Now for my choices:
Starting with the easiest part - the drummer. It may be a huge cliché but I think it has to be Keith Moon. He inspired a Muppet for goodness sake! He was also the best looking member of The Who by a mile so imagine how good this band is going to be if even the drummer is attractive!
I’ve already said I’m happy with Hendrix, but if I had to choose another, then it would be Johnny Marr. I’ve seen Morrissey live and he played a few Smiths songs, and whilst they were good, without Marr there was something missing. I’m no musician so struggle to describe how good he is, but even other guitarists struggle to explain his greatness. Noel Gallagher said it was Marr that first inspired him to learn guitar and then said words to the effect of ‘Johnny Marr – he’s so good, that even he isn’t that good’
Keyboard is difficult as I’ve struggled to think of many. Someone on the radio had suggested whoever is the keyboard player from Kraftwerk and whilst their influence on dance music cannot be denied, they’ve always left me cold so I’ll be leaving them out. As a reformed Doors-fan I’m not letting Ray Manzarek near the line-up either. So I think it would have to be Rob Collins, from the Charlatans, which I’ll admit is a hugely personal choice. The moog sound was an important element of their early songs, and I don’t think they were ever as good after he died. Kurt Cobain was supposed to be the voice of my generation, but I can remember just as clearly finding out that Rob Collins had died – I was in the brief period between finishing university and starting work, and somehow it felt like it marked the end of an era.
My group is definitely having a bass player, but I’m torn between Peter Hook and Mani. Hooky’s low-slung bass is iconic and being in New Order and Joy Division means he’s played on some of the best records, but then Mani’s been in The Stone Roses and Primal Scream. I think Mani might just edge it because a) Peter Hook looks too much like the OH’s dad, and b) I’ve met Mani a couple of times over the years and he is great bloke & can be relied upon to give a great interview.
The singer presents an even greater problem. As the line-up is so far all male, I did consider a female vocalist – Martha Reeves, Dusty Springfield,, Shara Nelson, even Dolly Parton – all have sublime voices, but I’m not sure they’d work with rest of the band. Grace Slick might work but she's gone down in my estimation since I'd found out she had rejoined the band when Jefferson Airplane mutated in Starship.
Other contenders: Frank Black (Pixies) but you’d need Kim Deal was well; Mick Jagger in his prime but I fear he’s sullied the image by not having the good grace to retire; Morrissey perhaps but then it would really just be The Smiths reformed.
I like my frontmen to have swagger, which rules out the wet-boys fronting most recent bands. Everything they’ve done since the first album has been unremarkable, but really I do think Liam Gallagher is a good frontman – he has that arrogance – unfortunately Oasis are the band of choice of a generation of louts so I'm not picking him. Before my brain melts entirely, I'm going to pick Arthur Lee (Love) - he had a distinctive voice and was a bit of a lunatic, not afraid of a bit of self-mythologising.
So there you have it (eventually). Who would you pick?