In 1985, after hearing The Wedding Present’s first single played on John Peel, I decided I wanted to interview them for a fanzine I was writing with some friends. In 1985, that single was the first record since The Jesus and Mary Chain’s Upside Down that interested me. However, I was 15 years old and lived a long way away from where they lived – in Leeds, in the north of England.
I sent a letter, some questions and a tape cassette to the band’s Leeds address which John Peel had read out on air. The (frankly awful) questions of the teenage me were read out by a friend of the band fifteen minutes before they were due on stage for their ninth ever gig.
Crap teenage questions aside, there are some interesting insights into the band’s favourite songs and other groups of the time. There is also a long, bizarre, fun mixtape which follows the interview. It was produced (I think) by the lead singer and guitarist, David Gedge, and includes John Peel talking about the band’s first ever single.
I guess this is just for diehard Wedding Present fans. There’s a great deal of innocence in the recording below – both in the questions and in the responses – and the band come across as quite charming, young and excited. As far as I know, I was the first person to ever interview the band and the recording sounds exactly what it is – of another era.
I admire the fact that Gedge has managed to maintain a thoroughly independent direction ever since this recording was made. I certainly couldn’t have predicted the path he would take after this first single. Nor the wonky path into journalism and book writing that I would take. At least (I think) the older me learned to ask better questions.