Q & A with Richard Vernon - March 2003
By Petra Sümnicht
Q: Unfortunately nobody seems to know anything about you, would you like to introduce yourself?
A: Hello, I`m Richard..... brilliant! ;)
Q: On the last Mission tour you played the bass, how did you join the band and who asked you to do it?
A: First played with Mission after a call from Dave the tour manager, he used to tour manage another band I was in and asked if I could learn about 30 bloody songs in 4 days......
Q: Are you a professional musician or do you have another occupation?
A: No I dont do anything else, just musician. Oh and chase around after my four year old son.
Q: Do you play in other bands as well or do you have your own band?
A: I still do bits of recording for other people but I can`t tour as much as I used to because of my son.
Q: If yes, in which other bands have you played in the past?
A: Played in loads of bands in the past, had my own band signed to Island records, loads of sessions, all kinds of stuff from heavy metal to horrible funk. Last proper band not just session was playing for Peter Perrett from The Only Ones, did two albums and loads of touring, Europe, Uk and Japan, that`s where I met Dave and Rog who asked me to do Mission stuff, they did sound and tour managed us...the poor bastards...
Q: Do you play other instruments as well?
A: Yes ,drums
Q: Did you know anything about The Mission and their songs before you joined them?
A: Obviously I`d heard of them but I only knew the hits and that Wayne used to have a big hat.
Q: Are there any songs you hated to play, because they are difficult to play or you didn`t like them at all?
A: I actually really like most of them. Sorry to say that I dont like "Wasteland" much, but it`s only a few minutes long!
Q: Do you have a favourite Mission song?
A: No, apart from "Wasteland" I really enjoy the rest of the set. There are particular times when a song really works that I love. Some of the grooves like "Tower Of Strength" and "(Slave To) Lust" really suit my playing and I adore that feel but also dynamically interesting ones like "Swoon" get me going too.
Q: You toured with The Mission in May 2002 on the European tour, you played the summer festivals and the US-tour in September. What was your personal highlight? (on- or off-stage)
A: The German outdoor festivals were great crowds and Arvika too. Barcelona was a great gig but strangely although the U.S. tour was difficult I think it felt really together at times and the band kind of stuck up for each other, everyone got on with it and it was a nice feeling, there were no primma donnas (apart from the support act) and musically there were some great shows there and some nights it sounded massive.
Q: How was tourlife in general?
A: I`ve always loved touring and find it really easy, always nice to go home but I could tour forever.
How could you get pissed off with sleeping, drinking and playing bass interspersed with conversations about football? Perfect!!
Q: Wayne mentioned in several interviews, that he would like to have you in the band for future Mission shows and probably also for a new studio recording. What is the situation on this?
A: Just trying to get some song ideas finished to send to Wayne now...
Q: Would you like to become a permanent Mission member if the question arose?
A: I dont know how Wayne sees the mission developing or whether he wants to do more solo stuff instead.
If The Mission is there I love being in it.
Some gossip stuff:
Q: What kind of music do you like?
A: Everything except manufactured pop
Q: Last CD you bought?
A: Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Marvin Gaye
Q: Last book you read?
A: Japanese author called Murakami,weird head fuck book that I had to read twice and still only just understood it. Then I read "Arsenal, the glory years"
Q: Last film you saw?
A: Lock stock and two smoking barrels on video
Q: Your most precious property?
A: Property means nothing. My most precious thing is my family, including Noriko.
Q: Your most embarassing moment on stage?
A: Once got hit on the head by a massive piece of scenery at a gig, threw up at gig in Amsterdam after too much San Miguel, combat trousers nearly fell down during "Swoon" at Zillo.....enough??? :-)
Q: Your most memorable experience?
A: Birth of my son, touring Japan, Dennis Bergkamps goal against Leicester.
Q: What makes you mad?
A: Injustice, cruelty and traffic wardens
Q: Three things for a desert island?
A: Instrument to learn (piano), hammock, Noriko
Q: What phrase would you use to describe 2002?
A: Someone said to me"jesus you live the life of bloody Riley..."
Q: What would you like to see happen in 2003?
A: To perfect the life of Riley
Many thanx Richie, hope to see you with The Mission - and another shirt :-) - this year!
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