Chet Baker

We argued about all music on the tour bus but the two things we could all agree on was Abba and Chet Baker. I’d say Baker is my favourite vocalist of the century. There were two albums, both with the same title, ridiculously, which were released with Bruce Weber’s film of his life, Let’s Get Lost. One was recorded when the film was being made, when he was older, and the other with all the stuff he sung when he was young, which I prefer.

I wouldn’t say he’s an influence as I didn’t hear him until much later in my life, but he’s the only singer I’ve ever been able to identify with. I love the fact he’s so expressive, so over-emotional. It’s classic stuff ; it makes me soft in my knees. He was a bit of a heroin casualty, silly guy, but you couldn’t tell he had a habit when he was younger. He was so into it, like, ’fuck those notes I’m singing, and fuck those songs I’m singing, what I want is the emotion’. That’s how I feel about it too.

Q magazine, october 1993