The Little Prince / Mad Man Moon

  • I remember reading (possibly in the Genesis biography) that one idea for the follow-up to SEBTP was to adapt the story The Little Prince by Antoine du Saint-Exupery. If I remember rightly it was Rutherford that was pushing for this. In the end of course Peter's own Lamb story won out. Do let me know if I've misremembered this!


    Banks' Mad Man Moon has always strongly reminded me of the Little Prince story - in both setting and theme. I used to think that before I ever read that they'd considered adapting the story. I'm just wondering if Banks still had the Little Prince in the back of his mind at the time of writing ATOTT. Or maybe he'd started writing it a few years before? I don't know - I just always thought it was interesting. TLLDOB would certainly have been a very different, more romantic and lighter album if they'd gone down that path - perhaps not dissimilar to how ATOTT turned out.

  • I remember reading (possibly in the Genesis biography) that one idea for the follow-up to SEBTP was to adapt the story The Little Prince by Antoine du Saint-Exupery. If I remember rightly it was Rutherford that was pushing for this. In the end of course Peter's own Lamb story won out. Do let me know if I've misremembered this!

    That's certainly always been my understanding.


    As for Banks basing it on TLP personally I have no idea. They both feature a desert and sand, for sure. I once read that he'd based it on Pilgrim's Progress, others have said it's a fanciful rendering of the "grass is always greener" saying.


    On a tangent to this: Wikipedia, regarding the writing of ATOTT, blithely says Banks was amassing material for a possible solo project and this song was one of them. I don't think I've seen that mentioned anywhere else and I have no recollection of TB himself ever having said that in interviews. Has anyone else?

    Abandon all reason

  • I've seen a statement somewhere (can't remember where it was from) that Tony was the one who ironically asked the other three guys if he was supposed to do a solo album too. It was a reference of everybody being busy with side projects - Steve having done Acolyte with Mike and Phil's involvement, Mike having recorded for The Geese And The Ghost with Ant, and Phil having recorded two Brand X albums. Tony supposedly had the first drafts for Mad Man Moon and Robbery, and he wanted to keep Genesis alive and do his songs with the band. So he became the one who convinced the others to give Genesis without Peter a chance.

  • Wikipedia, regarding the writing of ATOTT, blithely says Banks was amassing material for a possible solo project and this song was one of them. I don't think I've seen that mentioned anywhere else and I have no recollection of TB himself ever having said that in interviews. Has anyone else?

    I recall seeing the same comment on Wikipedia and even starting a forum thread about it; but I'm not able to find it now, and I'm wondering what happened to it.


    What I mainly wondered was: Who would have sung on a 1976 Tony album?

    Such are the times we live in, that talking about what's really going on will make you sound crazy.

    Edited once, last by DecomposingMan ().

  • Long ago, in an Italian music magazine, Tony, during an interview said that the lyrics to MMM were based on Carlos Castaneda's novel Eagle's Gift. At the time, I was so enthralled by the song that I vowed to look for the book, I never did, I was 15, I think and had better or more entertaining things to do. I browsed the internet, looking for references to that old interview and couldn't find any, either in English or Italian but I do remember reading about it, how trustworthy the journalist was, I couldn't say.

  • ^ I just tried reading a synopsis of it. It banged on about sorcery, Don Juan and warriors or something. I read the synopsis twice and nothing stuck, it was like breathing on a window pane. I'm pretty sure there was no mention of horses made of sand though.

    Abandon all reason

  • ^ I just tried reading a synopsis of it. It banged on about sorcery, Don Juan and warriors or something. I read the synopsis twice and nothing stuck, it was like breathing on a window pane. I'm pretty sure there was no mention of horses made of sand though.

    I did the same and I agree, I just reported something I know I read decades ago and it was a different time, nowadays you can doublecheck everything within seconds.