Judie Tzuke appeared on GLR
on the Bob Harris Show
to promote the Under The Angels album
[transcribed by Ian Taft - Thanks Ian!]
Click on the underlined passages to hear Judie's voice
[Under The Angels concludes]
Bob: That's called Under The Angels, and it's the title song from
the new album from Judie Tzuke, who is with me here in the
studio tonight on GLR. Good to see you Judie, welcome along
to the programme.
Judie: Thank you.
Bob: first album this for how long now?
Judie: Um, I think it's three years...
Judie: Two and a half, three years.
Bob: Yeah. Before we go any further, I've got a fax which I want
to quote to you from Mike Harrison who faxed in just a few
minutes ago, he says: ''I was delighted to hear that Judie
Tzuke was coming in to the show. I saw her brilliant gig at
the Jazz Cafe and I'm really looking forward to getting her
new CD which I sent off for the other day...''
Judie: Thought I recognised the name!
Bob: ''...I thought her last CD, Wonderland, is the best she's
ever done; could you please ask her if she knows if I Am
The Phoenix is ever coming out on CD? All her others have
appeared at some time or another but I've never seen Phoenix.''
Judie: No. Phoenix...we're trying to find out if it can be released
on CD but we don't seem to be getting much joy on that, but
we are trying to get it...
if either we can do it ourselves
or somebody can do it. I'm not quite sure how we go about it,
but we are trying.
Bob: Because it is, Judie Tzuke cottage industry...
Judie: ...it is now! [laughs]
I'm chief of everything in my record
label...chief of promotion...everything.
Bob: So: tell us about that, with the new album, because...you're
trying an entirely different way of getting this album out
to people, aren't you?
Judie: Well, we are, and it's sort of, it's really very exciting
for me 'cause everybody writes to us now at our postoffice
and so I actually get to read all the letters, which is
very new for me and so I find out who everybody is and I do
tend to remember names, which is quite good, but, um, we
just found that...Wonderland was my favourite album, and it
just got no promotion,
and you put so much into making an
it becomes so special to you, and then you sort of
hand it to somebody else, and if they don't do anything,
there's absolutely nothing you can do. So it may be that I
can't do very much this way but at least I know what I'm
doing, y'know, and I know how much I've done, and I'll know
what I've done.
Bob: So, in other words, you supervise the recording of the album,
Judie: ...I took the photos on the album cover...[laughs]
Bob: ...you're now really supervising the marketing of the album
Judie: Well, yeah. We're trying.
Bob: Through a PO Box number.
Judie: Through a PO Box number, and we're also on the Internet, and
we've got a telephone number now, as well.
Bob: OK. I'm gonna give these out now, then repeat them later,
so that we're absolutely sure to have covered all this...
it's Big Moon Records, actually, that's the title of Judie's
label. Big Moon Records, at PO Box 347, yeah?
Judie: ...got it in my hand here...
Bob: ...Weybridge, and the postal code for that is KT13 9WZ.
And, Judie has also got a website which I'll give you,
which is http, colon slash slash...
Bob: ...you need to be very very precise about these things...
http colon slash slash, www dot bogo, that's b o g o, dot
co dot uk...now what's that single one?
Judie: Oh God, I don't know! [laughs]
Bob: ...single line pax single line [laughs]
[NB: This is the old address]
Judie: ...don't really know...
Bob: So...[repeats URL]...I mean, I'm giving out our programme
e-mail address now, and we've got a website as well, which
we will just simply icon and link into yours, Judie, so
whenever, y'know, anybody's looking down ours...
Judie: That's brilliant.
Bob: ...they'll automatically be able to open your pages as well.
And I've started talking about this on the programme, the
fact that we've now got an e-mail address, and we've got our
website and stuff like that; I'm thinking, I wonder to what
extent one sounds like a complete, kinda computer bore?
Judie: Well, Pax has had this going on - this is Mike Paxman who
I've worked with always - he's had the computer for, I don't
know how long for, but he's up all night, every night,
talking to people all over the world and we've all been
making fun of him for ages, but we've actually succumbed and
we're getting one next week! [laughs]
Judie: So we'll also be sitting up all night, and talking to all
strange people over in, sort of, Austin, Texas...
Bob: It's that moon town, you can always tell. Yeah,
Judie: But I think it's really exciting 'cause it's so different,
I mean, I don't know,
I hope I can work the computer and
everything but I'm looking forward to it.
Bob: I think it's incredibly exciting and you know, the
opportunities, again, for getting the album out on the
Internet and getting people to know about it...
Judie: Yeah. Well we've had a lot of people already ordering it,
you know, through e-mails and stuff and, it's just
incredible, these people from all over the world and they
don't...it's just like they're on the end of a phone, I
mean, I know they are, but it doesn't seem the same as a
phone, somehow. It's much more...
Bob: Whoever would've thought...?
Bob: Let's hear you play, Judie...
Judie: Oh God, that's if I must...
Bob: ...what's the first song gonna be?
Judie: Well this is Man & A Gun and it's from the last album,
and, um, but I like it anyway!
Bob: Right, it's Judie Tzuke live on GLR here tonight.
[Jude performs Man & A Gun]
Bob: If you've just tuned in during that number you'll know,
after about three notes, you're listening to Judie Tzuke,
who's live with us here on GLR, it's the Bob Harris Show,
at nine twenty-three on this Tuesday evening. Um, it's
what, over twenty years now, isn't it...
Judie: Not quite! Not quite...[laughs]
Bob: ...er, your career, spans...
Judie: ...not twenty, no! Nineteen seventy-nine!
Bob: ...but you started writing, though, before that, didn't
Judie: Oh yeah, I wrote, from when I was about eleven, so yes,
that was more than twenty years.
Bob: Yeah. And how did you start, 'cause you, you were putting
poems to music at that point...
Judie: Yeah. I used to write a diary, and at the end of every day
I used to write a little poem, um, because I had this very,
sort of interesting History and English teacher who I
wanted to impress and I used to sort of try and write these
things to impress him really. And that didn't impress
him so I then started learning guitar and put these poems
Judie: ...but I mean also, I did do them because I used to get
very depressed, I am a bit like that, I tend to go up and
down, and I found that writing about writing about what I
was depressed about made me feel better; and that's really
why I started, and why I still do it most of the time.
Bob: Is it an exorcism?
Judie: Yes, it is. It definitely is. I mean, there are songs that
aren't that, but there are definitely songs that I write
that are something like that, and I definitely feel quite
relieved after I've written them.
Bob: [chuckles] Because it's quite amazing isn't it, Judie,
looking through your career highlights and the various labels,
having now arrived at the point where you're basically very
hands-on and putting everything together yourself...you've
had the big corporate experience, not just once but several
Judie: I've had everything, but I don't think I've ever had very
much promotion, and I don't understand that, I think people
always feel a bit confused as to what to do with me. Um,
I don't know why...I can't think why [laughs] but um, I just
feel that I've never had that big coverage that...apart from
probably the very first album, which I had.
Bob: Mm. I was going to say because, you know, you seemed very
comfortable at Rocket, and er...
Judie: I probably was the most comfortable at Rocket really, and
I had friends, I was friends with everybody there...I still
am. So, that's probably true.
Bob: ...and the atmosphere seemed right for you and your music;
you know, as a person and as a musician I thought Rocket
and you seemed to segue very nicely.
Judie: They did, but in the end it got to a point where, um, John
was away a lot, and when I used to ring the company I
couldn't speak to John, John Reid that is, and I just felt
very kind of, distant in the end and that's why we kind of
went separate ways, not for any bad reasons or anything
like that, it was just that I needed to be able to speak
to John and he was doing a lot of stuff in America and,
y'know...I probably shouldn't have, and, I don't know...
Bob: Mm. 'Cause you collaborated with Elton, didn't you, you
worked with him didn't you...
Judie: I did but, not in a way that I felt I wanted to do much
more; I mean, he sent me a track, and I didn't feel that I
did something special on it. I would have liked to have
worked more and actually done something special. But I'm
very, sort of, y'know, proud to have worked with him...
Bob: That was something on the 21 To 33 album, wasn't it?
Bob: Which song was it, Judie?
Judie: Um, I can't remember, hang on...
Bob: Give Me The Love, was it?
Judie: Er, yes. Some of the lyrics were already written, so I
had to write around them and that's not how I write; I
tend to write about something that's in my head and then
I write the whole thing, and when you start putting bits
in, to work around then it can't be the same as, you
know, you can't get your own story quite the same.
Bob: And is it difficult doing that anyway, y'know, kind
of separate from the person you're writing with?
Judie: Well I've found now how I write, erm, is, I write mainly
with Bob Noble, on this album anyway, and he actually
sent me backing tracks from, um, he lives in Miami now,
and I actually wrote on them as they were, and it was
fantastic, because I know him so well and he knows my
music so well that, y'know he knew what I liked. Erm,
now I'm writing with lots of different people in that
way. Sort of with people but I like to have a backing
track because then I can go off on my own in the car
and sort of sing awful things and nobody knows! And
hopefully I can sort of, get it to sound good before
I ever play it to anyone.
Bob: [chuckles] ...yeah. I was thinking of one or two of the
other labels, I mean you were with Polydor, weren't you
Bob: ...you were with Columbia, more recently there were a
couple of albums with Legacy, so there's quite a sort
Judie: One album with Legacy, although I think, um, in the end
Castle bought the Legacy one so they were both on Castle,
Bob: Yeah. So I mean you've had a sort of range of different
kind of relationships really with labels...
Judie: You're rubbing it in here [laughs] I'm beginning to feel
Bob: No because...y'know there's a maverick aspect to it, to a
lot of the musicians who come into the studio to play live
for us, who've had a corporate experience or experiences,
in the past have found those experiences in some way
Bob: ...and therefore, those experiences have led them to
becoming much more independent, setting up their own
situation, and discovering tremendous success, often, by
doing exactly that way; John Prine is a perfect
Judie: Well, I hope so! I'm much happier doing it this way, I
get a bit frustrated because I sometimes doubt my own
ability to promote it, and y'know I don't know who to ring,
I don't know where to go, I don't know how to sort of get
to the next stage. And that's difficult, and I have to sort
of ask people for their advice and I'm getting on with it,
but it takes a lot longer, it's not like having a release
date and a load of promotion everywhere and your posters
up - it's not like that at all, it's very much like, well
what can we do this week and, y'know, who are we going to
approach. I mean like, I sent you a postcard, y'know I
mean that was the first thing I did...
Judie: ...and um, told you what a great album it was, but then I
am head of promotion in my own label so...[laughs]
Judie: I had to say that! ... and it's kind of fun doing that, and it's great when you
get a reaction but it's a bit scary, because people are
quite difficult to get to sometimes and I've got to plug
on a bit, I've got to keep trying and not get disheartened.
Bob: Mm. Does this mean also Judie, that you're sort of putting
your own concerts together as well, and tours and
Judie: Yes...well, yes, we are, we're sort of talking, um, I have
got an agent but, I mean we are kind of, helping [laughs]
because, you know, we've got to really. We're not a big act,
we can't make, sort of money so it's all got to be done on
a real budget and very carefully done.
Bob: Yeah. 'cause you were saying a few minutes ago, before we've
been chatting on air here, that although you didn't see
or hear it yourself, there's a reference to you on one of the
Good Morning...er, was it GMTV?
Judie: Apparently so, saying that I, I was not the person to mention
a while ago but now I'm trendy apparently, to have an album
of, mind you you'd have to be clever to find out how to get
my album but you're gonna tell them again anyway...
Bob: [laughs] absolutely...
Judie: ...but apparently I'm trendy again now.
Bob: But do you not think that's the case anyway, that, again,
this is something we've talked about on the programme before,
but, you know, anybody who's had a career spanning any length
of time within the music industry and is still surviving, has
experienced those times when you are ''in'' and other times when
you are completely ''out''...
Judie: I don't think I've ever been ''in'', actually, so I'm hoping
that now I might become in, but I don't think, y'know when I
first started I think I was very lucky to have success because
it was when the punk thing was happening and really, Stay With
Me Till Dawn should never really have been a hit at that time,
but for some reason it was, and, and so I kinda, I had a
reasonable amount of success, but I don't think I was ever
Bob: But, having said that, I mean a lot of the, particularly
American, erm, and I don't mean quite so much the Alanis sort
of, strand, but a lot of the other new American,
singer-players coming across, albums coming across from the
States, are plumbing into that, y'know, more sort of mellow,
seventies sound, it's beginning to crop up on albums more and
Judie: Well that's right, I mean we, this album, to me, sounds
seventies, because I've done this album very much the way my
very favourite albums were, when I was listening to music,
y'know, before I actually did it myself. And I thought that
it might sound sort of old, but it's quite interesting because
a lot of younger people are saying that it sounds, kind of
Bob: ...fairly contemporary, yeah...
Judie: ...yeah. Which I find bizarre! Because to me, I love it, but
to me it, it doesn't, I don't know what contemporary is any
more, so many different kinds of music around at the moment,
that are contemporary supposedly.
Bob: Mm. So how are you overcoming the problems of distribution
because, I mean, actually getting into record shops is,
quite a challenge...
Judie: ...well we're not...
Bob: ...so you're not doing record shops at all?
Judie: We're not doing record shops at all. I mean at some point in
the future we might, but at the moment we're only doing it by
mail order. We're just seeing how we go with it really, and
it's quite remarkable how many people are finding out about
it, and hopefully this is gonna tell more people, but, it
keeps it very much cottage industry, and it's quite nice, as
I said in the beginning, for me to actually see the letters,
see who's writing to me, find out what the people who are
buying my album are like, and, it feels much more personal...
Bob: It does.
Judie: ...it's a very exciting way of doing it, it's just, y'know,
I hope we can keep it going.
Bob: Well, I mean in another way it's the reason I give out the
telephone number on this programme so regularly, and welcome
faxes and e-mails and everything else because...
Judie: Well, it's what made us think we might be able to do it, to
be honest, we honestly, I promise you we were, sort of listening,
one night and we were sort of thinking, I wonder if he ever
gives out, box office, box, post office box numbers, and
then you did, and it was like, well: OK, well, we'll do it!
Y'know, we'll have a go!
Bob: But I mean that, this programme absolutely thrives on feedback
because then you, y'know, you're hearing from people exactly
what they want, and, er...
Judie: Well that's the same as getting the letters direct so, y'know
you are really in contact with the people that, that like you.
And it may be that I've only got a small following, but that
following, I'm really sort of, I'm really proud of them and I
love reading their letters and, knowing who they are...
Judie: ...and it, it makes me feel great, when I get those letters,
and I hope, when I send them the album, they'll like it!
Bob: [laughs] Is the second song you're doing live tonight, from
Judie: This one's from the album.
Bob: Right. What's it called Judie?
Judie: This one's called Joan of Arc.
Bob: OK. This is Judie Tzuke live here on GLR.
[Jude performs Joan of Arc]
Bob: Another song from Judie's new album, Under the Angels is
the title of the LP and, details on how to get it coming
up in a second or two. GLR, twenty-three minutes to ten
o'clock is the time right now. Chris Walwork has,
er, faxed in from Birkhamstead, he says ''Great to hear
you again Judie, saw you in Rotherham, must've been late
seventies,'' he says, ''I've got Welcome to the Cruise and
Sportscar on vinyl, lost touch after that; tell me what's on
CD these days and I look forward to hearing more new stuff,''
he says ''I met you behind the mixing desk that night...''
Judie: Oh my God...[laughs]
Bob: ''...but I'm not sure you'll remember.''
Bob: Hahaha...all right Chris, thanks very much indeed for your
fax, and also just a thought here from Simon in
Bexley, asking if you remember a benefit gig for the, I
think he says Marydon Primary School, Glenn Tilbrook
played that night...
Judie: Yes, yes, that was actually only a couple of years ago, yeah
I sang with Glenn; Glenn played guitar on Stay With Me Till
Dawn and I sang Tempted, and we sang Crowded House songs. It
was fantastic; it was really good fun, it was probably one of
the most enjoyable evenings I've ever spent, actually.
Bob: And Ollie from Camberley wonders, if you can explain the
message on the back of Welcome To The Cruise; something to do
with a fire engine...?
Judie: When I was a little girl, I said I wanted to grow up and be a
fire engine, and I'm just saying that because I did what I
was doing, it saved me from being a fire engine, that's all!
Bob: [laughs] Brilliant. Let me just give you the details once
again on how to get hold of the album, this is if I can
find the address on all the bits of paper in front of me...
Judie: Otherwise it's on my hand [laughs]
Bob: Right, it's Big Moon Records, PO Box 347, Weybridge,
KT13 9WZ. shall I give the telephone number out as well?
Judie: Yes, there's the telephone number...have you got that?
Bob: OK, which is O1932 859472, and at the risk of taking up
a lot of time by doing it...
Judie: Oh, go on.
Bob: ...I'm gonna give out the website address again, which is:
http colon slash slash, www dot bogo (b o g o) dot co
dot uk...Robert, just come over here for a second, 'cause..
it is a slash is it? Right, OK [laughs] so dot co,
erm...uk slash pax slash. P a x. or, as I say, you can
just give Judie a call, 01932 859472. And our own website
will be linking into Judie's website too so you can get each
other by, sort of dialling up the other, if that makes sense.
Bob: And ours is, http colon slash slash, www dot bbc dot co dot
uk slash bobharris slash. So there we are. Does take up a lot
of time giving out these addresses but worth it, I think,
we look forward to you linking in and, just finally a question
in from Jimmy, Jazz Cafe gig was excellent, he says; when
can we see you again Judie, and will the new album be
available on LP vinyl or just CD?
Judie: Well, it's just gonna be on CD; we are actually running up our
own cassette copies for a few people, if they, y'know, if they
don't have CDs, but, erm, it won't be on vinyl, I'm afraid.
And, when will you, um, I'm doing a gig in Ireland in November
but I'm actually trying to set up a little tour in January/
February this year, and that should cover most areas, I hope.
Bob: Details on the website?
Judie: Yeah, they will be...when we get them, yeah.
Bob: And if you let us know, Judie, I'll put the information across
on air as well. And what's the old band up to?
Judie: Well the old band are doing all sorts of things, I mean Pax
and Paul and Bob are still very much involved, Mike Paxman,
Bob Noble and Paul Muggleton, but I've got a, a new band now,
and, I'm not going to be able to remember everybody's surnames,
[laughs]...it's Dave Goodes, Richard Cardwell...
Bob: Yeah. And it's Dave and Richard of course who've been playing
here, backing you tonight...
Judie: That's right, yeah. Oh God, now you've put me on the spot,
I'm terrible with names, erm, John Wood on bass, and Andy
Newmark played drums on the album.
Bob: Yes. Good. Well, we look forward to seeing you again in London,
Judie, as I say, immediately you've got any information about
concerts here in town, do let me know, bung it up on the
website, and we want to round off with a final track from the
Bob: Ah! OK, so the opening track. Judie, thanks very much indeed.
Judie: It's a pleasure, thank you.
[Two Mountains is played]
Bob: A song called Two Mountains: it's the one that opens up the
new album from Judie Tzuke, the album called Under the Angels.
And many thanks again for a wonderful session from Judie and
the band tonight on GLR.
Other Judie Tzuke Sites