VP: You have sold over 55 million records since ‘Can the Can’ – with millions of fans around the world with all of this worldwide success how do you keep your feet on the ground?
SQ: It’s quite easy. First of all, I was brought up in a professional music family so that gives you that attitude, so it’s not ‘Hey I’m Famous’ that’s never in my head. Second of all I actually do separate the worlds so I have an ‘Ego room’ in my home which is upon the third floor so I have to climb three flights. You go up and bang your head, it’s all analogy but it’s true and then you get to the door and it says ‘Ego room mind your head.’ and you go in and you enjoy it. There is everything there from your life. There are jumpsuits, there are CD’s there are scrapbooks there are cassette tapes, There are awards, pictures all over the walls, stage passes, guitars everything, and when you are done you come out and you shut the door.
VP: Amazing so the stage Suzi lives in the Ego room and when you go on stage you zip her on and you go out there.
SQ: Well they are both me but I don’t mix it up, I don’t feel the need to be Suzi Quatro off the stage as well, you know a lot of people do and I don’t. I think you need a private life and you need a public life but they are both me don’t get me the wrong one is not an invention. They are both me. It’s just you know I can be normal when I am not on stage I say that in my documentary that’s the whole point of doing that you have two separate existences. Well they are both me but I don’t mix it up, I don’t feel the need to be Suzi Quatro off the stage as well, you know a lot of people do and I don’t. I think you need a private life and you need a public life but they are both me don’t get me the wrong one is not an invention. They are both me. It’s just you know I can be normal when I am not on stage I say that in my documentary that’s the whole point of doing that you have two separate existences.
VP: Yes and I think the people that don’t do that are the people that burn out.
SQ: Those are the people that are the casualties of this business, and I am not one of them.
VP: That’s right they can’t separate fantasy from reality.
SQ: I put it this way, just because I happen to be famous which I am. Okay, that is not negotiable I am. It doesn’t mean that I am better than everyone else it just means that I have become successful at my chosen profession and that’s how I treat it. I am not a diva whatsoever. I just happen to be successful at what I chose to do with my life. Which is great and I am grateful for it you know? Every gig I do, I stand up there most times and I think and you are paying me? (laughs) and I think that’s kind of like my attitude, and that has kept me very sane, and very feet on the ground and very for a want of a better word, because no one can define this word, very normal well normal-ish!
VP: Yes and hard work too. You constantly work hard at it all over this time.
SQ: I have never stopped and I have had such a varied career as well. I think I am what you call a true artiste and that means that I always have to be creating. I am always doing something whether it’s a TV show or radio, writing a poetry book, writing a musical or whatever, I am one of these artists that just always need, to create. it’s just in my DNA.
VP: Always keep moving forward like a shark.
SQ: Always and I hope I never reach my goal because I don’t’ know what I would do then.
VP: Yes I totally get what you mean. Now you have said that you trashed a hotel room in Melbourne and that you planned it. Can you tell me about that?
SQ: I have to say though, I am not really that kind of person, but the one I remember I had been on the road for eight months that year, non stop that’s going to make anyone crazy and I started it and we did trash it, you know, we did pour water on the TV and our drummer at the time, he made the mistake of saying ‘This is my favourite shirt.’ Well, that went out the window (laughs) These are the things not to say on tour. Well, I got my favourite shirt on, that’s the wrong thing to say! (laughs)
VP: Right. I am ripping it off you and it’s going out the window.
SQ: I am not innocent of these wrongdoings but it’s not normal, let’s put it that way But it’s going to happen sometime. I can talk about it. but it’s not my normal way.
VP: Is it true than Elvis had a photo of you on his wall and is it true that he invited you to Graceland and you said sorry I’m too busy!
SQ: I know he didn’t have a photograph of me on his wall I heard this from his last girlfriend Linda Thompson. They used to go to this club on Sunset Strip every now and again and they used to go to this VIP area and it was Rodney Bingenheimer, and he was this huge fan of mine. He had this poster of me on the wall, and Elvis used to stare at that I don’t mean in a sexual way I never got that feeling. He just found it interesting. I went back to America in 1974 and toured for the first time with my English band with some hits under my belt. Elvis liked my version of ‘All Shook Up’ and he called me. His people called first and then he got on the line, but he said liked my version of ‘All Shook Up’ was the best since his own. He said would I like to come to Graceland and I said I am very busy, and too be honest I was not ready to meet him. I was not scared, but I figured I’d have another time when I was more into it. More comfortable. I only had a few hits and I was not ready yet, and no I didn’t know that he was going to die, but having said that I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason and I wrote a song that is now quite a cult hit called ‘Singing With Angels ‘I wrote about him and for him and I recorded it in Nashville along with James Burton on guitar and ‘The Jordanaires’ on backing vocals. So come on give me a break, If I had actually met him I think that possibly I wouldn’t have had the feeling to write that song And that song needed to be written well it was videotaped too. I play that song now at the end of my concerts so that was my path to remember Elvis that’s how I believe it.
VP: Oh how lovely. What a lovely end to that story. Now your trademark outfit on stage is a leather jumpsuit and your husband helps you get out of those jumpsuits for each show can you tell me about that?
SQ: Well you know, if there’s a girl singer in backing vocals I usually get them to help but if not my husband does it And if my husband is not there that I am in big trouble. You can’t get it off because you get soaking wet obviously. And leather sticks to you so can’t get it off yourself if you try to get it off yourself you break your arms, You have to undo the zipper. Then whoever is helping you have to slowly peel it off! It sounds quite erotic doesn’t it how are you doing? do you want to peel my leather off!
Suzi Quatro’s new album ‘No Control’ is out now and available at all good online and in-store retailers. Tour dates can be found on Suzi’s official website. http://www.suziquatro.com/shows.html