The band was a meritocracy for the most part. Even though it functioned like a dictatorship. Billy wasn’t in charge because he was a jerk, he was in charge because he had the most talent.
I had told Eddie before….It’s a losing battle if you’re going to try to compete with Billy. That’s why I don’t. Eddie didn’t get that.
KAREN: We ended the show by playing “Around to You” with Daisy harmonizing with Billy for the whole song. We hadn’t done a pure vocal harmony song before. It sounded good.
It seemed like Daisy and Billy had a sort of unspoken language, they could pick up stuff quick with each other.
BILLY: When we ended that song, I thought that was the best show we’d ever played. I turned back to the band and I said, “Great job, everybody.”
WARREN: Eddie got really heated and he snapped. “So happy to please you, boss.”
BILLY: I should have read the situation and just backed away. But I didn’t. I don’t know what I said but clearly, whatever it was, I shouldn’t have said it.
EDDIE: Billy got up close to me and said, “Don’t be a dick to me just because you’re having a bad night.” And that was it for me. You know why? Because I’d had a great night. I played great that night.
So fuck him. And that’s what I said, I said, “Fuck you, man.”
And Billy said, “Take it down a notch, all right?”
BILLY: I probably told him to calm down or something.
EDDIE: Just because something doesn’t matter to Billy, doesn’t mean it doesn’t matter to me. And I was real sick and tired of people expecting me to feel exactly Billy’s way about something.
BILLY: I looked out to the crowd, thinking nothing was going on. And I said, “Thanks, everybody! We’re The Six!”
KAREN: Right before the lights went out, I looked over at Eddie and I saw him lift the guitar off his shoulders and I could just tell.
DAISY: Eddie took his guitar and lifted it into the air.
GRAHAM: It just came smashing down.
EDDIE: I smashed my guitar and walked off. I instantly regretted it. It was a ’sixty-eight Les Paul.
WARREN: The neck broke off of it and Eddie just swung it and let it land on the ground and he walked off. I thought about kicking my snare just to join the fun but it was a Ludwig. You don’t go kicking a Ludwig.
ROD: When they came off the stage, I was of two minds. On the one hand, they had just put on a crack fire show. On the other hand, I was afraid Eddie might slug Billy if given the chance. And Jonah Berg was about to come backstage.
So when I saw Eddie, I pulled him aside and gave him a glass of water and told him to take five.
EDDIE: Rod tried to get me to back off. I said, “You get Billy to back off.”
ROD: You know, some days, you’re just trying to get your job done. And musicians can make that a lot of fun or a real drag.
Billy came off the stage as everybody else trickled down. I said to him, “Don’t start, all right? Just put it behind you. Jonah Berg’s coming back here any second and you need to keep the good show going.”
DAISY: It was a great show. A great show. I felt like dynamite after that show.
JONAH BERG (rock journalist, Rolling Stone, 1971–1983): When I first came back and met the band after the Glasgow show, I was surprised at the level of camaraderie. They were out there, rocking out, smashing guitars. But backstage, everything seemed really calm. They seemed completely normal. Which is weird for rock stars.
But The Six was never what you expect.
KAREN: It was so much pretending.
Billy and Daisy are pretending they normally hang out after shows, which they had never done. Eddie’s pretending he doesn’t hate Billy’s guts. I mean, obviously, we were all preoccupied with other things that night and we all just had to put it aside to show Jonah Berg a good time.
BILLY: Jonah was a cool guy. Kind of a shaggy look to him. We were hanging out for a few minutes backstage and I offered him a beer. I had a Coke.
He said, “You’re not drinking?”
I said, “Not tonight.”
I didn’t want my personal life to be any journalist’s business. I was very protective of that. Of what I’d put my family through. No need to air any of that type of dirty laundry.
WARREN: Somehow we all ended up at a piano bar a few blocks away. It was the first time that all of us went out together. The six of us and Daisy, too.
Daisy was wearing this coat over her shorts and shirt. The coat was longer than her shorts and it had real deep pockets. And when we got into the bar, she pulled a few pills out of those deep pockets and threw ’em back with the beer.
I said, “What you got there?”
Jonah was up at the bar, ordering drinks.
Daisy said, “Don’t tell anybody. I don’t wanna hear about it from Karen. She thinks I quit.”
I said, “I’m not asking so I can rat on you. I’m asking so I can have one.”
Daisy smiled and handed me another one from her pocket. She put it in my hand and it had lint on it. They were just loose pills in her pockets. She had pills in all her pockets back then.
BILLY: I’m sitting down with Jonah and he’s asking me questions about how we got started and what’s next for us and all that.
JONAH BERG: When you’re interviewing a band, you’re interested in talking to everybody. Because a good story can come from anyone. But you’re also keenly aware that it’s people like Billy and Daisy—maybe Graham, Karen—that the readership is interested in.
EDDIE: Of course, Billy corners Jonah. Hogs his attention. Pete kept telling me to light a doobie and chill out.
KAREN: When everybody else was over talking to the guy at the piano, I pulled Graham into the ladies’ bathroom.
GRAHAM: I’m not about to go telling who did what where in public.
BILLY: I was surprised to find myself having a good time. I mean, I knew Eddie hated my guts but the rest of us were getting along well and it was fun, being out again. And we’d just played this great show.
DAISY: Some of my best nights back then were the nights I hit the dope just right. Perfect amount of coke, perfect timing on the pills, with just enough champagne to keep me bubbly.
KAREN: After Graham and I rejoined the party, I sat down with Daisy and split a bottle of wine. Or maybe it was that we each had our own bottle?
BILLY: One thing led to another.
JONAH BERG: I think it was me who suggested they play something.
DAISY: I ended up on top of the piano belting out “Mustang Sally.”
GRAHAM: You have not seen anything until you’ve seen Daisy Jones dancing on a piano in a fur coat with no shoes on singing “Mustang Sally.”
BILLY: I don’t remember how I ended up on the piano.
WARREN: Daisy pulled Billy onto the piano.
BILLY: The next thing I know, I’m singing with her.
KAREN: Would Billy have agreed to get on top of a piano with Daisy Jones if Jonah Berg wasn’t there? [Shrugs]
EDDIE: This was not a cool bar. Most places by that point, if you sang a few bars of “Honeycomb,” you’d get a “Oh man! That’s you?” These guys had no idea.
KAREN: When the song was over, Billy went to get down off the piano and Daisy grabbed his hand, held him up there. I said to the piano player, “Do you know ‘Jackie Wilson Said’?” When he shook his head, I said, “May I?”
He got up and let me sit down and I started playing.
GRAHAM: Daisy and Billy just nailed it. The whole place was excited, dancing and singing along. Even the guy Karen had kicked off the piano was singing the chorus with them. “Dang a lang a lang,” you know that whole thing.
JONAH BERG: They were magnetic. That’s the only word for it. Magnetic.
BILLY: When the bar started to close, Daisy and I got down off the piano and this guy said to us, “You know, you two should take your thing on the road.”
Daisy and I looked at each other and laughed. I said, “That’s a great idea. I’ll think on it.”
KAREN: We all walked back to the hotel together.
DAISY: I was behind the rest of the group, putting my shoes on. And I thought I was alone until I saw that Billy hung back for me. He was standing there with his hands in his pockets, shoulders hunched, looking at me as I put my sandals on. He said, “I want to give the other guys time to talk to Jonah.”
The two of us walked a bit slower behind the rest of them, talking about how much we both loved Van Morrison.
BILLY: We got to the hotel lobby and said goodbye to Jonah.
JONAH BERG: I excused myself and went back to my hotel. I knew what I wanted to write about and I was eager to get started.
KAREN: I told everybody I was going to bed.
GRAHAM: I got off the elevator and acted like I was going to my room and then I went straight to Karen’s.
DAISY: Billy and I walked back to our rooms, still talking.
KAREN: I’d left the door open a crack for Graham.
EDDIE: I was so glad to be rid of Jonah and not have to pretend I could stand Billy anymore. I smoked a bowl with Pete and went to bed.
DAISY: Billy and I were walking down the hall and as we got to my door I said, “Do you want to come in?”
I was just enjoying the conversation we were having. We were finally getting to know each other. But when I said it, Billy looked down at the floor and said, “I don’t think that’s a good idea.”