Ginger Wildheart

Ginger Wildheart Interview


Ginger Wildheart has been making some of the best rock music around for well over 20 years, whether as lead singer of The Wildhearts, or Hey! Hello! or Silver Ginger 5 or Clam Abuse or his own solo records. He’s also been at the forefront of new ways of funding music, repeatedly breaking records on PledgeMusic and running a 12-month fanclub called G.A.S.S. which gave subscribers great new songs and a whole load of other goodies each month, some of which can be heard on the commercially available Year Of The Fanclub album.

This year he’s got his first book coming out (funded by fans through PledgeMusic) as well as a new Hey! Hello! album and the launch of a new Pledge campaign for his Round Records label. Amazingly, he found the time to talk to us.

This is his music…

What is your favourite song of all time?

It changes every day. I usually say Heroes, by David Bowie, because that is the one that nails it all. Composition, performance, mix, it has it all by the truck load. But because I always say Heroes, today I’ll say Absolute Beginners, by David Bowie. Which is probably joint first.

Can you remember when you fell in love with it?

Absolutely. I was in my bedroom in my mothers house, waiting to see my friends and listening to the radio. Absolute Beginners came on and I just started to cry uncontrollably. But they were tears of joy, of witnessing something so beautiful that the central nervous system just surrendered. I cancelled hanging out with my friends that day and sat by the radio waiting for the song to come on again, tape recorder ready to record it. I didn’t know what the beginning went like so when it eventually came on I missed the first few bars. I listened to that version of the song many, many times a day for years, until the soundtrack of the movie became available. The song still turns me into jelly.

Has a song or album ever changed your life?

Yes, too many times to list. Albums have been the soundtrack to my life since I was about 5 or 6. They have healed me, directed me, supported me, understood me and moulded the person I am. I’m a slave to music and I always will be.

If you could only listen to five albums for the rest of time, what would they be?

That’s like picking your favourite child. If you said I could pick 50 albums I’d still struggle.

How much of your day do you spend listening to music?

If I’m at home I’m usually in writing mode, so I hear music in my head all day long. If I’m running or driving I need music the whole time. I find it’s the traveling companion and the perfect housemate.

What’s your ideal time and place for listening to music?

Probably driving. I don’t think I could drive long distances without music, the time would drag too much. Same with running. I’m shit at running without music because I can hear myself getting out of breath and that tells my brain that it’s time to stop. If I can’t hear my breathing I can run for a long time.

What’s the best gig/show you’ve ever been to?

Again this is an impossible one to answer. I know this sounds like a cop out but I’ve been to so many amazing gigs and had so many amazing experiences that I couldn’t pick one. Who can? Surely everyone who’s life is dedicated to music simply has too many choices to nail down one?

Approximately how big is your music collection? And in what format?

I have a large vinyl collection and a ridiculously huge CD collection. And I buy music constantly. I still love the feeling of buying vinyl every bit as much as I ever loved it, but I still buy everything new on CD. I love playing CDs in the car. I know I could hear the same music from my iPod but it just doesn’t feel the same.

What does music mean to you?

Music is the sound of feelings.

What song should we all go and listen to right now to make our day better?

Pearly Dewdrops’ Drops by The Cocteau Twins.

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