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Pete Waterman interviewed by Nik Goodman

An audience with a legend

 Nik Goodman interviewed the successful music producer Pete Waterman, and the audience went crazy – applause, whistling and an atmosphere that could raise the roof.

Pete said that music has the ability to transport you to the first moment you heard the song, and that it’s only a great tune that will make a radio hit. When he first started out with music he preferred Motown and he was a Beatles fanatic – but even though Beatles had such a great influence on him, it was Motown that ultimately won out, and it was that kind of music that he wanted to make.
When you produce something it’s easy to become bored of something really quickly, but Pete stressed that it’s so important not to move away from it too quickly – until signs that the listeners has becomes bored as well.
He told the audience that he had always wanted to do radio, and he wanted the radio show to be exciting – so when he got the opportunity to have his own show on Radio City in the late 80’s he grabbed it. 
Kylie Minogue had her first play of “I Should Be So Lucky” on his show - naturally. He even managed to upset the BBC by giving the listeners the number to BBC Radio 1 and asked them all to give the station a ring and tell them that it’s a shame they didn’t play Kylie Minogue’s song like Radio City did. Several people rang the BBC, and Pete received a not so happy phone call from them later on.
He also had lots of other stories from the olden days; among them were the story of being told not to put the picture of Rick Astley on the album cover, because that would make the album appeal to more people. This backfired when Astley was booked to play a gig for American radio station Z100. The bouncer at the venue refused to let the very white singer in - because Rick Astley was black!
“Just because a song is made by someone famous does not mean you should play it - it needs to be good on its own,” says Waterman.
And added that he loves making radio these days because of the immediate feedback of Twitter and Facebook.
And did you know? Pete is a big lover of trains in any shape and form. And he definitely won’t stop making radio for some time yet!
“I’m 65 years old, healthy and am on the radio once a week, what could be better?”