Interview: Shane Filan
Graham Clark, Features Writer
Ex Westlife lead singer Shane Filan is returning to Yorkshire on Monday 17 October to play the Alhambra in Bradford, I asked him about the tour and what we can expect:
You are returning to Yorkshire in October to play a gig in Bradford, do your Yorkshire fans always give you a warm welcome?
Absolutely. We played a gig at the Barbican in York earlier this year and it was a great night, one of the best gigs on the tour. I'm looking forward to coming back to Yorkshire.
I reviewed the gig in York, you said that you had your family with you, do you always take them on tour?
I did for the York gig and those other dates around that time as it was Easter and the kids were not at school. When we tour in October they will be at school but they will be coming along to the weekend shows. They like to come and see daddy and go and explore the tour bus!
What was it like starting out as a solo artist?
It was all new territory. You become a more positive person and have to make all the decisions yourself. I threw myself into it, at the deep end so to speak. I had to grow up quickly. At the end of the day it's all down to you.
What can we expect from the Bradford gig?
It is the same show as the one in York but we have tweaked it a bit so expect something different too. It will be a mixture of old and new, obviously there will be a few Westlife songs which I love singing. My job is to entertain the crowd, it will be a great night.
On a previous tour the stage set was an old Irish pub, was that your idea?
We did that after the first album was recorded in Nashville, I wanted to come up with something that I thought was cool. It was a relaxing atmosphere as I was able to get members of the audience onto the stage and sit down on the bar stools with me and I would sing them a song. This time though it will be a bit classier with a staircase where I start the show standing at the top.
Do you still keep in touch with the other members of Westlife?
I see them from time to time. I saw Mark the other day on the beach walking the dog. We have so much history together. I know the lads better than my brothers. We spent half of our lives together. It's nice to keep in touch with them.
Is there a song which you wish you had recorded?
All of Me by John Legend, it's a huge love song and I like singing those types of songs.
When you get back off tour is it hard to settle down?
I miss home and my family on tour but it usually takes around a week to settle back in. On tour I'm going to bed at 2 or 3am and wake up around noon whilst at home I'm up early with the children on the school run so it's all their schedule.
Your audiences are usually female but I'm sure that some men would like the show.
I hear that comment quite a lot. I do get men coming to the shows but they have usually been brought along with their wives, girlfriends or partners. I do see one or two singing along to the songs. My job is to get the audience leaving with a smile on their face. I'm looking forward to this tour and seeing many faces light up, it's good to play close to the crowd which this tour will allow me to do.
The Bradford Alhambra sounds a great theatre with so much history and atmosphere, it sounds great.
Shane Filan plays Bradford Alhambra on Monday 17 October
Interview: Shane Filan, 5th August 2016, 9:13 AM