It was during the same period millions have been witnessing in Peter Jackson’s documentary Get Back, a little over fifty years ago, that US audiences were introduced through a Paul McCartney song,”Come and Get It”, to a little-known English band The Iveys, soon to be rechristened Badfinger and to become second only to The Beatles in sales on the Apple Records label. “Come and Get It” by Badfinger reached #4 in the UK, #7 in the States. So with that kind of Top Ten start on both sides of the Atlantic, what could have possibly gone wrong? As you will hear, everything.(left rear- Joey Molland; left front-Mike Gibbins; right rear-Pete Ham; right front-Tom Evans )
If the Big Star story warrants box sets and a documentary film, then the saga of Badfinger surely deserves a full-blown mini-series. Maybe the appearance of Badfinger’s hit “Baby Blue” in the finale of the hit cable series Breaking Bad, originally from the brilliant December 1971 Straight Up album, generated enough buzz to get their tragicomic story into development. Certainly every element necessary is there in spades: working-class struggle; anointing by rock royalty the Beatles; hit songs “Come and Get It”( donated by Paul McCartney ), “No Matter What”,” Day After Day”,”Just a Chance”; intrigue, big money, bigger crooks, pathos, and heartbreaking suicides. Yes, plural.
Guitarist/singer/songwriter Joey Molland and Badfinger drummer the late Mike Gibbins tell the dashed dreams of the ill-fated quartet in this classic rock interview to mark the golden anniversary of Straight Up, produced by Beatle George Harrison until he was called away by Ravi Shankar to organize a star-studded benefit concert for monsoon-ravaged Bangla Desh. Substituted for George Harrison? Some American kid in his early twenties named Todd Rundgren. – Redbeard