An Interview with Jason Donovan
Jason Donovan returns with new music, and a pledge to stay away from reality TV shows…
In his pomp, Jason Donovan was best known for his collaborations – both musically and romantically. But these days the Strictly Come Dancing star is looking for another bedfellow in the unlikely form of David Guetta. The 43-year-old star admitted he’s a huge fan of the French dance producer, who has previously worked on chart-topping tracks with Rihanna, Nicki Minaj and Kelly Rowland.
“That is honestly a dream of mine,” Donovan says. “I just love pop music. I love how one fantastic song can transform you in three minutes. David is the King of that right now. My kids idolise him and I’m always robbing their iPods to listen to his latest stuff. They obviously know about the latest sounds far more readily than me. So the opportunity to work with him would be amazing. He hasn’t called yet, but here’s hoping. I’m sure the mix would be something special.”
Not that Donovan is lacking his own creative inspiration, given that the release of his tenth solo album Sign of Your Love has again propelled him into the public’s music consciousness. It’s a welcome return to familiar territory for the star, who has just come back off the Strictly Come Dancing live tour, immediately confessing that the rigours of the BBC reality series and accompanying theatre showcase were beginning to take their tour. “I swear, if I hear that opening Strictly title music again, I will jump off a balcony and end it!” he laughs. “The show was a bigger experience than I ever expected it to be. It was an incredible journey and I learned skills that I never thought I’d be accomplished at.
“Scariest thing for me wasn’t the insects”
“But I’m truly exhausted by it. Since I signed up, I’ve been living and breathing dancing 24 hours a day. I don’t think anyone going into it really appreciates how utterly consuming the whole thing is. But, listen, I’m so grateful for the experience. It has kept me in the public eye and it’s always nice to be there. But, in the nicest possible way, I would never do anything like that again!”
So how did learning the tango and foxtrot compare with encountering black widow spiders and kangaroo testicles of I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here?
“There is no comparison!” Donovan laughs. “One experience involves sitting on your back, watching the trees grow. The other is getting out there and working your butt off. I’ll admit, the jungle isn’t too pleasant, but no-one’s going to die out there. It’s not in ITV’s interests. And I’m an Australian, that’s my backyard. The scariest thing for me wasn’t the insects, it was the other celebrities!”
“I’ve been offered Big Brother“
So Jason wouldn’t rule out completely the unholy trinity of reality television by doing Celebrity Big Brother? “I’ve been offered the show but it’s not one for me. I’m not a fan of people playing tricks to gain publicity. I’ve picked the best reality shows, they treat their celebrities the best and, honestly, I don’t think Channel 5 is for me. It’s a show driven by controversy. I don’t like that.”
Back to the music, and the singer’s latest album, Sign of Your Love, is a collection of swing classics inspired by his time on Strictly. It marks a fantastic return to form for the singer who is happy to get back to the real craft of music after a couple of years away.
“A good song is a good song, and I’ve really enjoyed expressing myself on this album. There is a huge trend for swing at the moment, inspired by people like Michael Buble, no doubt. But it’s a genre that never goes away, and selecting songs that really mean a lot to me has been a fantastic adventure. I hope others enjoy the album as much as I do.”
Jason Donovan’s new album, ‘Sign of Your Love’ is out now.