Staying Out For The Summer – Dodgy Come To St. Paul’s, Worthing
Written by Rob Kelly
In the mid 1990’s at the peak of “Britpop”, Dodgy the bottle blonde, midlands band with a bag full of feel good songs such as “Good Enough” and “Staying out for the summer” tried to meld their engagement with social issues, love of the sound of the 60’s and insidious earworms to create the perfect pop moment.
I managed to catch up with lead-singer and songwriter Nigel Clarke as he prepared to play at the Lytham festival, to talk about Worthing, song writing and why it would be great to be a Castaway with Aphex Twin.
What comes across throughout the interview is that as well as being a really genuine, grounded guy, Nigel still loves being in a band and really enjoys playing live.
After some initial small talk we got down to some questions.
Rob Kelly: I think you last played Worthing in 2012 is that right?
Nigel Clarke Yes we did, by the train station I think, but haven’t been back since but I was thinking ahead of this interview that Worthing was the first ever” Dodgy Club” event outside London, that was in 1993, we did it on Worthing Pier and bus loads of Dodgy fans came down for the Saturday night and we had a whole Dodgy club with clowns and hoopla and other bands and had a fantastic time .
We weren’t part of the “Manchester scene”, we weren’t part of the “Grebo” Wonder Stuff Stourbridge scene, and so with the Dodgy club we adopted a town for the day and just turned up and it was a brilliant day in Worthing and kind of shaped the way of Dodgy really.
RK: How has last year’s album “What are we fighting for” gone down?
NC: Again it’s been one of those things, we managed to get about 1 review, and the record company didn’t manage to get any of the pre sales registered for the charts so we missed out on that which actually helped. We were basically ignored and the weird thing is it started to pick up abroad, in mad places like Chile, Brazil, America, it’s a really good album and we are just sorting out a new deal for an album on a new label in 2019.
RK: Are you writing songs at the moment?
NC: I am writing songs at the moment, I am always writing songs, all the time.
RK: Is that solo stuff or the next Dodgy album
NC: No I was going to do a solo album and then we put out the “What are we fighting for”, and I thought lets make the next one a dodgy album too, I write the songs any way so my songs are Dodgy songs.
RK: What can we expect from the gig at St Pauls?
NC: Probably be a bit of acoustic, a couple of really new (unrecorded) songs maybe on my own, then with the band, some of the hits from the 90’s and a few songs from the last album, we will mix it up really. It will be a really good night, we just love playing.
RK: If you had to recommend one album and one book to a friend what would they be?
NC: Album: Marquee moon by Television.
Television are my favourite band ever, I saw them at Glastonbury and you know what, I love Marquee Moon even more now than when it first came out, just a shame that Richard Lloyd isn’t with them anymore.
Book: Shampoo Planet by Douglas Coupland.
RK: When push comes to shove – Dylan or Morrissey?
RK: Have you ever played Desert Island Dicks – If you had to be stranded on a desert island with someone called Richard who would it be?
NC: Richard D James from Aphex Twin, I think just taking Aphex Twin and saying to him “so how do you do it, so where do you start to create like that?” would be a great thing to do.
Sadly Nigel had to dash off to get ready as the band prepared to share the bill with Human League and Midge Ure.
What came across while chatting to Nigel is he is still enjoying himself, he promised that Dodgy will be bringing a great show to St Pauls and that they are really excited about returning to Worthing, a place close to the band’s heart. So make sure you snap up your tickets before the event sells out.
For the full interview check out Rob’s Blog WoMu – A Worthing music blog at – worthingmusic.wordpress.com