Steve Overland Talks FM,Lone Rider and more.
On Tuesday the 9th of April back stage at K.K.'s Steel Mill in Wolverhampton before the last night of the run of dates co headlining with The Quireboys with support from Bad Touch and Vega,Rockgig had the pleasure to have a catch up with Steve Overland to talk all things FM and more.
Rockgig As always Steve thank you for taking the time to talk to Rockgig.
Steve No problem.
R. I saw you recently in Reading a couple of days after the robbery in Barcelona and you all had a real nothing can stop us attitude.Can you tell us what happened,the aftermath and any news on getting anything back?
S. No we will never get anything back.We arrived at the gig about 20 minutes early so we thought do we go to the gig yet as the doors weren't open at the back so we dropped off to get a coffee for 20 minutes and left the van and in that time they cleaned us out.It's just a life experience mate but having no passports we couldn't get back for 4 days,so we kept going to the embassy every day and made the best of it.You just can't do anything with out a passport you can't check into a hotel or hire a car.It was an experience that I wouldn't want to go through again.We made the best of it.
R.I believe you are under new management and seem busier than ever.You were offered at short notice last autumn the Saxon European tour.Did you say yes straight away and second thoughts and any difficult crowds?
S.No we snapped it up because we know the Saxon boys and management really well and it's kind of intertwined so to speak as our agent X Ray does Saxon.They were 3000 plus capacity venues so we would have been foolish not to.We did wonder how we would go down with the hardcore fans in Germany with it being a metal crowd but we came away pretty much unscathed.It went down great.They were a bit confused for the first few songs but once they got in to it they really liked it,so we won them over and it did us the world of good.
R. How was it to have Didge Digital back for some of the shows?(I asked the question just as Jem Davis (keyboards had left the room with lots of laughter.)
S.An experience.He has not changed one bit he is the same mental wierdo that he we was back in the day but a great bloke to have out on the road with us and he is just hilarious because he isn't with us at all and he isn't normal in any shape or form!!!Great fun having him back.
R.You finally played your first show in America last year.How was it and any plans for any more?
S.There are always plans the show was great.We went out for total for 6 days so we could get a feel for it in the States as we hadn't been over there for so long.We did the acoustic show the night before and people came from all over America and South America to see us who had been waiting for along time.It was excellent and we just can't wait to go back now so that is being worked on with the new management and we can't wait to get back.
R.You are currently promoting The Italian Job cd/dvd how was it trying to get it perfect for the one show?Feel the pressure?
S.Basically what you have to do with live dvd's is trying to remember that you are there playing to the people who have come to see you so you just have to get on with your job and let the rest of the people do their's and get on with that kind of thing.Then anything your not happy with the editing and stuff you do get a chance to go through it,so really it's just about concentrating on our gig and the audience in front of you and not worry too much about what is going on around you.
R.On the Japanese version there is an extra track of Blood And Gasoline taken from the acoustic show is there any chance of it all being released?
S.No thought's on that at the moment but you never know with us do you?
R.With Someday now being embedded in the set you had steered away from it for many years saying you needed St Johns Ambulance are there any other songs you veer away from?
S.Apparently not.They say can we do this or that but not really we are kind of open to changing the set around when we can for each tour and bringing back songs that the fans want as they are the people who keep us in our jobs and they let us know what they want to hear.
R.Dangerous has returned.
S.Yes on this run if you had seen other nights then you would have seen other songs tonight we have just set set it up.Sometimes we have an hour sometimes an hour and 15 even an hour and a half the other night,so it means we have to kick stuff out and its tough when you have an hour and a half to get the pacing right.Once you start changing things or songs out you have to take into account what would work.So that is what we have done really for this tour.
R.With all the albums you have done since the reunion would you ever consider just playing newer songs?
S.Well we are just in the studio at the moment and its is going great.The thing with this band is because it is going from strength to strength which is a great thing it keeps you inspired. People love the band and discovering new territories so the positivity around the band is so brilliant that just want to keep going.We are well aware of the heritage part which is very important but it is all about what we do next and making sure that is kept to a standard and a level and that is the main thing for us.
R Will the album be out this year?
S.Probably not as there is a lot of stuff coming up that I can't talk about.
R I have heard a rumour?
S.And I can't talk about it (lots of laughter) It is really busy and we are recording when we can at the moment.
R.For yourself are there any ambitions still to be realised?
S.Blimey.Always I'm just enjoying what I am doing and take it one day at a time we are so fortunate we came back and we are lucky that our fans want to come and see us.Back in the day it was "we want to be the next Bon Jovi " but now we take it one day at a time.We are enjoying it and that's what really matters.
R Now for some of your other work.The Staks Band how did you get involved with that?
S It is a long story I worked with a girl about 30 years ago called Sonia Jones who is one of the top backing vocalist's who has worked with The Stones everybody really.She set up The Staks Band with Sam Brown the original singer and they have used lots of singers.Steve Winwood and basically they were doing the album in British Grove Mark Knopfler's studio and there was a track that they wanted a certain kind of vocal on it and Sonia said I know the singer I need for this song but I don't even know if he is still a singer.So she tracked me down through my facebook page which Scott runs for me and I went into the studio for the song she wanted me to do and ended up having 6 tracks on the album.
So now I have become the band singer but we still have guests at every gig Gloria Gaynor ,Lulu,Kiki Dee and Beverley Knight we do it at every gig.There will be more gigs and the album comes out in May and every single gig will have a name vocalist which is fantastic and something I want to do as I am a big fan of soul music which is no secret and to sing with a brass section it is amazing for me.
R Up to 15 members in the band?
S There can be more depending on how big the stage is!!
R Groundbreaker came out last year and was very well received by fans and critics with any more likely?
S Yes it was and possibly.It was well loved by the record company Serafino at Frontiers was very happy with it.The main problem we have Mark is with all of the other stuff that I do with FM is finding the time hook us all up and Robert Sall is in there ,Alessandro who is always touring but if they want one and Robert is up for doing one the I would definitely be up for that.I thought it was a great AOR record and we did a great job on it.I wasn't sure at first as I heard the first batch of songs which were a little generic and then Robert sent me 3 or 4 tracks and one of them was Will It Make You Love Me and I thought.What a song?He sent me just the backing tracks and I wrote the melodies and the titles and the words.
I loved it and would do another one.
R Lone Rider. A year ago when I spoke to you mentioned a snippet of a new band you were involved in but no details.Now with the album Attitude due to be released on April 26th on Escape Music you can spill the beans now?
S It's been an ambition album for me for years.I wanted to go back and make an album like they used to be made and I wanted to make a Free/Bad Company style of record.
Fortunately I got to make this album with Simon Kirke.
R 35 years since Wildlife how was it working with Simon again?
S Fantastic.He came over from New York where he lives now and we went to the studio with Chris Child of Thunder on bass who for him said this was a bucket list moment.All the time we were recording he kept saying he couldn't believe he was playing bass with Simon as he grew up learning to play bass to Free records.
It's fantastic I love the album and it has been very well received by the people that have heard it and really looking forward to the album coming out and seeing what we can do with it.It's something I would like to do something with.
R Did you write with Steve Morris on it?
S Yes I did but it was one where the band came in and Simon gives you a certain feel by the way he plays and Chris bounced off that great so the album took shape when we got in the studio and we had backing tracks as a live band.Simon had the kit he used on the first Bad Company album because I wanted that Bad Company drum sound I said to Chris the engineer and gave him the first Bad Company album and said that is the drum sound I want and he got it.It's a great record and I am sure you will love it when it is out.
R Live shows would Simon be up for that?
S There is talk about it but he is on tour with Bad Company at the moment doing some arena dates with Paul.They are talking about doing another album so he has said if none of us are touring we will try to hook up for some shows.
With that I thanked Steve for his time and let him get ready for another superb live show as FM go from strength to strength.
A few days later with with the kind help from Lidia from FM Official I managed to get Steve's thoughts after the announcement of the Big 3 0 shows in December with FM playing Tough It Out in full alongside Dan Reed Network playing Slam and Gun playing Taking On The World.
Steve.No I don't think I can think of any other Fm tunes I wouldn't tackle.As for the Tough It Out Big 3-0 tour dates.... I'm quite looking forward to playing some songs we've never played before live eg.Obsession,Feels So Good,Can You Hear Me Calling - and some we haven't done since we toured that album.It'll be a great night and what a bill,the response has been off the scale.....
Big thanks to Lidia at FMOfficial for all her help in setting up the interview.