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Interviews Leon - June 2003 - SpaceTheBand.comThe following is a transcript of a video interview. You can download the video & audio versions on the downloads page.
I suppose these are my questions!
Right then, here we go! Ah I may as well start from the front eh?
What is the idea behind the new album (if any)?
Aww thats a bad one, I'm always bad at answering questions anyway! I suppose the idea behind the new album was just to get in there with the producer and just get it together and get the songs going and get the album out I mean.
Is there an underlying theme / concept to it?
Well... theres a lot of death in it I think... from Tommys stuff, a lot of death!
Is the new album a radical departure from LYMTF, or is it a more natural follow-up?
Its totally different from LYMTF and it is a natural follow up, I mean I liked LYMTF as the album but I think this is for me 100 times better I mean it might be a bad thing to say its 100% improved but it really is.
Was it hard to record, after all that happened with Gut, etc?
No, it was easier it was made totally easier, less pressure and I mean we just like to get in and play and theres no time restriction on getting the album and no people coming and interfering I thought.
Has Jamie's departure changed the sound much and if so, in what way?
No I don't think so, it hasn't changed the band's sound in any way at all because a lot of the studio stuff, Tommys songs would be very inputted by Tommy and Jamie's songs would be very inputted by Jamie so I don't think it makes much difference in that sense.
The photos from the album look very exotic, where were they taken?
HAHAHA! The very, very, very exotic location which is, they've probably disclosed it but I'll keep mine schtum!!
Why the sniper sight on the cover?
I don't know, maybe they were looking for Jamie! Hahaha!
What are the planned singles for the album?
Definitely for me personally Punk Rock Funeral because its a brilliant brilliant track on the album, I also like Suburban Rock and Roll and 20 Million Miles is probably the one that stands out most as a single but then I also love... a great song on the album its violence... its all about violence which is called hahaha ohh you've got me!! Umm I'll come back to that one and tell you when it comes back into me head!
What's your favourite track on the album?
Well HITCHHIKING is the track and that's what I was gonna say!! and probably Hitchhiking is one of me favourite songs on the album.
What's your least favourite track on the album?
Least favourite is not gonna be on it so that doesn't make no difference.
When's the tour and have you got any surprises in store for it?
I hope so I really hope so, I mean we've gotta start the rehearsals/starting to rehearse and...
Ahh I'm on the next page now then
Does Leon Know He Has A Fan Base?
Will Leon Get The Chance To Do A Drum Solo At The Next Gig?
Heh heh heh heh
Is it true that Justin Timberlake plays tambourine on the new record?
Yes! That is true!
Who do you prefer Sonic or Mario?
I was a Sonic man! Definitely a Sonic man.
How does Leon feel to replace Andy Parle?
Pfft... I've been replaced by a lot of drummers and I've replaced a lot of drummers in me time so it makes no difference to me.
What comedies are Space into? I know Tommy likes the League of Gentlemen and Yorkie likes Chris Morris (good taste, dudes) but what about Fran & Leon?
I love the League of Gentlemen er... and yeah the League of Gentlemen is a comedy definitely most definitely. But also like Ali G like ??? yeah thats the best one in Ali G, I think so!
Do any of you do karaoke? If so, what songs do you do?
No, I can not sing for toffee well that's a lie, well I can sing but only when I'm behind a set of drums or in the studio. I mean I certainly haven't got the bottle to get up and sing in front of anybody. You know... if I'm behind a set of drums I feel safe, that's me house I'm inside me house and I'll sing on a microphone great, in the studio I'll sing then but most definitely definitely not on a karaoke. I'd love to be able to I mean I'm the best dancer in the world in me own house in front of me wife or me kids and I'll dance around with them but as soon as you put me in front of people every bit of rhythm I've got goes!
What is the best place outside of your native country to play a concert?
Ohhh... er thats a hard one. Umm outside your native country, well if you're not including Britain I'd say Scotland and Wales they're both brilliant places to play. I like Copenhagen in Denmark I thought that was a great place to play and I mean probably this is not from a musical point of view as well or Vienna for me was a great place to go and play a gig in Austria and I really had a great time when we were there in Vienna so probably that sticks out in my mind as one of the best gigs I've liked and enjoyed the time being there, so I'd say Vienna.
Who are your main influences?
Well my main influences are probably very boring in the sense that they're all gonna be drummers ie. Buddy Rich, Gene Crouper, Max Roach, Bernard â€œPrettyâ€ Purdie â€“ but hes not so pretty!, Steve Gadd I mean I seen him not so long ago with Paul Simon and I met him and I was just like Ohh it absolutely amazes me people like that. So they're my influences musically I mean I listen to a lot of drumming things
What do you do in your spare time?
Well I love me golf, I love playing golf. I've been listening to... musically I went off in a stage were I wasn't listening to music at all and I suppose I am listening to music in a big way at the moment.
Are there any plans for any TV appearances to publicist the new album, single and tour?
Yes I would imagine so, but I mean me personally I don't get involved in trying to sort these things out and I mean Dave likes to get involved and I just like to get the phone call and say yeah ok you're doing this television make sure you're ready and make sure you're not doing anything else really you know, so I get there!
There is no album is there?
Isn't there?! HAHAHA isn't there?! Thats all I can say to there is no album is there!
Have there been any alterations to the new album or is it still the same?
Theres gonna be one alteration as far as I know, from the last meeting we had. Which is the song I don't like which is not gonna be on the album so I'm happy about that.
How happy are you with the new album?
I love the new album, I think its absolutely brilliant, absolutely brilliant.
What do you think about Liverpool's bid to become the City of Culture?
Well HA I'm probably in a privileged position to say we won the city of culture because they've probably done their videos before it. And I think its going to be a great thing for Liverpool! Not the football team by the way.
Where do you see yourselves in 3 years time?
I'd like to see meself still playing me drums, preferably in this band I mean hopefully we'll be out there touring again and I mean getting another album out, that'd be the best thing you know just to keep going and you know I just wanna play me music and I love playing me music, I hate doing anything else bar music you know and thats what I wanna, thats it the be all and end all.
WHERE THE HELL IS THE ALBUM?
Yes, is that the same person who asked â€œThere is no album is thereâ€?! HAHAHA you know that â€œwhere the hell is the album?â€ I ask that question meself a lot!
Will there be any more Music For Aliens?
I hope so!
What songs from LYMTF were going to be singles?
No No LYMTF you might as well say thats out as far as, we know people have got it but its never, its not officially out and theres no singles off LYMTF I don't think there is definitely not no singles off LYMTF.
What was your favourite Jamie song?
One O'Clock probably... aww man do you know I'd say Gravity because I really enjoyed Gravity but I really enjoyed One O'Clock playing that from the last album but Gravity too. Erm I'm dithering so either one!
Do you think you'll achieve commercial success again, and is that important to the band?
I'd like to achieve commercial success again but I mean I'm probably gonna tell you different to what Tommy and Yorkie'll probably feel because they like the underground thing, I mean I'm not a big fan of underground music I mean they are, Franny was because of his dance I mean. I like the commercial success again but more importantly a respectful album rather than commercial. Well it would be nice to have a commercial album I'm not gonna beat around the bush on that one but the sense of I think that more importantly is that we have a respected album thats gonna be... respected basically yeah.
Are we likely to see Space on MTV and those other music channels?
Yeah yeah I hope so. Yeah yeah I think so, depending on what the videos are - especially for MTV
What is delaying the new album?
Awww... what isn't! Personally its not musically whats delaying the album its certainly down to the political and business side of things, always the way â€“ the shitty end of the music business, sorting the legal stuff out I mean thats why I don't like to get involved, thats the only, its just a pity that it always has to come to that but I mean thats why its holding up and I'd like to think we're doing it. I mean you don't have to worry about that all that side of things but obviously it comes into it at the fold(?) all the time so thats whats holding the album up anyway.
Any chance of touring Australia in the next... oh I dunno, 10 years or so?
Yes, ahh thats a very close question because I think we might be going there very soon, so yeah that'll be nice to go there so, whoever asked that question... hope to see you soon.
What were your inspirations for the name of your albums and the name â€œSpaceâ€ itself?
I wasn't in the band at the time, Tin Planet I joined the band just when it was finished recording, went in and done a couple of the singles again because they're singles that were coming off Tin Planet. So I mean umm Space pfft you've got me â€“ that isn't a question I can answer. I mean I've spoken to Tommy but I'm sure they've already answered anyway.
You're not going to throw the towel in on us are you?
No, no no no no no no no no no we've done too many rounds to be throwing the towel in!
When did you play your first gig, who was it with and where?
My first gig was in a place called Kirby (where I'm from in Liverpool) and it was at a social club, I was 15 years of age and I played with a band called The Sly Dogs doing their own stuff and it was the support for another Liverpool band at the time called Blue Vein hahahaha Yorkie will laugh his head off when I tell him this one! And erm that was me first gig and it was brilliant, absolutely brilliant, come off and thought wow yeah all them stories you can't see the audience and you can't see this... a load of shit! Cos you can and that you know! So it was nice to finally quash all them rumours you get told before you do a gig
What's the most embarrassing record in your collection (the one you hide at the back!)?
Oh... erm... Well for me I don't think I've got any embarrassing record collections, I probably give the embarrassing ones away, I couldn't even remember what they were, I don't know I don't think I have, everything I've got I like. I'm not like Yorkie who goes and buys just records and records and records every week, I mean I buy them when I like them or when I hear of somebody I get them, so no they're not embarrassing to me.
CD or Vinyl which do you prefer?
I prefer CD, obviously I know that probably the other 3 will have definitely have said vinyl but I'm saying CD definitely because they're older than me!
If you could own anything in the world what would it be and why?
Umm... anything in the world, thats a good question but its got me stumped. I mean I'm happy in me life, if I could own anything in the world... I'd like to own a Buddy Rich drum kit and why? Because its Buddy Rich's! Thats it.
What was your favourite childhood toy?
I loved me Action Men but I was brought up by me father who always bought be guitars and bought me drums so I had a first set of drums at 7 of age so and then that always stayed with me and always getting drums so i think it was probably drums.
Are â€œSpaceâ€ the Band still a viable option?
Of course they are, yeah definitely yeah. I'm not taking offence or anything to the question but I'm just shocked by some of the questions but I mean I suppose because we haven't been out there! Yeah
Have you done the video for '20 Million Miles From Earth' yet?
How did you know that thats going to be a single?!
Is the album a radical departure from... I'm sure I've answered these questions!! Yes I've answered that one â€“ I've had that one twice and you know... Dave you're stitching me up!
Have I gone through them that quick?! Oh god... I have!
Awww well, I'll have to kill ten minutes! I look forward to seeing everyone anyway and if I do have a Leon fanbase as it said there its nice to have it and I look forward to seeing you all at the gigs. If you buy the album and enjoy the album it'll be nice to see you and make sure you shout out, anyone whos asked the questions give me the question again and it'll be nice to see you and have a little chat with you anyway and chat about it more personally. Thanks anyway!
See you later!
... Dave, come and turn it off... I started answering the questions again!