Bernard Fanzine in May 1996

What do you think of the music press/critics? Do you not like being interviewed?

BB: Journalists are like taxi drivers - some of them leave you to it and some of them drive you mad taking wrong turning. Some of them think you owe them a living while some smile and enjoy what they’re doing. Sometimes you like them and have a chat, and sometimes you wish you’d got the bus.

How many songs do you think remain unreleased from your time with Suede?

BB: There are no left over songs, just a few backing track ideas without vocals that I retained the rights to.

Is there any sheet music The Sound Of…? Or any of your other stuff

BB: There is a book for the first Suede album which is totally wrong and for Dog Man Star which is so complicated I couldn’t tell you if it’s right or not but features some fairly crap artwork wholly unconnected with the records. Nothing yet for the McAlmont and Butler LP.

Have you thought about working with Ed Buller again?

BB: Thought about it…woken up and splashed my face with a cold flannel…realized it’s OK now..

What did you listen to when you were younger?

BB: When I was small I listened to a lot of Irish traditional music mixed with Elvis and Nana Maskouri. Then I moved to Blondie, Madness and The Jam, followed by (1983+) New Order, Joy Division, The Smiths, Velvet Underground, etc.

What do you listen to now?

BB: Neil Young, Underworld, Van Morrison, Roxy Music, Bob Dylan, Teenage Fanclub, Elvis, Lou Reed, Beach Boys, Jeff Buckley, Talking Heads, REM, Burt Bacharach, various records.

Who are your favourite bands of the moment?

BB: Supergrass, Teenage Fanclub, Underworld, Hopper.

Is your guitar a Gibson Acoustic J200 and is it expensive?

BB: Yes, I have a 1973 Gibson J200 acoustic and yes, it’s worth quite a lot of money, but don’t be fooled by expensive guitars - even in the high vintage price bracket they can be hit and miss. One of my favourite guitars is a cheap acoustic, probably worth next to nothing but which has a huge rumbling sound. Don’t try and buy the guitar and colour your hero has - it possibly came to them by accident in the first place and won’t help you find you own sound and character.

Have you spoken to Brett since you left Suede?

BB: We meet regularly for a silent game of bridge. (LOL)

Which guitar do you like best?

BB: My favourite guitar is my 1962 Gibson ES355 which is close to my heart although it has been “adopted” by a few morons lately.

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What do you think of heavy metal?

BB: I like Nick Drake - does he count?

Do you really write most of the songs on “The Sound Of McAlmont & Butler” on hot Summer nights?

BB: “Yes” was record at Xmas 1994. “Tonight”, “You’ll Lose A Good Thing”, “The Right Thing” were all recorded in Summer. “Tonight” was recorded on the hottest night of the Summer of 1995 - hence the argument we taped for the outro sequence - it was a fight taking place in the flats opposite RAT studios about someone’s barbecue blowing smoke into another man’s house

Notes

 

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