Otway & Barrett
More information about Otway & Barrett tickets
The partnership of John Otway & Wild Willy Barrett was never going to be smooth. Willy was a musical prodigy having learned to play at the age of four and mastering the guitar, piano, banjo and fiddle by the time Otway gave his first performance - drinking a bottle of ink in-one in the school playground, to an audience of 100 fellow school-children who did not believe anyone would go to such ridiculous extremes just to get attention.
The first place Otway and Barrett did not work together was their first gig - John was heckled off stage during his solo number and both Willy and the audience decided that it would be better if they did not do the rest of the show as a duo.
They did however do some recording together, but after falling out John put out the single himself leaving Willy's name off the label. That should have been the end of the duo, but Pete Townshend heard the record and offered to produce the act - an offer neither party felt they could refuse.
When times got tough they did re-unite for short periods of time, but any sustained partnership was usually curtailed by unreasonable behaviour by one of the parties. Barrett writing a song called "Give It Headbutts" which required him to bang John's head against the microphone in time to the music and Otway recording a solo album called "All Balls and no Willy" are typical examples of this.
In the past few years Otway and Barrett have reunited for a few short tours, if only to prove that nothing much has changed.