Official Showaddywaddy Web Site

Dave Bartram Q&A - 28th Feb 2011

I have recently seen and enjoyed the rockumentaries for The Undertones and Anvil – Anvil in particular have an interesting story and passion for their music. Have you got any favourite rock films?
Favourite rockumentary would be "That's The Way It Is" about Elvis. It's a true insight into probably the most famous artist of all time.
Also (more of a movie) Spinal Tap is priceless. So funny but obviously done by people 'in the know!'

You have quite a sense of humour on stage, who are your comic influences, past and present?
The long shows have given us a chance to communicate a little more, and I enjoy a bit of banter. The funniest comic ever in my view was Tommy Cooper. Today I like a Canadian guy called Stuart Francis - really clever one liners.

What is the latest news on Trevor?
Not heard from Trevor for ages now, and no longer have mobile or email contact. Which seems crazy after knowing him for 40 years!

Can you update us on your book project, have you got a publisher, proposed release date etc?
I changed my tack on the book project and moved onto something different to a history of the band's career. I do have a couple of publishers interested, but it's still in the research stages, although the odd chapter is complete. I'm looking at 2012 realistically as I keep going back and changing things - a little 3 steps forward 2 back!

Have you got any plans to put Heavenly, Why Do Lovers and Who Put The Bomp back in the live set? Or any others from the 70s/80s period?
I doubt Heavenly or Why Do Lovers will be performed live in the near future, but we have played around with Who Put The Bomp, as people seem to ask for it regularly.

Are there any plans for a new album with the new line-up? If so will there be any self-penned songs? We miss hearing new original material!
Had several meetings with record labels, but to be honest this is a bad time for the Record Industry and decent deals are thin on the ground. I won't rule out future album projects, but we're sitting tight for the time being.

I have noticed that both Dave G and Paul play with other groups / duos etc. What about yourself, Rod and Romeo, do any of you have other work interests away from Showaddywaddy?
Romeo teaches at a Leicester college (drums of course). Rod is involved in an Industrial machine maintenance business. I do a bit of writing for an English speaking Portugueses newspaper, along with my music management activities.

A question that has been asked several times over the years, but could now do with an update, what cars do the band own?
I have a BMW 5 Series. Rod a Merc. Romeo a VW Golf. Dave G a 280z Nissan and Paul a Ford van (he carries a lot of gear around for himself and other musicians).

Are Showaddywaddy going to be doing shows in South Wales this year?
We did a show in Monmouth on 25th February. No other dates in the diary for S Wales as yet!

Did you sing a song for a BA advert many years a go? What was it called and how did it come about?
Not me I'm afraid - would've been nice though. Difficult ladder to get onto advertising, as it is so lucrative!

How were support bands chosen in the 70s and 80s? Mr Big performed on a TV show with you in 1976 called Superpop and they also supported you on tour that year. Is this an example of how some of the support slots came about?
No particular method of choosing support bands. To be honest most of them approached agents/record company and the bands thought to be best suited were chosen.

Which support bands have particularly stood out over the years?
There was a band way back in the 70's called Light Fantastic who were really entertaining and put on a great show. Also Arrows were nice guys (I'm still in touch with Alan) and a good band. [See footnote 1]

Have Voiceprint recently stopped trading? Does this mean the extra Sun tracks recorded in 2008 have even less chance of being released?
Voiceprint, as with many other companies have had problems with falling sales. They are still trading, but to a lesser degree. Some of the Sun tracks are to be featured on a new Demon collection called "100 Hits Legends" which is due for release towards the end of March. As for the unreleased Sun tracks I'm sure they'll eventually appear on some future project.

In the band’s periods of inactivity, you travel to different countries. Which have been your most memorable trips in recent times?
I love experiencing different cultures, and was recently in South America which was incredible. Bolivia completely blew me away, with its open space and natural beauty. The people were unbelievably friendly, and despite being poor seemed happy with their lives. Travel is such an education, and it's such a fascinating planet. I love it!

When the band are off the road, are you itching to get back on stage? How do you fill your time if you’re not travelling?
Sometimes you do get 'the itch' to be back on the road, when the band are not so busy. However we all have lives outside of the band (with businesses etc) which ensure we don't sit around twiddling our thumbs. An important part of being on the road is the camaraderie with the guys, there's nothing quite like musicians humour!

You mentioned in recent sleeve notes that Everybody On Your Feet was written with a view to performing as a live number but was never played live on stage – why was this?
Around the time of Everybody On Your Feet, Trevor and myself were writing a lot of songs with a view to performing them live. The majority of the band wanted to do a longer stage set to show we were more than just a covers band. Sadly a couple of members disliked rehearsing and failed to show up on several occasions. It was a difficult situation and ultimately led to fall outs, and a period where the band 'rested on its laurels'.

A fan club news sheet from 1984 tells fans that you were in the wars after moving house recently and had to go to hospital for treatment to your eyes and shows were cancelled due to the accident – what happened?
I moved to a new house in 1984 in Northants and shortly after the moved had a nasty accident where a foreign body pierced my right eye. It was agony, but after a few months of treatment, specialists etc my eye was found not to be too seriously damaged. I did miss a few gigs, and remember lying in bed listening to the band on TV, as I couldn't let light into my good eye as the damaged eye became too painful. I was lucky as after 5 or 6 years the eye had healed, and now although I'm aware of it, is pretty much back to normal.

My favourite SWW lyrics are:
“Got to find a fitting registration
JU104 was not your style
Came across a Jag it was a write-off
CUT 1E it made me smile”
Do you have a particular line or verse that is a favourite?

CUTIE was a true story, and JU104 was a registration on an old car of my Dads from when I was really young. Unfortunately at the time I couldn't afford to buy the CUT1E plate. Creatively my most pleasing lyrics have to be on "Swansong". Which is about an old rocker doing (what he thinks is) his final gig. "I see people, thousands of people, they're all screamin', they're all singing". I'm really proud of that song, I find it quite stirring.

Have the band got any TV or radio promo work lined up for 2011?
We have been talking to the BBC about a future documentary that is in it's planning stages. Which could be quite exciting. Can't really say more at this time. [See footnote 2]

There is a new SWW compilation being released in March called 100 Hits. Are there any band sleeve notes, or do the band have any input into these releases, such as track listings etc?
Demon asked me to do sleeve notes for the 100 Hits Legends collection. As I said earlier I managed to persuade them to use some songs from The Sun Album, which is pleasing. Demon are great as they always run a proposed project by the band prior to going with it.

Is there any news as to when the original promos might be released on DVD? Originally released on video in 1987, they are now very hard to get hold of. If so, will these include promos for I Wonder Why and You Got What It Takes that were not on the original release?
This has always been a thorn in our sides, as it's all about ownership of rights etc. I think we have hit a brick wall with that one. [See footnote 3]

What’s your favourite Indian meal?
Depends on the restaurant. I like it pretty spicy. I like a King Prawn Balti as long as the prawns are fresh, or something like Methi Chicken or a good Jalfrezi. A lot of different choices in the Curry capital of Leicester.

Only the albums “Jump, Boogie & Jive”, “Hey Rock ‘n’ Roll” (2002 album) and “Hey Rock ‘n’ Roll (Very Best Of)” are available to download via iTunes. Will the others follow, perhaps with previously unheard bonus tracks?
This has been discussed several times, but as the original albums are with Cherry Red I think it's unlikely, as they are old fashioned retailers in that respect.

In the 70s, you travelled to gigs in two American cars. Were these a practical, or show off mode of transport?! I suppose you also did your fair share in the back of Ford Transits!
Fuel was a heck of a lot cheaper back then, so it certainly wasn't impractical. Obviously the rock & roll image thing was important and it was fun to travel that way. Biggest problem was that those Yankee cars were so unreliable, so we had a few breakdowns to contend with. We also - especially in the Choise days - had our share of scrapes with 5 people and all the gear in a Ford Transit. If you had a "Tranny" you were seen to be doing ok by other bands. Great days, but 'my' some bands travelled in real bangers.