Kenney Jones in Soho, September 2007
Soho plaque unleashes mod memories
Drummer Kenney Jones was the powerhouse in two great pop bands, the Small Faces and the Faces. As London honours his first outfit, he talks exclusively about his former bandmates and a new link-up with singer Rod Stewart...
The likelihood of The Faces reforming in the near future is closer than ever before, according to drummer Kenney Jones.
The 59-year-old veteran has also been speaking of his late former bandmates Ronnie Lane and Steve Marriott, saying he thinks about them "all the time".
Jones was one of the founding members of London R&B pop band the Small Faces, who helped define the mod era of the Sixties and later evolved into one of the UK's most successful psychedelic acts.
The mid-1967 single Itchycoo Park is one of their best-remembered songs, while their album Ogden's Nut Gone Flake featured an innovative round cover, the first of its kind.
The band broke up at the end of the decade following Marriott's departure and regrouped as the Faces after joining forces with singer Rod Stewart and guitarist Ron Wood.
In an interview with BBC London Jones revealed he recently had dinner with Stewart and that a Faces reunion "shows all the signs of happening".
"it was a party"
"It's foolish to say we're not talking about it. This time it feels better than it did before," he said.
The Small Faces plaque in Soho
Recalling his time with the band, with whom he recorded a total of five albums, he said, "They were just a delight. It was a party and we played to the audience who were often onstage with us and we had a great time."
The drummer was speaking on the eve of a plaque being unveiled in Soho in memory of the Small Faces and their svengali-like manager, the late Don Arden, father of Sharon Osbourne.
The plaque will mark the site of Arden's office in Carnaby Street where he reputedly signed the group half an hour after first meeting them.
"I think Don would have been proud of this moment," said Jones. "It's a great honour. It does feel weird though. I feel a bit like Nelson."
The Small Faces are often cited as a major influence on many of today's musicians, such as Paul Weller of the Style Council and the Jam and Noel Gallagher of Oasis.
Bandmates Steve Marriott and Ronnie Lane
Their distinctive style featured Steve Marriott's uniquely powerful voice and the songwriting talent of Plaistow born bassist Ronnie Lane.
"I think about them every day. It's hard not to," said Jones, who grew up in east London in the immediate post-war years.
"My house is full of memories. I miss Steve's bolshie attitude and Ronnie was so laid back he was almost falling over. He was always a gypsy at heart and one of the best bass players I've ever worked with," he continued.
Jones also recalled the Pimlico house where the Small Faces, teenagers at the time of their first success, grew up together.
"We had screaming girls outside, lipstick on the walls. There isn't much more a young boy could want - other than more cars!"
last updated: 04/06/2008 at 16:38