Whether its “twistin’ yer melon” with The Happy Mondays or paying homage to Ian Curtis alongside Peter Hook and the Light, Rowetta is the undisputed Queen of Madchester. A very influential artist in her own right, we wanted to know what songs she loved, the ones that she would say made the Soundtrack of Her Life…

BM: Can you remember the first record you ever bought?

Ro: The first album I bought with my own money was ‘Never Mind The Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols’
My mum’s record collection was filled with motown and crooners like Tony Bennett and Perry Como. I enjoyed all that as a kid, but it was hearing the Sex Pistols that made me want to be in a band and I related to punk, like I’d never related to any other subculture. I loved the music, fashion and original form of expression. Although looking back, we all thought we were unique and being revolutionary but a lot of us looked the same.

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BM: Do you have a tour bus favourite?

Ro: I never tire of Revolver – The Beatles on the tour bus. I love every song on that album except Yellow Submarine which is too novelty for me. I also like anything funky on the road.

BM: What’s your Saturday night tune?

Ro: I actually like to get ready to Justify My Love by Madonna. I love the tune I love her sexy speaking voice. Written by Lenny Kravitz & Ingrid Chavez with additional lyrics by Madonna. This song gets me in the mood for everything!!!

BM: And your Sunday morning record?

Ro: Anything by Marvin Gaye on a Sunday morning as his voice is so soothing. my favourite male voice and some stunning songs.

BM: Whats the favourite song you’ve ever covered?

Ro: Really honoured to have been asked by Hooky to record this for the EP ‘1102 -2011’ – Peter Hook & The Light
One of the most beautiful songs ever written. It’s perfect.

BM: Is there a song you’d like to cover, but can’t or won’t?

Ro: It would probably be a song by Chic as I am such a fan of Nile Rodgers and he has been really kind to me, but the songs are just perfect as they are and the female vocalists are outstanding, but i love to sing along to ‘I want Your Love’ at Chic gigs.

BM: Is there a song we might be surprised that you like?

Ro: Mother Earth by Crass from Stations Of Crass was my favourite song as a teenager. I was fascinated by the lyrics. It’s so real, so true and so strong. Steve Ignorant’s delivery is so powerful… questioning us. Had a huge impact on me and made me question a lot of things in the news etc, that I probably wouldn’t have before.

BM: A favourite track from people you call friends?

Ro: Anything by the Roses, but ‘This Is The One’ is special to me as my team Manchester United come out to it at every home game and I got to sing it on stage with some Man United legends including Sir Bobby Charlton, Bryan Robson and Denis Law at a United event. One of the greatest honours. Something I’ll never forget.

BM: Is there a record in your parent’s record collection that attracted your attention?

Ro: I remember hearing Perry Como’s – A Your Adorable and Loving It.
Shaun and I did dirty version of it years ago messing about in rehearsals which was actually pretty good from what I remember.

BM: Is there a song who’s lyrics you find really inspiring?

Ro: ‘The Morning Of My Life’ – written by The Bee Gees. Great song.
The versions that I often have on loop are a reggae version by John Holt and a version by one of my favourite female singers, Esther Ofarim. I never know if it’s going to make me smile or sob but I always feel inspired by this song.

BM: I know there’s probably 100’s but if you had to pick one whats the song most likely to get you on the dancefloor? 

Ro: A song called ‘Rise Up’ by Sunkids feat Chance. I can’t sit down when this comes on.

BM: Do you have a karaoke tune?

RoI don’t really do karaoke and try to avoid bars that do it, but my & Clint Boon do a wicked karaoke version of Kinky Afro.

BM: Do you have a song you’d like played at your funeral?

Ro: I love ‘Take My Breath Away’ by Eva Cassidy and ‘Atmosphere’ by Joy Division but I will probably change my mind and go for something happier… depends if I want people to party or cry!

BM: From your own back catalogue, which song are you most proud of/means the most to you? And why?

Ro: Apart from the Peter Hook & The Light EP. I love everything I’ve done with the Mondays as it’s stood the test of time and people know my voice from that, but most proud has to be a song I wrote and recorded in 1989 called ‘Reach Out’ as it’s been sampled by so many people and still is sampled weekly now.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6OQiOHgLRg

Ro: It was most famously sampled by Black Eyed Peas on ‘Boom Boom Pow’, which was number 1 in America alone for 12 weeks and my voice runs right through the song. It’s also on ‘Show Me Love’ – Robin S and Steve Angello & Laidback Luke’s ‘BE’.
I’m very proud of that vocals as 26 years later it’s still used and has made my voice heard more than anything else.

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For an earlier interview with Rowetta from October 2013 click HERE

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