Radiohead interview in the can. Johnny Marr in the can. Sitting across from Jonny, Colin and Ed I didn’t realize I was nervous until we were rolling for about five minutes. “So what do you want to ask us?”
Trying not to conduct the typical interview I travel with stacks of Scott LPs and singles. I want the experience to be tactile, and they get right into it, never having seen Scott’s albums on vinyl, the gatefold sleeves, the notes, the lyrics. They’ve never heard the “Nite Flights” tracks so we start there. Amazing to see these guys grooving on an old Scott track for the first time.
Johnny Marr a few weeks later at the Night and Day Cafe & Bar in Manchester. Waiting for the word from Scott’s camp that we’re cleared to shoot I spend afternoons at my friend’s flat in London flipping through magazines - in the Smiths special edition of Q that I read cover-to-cover there’s a bit about “Strangeways”; “I wanted a real Scott Walker vibe on this one.” Johnny is quoted as saying. I call Tanya, my Dublin-based music supervisor. ” Get me Johnny Marr!” he wasn’t on our original hit list for some inexplicable reason, but can’t imagine the project without his input now, so incredibly thoughtful and deeply into the music. We listen to “The Seventh Seal” and he picks apart the arrangement instrument by instrument - it’s one of his all-time favorite songs. We tell him we were not allowed to shoot a recent session Scott did with a guitar player because Scott had invented some new impossible-to-play chords and it was a very intense session.”They shoulda’ called me!” he says. Can you imagine?
Friday, Dec. 10.� We’re nearly out of funds. I’ve been here since October. We got some good stuff but it’s not enough. All at once, we finally get word that Allison Goldfrapp is available as is Simon Raymonde and Rob Ellis - all on the same day. So we’ve arranged to have them all driven over to the flat in Bermondsey to shoot all three interviews. No matter that the #1 bus rumbles by the front window every ten minutes - we need to cut a solid promo before I go home for the holidays and really need more material to work with. The car that’s sent to pick up Simon goes to the wrong neighborhood entirely so we’re already an hour behind, but once we get the Scott spinning, it’s all good. Simon (former Cocteau Twin and son of Walker Brother’s arranger Ivor Raymonde) is moved to tears by “Two Ragged Soldiers”, Rob (experimantal/electronic composer and PJ Harvey’s percussionist/producer/collaborator) wants to listen to “Patriot” from TILT (the first Scott Walker album he had ever heard). About halfway through Allison’s interview she asks (with a roll of her eyes) “So, you’ve been listening to Scott Walker songs ALL DAY�” I top off her pinot gris and off we go.
Now we’ve got about four days to log it all and cut the promo.