Gary James' Interview With Steve Priest Of

Sweet is probably best known for their 1970s hit songs "Ballroom Blitz" and "Love Is Like Oxygen". Today there are two versions of Sweet, Andy Scott's Sweet and Steve Priest's Sweet. Bassist Steve Priest spoke with us about his band.

Q - Steve, it's been a while since we last spoke. The last time I talked to you was back in 1978.

A - Oh, wow!

Q - You were in Syracuse, New York performing at the Onondaga County War Memorial.

A - Right.

Q - So, I said every thirty-six years we just have to talk.

A - There you go.

Q - I was surprised to learn there's two versions of Sweet, yours and Andy Scott's. Were there personality differences between you two guys? Is that why you're not together?

A - Well, two continents apart doesn't help. (laughs)

Q - So, you'd have to move to England or he would have to move to Los Angeles.

A - Well, I ain't movin' to England that's for sure.

Q - When I contacted your publicist, she mentioned you were playing a club. Is that the type of venue you perform in these days?

A - No. That was a one-off. It was local, so we didn't mind doing it. No flying involved.

Q - And you get to sleep in your own bed.

A - Right.

Q - So typically, where do you perform?

A - All over the place, festivals which will be coming up soon. We do casinos. Anyone that will book us really.

Q - What keeps you fired up about performing? You could be a producer or a manager, couldn't you?

A - I could I suppose, but I still like to perform.

Q - In 1977 you and Sweet didn't perform. How then did you live?

A - Which album came out in '77?

Q - You got me. I don't have that information in front of me.

A - I think it was "Off The Record". And we did so some gigs that year. I don't know where, but we did.

Q - So much for on-line info.

A - How unusual. It's all bullshit.

Q - That's why I'm doing this interview, to set the record straight.

A - Right.

Q - Before Sweet, what kind of music were you playing?

A - I was in an eight piece band called The Army, which did Soul (music) (laughs).

Q - You were playing where back then?

A - There's a lot of dance halls in England, or there used to be.

Q - When you were growing up, did you ever cross paths with any of the British Invasion groups?

A - Yeah. I saw The Stones when I was fifteen at Botswell House.

Q - Was that a club?

A - It was a church that used to hold dances.

Q - What year would that have been?

A - '63.

Q - Did you look at them and say that's what I want to do for a living?

A - Well, I was playing, but yeah, they did inspire me I must admit. They were incredible.

Q - Were there a lot of bands in England at the time? At least that's what we've been led to believe.

A - There were a lot of 'em, yeah, from all over the country. I saw The Yardbirds a couple of days after I saw The Stones.

Q - Are you touring behind any new product these days?

A - We will, but we haven't yet. I need some inspiration.

Q - Where do you get that from?

A - I have no idea. (laughs)

Q - I suppose you could turn to the TV.

A - Well, there's that. You gotta be very careful what you do.

Q - If one thing doesn't hit you, you turn the station and get inspired by something else.

A - There you go.

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