About the band with which he sold 25 million copies worldwide in the 1980s, first broke up in 1990, reformed in 2009 and then broke up (permanently?) in 2019, he speaks reluctantly: « The Spandau Ballet? I only talk to saxophonist Steve Norman”, Tony Hadley interrupts. At 63, the historic voice behind such iconic hits as True, Gold, I’ll Fly for You and Through the Barricades, part of that magical decade among the most representative, which is making a strong comeback today knocking on the door. charts (thanks to the TV series and film too: Kate Bush’s Running Up That Hill after being discovered by Generation Z thanks to Stranger Things has crossed one billion plays on Spotify), she doesn’t think at all about hanging up the microphone and continues to get her satisfaction.
As a solo artist: «There’s a lot to do these days between touring and new music. I stay busy Now I have reached home, but there is already a plane waiting for me,” he says on the other end of the phone. Tonight the former Spandau Ballet frontman begins his Mad About You Italian Tour at the Roman Theater in Ostia Antica, following the Capitol with stops on June 27 in Verona, June 28 in Bergamo, June 29 in Castiglione del Lago, June 30 . Cattolica, in Treviso on 18 July and in Campitello Matiz on 16 August. On stage in Rome will be accompanied by Tony Hadley, his faithful The Fabulous TH Band, and the Bruno Maderna Orchestra, conducted by maestro Danilo Rossi.
What is your relation with Italy sir? Headley?
“Special, I would say. The first time we played with Spandau Ballet in your country in 1981, we were still unknown: a cult group. Then we came back in 1985, this time as Superstars: in Rome we played at the Palazzo dello Sport between the releases of Parade and Through the Barricades.
What phase of the band’s career was that?
“We were on the cusp of success. We made good money, chased our dreams, traveled the world with our music.
The story of Spandau Ballet began over a decade ago in the corridors of Dame Alice Owen’s school in Islington, when you were all teenagers. Is it true that you wanted the Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney and all the British rockers of the previous generation to retire?
“Already. We were convinced he should have retired at 35. Now that I’m 63, I regret those things. I spoke like a young rebel rocker, I was talking nonsense Had been.
The new romantic scene, of which you were the absolute protagonist, gathered at the Blitz in Covent Garden, London: what do you remember of those first performances?
Everything happened. Steve Strange (leader of Visage, the band of Fade to Grey, who together with Spandau Ballet contributed to the success of the New Romantic movement, ed.), who owned the venue, once kicked Mick Jagger out, Claiming that it was not enough. And Boy George, on the other hand, worked there as a wardrobe attendant.
How do you explain the revival of ’80s hits over the years?
“It’s a sign that even as the years pass, great songs remain.” It is also contributed by the nostalgia of those who went through those unpredictable years. It’s better this way: it’s all the people who buy tickets to come to concerts (laughs) ».
How did the idea to do a concert with an orchestra come about?
“I did a thing with Joe Cocker in the late 90s. I wanted to give a different flavor to the songs. Also underline the grandeur of the arrangements. In Rome and Verona we will sing all the classics and some new songs.
Which arrangement surprised you the most?
« A Song of Communication, a song from the 1983 album True, which turns forty this year. He played as a one-off with the Spandau Ballet. It’s a totally different thing with an orchestra. There’s a great orchestral introduction, excellent. Golden isn’t bad either. And what will happen through the barricades?’
Over the years he has collected various collaborations with Italian artists: from Caprezza, who wanted him with him in “Goodbye Malinconia”, to Arissa, with whom he went to the Sanremo Festival in 2019. In 2018 they also released a Christmas album in Italy, “The Christmas Album”, with an all Italian staff. Have you ever thought of moving here?
“I confess I have thought about it at least twice, also because of the affection I regularly receive from the public and insiders in Italy. But in the end my British roots won out. Maybe I will when I’m older: now I feel I still need to be close to my family and children in the UK.
In April we saw her with Morgan in an episode of his TV program “Stramorgan” on Rai1. Morgan says there’s this feeling between the two of you: What’s cooking?
“I was very happy with your program. He is a great person, very genuine. He seems brilliant to me. And I found it in great shape. He will come to Bergamo to play with me. We’ll make some amazing creations: I won’t say much else.
Are you working on new music?
“Yeah. I’m collecting songs for my new solo album. It should be out by the end of this year, between September and October.”
What do you think about the new generation of artists?
« I follow Yungblood: I find him very interesting. And then Shawn Mendes, a great pop artist».
and manskins? Do you hear about it in Britain?
“Yes of course. They are really cool, unique: I know they have become very popular all over the world.
Pardon the indiscretion: what ever happened to Spandau Ballet, which will never recover again?
“Unfortunately, things went wrong with the others. the reason? They know it. I had reached a point in my life and career where I just wanted to be happy. And today I finally am».
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