Earlier in the week, I was lucky enough to have an interview with Rowetta from Happy Mondays. An incredible band that are currently starting a tour by the name of Twenty-Four Hour Party People – Greatest Hits. Me and my colleague spend some time chatting to her, this is what was said:


THE MODERN RECORD: What was it like to tour with the Happy Mondays?

Rowetta: Well, I’ve been doing it since I can remember to be honest, I first started in 1990 so its normal for me, we’re like family so it’s just normal its em great, its different than it used to be, years ago it used to be a bit madder.

THE MODERN RECORD: what was mad about it?

Rowetta: well I think it’s known that the excesses of the band and everything, I’m not going to go into it. I think everybody knows. It’s Happy Mondays innit so eh yeah. It’s was proper wild when we were younger. But it’s a lot different now… we actually get some sleep before a show which it good for the performance.

THE MODERN RECORD: When did you meet Shaun and Bez?

Rowetta: I first met Shaun a couple of days before I went on stage with him to be honest. I had already sung step-on. I’d seen him at a gig but I didn’t actually meet him until the day before I got on stage. Bez used to chat me up everywhere, probably about a year before I joined the band in 1989, he saw me on stage and he was just obsessed with me, it was just funny but nothing happened cause I kept saying to him, ‘You got a girlfriend’. And when I wanted I wanted to join the Happy Mondays I saw them on the TV and I was like ‘Oh that lads in it’. But now were like brother and sister, it’s great.

THE MODERN RECORD: Where you always a fan of the Happy Mondays?

Rowetta: Just for about a year before I saw them on TV, that was it then I went to a gig, and we were the same age, got a ticket and thought I have to be part of this band. So I spend the next 6 months just making them understand and making them love me and making them let me join. So, it’s good…worked out well

THE MODERN RECORD: What would you say your favourite gig and why?

Rowetta: I wouldn’t say I have one, like Barrowlands is my favourite from like years ago, I loved Barrowlands because it was the best crowd. But now we’ve done Wembley stadium with Oasis. But now we’ve done so many great gigs, you know Manchester is always a great one, but Barrowlands was special the first-time round, Scotland in general always great audiences for the Mondays. But em’, since we’ve reformed there’s hardly any bad gigs, the crowds just brilliant, and of every age so it’s just as long as you have a good gig it brilliant, but obviously you do remember some better than others like obviously I’m going to remember Webley Stadium with Oasis who were brilliant that day aswell. I’d love to play at Old Trafford ‘cause I’m a united fan. I sung there on my own but not with the Mondays so I’d like to do that.

THE MODERN RECORD: Is there something special about playing in Manchester? Do you feel like that’s where you’re suited best?

Rowetta: No, not really, ‘cause there are certain places that remind me of Manchester, certainly New York, Dublin, Glasgow there similar to doing hometown gigs to be honest, but Manchester is special. London’s become really good now, it used to be a bit posh, they always wanted to listen and not dance but they’ve become really good gig for us. So em, people who want to see us really do come out to party and we’ve done all the festivals and stuff. Obviously, Glastonbury was amazing, but with us when our fans are in the audience it’s like playing Manchester all the time because we are a very real band and everybody knows everything about us. But Manchester is always going to be special, even when I go to the shops its special, I love the people, it’s always been with me.

THE MODERN RECORD: So I first seen you at the O2 in Glasgow, and I was wondering…what do we have in store for your show in December.

Rowetta: I know we’re doing songs that we’ve not done in years, I can’t remember doing it live anyway, they’ll be some surprises in there, obviously greatest hits that everybody wants to hear some from each album. So, there will be something from every album I think and a few that we’ve not done in years if at all. I expect really good shows. It’s going to be a long a slot because we’ve got 28 dates right up until Christmas, we are doing Glasgow on the 23rd but Dundee is our first so we’re starting in Scotland and finishing in Scotland and I wouldn’t want to do anything else.

THE MODERN RECORD: Have you heard Liam Gallagher’s new album?

Rowetta: I have, I love it. I am actually a massive Liam Gallagher fan. I love the new album, yeah, big fan of it. I’m definitely Liam more than Noel…if you ask me that. I’m really glad he’s done well, he’s actually a sweetheart, he’s not like he comes across at all he’s a real softie. He loved hanging out in our dressing room.

THE MODERN RECORD: Are you still in touch in Simon Cowell?

Rowetta: No, not really, I didn’t fall out with him, I just had no reason to ring him and I don’t watch his shows. I did it for my grandma, that show, and she’s dead now so it’s really nobody’s business why I did it. And I done really well, I came 4th but I was the top woman, didn’t expect two songs that weren’t my cup of tea. I wanted to sing ‘Stop Crying Your Heart Out’ and they didn’t let me. I did get on with him [Simon Cowell] really well but I did it for my Grandma. I did it and it was great, I got a brand-new audience from it, loads of kids liking me it was great, and I proved I could sing anything on that show ‘cause that what I had to do. I think it did it well.

THE MODERN RECORD: I was Also going to ask; do you think Happy Mondays will ever be doing any new music?

Rowetta: Yeah, we talked about it, Alan Magee our manager wants a new album, we were going to do it this year but it’s difficult to get us all together…one of us lives in Canada, one of us lives in L.A. but hopefully either this year or the year after but we’ll definitely get it out by 2020.

Interviewers: Ross Arthur and Owen Meldrum 

The Modern Record