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Friday, February 8, 2008

Utah Saints' stadium stage secret

Utah Saints' stadium stage secret

Created On February 4th, 2008 by i_have_ADD

Jez Willis from rock-rave pioneers Utah Saints chatted to Skrufff recently as the band geared up for the Ministry Of Sound reissue of their early 90s chart hit ‘Something Good’, revealing that he found playing at Wembley in front of 100,000 people easier than small gigs in Leeds.

“I remember this from when I first started out, the most nervous racking gigs are when you play before about twenty mates because when you’re in front of 20 mates you can’t pretend to be someone else,” said Jez. “The way I get my head in the right place for big shows is by pretending to be someone else, because if you just took me as a normal person and shoved me on stage I’d be thinking ‘wooah, don’t look at me’. “

The Leeds based duo of Jez and bandmate Tim Garbett supported U2 on their Zooropa stadium tour in the early 90s, playing to tens of thousands of people, which Jez admitted he found both nerve-wracking and pleasurably intense. “Basically when I was on stage I was imagining myself as people in bands that I’d seen that I thought were great. If I was really pushed, I’d say I was a cross between Jazz Coleman (Killing Joke), Freddie Mercury and Liam Howlett,” he laughed. “I had two reference points: Cliff Richard and Edwin Starr.”

“We did Top Of The Pops and we met Cliff Richard waiting in the wings and I asked him if he got nervous before performing and he said ‘no, I don’t anymore’. Then we did a record with Edwin Starr and he came and did Glastonbury with us and I remember asking him if the same question and he said ‘yeah, every time’. And he’s been doing it for even longer than Cliff Richard. I think nerves are actually a good thing because they keep you focused. It might not be that pleasant but nerves and self doubt help you set your standards high.”

Utah Saints ‘Something Good ’08’ is out shortly on Data/Ministry Of Sound.

Check out the clip of the above mentioned Top Of The Pops performance!