was an accomplished jazz nmsician specialising in drums and the vibraphone, other drummers have included Les Lest On she Ambrose: Octet), Slim Borguud (Abb., Nick Mason (Pink Floyd) and Cozy Powell, while Buddy Rich is a great racing enthusiast. Francois Cevert had to choose boween a career as a concert pianist and raing, Maurizio Flammini combined the two, Elio de Angelis is an accomplished pianist and Gilles
Villeneuve was apparently hot stuff on an upright. James Hunt, of course, plays the trumpet. Johnny Clues led. his own band, the Clay Men. The jazz singer Buddy Featherston, haugh raced successfully at Brooklands. as did Billy Cotton. Reg Owen, “red Heath’s arranger, competed in hill climbs and jazzmen Acker Bilk, Ronnie Scott. Pete King and Chris Barber have all raced. Owen Maddocks, the Cooper designer, played with Mick Mulligan’s band, the Amercian singers Darrell Hall and John Oates race in S2000 in the States, 103 driver Rob Wilson plays with a popular group called “The Strolling Bones” and the pee-wan Italian driver, Camp.ari, once fulfilled an ambition by playing the lead in an opera in a provincial theatre the was not a success). Casting the net wider. Kali Nail Whiteman and Woody I lerman were great racing enthusiasts. as are (i.irge Harrison,
Denny (nine and Leo Sayer. Disc jockeys, Mike Smith, Dave Lee Travis and Noel Edmunds have all been active participants in motorsport.
No doubt readers can supply other names. But can anyone suggest a reason wity there should be this app arms correlation? • Is it just that a• musician is more noticeable than, say, an accountant and what appears to be a high incidence of musical racing people is actually only a statistical norm? Is it that successfitl musicians frequently have the wherewithal to go racing whereas, for example, schoolmasters do not? Is it a matter of inherent .1-ordination, or the fact that both musicians and racing drivers both tend to be: people out of the conventional workaday mould?
I’ve had as many theories proposcd as people Inc asked. Over to you „Th. Erudite Reader. — Ml,.