2015-09-19 Dermot O'Leary Presents the Saturday Sessions, BBC 2 Radio, London, UK

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Dave Gahan was interviewed live over the phone on Saturday, September 19th, on Dermot O'Leary's show 'The Saturday Sessions'. While this interview was done to promote the upcoming Soulsavers album and tour, this is not discussed much. Apparently the show contains a segment where older artists are asked the same questions that have been asked to them by UK magazine 'Smash Hits' in the early '80s, and they have to remember the answers that they gave at the time. For Dave, Dermot used a 'Personal File' from the March 18th, 1983, issue of 'Smash Hits'. Needless to say, Dave does not remember much of it, and hilarity ensues. The fragment has been downloaded and cut off from the whole episode, and re-uploaded on Box as a 128 kbps mp3 file. A transcript has been typed out below for your convenience.

  • Duration: 06:24 minutes



Dermot: So, it's time for an in-depth exploration into the minds and memories of musicians from the pages of 'Smash Hits' circa '82 to circa '86. Dave Gahan, hello, how are you?

Dave: I'm good, how are you?

Dermot: Really well. It's nice to talk to you.

Dave: Good morning.

Dermot: Good [morning], yeah, are you in America at the moment?

Dave: I am indeed.

Dermot: Lovely. How is it all going, all good?

Dave: Everything is good, yeah, it's a beautiful morning, I'm in New York City.

Dermot: When did you move out there properly? You've been out there for a long time now, haven't you?

Dave: I moved to California in the late '80s, I'm guessing sort of '89 or something, and then I moved to New York around sort of '97. So yeah, I've been out here a long time.

Dermot: Have you... did you... Do you live in New York now?

Dave: Yeah, I've been here for almost twenty years.

Dermot: I don't know, the picture that you always have when you think of Depeche Mode is the Hollywood Hills kind of [feel], in some desert somewhere, do you know what I mean?

Dave: Yeah, I sort of think of Essex. [laughter]

Dermot: Do you come back much?

Dave: To Essex? Not that much, no. I still have family there, but my mum lives down on the Isle of Wight and has been down there for a while, so we kind of all meet there.

Dermot: The best part of the world. So, at the moment you're doing the stuff with the Soulsavers, yeah?

Dave: Yes, correct.

Dermot: That's 'All Of This And Nothing', I'll be playing that just a second. You're playing London in October the 26th.

Dave: Yeah and I understand that yesterday it went on sale and it sold out immediately. I'm really excited about that.

Dermot: Brilliant. Great stuff. And 'Angels And Ghosts' [is] out on October the 23rd. So listen, congratulations on that, that must have been [nice]. Is it weird when you do your own thing? Just sort of off the back of it, when you're part of such a seismic band?

Dave: Ehm, you know, it's just like a continuation, I just keep writing, and I love writing with Rich Machin from Soulsavers. We just seem to really hit it off, so it was just like a natural thing, going from one record to the next.

Dermot: OK. I'll tell you what isn't a natural thing: trying to remember the answers you gave in 1983 to 'Smash Hits'. Be very [specific], because some of these are very exact, so I'd be amazed if you could remember some of them. Ehm... First concert?

Dave: First concert...? I think...it was... The Rezillos.

Dermot: Aaah.

Dave: But I didn't actually go inside. I was looking through a pub window. My local pub, the Double Six. Too young to get in.

Dermot: That's an incredible answer, you know what, I'll give you another one, because I'll give you [the answer]: "We used to go up to..." OK, where would be the glamour venue when you were a kid?

Dave: ...Ehm...

Dermot: Chelmsford, [by] the way.

Dave: ...that's... When I was a kid, what was the venue?

Dermot: Yeah.

Dave: ...Oh boy. Wow, I should have drunk more coffee. [laughter]

Dermot: Alright, OK, here we go. Do you know what [the answer was from] 'Smash Hits': "It was probably a punk concert in ’77. We used to go up to Chelmsford Chancellor Hall a lot."

Dave: Chancellor Hall! Damn, yeah!

Dermot: "So it could have been The Damned, could have been The Clash-

Dave: -The Damned! Yeah, of course. The Damned, yeah definitely-

Dermot: -or...-

Dave: -The Damned, yeah, definitely would have been up there, they made a very big impression on me.

Dermot: "...could have been The Banshees."

Dave: ...Ehm, it would have... [sighs] Oh my Gosh.

Dermot: You got it, go with The Damned.

Dave: I would have thought that it was either The Damned or Siouxie And The Banshees.

Dermot: It's funny, there, isn't it? Because I grew up in Colchester, and I suppose now that [those] bands probably play London, and probably wouldn't go to Chelmsford and Colchester as much. But The Damned playing Chelmsford back then would have been huge.

Dave: Yeah. I mean, in those days, to be honest, you would go, and you would quite possibly see The Damned, Siouxie And The Banshees and 999 or something, all on the same bill, for a couple of quid.

Dermot: Seriously?

Dave: Yeah. In Chelmsford. And Chelmsford was the closest place for us to go to, from Basildon. We always used to jump on a bus and go there. I saw a lot of my first bands sort of there, a lot of big impressions were made on me in that concert hall.

Dermot: OK, in 1983, what was your most treasured possession?

Dave: Oh boy... [laughs] In nineteeneightythree...

Dermot: I'll give you a clue.

Dave: Yeah, gimme a clue, please.

Dermot: It involves wheels.

Dave: Oh yeah, my Escort XR3i.

Dermot: OHHH! No! It's your Yamaha...

Dave: Oh! [slaps his knee]

Dermot: [laughs] ...XT trial bike.

Dave: It was my motorbike!

Dermot: Yeah.

Dave: Yep, that was my first vehicle, you're right, I hopped over that one. Actually, someone sent me a picture recently of that, I was sort of horrified, I looked about ten years old.

Dermot: Do you still ride now?

Dave: I have a different motorcycle now-

Dermot: [laughs] Yeah, I didn't think you had the same one!

Dave: [laughs]

Dermot: OK, listen, you'll never get this right, but it's just interesting to see if you have any idea.

Dave: Come on then.

Dermot: This is 'Smash Hits' in 1983: "What have you currently got in your pocket?"

Dave: ...Ehm, let me see. Of course I've got my phone.

Dermot: OK, in 1983.

Dave: ...one of those things we definitely wouldn't have had in our pockets [unintelligible] ...seen with a smartphone.

Dermot: Exactly. I'm not expecting you to know this, so I'll clear you: in 1983, you had "About 60p in change. a front-door key, a hankie and two receipts: one for a cheque from Granada TV, £126 for doing Get Set For Summer. I paid into the bank this morning; the other is for a copy of Smash Hits."

Dave: [laughs] Wow.

Dermot: Very good. Very on brand.

Dave: Wow! That is... amazing. I mean, this is kind of interesting! It has taken me back, yeah.

Dermot: Yeah.

Dave: I probably still would have had a hankie in my pocket, but I just, you know...

Dermot: ...You just grew up.

Dave: ... But that's what I'd probably still do.

Dermot: Yeah. And whose phone number would you pay the most for, in 1983?

Dave: ...Hmm... I might have said David Bowie.

Dermot: Bang on!

Dave: Yes! [laughs]

Dermot: Yes, Dave! Impressive! Yep, "David Bowie, would love to have his phone number." Wonderful. Brilliant. Thanks so much, mate, nice talking to you.

Dave: Well, one out of five wasn't bad.

Dermot: It's not bad! Not bad for first thing in the morning.

Dave: [laughs] Listen, it's great to talk to you as well. Thanks for your support, man.

Dermot: Thank you, mate. And will you just be doing London, or will you come over and do more?

Dave: Well, at the moment, that's all we've got penciled in, and then I'm doing a bunch of stuff around Europe, and then something here in New York and in Los Angeles. But we're gonna see what happens.

Dermot: Great stuff. OK, Dave, [it was] lovely talking to you, thank you very much, mate. Thanks for your support. Take care, bye bye.

Dave: Cheers, thanks Dermot, bye bye.

['All Of This And Nothing' plays]