Re: The fake "Asia." How did this happen?
Date: July 22, 2021 05:03AM
I really don't get the "hate" for John Payne. Downes invited him in and is he supposed to turn it down? They formed a strong song writing partnership. JP era Asia released some damn fine albums along the way without recreating the commercial success of the eponymous debut and Alpha. To be fair Asia were prettty much on the wane as headliners following the percieved flop of album #3 - Astra.
What I admire about JP is that he didn't try to be a Wetton clone either in tone, style or songwriting. He wasn't helped by Wetton publicly describing him as a crap singer.
As far as the right to call himself "Asia" - he's the 2nd longest continuos serving member of the band after Downes and as well as acquiring Palmer's share of the name I believe he actually acquired the majority share during one of Downes' divorces to stop the name being part of the divorce settlement.
So, when the original Asia wanted to reform, they had no rights to use the name and had to make a agreement with JP which included his right to run with AFJP. If I was a betting man, I would wager JP made more money from passing the Asia name rights back to the original members than he ever did and does from Asia music.
I remember when Asia reformed that Wetton was quick to state that Asia could really only exist with the 4 guys that made the original magic. Didn't stop him carrying on the band with Sam Coulson on guitar when Steve Howe quit to concentrate on his Yes commitments. Is that also "fake" Asia?
Paynes subsequent work with GPS and Dukes of the Orient also stands muster against the vast majority of output from our genre.
As a final note, JP is really nice guy. Always happy to stop and chat. I remember way back when when GPS played an early UK show supporting Y&T, JP'S girlfriend took a great picture of my then 10year old son and JP shoulder to shoulder and promised to e-mail it to us later. Most people would have not bothered but my son got a personal e=mail a few days later from JP thanking him for coming to the gig along with the photo. Money can't buy class like that!!