“Being in The Payolas was really the foundation of anything I’ve done. It was me learning how to make records, how to write songs, what structure meant – along with everything about the music business. Of course, working with a writer like Paul Hyde, whose integrity was always right there, was very good for me.
“The whole period of The Payolas was life-changing, and my time with Mick Ronson in the studio was huge. [Ronson produced the band’s 1982 effort, No Stranger To Danger.] He was the kind of guy I strived to be.
“The name of the band insulted the people at the record company. Charlie Minor, who ended up being murdered by a stripper, was the head promo guy at A&M in the States, and he told us, ‘I’m never going to do a fucking thing for you. Your name is an insult to what I do for a living.’ He said that with a smile on his face, even though he did help us a bit.
“The people at the record companies didn’t like the first generation of punk. They didn’t see what they were starting to develop. Going to clubs and getting spit on wasn’t for them; it was different from going to strip clubs with hot babes and cocaine and that whole ‘money, money, money’ thing.
“But without The Payolas, I wouldn’t be doing what I do now. It was very important to my development and career.”