Stereophonics : Kelly (vocals, guitar), Stuart (drums) & Richard (bass)
October 17th, 1999
Stereophonics: (SP) (Stuart) (S) The video was shot in Italy, in Turin. We are all in Minis like in "The Italian Job". It is based on The Italian Job, the old Michael Caine film. We are all in red, white, and green cars - which is the Welsh flag. That's about it really - we had lots of fun.(Richard) (R): It was freezing - we were all drunk - we had stuntmen.
VV: Is anyone a particular fan of The Italian Job? Where did that influence come from?
SP: (S) It just gets played every year. When we were growing
up during Christmas time, back home, it (The Italian Job) was always
on the tele (TV) - when I was a little kid, I always remember them going
down the tunnels, the steps, and stuff. I think it sticks in everybody's
mind - back home.(Kelly) (K) We did a lot of videos based on famous
films. So it's just something different - we did not want to do videos
of a band playing in a room - we wanted to do something which was more
interesting. We just picked some films we liked that involved 3 people.
SP: (S): Not really... (K) We had stunt devils - I had the guy who was Sylvester Stallone's double in Cliffhanger (movie). He was the guy hanging off the cliff and stuff like that. Stuart had a go and nearly drove it off the top of a car park. But then we got stopped because the insurance guy was going mental.
VV: So they were Italian minis - I noticed you guys were sitting on the wrong side?
SP: (R) Second hand, old ones. There were no brakes on them, so the stunt drivers just used the gears to stop the cars and everything like that - it was a good laugh.
VV: It looked like a lot of fun. So Turin, was that fun?
SP: (S) Yeah, we enjoyed it. (K) We were the first film crew to be allowed back in since they made the original film, because they banned film crews after Michael Caine and all the boys went there. Because they ruined it.
VV: How about now - are we still banned?
SP: (K) It's a nice change, I suppose. We have just come from Australia, where we have been playing to 2,000/3,000 people with a band called The Living End, who are really popular over there. And all summer we have been doing festivals, with 50,000 people, and Wembley and V-99, and Reading, and all these different types of festivals, so it's nice to do some clubs. If there are people there, we don't mind where we play. It's just playing to empty rooms that we don't like. If there's enough people to make us excited, then we'll be happy.
VV: I noticed that you recently did a web-cast.
SP: (R) Yeah
- a week ago yesterday, Saturday. That was at Wembley. There was one at
Giant's stadium in New York, as well. And there was one in Geneva. It's
to raise awareness of the problems in Third World countries, human rights,
food problems, water problems.
VV: We were surfing your web site and your fan's web sites today - do you guys manage your own site, do you know your fan's web sites?
SP: (K) We have had a look at a few. We usually look at them in airports when we're bored, and stuff like that. There was a guy from Cardiff who was doing our web site and now they have combined it with somebody from V2 in the record company. It's changing all of the time. As we get more involved and we get more popular, then the site keeps changing. There is a lot of people doing sites on us and we don't really have a great deal of involvement in that sort of thing. Everything else we do (have a hand in): videos, artwork, t-shirts. Up until now, we haven't had a great deal of involvement in the Internet, because we've been so busy.
VV: It is a good place to come, Silicon Valley, you'll probably get a lot of hits on your web site after tonight's gig.
SP: (S) Manic Street Preachers are really not influences - they just come from the same neck of the woods as us. Influence wise, anything really from Neil Young, to Bob Dylan, to the Clash, Sex Pistols, Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin, The Who, Deep Purple, AC/DC, Rainbow, Rush, to ....should we go on? Anybody that writes good songs really.
VV: What about Tom Jones then?
SP: (S) Oh yeah, definitely, DEFINITELEY. (K) One of the best performers in the world.
VV: Did you guys meet him, with the collaboration you did with him?
SP: (K) Yeah,
he's a great bloke. He had the same sense of humor as us. He's from ten
miles away from us, originally. We got on very well - we had a good laugh
and a few beers, and a few more beers, and then he started telling us
stories about Elvis and Frank Sinatra. It was a good night, very memorable
night. (R) Took us out for Chinese, as well.
SP: (S) Yes, we're going to be in Canada on Saturday, in Toronto, when Wales plays Australia - so we will have to get up early, as it is on at ten in the morning. We will be cheering the boys on, and hopefully they can beat the Aussies and get through to the semis.
VV: We won't mention your (Wales) recent defeat then.
SP: (K) We
just lost one game..... (S) One minor hiccup......we won ten in
a row. It is the first time they (Western Samoa) have done us since 1971.
We're doing well.
VV: You're playing the closing ceremony (Rugby World Cup)?
SP: (S) We are, November 6th. Hopefully Wales will be there, in the Arms Park in Cardiff.
VV: That must be a proud moment for you guys.
SP: (S) Yeah,
it'll be fantastic. (K) It will be a frightening moment. It's always
weird doing stuff like that, playing in front of Rugby fans. In Wales,
obviously, it makes a lot more sense to do that (Rugby madness in Wales).
We are going to do "Pick a Part That's New", I think. It will be alright,
it will be a laugh. Gets us free tickets for the final. It's the only
reason we're doing it, to be honest......Only reason to do anything.....money
and tickets.....free clothes....shoes......alcohol.
SP: (K) It was made in lots of different studios, not by any conscious decision really, we just toured and recorded, then toured and recorded. It was very much broken up. (R) We probably started recording it about two years ago, just south of London, then traveled around on some more tours, then back in the studio to record some more songs. Out on tour, back in the studio, we just work better that way. (K) It was very relaxed, we didn't have any pressure. We decided we wanted to go in, we had the songs, just kept writing and writing and recorded them gradually We had thirteen songs and stuck them all on a record. We only had fourteen, chucked one away, and had thirteen left.
VV: The cover to the new album, are you guys in the picture there?
SP: (K) Yeah,
we are. We are on the flap on the other side. It's based on a Annie Liebowitz
photograph, where there's women visiting their husbands in prison and
there's lots of different reactions....some people happy to see each other
and other people are pissed off...we wanted to use the original, but it
cost too much money. The girl who took the picture was Scarlet Page, she
is Jimmy Page's daughter and she is a really good photographer. She hates
people saying that.....we like Jimmy Page.....so she took the picture
and did a good job.
Interviewer: Kevin Hudson
Camera & Photos : Rodwin Pabello
Transcription: Kevin Hudson
Editor: Catherine Lee
© 1999, 2000 Evans Media Group, Inc.
Other Stereophonics Links:
The Official Stereophonics Web Site
The North American eFan Site
Welsh Bands Page
Stereophonics Guitar Archive