I'm a Piscean and I was born in 1956

Where did you grow up? Who are your music influences?
I was born in Stratford and brought up in Leytonstone both are in East London and also in Essex. My music influences in terms of songwriting would be primarily Bowie, Jacques Brel, Tom Lehrer, Randy Newman, Ray Davies, Bertolt Brecht. I'm also influenced by early soul, reggae, The Beatles, The Yardbirds, The Animals, English 60s pop, 70s bands like Sparks, Cockney Rebel, Alex Harvey Band, 10cc, Lindisfarne and punk. Everything you hear influences you, if it's good.

Do you have a particular David Bowie song or favourite album and have you ever seen him play live?
I've never seen Bowie live and I'm actually not all that disappointed about that. I don't like that much of his stuff these days, too hit and miss. I could probably name ten songs that would pop into my head as favourites but it would be ever changing.
10 good ones that come to mind today would be:
I Can't Read (Tin Machine). Candidate/Sweet Thing (David live). Gospel According to Tony Day. London Boys. She's Got Medals.(All early tracks)
Fantastic Voyage (Lodger). Blackout (Stage).The Drowned Girl (Baal) This Is Not America (Single) Hallo Spaceboy (Outside). Panic in Detroit.

What is your favourite Patrik Fitzgerald song?
Again that would change. I don't know...No Fun Football. Backstreet Boys. Bones in a Graveyard. The Serving Classes. Background Paints the Picture. Gifts and Telegrams. Island of Lost Souls. Live Out My Stars.
I think maybe
All Sewn Up might be my favourite.

What are your good memories of the 70's Punk movement?
My good memory of punk was feeling that you were part of something that was going to change everything for the better and take away the shit that rules everybody's life.

What are your bad memories of the 70's Punk movement?
The bad memory was that really punk only mattered as much as everything else matters.

Your memories of the 1978 Rock Against Racism festival?
I used to go to Victoria Park Lido with my family when I was a kid so it seemed very surreal to be playing there. I remember thinking that the whole thing was a bit of a circus with all the showbiz people hanging about backstage. I found The Clash aloof and unfriendly but they might just have been nervous. It was a big day but it was a very dream like day. The events of the day spelled out fairly clearly that although rock or punk might be associated with good causes, the old rules of rock still applied. If you're not a star name forget it. A bit of a forerunner of Live Aid and all that mallarkey in some ways.

Memories supporting The Fall & The Camden Electric Ballroom?
I actually don't remember that one. I remember playing with The Fall in Holland and again finding them a bit unfriendly. Then again maybe i was just nervous.

The strangest place you have ever played live?
Several possibilities. gigs with Hawklords. A gig at a Saturday Night Disco in Bodo (Norway) and a gig for non English speaking farmers in Frederikstad (Norway) a gig in a public school (Rugby) and on the back of a truck at a
Right to Work march (Brighton). The Victoria Park gig and a gig in Regents Park open air theatre with Steel Pulse. A support slot to Sham 69 in Harlesden.

The gig which has the fondest memories?
A gig in Gothenburg in Sweden in a really big aircraft hanger where there was hardly anybody. i switched all the lightts out and played in the dark and people really enjoyed the gig the darkness meant nobody felt self conscious.

What inspires you?
I just get ideas for songs from things i see and feel and if the ideas are good they become songs.

You have been cited as influences by  Billy Bragg & Benjamin Zephaniah and Milk Kan. Is there anyone else we can add?
Possibly Attila the Stockbroker and Chumbawamba. Possibly Adamski (Killer). Other people would probably answer that question better than me.

How did you end up living in New Zealand?
Jessica and I had been living together in London and she decided that she wanted to return home to New Zealand. I had grown tired of living in London and decided a change of scenery and the possibility of a better life appealed so I decided to go to New Zealand.

If a genie granted you three wishes, what would you wish for?
That's a very good question. On a personal level and on a musical level I would have liked to have had more guidance and management when I was younger. On a musical level this would have been good because I might have been able to make better decisions when faced with the music business in order to allow my songs to become more well known. On a personal level I might have made better choices on where my life might go
if my parents had been better equipped in terms of working with me on getting my life to go somewhere. Both of these would have depended on me not being so much of a stubborn arrogant know it all woodenhead. On the other hand we probably wouldn't be talking about my music at all if my life had been that sorted and well balanced. At the risk of sounding like a contestant in Miss World or on Eurovision, a second wish would be for peace, harmony and a sense of security in the world.

A third wish?
Maybe a personality transplant so that the first two things wouldn't affect me so much and so that i could enjoy some kind of sense of well-being.

What is the message behind Patrik Fitzgerald's music?
I think really that it's about having the right to open your mouth and say stuff in at least one area of life.
Patrik Fitzgerald

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