Shed Seven are on their first UK tour in two years. Frontman Rick Witter spoke to Marie Westmoreland about the tour, why the band originally spilt and how the NME gave them a “rough deal” back in the 90s.
Why did you decide to do a Greatest Hits tour?
“Well, that’s all we have kind of done since we reformed. People coming to see us are going to get a little bit drunk, sing their hearts out and go home happy.”
Why did you reform?
“For us to have a bit of a laugh. We just wanted to go out and do some gigs and it went a little bit through the roof.
“How many times can you just go out and play old stuff to people? The weird thing is, with us, people absolutely love it. We have managed to last the past six years just playing off our history.”
You’ve still got loyal fans. How does this make you feel?
“We are a fortunate band. In the 90s we never had the chance to stop and think about it. It was always full-on.
“It was only kind of when we got back together, played some gigs and saw the reaction, it made us quite chuffed as what we did back then meant something to people. Now it’s perfect.”
Will the band write new music?
“There is always the opportunity that we might start writing new songs.
“If we do, it won’t be with the interest of trying to get a record deal or going on a big world tour, we are a bit long in the tooth for that.
“We will just release EPs on iTunes and do it at our own leisure. We’re not precious about things anymore.”
What was fame like in the 90s?
“We had a rough deal with the NME who thought we were really un-cool.
“We had some bad reviews. They didn’t like us at all and I think we became a people’s band because of that, really.
“The NME tried to stop us because they thought we were pointless and they got quite annoyed that people kept buying the singles and seeing us live.
“All I wanted was for people to listen to my music in their bedrooms and come and see us live, and that’s what they did.”
Why did the band split up?
“We probably split up because of record labels.
“We grew up together and had been friends for a long time since school. It got to the point where we were getting that much pressure to come up with the goods, we thought if we carry on like this, we are going to fall out.
Are you getting a new generation of fans coming along to gigs?
“Yeah, and that really makes me feel old, thanks.
“As you say, it’s a new generation and people are bringing their kids who are watching and singing along. So that means I will still be creaking on stage when I am 100 – swinging my hips!”
What songs get the crowd going?
“We’d get lynched if we didn’t play all the obvious ones like Chasing Rainbows, Disco Down, and Getting Better.”
* Shed Seven will play Newcastle O2 Academy tomorrow. For tickets Tel: 260 2020.