On tour with Anthony Hegarty

Of Anthony and the Johnsons


Favourite city: I've had some really great times in Portugal and in Belfast and Dublin – I have a lot of family from Ireland. And I have to say London and New York too.

Favourite venue: I love Carnegie Hall and I can't wait to do a good show at Carré in Amsterdam, because I did a terrible one there before. But the best shows that you do are inevitably in dumps. I remember doing shows in Edinburgh or Glasgow on my first tour, in concrete bunkers, but they were really so spirited and fun.

Favourite hotel: I have a bad memory, so I never remember the good ones. I really like being at home better than staying in hotels.

Best gig: I remember doing this show in East Germany when I was 22 years old, maybe 23. I was performing as Anne Frank singing: "I Will Survive". I would do something that preposterous, but try to push it through on a really serious level. I just remember it being one of those moments.

Worst gig: There's one I did in Naples that was probably the worst show I ever did. I was almost catatonic with tiredness, and I remember just getting to a point where I was like, "I can't do this". Sometimes you can just feel the egg sliding down the wall, you know?

Most rock'n'roll moment: Usually the band's having a scream and I'm crawling to my bed. That's the biggest pre-occupation for me – I need to sleep, otherwise my computer breaks down. I just go on the blink.

Favourite musical discovery: I love collaborating, but it's mostly so far been dialogue with other singers. That's really a frontier that I'd really like to explore. I'm riveted by certain rhythms that I don't understand, especially African music and some Eastern music.

Where next: North American tour (2-28 February); European tour (15 March-4 June). For dates, go to www.antonyandthejohnsons.com



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