|1. What are you currently up
Bruce Watson: At the moment I am really busy working on songs and doing press and
promotion for forthcoming tour
Bruce Foxton: Touring
Simon Townshend: I have been in The Who since '96 playing second guitar and singing
backing vocals, first on the Quadraphenia tour then on the hits tours
of 1998 / 2000 / 2002. Also, last year when we toured the Pacific
rim. My claim to fame: I produced a couple of studio recordings for
The Who, Real Good Looking Boy and Old Red Wine that appeared on
their Now and Then album. It has been great for me, wonderful
experience and a joy spending time on and off stage with my big bruv
who I hardly saw for most of my life. I must say though, a change
will do me good - now I'm really looking forward to getting out and
singing some of my own songs - plus a few Weller and Adamson ditties
|2. How did you hook-up with Simon Townsend and why did JJ Gilmour &
Josh Phillips leave the band?
Bruce Watson: Simon, Bruce F and Mark were about to start working together at one
point a few years back. I think due to prior commitment to The Who,
SLF and Procol Harem, they couldn't. Maybe the guys can answer more
accurately. I have been wanting to work with Simon for a couple of
years and have indeed rehearsed with him a few times but again other
commitments got in the way.
Josh left the band as he writes music for TV and commercials which is
a very good earner for him. 'Strictly Come Dancing' and many TV ad's
are him. JJ really just wants to be a solo performer which is well
suited to him as I think he is at his best with solo voice and
Bruce Foxton: I was introduced to Simon via Mark. We worked on a few of Simon's
songs a few years ago, but for some unknown reason it never came to
any conclusion, just put on hold until now I guess
Simon Townshend: This is a quesion for the other guys. I just know that neither of
them were right for the band in the first place, it is now driven, as
it should be, by guitars and a London rock voice.
|3. How did last year's UK tour go? What have been the most memorable
live shows for the Casbah Club and why?
Bruce Watson: Last year's tour was basically us dipping our toes in the water. Some
nights were good, some not so good. That was the reason that the set
was predominantly Big Country orientated with a few Jam songs. We
didn't have time to write new material as we were all busy coming of
other tours. We only did 17 shows with CC last year and I think the
most memorable shows are to come
Bruce Foxton: Very early days, but probably King Tuts in Glasgow so far.
Simon Townshend: Again, another one for the guys - I personally think that their
most memorable gigs are yet to come. Everything else ought to be
|4. How did the live album get recieved by critics and fans? How did
you decide which Jam/Big Country tumes to feature in the live set?
Bruce Watson: The live album got some good reviews. I picked the BC songs and Bruce
F picked the Jam songs. JJ then listened to a selection and added
more as well as dropping a few that we suggested. Some of JJs
selections were cool as he wanted to do The Jam's 'Butterfly
Collector' which both Bruce F and I never thought about.
Now we have whittled down the BC and Jam material. I said to Si that
we should do 'In a Big Country', and he picked the rest. Bruce F is
now going to do more lead vocals with Si playing keys on a few more
song which will add new textures.
Bruce Foxton: Very democratic. As JJ was the singer we intially chose songs that
suited his voice.
Simon Townshend: I might as well shut up - I wasn't there.
|5. Have you seen an upswing in interest in rock music in the past few
years? Are you pleased at how the band has developed over the past twelve months?
Bruce Watson: Ever since the Beatles hit the charts people have picked up guitars
and drumkits and played rock n roll. There will be times where music
shifts, fashion and trends change but one thing is certain, Teenagers
want to make a noise, and thank God for that.
The band is now starting to take shape with the new songs that Simon
is bringing to the table.
Bruce Foxton: Definitely, bands that can actually write and perform, at last.
Casbah has taken a while due to the personnel changes. Now we have
the perfect line up things should move a lot faster.
Simon Townshend: Definitely a huge turn in the industry back to rock - thank God.
Music was becoming so shite and trite. My kids say, "We're rockers"
and I am a proud dad. Since I joined Casbah we have moved on really
quickly, just took time coming to a decision based on all my other
work - now I'm in I think we won't be looking back or wasting any
time. Ain't got that much time to lose anyway... or hair for that
|6. Do you find it hard sometimes to get fans onto new material as
they / some may just be coming along to hear the Big Country/Jam numbers?
Bruce Watson: Ian Grant has posted up a couple of downloads of work in progress on the website and they seem to be getting favourable reactions.
Bruce Foxton: This is the first tour with new material, so we'll have to wait &
see. I do feel that the new songs will be received favourably.
Simon Townshend: The songs I am bringing to the table are my pride and joy
collected over years, carefully crafted gems. I think the Jam and Big
Country fans are going to love them, after all my influences over the
years are their influences - when Weller supported The Who in Japan I
was on stage taking pics because I am a fan - he is a legend to me,
yet he sees my brother as the legend. Wierd. All very incestuous but
very cool at the same time. My music is born from the same ilk and I
am certain of how it will be received by real music lovers... As long
as you're not into any of that dance bollocks!
|7. What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
Bruce Watson: Snorkling with God
Bruce Foxton: Normality, as when you're in a band, can be a bit of a bubble, almost surreal
Simon Townshend: If I'm not playing guitar, I like to play golf. I can write when
I'm in either mode and that is what I enjoy doing most of all...
Painting in the sky.... Being creative, being aware, being an artist.
|8. Message to your fans...
Bruce Watson: Mine's a Stella
Bruce Foxton: Give us a chance.
Simon Townshend: My message to the fans: Come along and support us. Give us a
chance to blow you away.
|9. Bruce Foxton - did you ever think the Jam would have such a big
impact musically all these years later? What song(s) do you think sum up what the Jam were all about and why?
This is a long question. personally, songs like Tube Station, That's
Entertainment, Going Underground, English Rose, There's too many to
mention. Mainly because of their honesty, relevance, melody, arrangements etc.
Simon Townshend: If Foxy doesn't answer, I will... because Weller had something
meaningful to say. His Town Called Malice lyric for example...