(Yann) How did you decide to go on the road with Paul Weller? Paul Asked? I'D DONE "ARE YOU TRYING TO BE LONELY" AND PLAYED ON "22 DREAMS" IN 2007. I HAD GOT ON VERY WELL WITH PAUL AND HIS CREW, WHO I'D ACTUALLY MET BEFORE WHEN I WORKED AS A ROADIE FOR A BAND CALLED DOGS WHO SUPPORTED HIM ON A COUPLE OF UK TOURS. IT WAS EARLY 2008 PAUL ASKED ME IF I'D BE INTERESTED IN BEING IN THE LIVE BAND. OBVIOUSLY I SAID YES..!
(Yann) You’ve toured a long time and recorded with Paul Weller but also with Andy Crofts, Steve Cradock, Stevie Pilgrim and you are FIVE songwriters. Have you worked together? BEING IN A BAND WHERE EVERYBODY IS A SONGWRITER WITH THEIR OWN INDIVIDUAL PROJECTS AND STYLES IS INCREDIBLY EXCITING AND INSPIRATIONAL. WHEN WE ARE ON TOUR WE ARE ALL WRITING AND SOMETIMES DOING DEMOS, WHICH WE PLAY TO EACH OTHER. WITH THE FEEDBACK AND CRITICISM WE GET FROM EACH OTHER, IT'S LKE A TRAVELLING SONGWRITING WORKSHOP. I FEEL THAT THE SONGS ON "41" WERE IN PART INFLUENCED BY BEING IN SUCH TALENTED COMPANY. I KNOW THAT ANDY CROFTS AND STEVE CRADOCK HAVE COLLABORATED ON SOME SONGS FOR STEVE'S NEW ALBUM- "LAST DAYS OF THE OLD WORLD" IS A CLASSIC EXAMPLE OF A SONG THAT CAME TOGETHER OVER THE COURSE OF A TOUR. I EXPECT THAT AT SOME POINT WE WILL ALL COLLABORATE TOGETHER AND MAKE A TOTALLY BIZARRE BUT RATHER WONDERFUL ALBUM... ALTHOUGH UNITED BY A LOT OF COMMON INFLUENCES OUR INDIVIDUAL STYLES ARE ALL VERY DIFFERENT!
(Yann) How do you imagine Andy Lewis’ fan? Are you a fan yourself? I SOMETIMES CAN'T IMAGINE ANYONE ELSE LIKING MY MUSIC APART FROM ME! I'VE ALWAYS MADE MUSIC THAT I'VE WANTED TO HEAR MYSELF, BUT EVIDENTLY I MAKE MUSIC THAT OTHER PEOPLE WANT TO HEAR AS WELL. IT REALLY HELPS IF YOU ARE A FAN OF WHAT YOU'RE DOING- I DON'T LIKE MUSIC THAT INSPIRES NO EMOTIONAL CONNECTION WITH IT, MAYBE BECAUSE IT'S BEEN WRITTEN OR PERFORMED BY PEOPLE WITH NO EMOTIONAL CONNECTION TO IT.
I think than great songwriters have been dry from a creative point of view because they live in manors and stopped being fans themselves, is it a stupid idea? LIVING IN A BIG HOUSE DOESN'T NECESSARILY MAKE YOU A LESS CREATIVE PERSON, BUT STOPPING BEING REALLY INTO WHAT YOU DO PROBABLY DOES. ALSO IT REALLY HELPS IF YOU'RE STILL INSPIRED BY NEW IDEAS, NEW MUSIC, NEW PEOPLE. ANYWAY, IF I EVER GET TO LIVE IN A BIG HOUSE, DROP MY BUTLER A LINE AND I'LL LET YOU KNOW!
(Flavio. Captain Stax, MOD radio UK) - Anything new planned for/with Pimlico? last heard from them the mighty mruk jingle and the fantastic "anything you say". Pete Twyman collaborates and plays with you already, what about the other members and the reunion album? I THINK IT'S TRUE TO SAY THAT PIMLICO NEVER REALLY SPLIT UP. MOST OF MY SOLO MUSICAL ENDEAVOURS HAVE INVOLVED PETE TWYMAN AND DRUMMER MILES CHAPMAN- IN FACT YOU'LL HEAR ALL OF US REUNITED ON THE FULL-LENGTH ALBUM DUE IN THE SUMMER...SINGER WESLEY DOYLE SINGS A SONG THAT HE AND I ORIGINALLY WROTE IN 1997. WE HADN'T PLAYED IT AS A BAND FOR YEARS, BUT I THINK IT ONLY TOOK TWO OR THREE TAKES AND WE HAD IT IN THE BAG! PETE T WAS THE MAIN WRITER IN PIMLICO, AND HE'S WRITTEN LOADS OF GREAT MATERIAL OVER THE LAST TEN YEARS OR SO. A NEW PIMLICO ALBUM IS NOT UNTHINKABLE...
(Flavio) Will you release another Weller/Lewis single as good as "are you trying" and what can we do to oblige Weller to play it live? I think it's the most desired song the fans would like to hear from him and you live :O) THE THING IS, THERE ARE LOADS OF SONGS THAT PAUL HAS DONE WHICH I THINK THAT AS A PAUL WELLER FAN I'D RATHER HE PLAYED INSTEAD. IT'S ALSO A REALLY TRICKY SONG TO DO LIVE BECAUSE IT DOES REALLY NEED A PROPER HORN SECTION AND TWO KEYBOARD PLAYERS. IN THE MEANTIME, I WILL STILL PERFORM IT DURING MY OWN LIVE SHOWS- SINGER JESS ROBERTS PUTS A NEW SLANT ON IT WHEN SHE SINGS IT. ALSO DAVE JAY FROM TWISTED TONGUE SANG IT A FEW YEARS AGO AT A SHOW I DID AT 93FT EAST IN BRICK LANE... IT'S ONE OF THOSE SONGS THAT SOUNDS GREAT WHOEVER SINGS IT (WITH THE POSSIBLE EXCEPTION OF THE COVER VERSION THAT'S ON SPOTIFY! DO HAVE A LISTEN IF YOU COULD DO WITH A LAUGH!) AS FOR FUTURE COLLABORATIVE RECORDINGS WITH PAUL, IT'S REALLY NOT MY PLACE TO SAY. IT'S NOT AS THOUGH HE NEEDS MY HELP TO COME UP WITH AMAZING SONGS, IS IT?!
(Ian, Cornershop’s request): Are you still involved in Kevin Rowland’s solo lp? I WORKED WITH KEVIN AS HE WROTE AND DEMO'D A LOT OF AMAZING SONGS A YEAR OR SO AGO. HE'S GOT A VERY STRONG IDEA FOR THE EVENTUAL DIRECTION OF THAT PROJECT AND I HOPE THAT THERE'LL BE SOMETHING TO LISTEN TO IN THE VERY NEAR FUTURE. I WAS PRIVILEGED TO BE WITNESSING THE DEVELOPMENT OF THIS MATERIAL- IT SOUNDS LIKE A POTENTIAL FUTURE CLASSIC ALBUM. HE AND I HAVE TALKED A GOOD DEAL ABOUT A COLLABORATIVE PROJECT OF OUR OWN, AND THERE'S EVERY LIKELIHOOD OF SOMETHING HAPPENING SOON.
To be continued...