Series 3, Episode 6: Lead singer & bassist of OMD, music producer & songwriter, Andy McCluskey

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We take a trip down memory lane as we chat with this week’s guest, Andy McCluskey.

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (OMD) have been around since the 70’s when two school friends decided they’d give music a go. With no huge aspirations to be a musician, one of the band’s founding members, Andy McCluskey, recalls tales of how a lot of the band’s fate happened by chance.

Tony had the Human League on Granada Reports – he used to put bands on. And we thought, “sod it, we’ve met him. Let’s be cheeky and send a cassette, see if we can get on telly”. I thought this was like a myth until two years ago, I actually met Tony Wilson’s wife, Lindsay, and she confirmed that this myth was in fact truth. Apparently she got in the car with him and said, “alright love, what’s this bag of cassettes?” and he went, “oh, it’s the rejects, it’s just all the crap, people wanting us to release a record, it’s all the rubbish”. So she reached into the bag pulled out a cassette and she went “Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, that’s a weird name, let’s put it on”, and he went, “oh no, they played the club last week, they’re rubbish love, two hairy scousers doing electric music”, and she said “well let’s play it anyway”, and she played it and went, “that’s a hit”, so apparently Tony Wilson lent over patted Lindsay on the thigh very patronising and went, “alright love, just for you I’ll sign them”, and that’s how you get a record deal [laughter] fished out of the reject bag by the wife.

Speaking openly about the highs and lows of being in a band, the conversation moves onto more recent years of Andy’s career where he has spent more time as a music producer and songwriter for other artists. Andy’s involvement in establishing girl group, Atomic Kitten was instrumental to their success as he reveals why his career went down this route.

Available to download on now, The Lonely Arts Club can be found on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and many more podcasting platforms.

All episodes are recorded following social distance guidelines.

Listen to all episodes on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, Castbox or on your favourite podcast platform. 

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