They Were The Pipettes – The Pipettes Interview


Because It’s Not Love (But It’s Still A Feeling ) By The Pipettes

As mainstream “Indie” continues to drown in the self made quagmire that reflects the music industries apparent “Sorcerer’s Apprentice” mindset, (whereby they seek to tirelessly reproduce band after band that conforms to the skinny lads with guitars genre) people like Pipette Puppetmaster Monster Bobby  would say the more discerning music fan is finally beginning to wake up the fact that pop is actually the new Indie. Mind ,some may say thats bollocks however  The Pipettes appear to be band not afraid to reach back and reclaim all that was great about pop music, but also a band who claim they  put their own unique stamp on that sound, they suggest that they  write classic Motown Record-era Girl Group songs with a modern twist and suggest that people are missing that sense of fun that seems to be amiss in today’s monochrome world of pop. A world that is currently in the stranglehold of nihilistic young men whining about the futility of “being” and the eternal agony of having greasy hair and “combination skin”. Or not???

The Pipettes wish to put the  fun firmly back into pop and provide a well-needed slice of escapism. Oscar Wilde once said “Suffering is one very long moment”, if we were to update that maxim and apply it to the modern world we could say “Suffering is listening to Razorlight” so, is this the new pop or just a rehash of well worn soundbites and clever PR ??… We dispatched Mr. VP to have a little chat with Rosay Pipette prior to the release of their album in America to find out how things are in Team Pip…and seek answers to questions that other publications wouldn’t have the audacity to ask…

VP: This year has seen you concentrate on The U.S. ahead of the release of “WATP’s” (2/10/2007) You’re due to go back out there I believe (once the visa delays are sorted). What was the overall response from the U.S. crowds and indeed the media over there?

Rosay: We’ve been to the states twice now, and both times we have been really very pleased with the reactions we have had. I don’t think any of us really expected to get as much attention as we did, and I think having support from sites like pitchfork from early on really helped. I think that because we had already been going for a couple of years before our first trip to the states meant that the band was a much more fully formed concept through experience etc which hopefully came across in our performances. I think we are a better band for the last tour we did out there as I suppose we felt we had so much to prove. It will be interesting to see how it goes this time around! We certainly witnessed some very good dancing!!

VP: I did hear a rumour that the whole album was to be re-recorded for the American release? True or False?

Rosay: False. We did remix it though.

VP: What’s been the best thing and the worst thing about long haul touring?

Rosay: The best thing is getting to travel to all of these amazing places and have people listen to your music and (hopefully) get a positive response. Its quite incredible when you get the feeling that you’ve communicated in some way despite cultural and often language barriers and differences and to see people dancing to songs we wrote in a little studio in Brighton… The worst thing is missing family and friends and some of the smells that develop on the bus…

VP: What are the plans for the rest of the year, will fans in the U.K. be able to get their grubby mitts on any new material before the year is over? Any more live shows in Blighty planned this year?

Rosay: Well there isn’t really any resting going on for the remainder of the year, we’re in the states for five weeks, then promoting the record in Japan and Australia, so it is unlikely we’ll get to do any shows in the UK before new year unfortunately, same goes for new material I’m afraid. Hopefully we’ll get the chance for some more writing; there are just not enough hours in the day!!! Next year we’ll be cracking down on that side of things so a little patience is required unfortunately!!

VP: Joe’s left to concentrate on his own band, and has been replaced by Jason. Although I’m sure you’re all very supportive of Joe Lean &TJJJ aren’t five skinny Indie lads much loved by theNME the sort of band you’ve spoken out against in the past? (Ooooooh controversy! I’ve gone all Paxman! )

Rosay: It is true that we have always felt fed up with the NME culture, and a lot of that had to do with the fact that none of these bands that they champion, really seem to care about song craft in any way… Joe is a very talented songwriter and I think that really comes through in Joe Lean and the Jing Jangs…. I think they feel just as bemused about the attention they have received from the NME, but It would be great if they could use that forum in a creative way, which is they’re intention. It goes without saying that they all need a good feed up though…

VP: You’ve complained in the past of sexism in the music industry. Does it annoy you that in some quarters you’re dismissed as a retro novelty band? Conversely a group of blokes who wear retro clothes, have a sense of fun, have their own dance moves and call themselves “Madness” are treated with respect?

Rosay: It is annoying but it is something that we try not to concentrate on too much. We just want to be the best band we can be, and in fact I find the novelty thing rather funny. We’ve always said we would love to have a one hit wonder, but I think people chose to take us on face value a lot of the time, and we couldn’t care less. We’ve been doing this for four years now, so we certainly don’t see ourselves as a novelty, and it does get boring to be constantly reminded of gender, and the fact that people forget there are four boys in the band….

VP: What have been your own individual highlights this year (apart from this interview obviously)

Rosay:
Going to Japan for the first time was incredible, driving through the Arizona desert, playing the main stage at Glasto, going to Austria and being serenaded by a chef and the promoter who sang us all these amazing Corinthian folk songs with lots of Corinthian brandy, meeting Bryan ferry was funny…

Becki:
Being able to travel to so many different places. Serbia especially, meeting Beastie Boys and CSS was incredible. Going to Japan and America were also highlights.

Gwenno :
Getting to tour a bit more, playing all the major festivals and getting to record those new songs, it was a very interesting experience and I’m very proud of the outcome.

VP: Your website http://thepipettes.co.uk/ has some interesting “characters” within its forum, they draw pictures of you, they Photoshop you, they write poems, musicals and stories about you. What the devil do you all make of it? Is it the sort of thing you excepted when you joined a band?

Rosay: Its certainly not the sort of thing I expected, I think we do have a pretty creative bunch of fans!!! I do find it all a little strange, and it’s quite hard to relate to, but its great that people care enough to do things like that… I do like the caption competition ….

VP: Do you all still reside in Brighton, or have you had to flee, pursued by lovestruck males who regularly serenade your balconies until late in the evening and whom constantly festoon your porches with red roses, fine wines, Belgium chocolates and love poems ……….Or Not ?

Rosay: Well we are split half and half between London and Brighton. I have just moved back to London but it was certainly not in response to any of the above!!!!

VP: Glastonbury? A lot of people have been whingeing about it being too corporate, middle class and Middle aged. Should we adopt a “Logan’s Run” type policy and ban anybody over from 30 from gigs, record stores etc. Should they simply be given a packet of mint imperials an ill-fitting cardigan and be left in the corner to mumble about the “good old days”. What did you think of Glasto this year?

Rosay: I think its great that there is such a broad mixture of people at Glastonbury and it would be terrible to make festivals exclusively for young people (reading is a case in point!!) perhaps the headliners recently have been pretty uninspiring on the whole… I enjoyed Glastonbury much more than last time (!!!!). The fact we got to play on a real stage was good enough for starters! It isn’t really a music festival; it’s more of a cultural event, which I think people forget. I think it’s a bit too big for me personally though….

VP: How far along are the new album/new songs? Will it be a completely different sound to what we’re used to, will we lose the do-wops, if so can you give anything away yet or will we have to learn the virtue of patience?

Rosay: As I said its not really been the priority this year. We have started writing again, whether those songs make it to the second record is yet to be seen, we really don’t know how its going to turn out yet, it will definitely not be another version if WATP, but we can’t really give anything away. We know that it will involve a broadening of the concept….

VP: How do you (Rosay) manage to ladder your tights all the time?

Rosay: I don’t know tights just don’t seem to like me very much, although I have to say that I have been preserving them much better of late, and have endeavoured to wear tights in one piece. I’m just a bit scruffy I’m afraid…

VP: You all seem to like a wide range of different musical styles, do you ever argue about music. Who would each of you recommend to look out for in the coming months?

Rosay:
We do argue about music all of the time, which I think is really healthy. I would hate it if we all had exactly the same taste and agreed about everything. One of the best things about being in this band is learning from each other. I’m really excited about the new PJ Harvey record…

Becki:
We do but my music taste has broadened so much since being in the band that it’s definitely a good thing. I’d recommend the new M.I.A. album.

Gwenno:
We argue about music all the time! That’s only healthy in a band like ours though I think. I’d recommend The Gentle Good and The Real Heat.

VP: What’s the weirdest request/Myspace message /piece of fan mail you’ve received since being Pipettes?

Rosay: Someone once asked where we got out tights from on our gmail. I naively replied only to discover the impetus for the question was because the bloke had a tights fetish, which made me feel quite sick….

VP: Finally sum up your year in five words beginning with the letter ” P “

Rosay: Playing Parties Proves Pleasingly Popular…HUZZAH!!! (I’m quite Proud of that, it’s a sentence!!)

Links

On Myspace

Official Site

We Are The Pipettes Fan Site

“We Are The Pipettes” U.S. Version 2/10/2007

“Your Kisses Are Wasted On Me” U.S. EP

The Pipettes North American EP – ‘Your Kisses Are Wasted On Me’ is available in stores or alternatively you can download the EP from iTunes.

“We Are The Pipettes” U.K./Europe

iTunes UK
The album is also available in the rest of Europe. Click below for order from the following territory.
Germany

Norway
Sweden

VIDEOS

“Because It’s Not Love (But It’s Still A Feeling)” By The Pipettes

“Judy” By The Pipettes

“Dirty Mind” By The Pipettes

Wallpapers

32 comments

  1. Fran · October 1, 2007

    The last wallpaper looks very nice on my laptop.

  2. Malcolm Hunt · October 14, 2007

    What is going on here? I left valid, and purposeful comments on here, and suddenly, I find it gone.
    Eliteism is the scourge of us all. What do you mean by deleting my praise for The Pipettes? Those young ladies are big and strong enough to hold their own. They do not delete me from their account. You ‘sir’ (over emotional big blouse) are just in this as a way of hiding from the rest of reallity.
    Gwenno! – RiotBecki! – Rosaaaay! ONE TWO THREE LETS GO!
    Are more the man than you will ever be!
    Never hung out with REAL east London women did yer!
    They would make you shit your pants! Those are my friends , they are!
    Poor Mrs. Pip for having to clean up after you! WANKER!

    Oh, but hang on. This is how you get your jollies. Isn’t it.
    YOU GIRLIE BITCH!

    LOVE AND PEACE ALL THE SAME. (To a saddo who proper needs to ‘sawt it aahht’ -Muppet!)

    Malc.

  3. Dr Crippens Love Child · October 15, 2007

    Oh dear Von Pip, it would appear the Pipettes have a “Norman Bates”

    Bing-Bong!!!

  4. K Rogers · October 15, 2007

    Nice interview there, I like the Pipettes. seriously odd comment from that dude,

    Lovin this blog

  5. Defoe · October 18, 2007

    man The Pipettes rock, Rose is so cute– I wont give the strange comment guy any more kudos except to say get a grip

    just got the Pips album and its so much fun

    respect

    Defoe

  6. Malcolm Hunt · October 19, 2007

    Fair enough the lot of you. I’m not going to attempt any excuses about my disturbing post here. I got over it. I actually like what Mr. VP does, in spite of the fact he seems to hate people from the south of England. London is, like most capital cities, a bit of a rough-house place, -to put it mildly.
    The Pipettes do give us a sense of fun, and are very entertaining. Just the breath of fresh air we need right now.
    My mother, (-hang on, don’t get too caught up with the Norman Bates thing here.) was a fine woman. She died of tertiary breast cancer after a seven year war with the disease.
    If ‘My mother told me to do it’, it would be the following.
    Respect women for trying to make their own way in this world.
    ‘Always remember the fact that my dad (my grandad from her side) would never talk about his war experiences.’ She was always proud of the fact he was a true Trade Unionist.
    He used to say to his local membership, ‘I want to say to all of you, we must attend every branch meeting, otherwise the Communists will get in, and ruin it for all of us.’
    Many years later, Thatcherism took over, and he was proved right.
    A great man, not quite of my time. The one person who I really do regret not meeting. He died himself shortly before I was born, because he had started smoking Woodbine cigarettes in the WW1 trenches to stave off hunger. He had lied about his age to join that one, and survived. When he found himself of age to join up against the fight against Hitlers Germany, he did so willingly.
    Between those wars, he found himself a bit stuck in the 1930s. Rather short of cash because of the great depression, he walked over the North Yorkshire moors from Middlesborough to York. He found himself some work at his trade as a painter an decorator, which includes some gold leaf restoration work in York Minster.
    This led to him earning enough to buy his train fare down to London, and enough to pay some rent on a place to live. He soon put the predudicial Londerners in their place too!
    ‘Bloody northerners! Comin’ dahn ‘ere an’ takin our jobs!’ To which he deftly responded,
    ‘More fools you fer lettin’ oos!’
    Having established himself, he sent enough money for my Yorkshire Nana to come and settle with him in the Kings Road, Chelsea. He was her second husband, on account of her being a war widow during WW1.
    Some of my best memoiries are all the girls, from two marrages being together, and having a right laugh!
    My aunties and my mum.
    In later years, as a teenager, you should have heard some of the things the east London girls came out with when I was at school! F***in’ filthy, but hilarious at the same time.
    No wonder I laughed when I heard Dirty Mind on Xfm London. The Pipettes are the business. They really are. I also have my first Mod/scooter memories from a young age on The Kings Road too.

  7. Diamond Geezer · October 19, 2007

    BIZARRRE !!!!!!!!!

  8. Dogwood · October 19, 2007

    Hello Dogwood here.

    Settle down.

    Now I have to say that I found the Iliad style entry from m’laddo up there an intriguing insight into the class struggles and North/South divide of the 20th century but what it has to do with three young lasses who make popular beat music not even Roger D’Courcey could fathom. Let’s back to the matter at hand – The Pipettes.

    I don’t really do popular beat music, I find that Gareth Gates gives me the right gutsache, but I like these girls and I thank the Great Von Pip for the enlightenment.

    Settle down

    Dogwood

  9. Malcolm Hunt · October 19, 2007

    Real life is often, as the old saying goes, stranger than fiction.

    Even more bizzare than what I wrote, is the fact that this page won’t display properly on my PC any more. I hope all is well in the world of free speech.

    I should also give an appology to Mrs. Von Pip. I had no business bringing that lady into my diatribe against her husband. I’m sorry. I hope this finds you all well.

  10. Malcolm Hunt · October 19, 2007

    Fair enough Mr. Dogwood. I am settled now. The Pipettes are an amazing occurence though. They really are a clever twist on times past, when women were just there for pretty much subservient roles, including just pretty, and ‘where’s my dinner bitch!’
    Good grief! I cannot belive how much they have been thought provoking in any number of ways. All of those vivacious inteligent young ladies are talented in different ways. Even in the 60s going into the 70’s, women wern’t allowed to express their sexuality. Double standards or what!?
    Just listen to The Pipettes lyrics.
    It’s OK for them to find what is acceptable, and what is just downright peverted. They also speak of true love. I wouldn’t mind if one of them was a fat bird. (I reserve the right to use such language, as it is normal within my peergroup. Some women are lovely and big built. It’s about confidence if you ask me.) I really did love hearing Dirty Mind for the first time on my radio. As I love them all equally and unconditionally, I say good on yer grrls! It’s the pretty and clever thang. They’re clever AND pretty. -With some ugly lyrics to match.
    Malc.

  11. Daisy Dolly · October 20, 2007

    hahaha dogwood owns …..what is that malcolm on ? The Pips are great and rose is lovely , ive met them and they are really nice and normal . Pity that fella there isnt

    Daisyxxxx

  12. Malcolm Hunt · October 20, 2007

    Nah. miss Daisy, I reckon you’re just a bit of a thick bird ain’tcha.
    The only normal I adhere to, is this: Do thine own will, but hurt no one. It’s a difficult task but worth the effort. Why don’t you go back to sleep, and try to actually talk to me whan you’ve grown up a bit eh?

  13. Daisy Dolly · October 21, 2007

    “A Thick Bird” ? Sorry Malcolm Hunt but I dont like sexists or weirdos , you are clearly both I dont think u do “normal” I wonder what other people think , am I thick or are you just a very rude man who talks utter shit ?

  14. Davina McEwan · October 21, 2007

    I think malc is bizarre , his commenst are irrelivant rambling and just plain crazeeee. Give it up . Get a room…Im all for free speech …but this is complete codswallop …….. Lets get back to the interview

    Nice work …The pipettes rule

    Dxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  15. rob · October 21, 2007

    Barking, I like the pips Music, I lurk on their forum sometimes its a bit rubbish … and that blok posts some strange stuff on there too. best is to ignore him ….i don’t think his belt goes through all the loops……

  16. MC Rolly · October 21, 2007

    I used to go on that site too. The Pi pettes used to post a lot and then someone called Motorhead Mal joined and they stopped..Is this the same person I wonder?Nice work VP always good to hear what the Pips have to say

  17. Malcolm Hunt · October 21, 2007

    No MC Rolly. I joined well after I first saw them at the Camden Barfly. Lets face it. Three pretty women who are loud and proud are bound to attract attention. I’ve been in touch with several of the band since then. They don’t seem to have a problem with me. I certainly don’t want to give them any problems.

    Sexist and wierdo? Young lady! I make it my business to be decent to all women I encounter on a daily basis. Some are shy wallflowers who like manners and good grace. Others are bawdy little madams that like a laugh and a joke. Two of my most endearing friends are ex ‘working’ girls who feel comfortable in my company, and have a right laugh about sexual matters. Quite often it is the likes of them who make the best councillors and care workers of those women who have been victims of sexual crimes.

    Look right? The world ain’t normal. ‘Orrible ‘orrible things happen to people.

    Why does this this blog seem to always pick on me? -Actually, I say stuff the lot of yer.

    All I know is The Pipettes make me happy with their attitude and songs.

  18. MC Rolly · October 21, 2007

    Maybe cos you called somebody a “wanker” and ““A Thick Bird” Now I’m no rocket scientist but it’s hardly going to make you every body’s best friend is it ?

    as dogwood says “Settle Down”

  19. Mister Lion · October 21, 2007

    I think it’s safe to assume “sexist weirdo” is a perfectly understandable response from a complete stranger who you’ve just labelled a “thick bird”, Malc. If you haven’t got anything nice (and preferably, readable) to say, don’t say anything. You’re not being picked on, you’re just demonstrating bizarre and offensive behaviour and people are questioning it.

  20. Half Cut Cassie · October 21, 2007

    Whats going on?? , I best not get called a thick bird or someone will get a slap …anyway great interview with Rose and the girls, good lucj to them in america

  21. Malcolm Hunt · October 22, 2007

    Thank you people. I accept I was out of order. Now please, can we just talk about The Pipettes on here?
    I don’t like being Mr. boasty about who I’ve met, but every time I do meet any of the magnificent seven, women or men, they’ve been great.
    Gwenno has been kind enough to furnish me with info about them and her musical previous career, -not to mention her latest foray where she said she included her own sister on U’n’I. Rosay and previous drummer Joe were lovely and insightful at The Boogaloo.
    I’m sorry to have offended people.
    I hope future comments are just positive about The Pipettes.

    Settle down? -Yes I have. YouTube. Kenny Everett. This had me laughing my socks off. I
    recomend it.
    But enough about me…..

  22. Gregg Weed · April 5, 2008

    There’s some fun videos of the Pipettes on u-tube that I shot Nov. 2007 in Chicago.
    GreggWeed

  23. Gregg Weed · August 10, 2008

    Anybody can tell me what the heck the satiric (?) “fanisto” site, with the cutting lyrics, are all about? Is this part of the reason R and RB dropped out, ’cause they were being accused of pandering to the Pipettes” audience? There is nothing wrong with giving the world some happiness and joy; i.e., smile – during our idiot presidency and corruptness. We need to be reminded to smile; i.e., hope – and that’s what Gwenno, Riot Becki, and Rosay gave us.
    Gregg from Oregon, USA (the guy who gave the Pipettes the word, “Manifesto”).

  24. Dibert Fudge · August 10, 2008

    Well the lyrics were from The Indelicates debut “Our Daughters Will Never Be Free” wriiten by original lPipette Julia.(which I would say gives us an elequent insight into how the band operated … Rose dropped out as she felt she’d come to the end of theline, Becki was given the push.(some say by Gwenno some don’t we’ll probably never know why.) I can only assume the Fanifesto site, is some form of protest at how this was handled By Monster Bobby and his chums. ie/ Attacking the fans on a public forum, patronsing them etc. Saying that it doesn’t really matter who the Pipettes are,after initially promoting the feminist agenda when it suited would seem to smack of hypocryisy no? Theres no problem having fun and spreading joy, I think the problem comes from having a “6th form Manifesto” anyway. Why bother ? Why not say, “Look we are a straight pop band we’re sorry we tried to intellectualise our brand of fun and we’re sorry we handled the line up changes so ham fistidly” I do know they’ve lost a lot of fans now; be interetsing to see what the morph into next ….I’m thinking S Club 7 at a Pride march? Maybe they could Pipette up “Smack my Bitch Up”. Who knows, acttualy now,who cares. They were fun once, but I’ve little interest in the new line up

    Hey gregg if you gave the Pipettes to the word “Manifesto” maybe you should give Bobby and his mate this one “humility”

  25. James Hunter · August 11, 2008

    I did lurk on the old Pipette forum. It was fascinating- Bobby did seem quite defensive. He wrote “Nobody held a gun to Becki’ and Roses head” To which somebody replied “Your no Phil Spector then” hahahahaha. Still whats done is done, I’ll look forward to the solo projects from Rose and Becki in future. I haven’t been very impressed with the new Pipettes, the songs or the image

  26. Emma · August 11, 2008

    Yo! You gave the Pipettes the word,“Manifesto”?? was this like some sort of gift ? Did you have like,the intellectual right to the word?

  27. vonpip · August 11, 2008

    I’m not getting into this old chesnut again, I said enough at the time. It was a disaoopintement to find I’d bought into something that didn’t quite ring as true as I naively may have thought…anyway the people involved aren’t in league with Beelzebub, (I don’t think…..) so I wish them no ill willl….but yes I am more excited to hear the output of Rose and Becki, for me they were the Pips,(and Julia) it will be interestng to seewhat they come up with

    People should check out founding member Julia’s band The Indelicates who are amazing

    http://www.myspace.com/theindelicates

  28. Gregg Weed · August 17, 2008

    Actually the word came from Evita Peron’s “Manifesto” -and Bobby knows what I’m talking about. Also the feminist who tried to assassinate Andy Warhol – also wrote her “Manifesto”. Evita’s was certainly a gift. from smarty-pants gregg from oregon

  29. Titchmarsh Has Evil Pals · August 25, 2008

    Actually it goes back a lot further than that ….shall we say 1644? from It. manifesto “public declaration explaining past actions and announcing the motive for forthcoming ones,” originally “proof,” 😛

  30. Gregg Weed · August 28, 2008

    I speak of Manifesto with a capital M.
    Change of subject slightly: see videos of previous Pipettes last Nov. in Chicago. (utube pipettes gregg weed chicago) I think the videos (check them all out) capture their energetic beauty – especially Rosay – in a sadly nostalgic way.

  31. Gregg Weed · December 21, 2008

    What the heck is going on with the new Pipettes? Did the shoe that fits get thrown?

    Is anyone reading this web site, or are other fans as discouraged as myself? Or have we all moved on in this short-attention musical fare?

    • gregg Weed · March 24, 2009

      Oh, man. Rosay/Rose, why do you insist you’re not a rock ‘n ‘roller? The singer who screamed,

      “I’ve had just about enough of sweet!”

      is telling her (new?) fans, that she actually is of the English folk genre… come on. Write and perform (pretend it’s an exercise) some PUNK ROCK – use your strength, don’t smother it – don’t deny your old fans, please – just one tune that engulfs all of you, and scream that emotion (your heart) to your loyal fans; we’re waiting.

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