John Waugh - The 1975
In this episode of The StageLeft Podcast, we talk to the coolest saxophonist on the planet and all round nice guy, John Waugh. Recorded a week before playing at the Brit Awards with The 1975, who picked up the Best British Group award, John discusses his work with the band, his solo projects, and how his ambition is to play Local Hero at Newcastle Football Ground.
The 1975, who’s second album ‘I Like It When You Sleep…’, beat David Bowie’s Blackstar* to win the 2016 Q award for Best Album, have also received nominations in the Grammy’s and Mercury Prize. This has seen John playing on two No.1 albums, touring the globe, and is set to play Madison Square Gardens later in the year. John tells The StageLeft Podcast, in fascinating detail, his journey from his early musical influences, how studying at Leeds College of Music affected his career, and how difficult it is to write emotional music for the saxophone without inadvertently sounding like Michael Bolton.
Also discussed on the podcast; how he channels nervous energy before gigs, the surrealness of playing to nearly 80,000 at Glastonbury, the making of his second EP via Skype, and the importance of art in today’s political climate.
‘If you're angry, disappointed, find an awesome and creative vice to express it responsibly, art and music has more purpose now’
The interview touches upon rock and roll excess, the pressure of touring, mental health, and the dangers of a social media culture for young musicians.
Informative, amusing, and downright interesting, John Waugh gives a fascinating insight into the journey of a session musician, and how a love of music can get him from Glastonbury to St James Park. Hopefully.
**Not to be outdone, Blackstar beat The 1975’s album ‘I Like it When You Sleep..’ to win Best Album at this year’s Brit Awards. Hear from Grammy winning producer Tony Visconti, producer of Blackstar and long time Bowie collaborator, on episode 15 of The StageLeft Podcast. This was recorded one week prior to the Albums release, and was released sadly, three days before Bowie’s passing.
You can listen to it here for free; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EkmqIAinKqY
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