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Article: In Conversation: The Waiting Room talks to Mike Rutherford about new albums and life on the road

Photo © Stuart Barnes

This article originally appeared in issue 99 of The Waiting Room fanzine, and is reproduced here with their kind permission.

Interviews conducted by Alan Hewitt and Katherine Stratton on Tuesday 21st February 2017. Photographs by Katherine Stratton, Alan Hewitt and Stuart Barnes.

KS: Obviously we have not heard the new album yet, what can you tell us about it?

It’s fabulous [laughs]. It’s kind of like the first two Mechanics albums, I think. There was a nice start to this thing. Brian Rawling who runs Metrophonic, the production studio, he’s got these sort of good ears, you know what I mean? He’s a songwriter, he’s mad about music and songwriting, and he said: look, let’s go back to how you started, where you start with your sort of quirky demos, and I’d do these weird little loop things, and sound effects, an atmospheric style, and then get another co-writer. He recommended Clark Datchler, who was Johnny Hates Jazz. He was a songwriter before he ever started doing the band thing, and we got together and it kind of clicked again, really. A bit like B.A., in a sense. He brought something very different to the table, and then Roachford obviously. Roachford’s involved in the songs and Tim [Howar], and so rather than go in to record a dozen songs like we used to, I didn’t record anything until I had actually written four or five songs. Then I wrote them a lot more. I rewrote them, threw some out, I changed some choruses and some verses, you know, all that sort of stuff. Until we were happy with the songs, we didn’t go near a studio. And then when we got happy with the songs, we didn’t really get them through like we used to. I did my demo at home with Harry, engineering, and then I sent that to Brian with a good guide vocal. They work on the track, send it back. I liked some things, threw some things out, we sort of just back and forwards, slowly building the song up. After we did four, we did another three, bit by bit, but it was the songwriting that we spent more time on this time.

KS: There was one song I remember reading about, “When the World Stops Loving You”, what happened to that one? Did it become something else?

I couldn’t make it work. Funnily enough, I think the lyric actually might be re – I don’t normally reuse things – I don’t really reuse music, the next time around I won’t reuse the same songs. Lyrically it was quite interesting and quite strong, but the music didn’t quite work. I think the level of quality of songwriting [on this album] is a lot, lot better than we’ve done for a long time. Bringing Clark in was very good, he’s a sort of bona fide songwriter and it made a big difference, I think.

KS: Which ones are your favourite tracks?

Probably “Let Me Fly” is the favourite track. It’s about four and a half, five minutes long, and they asked recently to do a radio and TV edit to three minutes, three and a half and I thought “F**k knows, I’ll let Brian do that” and we’ve got this big choir that comes in in the end, gospel choir, and we brought it in in the first and second chorus, and actually it’s rather good! So it works, sure, but I mean, yeah, that’s my song. “Don’t Know What Came Over Me” is a song I really like. It’s got a same sort of feel as “Coffee”. It’s a nice idea about this chap, you know, he’s got a perfect life, he’s married or with somebody, and life is good. He goes out one night and it ends up being a huge, large night out, he doesn’t know what happens, and he misbehaves and he wakes in the morning and is a bit like “what came over me?” That sort of feeling of “why?”, it’s such an unimportant thing, but he did it. So that was not autobiographical… [laughs]. Then I wrote “High Life”, which is a little acoustic song, with a guy called Ed Drewett who Brian recommended. He’s actually done some One Direction hits, but he’s a very nice, quirky guy too. And Fraser T Smith, who is a bit on a roll these days, but he’s a friend more than anything. Actually we were going to do some more, but he got locked away with Gorillaz and Stormzy, so we didn’t have enough time. But I definitely think that the standard is pretty good.

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Article: Chief Mechanic (Gearphoria Magazine)

Photo via Gearphoria.

Mike was interviewed by Alison Richter for Gearphoria volume 5, number 5 (May/June 2017).

Mike Rutherford is backstage in an arena in a “very cold, wet Scotland,” calling before show time to talk about the new Mike + The Mechanics album, Let Me Fly. It’s the band’s first new project in six years, and he is quite satisfied with the results. “I’m pleased with the album,” he says. “I think it’s got a strength to it. How it does, we’ll see.”

Rutherford began thinking about a new album while The Mechanics were touring their 2011 release, The Road. “On that album we didn’t really know each other,” he says. “We were sort of feeling our way. This time it was a lot easier because I knew Andrew and Tim’s voices and I knew the kind of songs I wanted them to sing – or I had an idea, anyway.”

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Article: Genesis guitarist Mike Rutherford to return to Guildford for charity rock concert

Mike was interviewed for Get Surrey ahead of Mike + the Mechanics’ appearance as a part of the Wintershall Charity Rock Concert. Article by Georgina Townshend.

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Photo by Richard Heathcote

Lead guitarist of Genesis and rock phenomenon Mike Rutherford will return to his home town of Guildford for a charity rock concert next month.

The music icon will play at the Wintershall Charity Rock Concert, in the grounds of the Wintershall Estate in the Surrey Hills, on Saturday July 2.

Mr Rutherford, along with Peter Gabriel, Tony Banks and Anthony Phillips, founded Genesis 48 years ago when he was at Charterhouse public school in Godalming. The band has sold 150 million albums and their farewell gig at the Circus Maximus in Rome in 2007 attracted a crowd of 500,000.

In the meantime, Mike + the Mechanics, who he will be playing with at the concert, was set up in 1985 as a ‘bit of fun’, and has sold more than 10 million records.“There’s a nice history to the concert, which will be the sixth event in around 30 years,” he said. “It’s a nice local event, that raises a lot of money on the day in a special setting.”

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Article: Essential Surrey Interview – Mike Rutherford of Genesis and Mike + The Mechanics

Mike recently spoke with Essential Surrey magazine ahead of the Mechanics’ upcoming appearance at the Wintershall charity rock concert on July 2nd. Interview conducted by William Gadsby Peet.

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For more information on the event, and to buy tickets, please visit the Wintershall Concerts website.

You can also find more information about this year’s charities by visiting http://www.jwsmf.org/ and  http://www.haste.uk.com/

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Article: Mike Rutherford talks about the genesis of Genesis, the generation gap, love, death and causing a kerfuffle in the Borders

Mike spoke with the Southern Reporter leading up to his appearance at the Borders Book Festival on June 17th. Interview by Mark Entwistle.

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The generation gap was a term much bandied about in the late 1960s and not without good reason.

Many parents of teenage children in the 1960s found it difficult to relate to their long-haired offspring and vice versa.

 

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Article: Mike Rutherford: Ignorance about diabetes is rife

Mike recently spoke with the Daily Express about his family’s experience with Type 1 diabetes. Interview by Jane Symons.

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Photo by Nick Cunard

Amid the constant kaleidoscope of headlines warning of a diabetes epidemic and the ongoing debate around the sugar tax it’s easy to forget that there are two quite different forms of the condition – and that’s a worry for the families of thousands of children who are diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes every year.

Genetics play a part in both forms of the condition which causes blood sugar levels to become too high and can seriously damage the body’s organs, so it would be wrong to blame anyone for developing diabetes. But it can feel particularly unfair when it comes to those with Type 1 as, unlike Type 2, obesity and unhealthy habits such as lack of exercise are not risk factors. However ignorance is rife, as Mike Rutherford, a founding member of Genesis, knows all too well.

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For further information, and to support diabetes research, you can visit http://www.diabetes.org.uk/ in the UK, http://www.diabetes.org/ in the US, and http://www.diabetes.ca/ in Canada.

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Article: “Genesis? We’re all still here, anything is possible”

This article originally appeared in La Stampa as “Rutherford: ‘I Genesis? Siamo ancora tutti qui, ogni progetto è possibile'” on 29 May 2015. Interview by Marco Zatterin, translation from Italian by MR Net.

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Mike Rutherford leads the way to the dressing room, a small room with two chairs, in the immense labyrinthine back room of Brussels’ Cirque Royal. The rest of the Mechanics are in another room across the hall, eating, laughing. Singing. The drummer, who has played with Pink Floyd, is lying down on the couch, looking more dead than alive.

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Article: Mike Rutherford: Back in the Shop with the Mechanics

Mike talks equipment with Premier Guitar. Interview by Joe Charupakorn.

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Guitarist/bassist Mike Rutherford was a founding member of Genesis, a band that’s sold 130 million albums over the course of a career spanning nearly half a century. But for some Rutherford fans, that accomplishment is rivaled by the legacy of “The Living Years,” a 1988 song by Rutherford’s side project Mike + the Mechanics. It was a tearjerker mega-hit, a father/son song sad enough to turn a stone-cold bastard into a sobbing mess.

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Article: My haven: Mike Rutherford […] in his Surrey studio

Mike talks to Adrian Thrills for MailOnline about objects that hold a special significance for him.

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SOUND INVESTMENT
If I have a sense of belonging anywhere, it’s here in this recording studio in an old barn that Genesis bought in 1980. It was around the same time as my wife Angie and I moved to Surrey from London and we live nearby. I’ve made a lot of music here, with Genesis and my other band, Mike + The Mechanics. The picture on the wall is from the video for the Genesis single Land Of Confusion, made by the people who did the Spitting Image puppets – they could have made my nose a little bigger!

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Article: Mike Rutherford: Father was Genesis of my music

Mike talks to the Daily Express in conjunction with the release of his book. Interview by Jane Clinton.

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He was immersed in the fame of Genesis on tour in the United States when, in 1986, he received a phone call to say William, a distinguished Second World War naval captain, had died.

“I’d never told my dad that I loved him and my biggest regret was not telling him what a wonderful man he’d been in my life,” says Rutherford.

He derives consolation from the fact that both his mother and father saw the band, of which he was a founding member, “do well”, as he puts it.

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Article: Genesis star Mike Rutherford: ‘I never told Dad what a wonderful man he was’

Mike talks to The Telegraph about his loving and supportive father. Interview by Julia Llewelyn-Smith.

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Photo by Andrew Crowley

When Mike Rutherford’s father died in 1986, the lead guitarist of the rock band Genesis was feeling “invincible”.

“We were on a high, touring America, playing to 20,000 people a night in Chicago, selling 15 million records. It felt like nothing could go wrong,” he says. “I was in a bubble, so into myself and our success. If only I’d just stood back a bit and thought: ‘Hang on, he’s getting old.’ If only I’d spent more time with him.”

Continue reading Article: Genesis star Mike Rutherford: ‘I never told Dad what a wonderful man he was’

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Article: Mike Rutherford: The precious living years with my father

Mike contributes to The Guardian Family section in conjunction with the release of his book, The Living Years.

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Mike with his parents and sister Nicky on Whale Island, Portsmouth

As a teenager in the late 1960s, the last thing I wanted was to be like my father. He was a retired naval captain who’d fought in the second world war; I’d just recorded my first album with Genesis, had hair down to my elbows and lived in jeans and a military jacket from Kensington market that smelled like an entire battalion had worn it at some stage or another. It never occurred to me that he might see this as disrespectful.

Continue reading Article: Mike Rutherford: The precious living years with my father