Ready to make Selwyn feel like dancing

Leo Sayer

On a break from a 13-date United Kingdom tour, pop artist Leo Sayer spoke to reporter Matt Salmons about new albums, busy schedules and his excitement for next year’s Selwyn Sounds

Best known for 1976 pop tune You Make Me Feel Like Dancing, English-born Leo Sayer maintains a busy tour schedule.

Relaxing after his UK tour with a family holiday in Italian coastal town Porto Ercole with partner Donatella, Sayer was already looking to fit in an Australian tour before the Selwyn Sounds.

Perhaps surprisingly though, it would not be the artist’s first time in Lincoln.

Although he did not remember much about it, he said he passed by the area during a New Zealand tour in the 1980s.

“I haven’t played a show there but I’ve been in that part of the world. It’s very pretty country,” Sayer said.

Every year he said he pushed his agent for New Zealand dates and hoped the event in Lincoln Domain could be a taster for a future tour.

“It’s always a great audience down there, I’m just sad I don’t get there as much as I want. When this came up I was really excited.”

His last big event here was a performance at Hawkes Bay winery Mission Estate in 2014.

“We had a ball down there, it was a really good one. I think the angle was the Brits, but I’m more of an Aussie these days.”

Based in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, and down the road from Jimmy Barnes, Sayer said he kept busy working on his upcoming album Selfie and his personal memoirs.

“My life’s very busy, but no complaints. I just turned 70 in May and it’s not getting any less busy, I’m very happy.

“There’s plenty to do when I’m not on the road.”

His new album was “a one-man-band thing” he said, but had a big sound.

Manipulating the sounds and developing the album himself over five months was an enjoyable challenge he said.

“I’m really happy with the result.

“I’m a musician, I can never not be writing. The ironic thing is, everyone at the concerts wants to hear the classics from the catalogue.”

He was not sure if he would be ready to showcase Selfie at Selwyn Sounds, but he had been running his band through the title track of the album.

“Hopefully we can throw that in, that would be really fun.”

As well as Sayer, former INXS front man and Noiseworks singer Jon Stevens, Eagle Rock writer Ross Wilson, legendary Kiwi artists Midge Marsden and Peter Urlich are on the bill.

Hits such as Gutter Black, Blue Lady and Walking in the Light will be belted out by a who’s who of the New Zealand music scene known as The Golden Kiwis, which includes Harry Lyon from Hello Sailor and Rikki Morris from Crocodiles.

•Selwyn Sounds will be held on Saturday, March 2, at Lincoln Domain. Tickets are now on sale from www.selwynsounds.co.nz

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