Name, where are you from?
I’m John Cooper Clarke, originally from Salford.
Describe your style in three words?
I dress carefully. That’s how I would describe my style. I dress carefully, I didn't say 'well'!
Tell us about 'This Time It's Personal'
Yeah, I've got an album out. It was released in collaboration with Hugh Cornwell, late of The Stranglers, it's an album of covers.
Hugh chose all of the tracks. He originally invited me in just for ‘MacArthur Park’. He figured I would speak the lyrics in my normal, poetical style because of the arcane and poetic nature of the lyrics. But, that never occurred to me actually. I saw it as my big opportunity to make it as a singer, so I turned up and sung it. He was pleasantly surprised, and unlike ‘MacArthur Park’, I already knew the lyrics to all of the other songs. They were much easier.
There are ten tracks…
'It’s Only Make Believe' - A hit for a hit for Conway Twitty
'Way Down Yonder In New Orleans' - A hit for Freddy Cannon.
'Spanish Harlem' - Written by Phil Spector and Jerry Leiber
'Johnny Remember Me'
'Macarthur Park' - The most modern track on the album going back to 1968, released at the height of the psychedelic boom…seems like yesterday...hahaha.
'She's a Woman', A hit for Peggy Lee and Ray Charles.
'Donna'. Beautiful ballad. Not the 10cc version, heaven forbid. Written by Richie Valance and a hit for the same guy in 1957.
'Jezebel' - A hit for Frankie Laine around 1952.
'Love Potion No. 9' - Originally by The Clovers.
'Sweeter Than You' - Directly from my heart to my lady wife. A beautiful song, a hit for Ricky Nelson, in 1978.