Interviewer: Tim and Saul, welcome to Videotech. Now, we’ve just seen Sit Down, which for me was about being at university and having a good time. That was the song that broke you into a different audience. How do you look back on that now, what kind of a song is it for you?
Saul: You shouldn’t have been having a good time at university, you should have been working.
Tim: And getting into huge amounts of debt. Um, it’s really hard, it was sucha rollercoaster that it’s quite hard to remember, it was just every day getting different news about the song. Not only did it go to No.2 and stay there for a long time, but we were hearing stories that they would play it in all the night clubs, and people in the nightclubs would sit down on the floor and dance on the floor, and for a number of years we’d hear this. We’d hear stories that this was happening in Turkey. A friend of mine went to the biggest nighclub in Europe, holds about 10,000, in Istanbul, and they played Sit Down and all these Turkish people sat down and danced to Sit Down. We’d hear these bizarre stories, and it was like, this song’s got a life of its own, it’s doing its own thing.
Audience reactions were amazing, they’d started sitting down at the concerts and singing it to us, or they’d get on the stage and sit down, or we’d get in the audience and they’d get on stage, and each time you didn’t quite know what as gonna happen at that moment. That was really thrilling, and it was totally spontaneous, it just was not planned.
Interviewer: Now, that song’s on the greatest hits album, but you guys have been around for a lot longer that that, so which way is the greatest hits going, is it from then to now or from then going backwards?
Saul: It covers the whole history of James really, back to 1985, the second single they did, I wasn’t in the band then, but Hymn From A Village, on Factory records, that’s there, and it and it charts all the way through to two very new songs, one of which you’re going to play later, Destiny Calling, and an even newer track, the latest thing we’ve done, a track called Runaground. So it covers basically the whole history of James. There’s no really early scratchy demos on it though.
Tim: There’s not much from the first eight years, there’s one song, mainly because some of then we couldn’t get permission for, and some of them we’d recorded so badly we didn’t want to use them.
Saul: Couldn’t dare listen to them.
Tim: We’d be embarrassed. So it seemed that we were gonna stick to the singles, and if we called it Greatest Hits we’d all be arguing over what was, or if we called it Best of, I mean it’s called Best Of but that’s rubbish really, it’s greatest hits, it’s singles.
Interviewer: Ok, well lets take a look at one of the new tracks we’ve mentioned, this is Destiny Calling. So, that’s the new single. Are we gonna be hearing it when you guys tour, when you hit the Brixton Academy in April?
Tim: Oh yes, we’re working on quite a few new songs at the moment, and we hope to have some of them ready for this tour.
Interviewer: Fantastic, we’ll look forward to that. What about the festivals, are we going to be seeing you at any of them this summer?
Saul: Three or four have come through yeah, so we’re gonna be doing a few of those.
Interviewer: Are you looking forward to getting out on the road again?
Saul: Totally, yeah, especially the festivals. We were meant to do them last year but we went off to America, so this summer it’ll be good to be in our own country and making some noise.
Tim: I think live is our strongest suit, anyone who’s seen us live, that’s what’s kept us going for fifteen, sixteen years, the fact that people trust that they’re gonna get something unusual live.
Interviewer: Thanks for that, and we’ll see you guys after the break when we’ve got the brand new Top Ten.