We meet up with The Human League
AS pivotal british band Human League prepare for their 13-date tour to celebrate 30 years in the industry, we caught up with long-serving vocalist, Joanne Catherall to find out the secret behind the bands success and what fans can expect from the new tour.
The forthcoming tour will celebrate your 30th Anniversary- what is the secret behind your longevity?
We are very obstinate, I think we have a group of core people together in the band now, we have stuck together through thick and thin. I think the fallout in the past stemmed from artistic differences within the group, but myself and Susan stay away from the songwriting part of things, its never something that I've been interested in doing.
You will be performing in Sheffield on 7th December in Sheffield- how does it feel performing in front of a home crowd?
It's definitely more nerve-wracking performing to a home crowd. When you do other shows everyone in the crowd is more or less a stranger where as in Sheffield you see people that you know and people that you recognise from Tesco, which puts you under more pressure, but it's self-inflicted pressure.
Do you ever get nervous when performing live?
No not anymore- except when we are performing to a home crowd.
Your music has been sampled and covered by artists such as George Michael and Robbie Williams how does that feel?
We are always surprised when people sample our music. We tend to think that because we are out of the hub in Sheffield that no one takes notice of our music, then we get a phone call saying someone like George Michael is going to sample our music and it's like what? It is very flattering.
You will be playing the Dare album in its' entirety on this tour- do you have a favourite song from the album?
I've always's liked Do Or Die, it's a song that we've not played for many years.
Are you working on any new material?
Philip is in the studio at the minute working on new material but it won't be ready until sometime next year.
You met Phil Oakey in a Sheffield nightclub did you recognize him and how did it feel to be asked to join the group?
We did recognise him from his haircut, it was a close scene in the early 80's and even if you didn't know someone you'd heard of them. it felt great when we were asked to join the group but we thought we wouldn't be able too because we were still at school and thought that our parents would say no.
What was the reaction from the fans when you and Susan joined the group?
We had a mixed reaction really. in England it was fine, we did two shows one in Rotter's in Doncaster and one in Rotter's in Liverpool. But the rest of the shows were in English army bases in Germany we would get cans of lager thrown at us, I think they thought why have you got these rubbish girls in the group. But after the Dare album I think our fan-base changed and people were OK with it.
What has been the highlight of your career?
I think it would have to be last year, i'd been in the band for 26 years and we were asked to headline the Hollywood Bowl in America, it's something you expect to do in the heyday of your career but it came totally out of the blue.
Do you still perform in America?
We don't perform in America every year but about every two to three years we go there and the fans are really friendly. I'm always surprised that people like us over there because our music isn't really very Americanised but we do have a good fanbase.
How are you preparing for the forthcoming tour?
Dave, who runs the studio is in the process of getting out old master tracks and getting everything ready and we will be rehearsing for about two weeks.
You are Susan were renowned for your fashion in the 80's are you still interested in that side of things?
Well we do always like to try and look glamorous but I wouldn't say we are at the height of fashion.
What can fans expect from this tour?
It will be a great show for lovers of the Dare album, and there will also be some other songs as well. I don't want to give too much away.
Have you performed at any music festivals this summer?
We performed at Benicassim in Valencia it was great. We were hoping to see Arctic Monkey's they were performing on the same day but there was a power cut and so we finished our set late and ended up playing on a different stage at the same time as them- so I only saw them play two songs, I'm a big fan.
Tickets for the date at Sheffield City Hall on 7th December are priced at 25 and are available 0114 2789789
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Sunday 26 May 2013
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