Big Country Info Big Country Info


1 March 2014

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  • We welcome back Bruce Watson to the show!
    Introducing the new theme song that Bruce made for the podcast.
    We asked listeners for questions, got a long list, and those are the one we ask Bruce about in this episode!

    Questions & topics covered include:

    • How did Simon get involved in the band, and will he ever be allowed to speak on stage?
    • What happened to the four-piece plans discussed in the previous episode?
    • Is Simon now a full-fledged fifth member?
    • Any chance of new material this year?
    • Was there any live material recorded with Mike that could come out?
    • What is the status of Track Records and all the recordings released by them?
    • What are your touring plans for 2014?
      • The phrase “Have at you, Tom!” makes its first, official podcast debut
    • Is the band familiar with Kickstarter, and would they consider setting up a Kickstarter to finance a project?
    • What is your favourite riff in the entire Big Country catalogue?
    • If you can go back in time and remake one Big Country album, which would it be, how would it be, and why would you change it?
    • What are the plans for the Steeltown anniversary in 2014?
    • What was the single best day of being in Big Country?
    • What was it like going from Mark Brzezicki to Pat Ahern as a drummer, and why was Pat let go from the band?
    • What has been your most surreal experience in your time with the band?
    • Was it a big missed opportunity for you not to play Live Aid?
    • How did you feel when Stuart first asked you to form a band with him? With Stuart already being a star in the Skids, were you nervous?
    • Bruce sharing memories of the early recording sessions
    • Why were certain lines that are printed in the lyric sheet not found on the album – were they changed late, or what?
    • After hearing the recent “loft recording” that you and Jamie played on, it had some of the same feel as the “Restless Natives” soundtrack – celtic, mysterious, haunting. Is this a direction you will be going towards for new material?
      • Loft recording by Jamie & Bruce (musical theme later used for “All Fall Down”)
    • Just how far along in the instrumental stage does a Big Country song get before lyrics are added? Were there exceptions where the lyrics came first?
    • Would there be a Steeltown-themed single to coincide with the anniversary?
    • There were three singles from Steeltown – were there ever discussions about putting out a fourth single, and what would it have been?
    • Does the original Robin Millar mix of The Seer exist? What would it take to get it released?
      • Bruce takes the action of tracking down the Millar mix àmore on that in a later PSA episode!
    • Do you get nervous prior to going on stage? Do any other member of the band? Who’s the worst?
    • You’ve played a huge variety of venue sizes and events all over the world. What makes for a good show, and what can ruin it live?
    • Who’s your favourite guitar player apart from Stuart?
    • The Beatles famously used some of John Lennon demos in 1995 to create new Beatles tracks. Do you see yourselves doing the same with surviving Stuart demos?
    • How do you deal with fame in the UK – do you live what you consider “normal lives” or are you plagued by stalkers or unwanted attention?
    • Why did you chose not to use some of the R.E.L. demos for Peace In Our Time, and why were others selected and ended up sounding the way they did?
    • Are the band effectively managing themselves at this point?
    • How does the band work with Stuart’s estate?
    • You previously said you would not be playing Steeltown in its entirety for the anniversary tour. What would stay, and what would go?
    • If you have to choose just one guitar, one amp and no more than two pedals for the rest of your career, what would it be?
    • Since Tony co-wrote so much of The Journey, has he ever listened and/or offered his opinion of the album?
    • You are now more or less seen as the leader/figurehead of the group. How easy or comfortable do you feel in this role?
    • The current line-up plays the songs as they sound on the album. In the past, Stuart/Bruce would often improvise more, playing extend the guitar solos, insert bits of songs into other songs (i.e. Restless Natives into Wonderland), etc. Would the current band consider experimenting more with songs live?
    • What are some of the more memorable Spinal Tap moments the band has experienced over the years?