An Interview with Sharleen Spiteri
Peter Kay once offered a character analysis of Sharleen Spiteri, the enigmatic lead singer of pop group Texas. Sharleen recalls: “He said to me that the problem with you and the charm with you is the same thing. In your head you’re still a hairdresser.”
For biographical detail, when Texas first emerge, Sharleen is a stylist at a celebrated Glasgow hair salon. She has learnt to love Peter’s summation over the years.
“I get it,” she says. “Being a hairdresser put me in really good stead for what I do in the band. It gave me a connection with people. You touch them and, even as a stranger you’re changing the way they feel about themselves. That’s not something that happens in many jobs. You’re building their confidence. You become a team.”
Renowned as one of the greatest British front-women of all time, Texas fans are in for a treat when Sharleen and the band play an open-air concert in Leeds City Centre on Friday, July 31. The group celebrate 25 years in the business with an extra-special concert. It will feature million-selling hits like ‘Say What You Want’, ‘Black Eyed Boy’, ‘Summer Son’, ‘I Don’t Want a Lover’, ‘Halo’, ‘Inner Smile’ and ‘When We are Together’.
Twenty-five years in the music business – that has included six number one albums, 38 million records sold – are marked by the live concert in Leeds’ 5,000-capacity Millennium Square. Plus the release of the album 25. The newly-recorded project revisits many of the group’s greatest hits, giving them a metaphorical cut and blow dry. The loose ends are trimmed and roots touched up.
The concert on Friday, July 30, promises to be an evening celebrating the band’s 25 years of hits. Plus, Sharleen revealing the stories behind the songs in her own inimitable style.
Press interviews with Sharleen underline just what makes her such an exciting focal point for a live performance: “We’re very conscious that Texas was our dream,” she says. “It was the thing that would allow us to have the lifestyle that we have whilst doing something that we absolutely love and adore. So we’re very protective of it. Sometimes that gets you a bit of a reputation for being a pain in the backside. But I don’t really care about that. I’d rather be known as a pain in the backside than somebody who is willing to sell themselves short.”
According to Michael Taylor, MD of the Millennium Square show’s promoters Easy Theatres, Sharleen’s uncompromising nature is what makes a Texas concert an unmissable event. He says: “As well as enjoying everyone’s favourite Texas hit songs performed live, we’re looking forward to a fabulous evening in the company of Sharleen, entertaining a capacity crowd in her own inimitable style.”
Sharleen concludes, offering a taste of what is to come at the Leeds City Centre spectacular: “There has to be moments where you can’t get arrested. It’s good for you. But if you can get to that next bit, which we seem to have got to, then who knows where it might take us?”
Currently, she says, Texas are taking another big step. “All is good, the music sounds better than it’s ever done so let’s see where we go from here.
“The plan is that this will lead onto a big Texas, all-singing, all-dancing, get ready to put your hands in the air journey.”
images: Julian Broad