Interview : Daz Sampson (United Kingdom)

by Sietse Bakker 167 views

Daz Sampson will represent the United Kingdom in the final of the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest with Teenage life. Your esctoday.com editor Barry Viniker had the first big interview with him after his Making your mind up victory.

Esctoday.com: Everybody remembers a good teacher, who was your favourite?
Daz: That's Mr. Tomney. He�s mentioned in the song (Mr. T). We�re meeting up for a little reunion next week.

Esctoday.com: You�ve had phenomenal global success with some huge dance tracks in recent years, why take time out to do the Eurovision Song Contest?
Daz: It pains me how badly the UK has done recently. The state of the competition both here and globally needs to improve. The political voting has been an issue. It didn�t happen like this back in the 80s. People need to vote on the song and the performance. Bucks Fizz won the competition when Cheryl Baker ripped her skirt off. Katrina and the Waves won because they had a phenomenal song. I�m going to Athens with something different again.

Esctoday.com: Which is your favourite track to date?
Daz: Teenage life

Esctoday.com: Are you a DJ, singer, rapper or songwriter first and foremost?
Daz: None. I�d say I�m an ideas man, a 21st Century Pete Waterman. He was great in the 1980s because he knew the market. I thought this song could be successful at the Eurovision Song Contest, I felt within two bars of the song starting on Saturday that I could win. As soon as I came out from behind the blackboard, I could tell that the hardcore Eurovision Song Contestfans in the front of the audience had taken to it straight away. You need that if you�re going to do well at the competiton.

Esctoday.com: When did the Eurovision Song Contestfirst become an option, and how did you get involved?
Daz: I wanted to get involved before now. After Jemini�s �nul point�s, I put forward a song because I wanted to get the UK back to the top. We didn�t get through the first round of the selection process then.

I heard before Christmas that there was a chance for me to be involved this year. Thanks to Richard Parks for sticking his neck out and picking Teenage life for Making your mind up. Fair play to him. I�m not Eminem and I don�t look like Tom Cruise, I�m just a Eurovision Song Contest fan.

Esctoday.com: What has been your experience of the Eurovision Song Contest so far?
Daz: I�m really enjoying it. It�s not what I expected at all. There�s a News of the World photographer outside my door right now. I�ve had ex girlfriends being contacted by the press for stories! The Sunday Mirror were asking about my criminal past within minutes of winning on Saturday… but I don�t have one! It's such a shame. the press and the public should get behind the song now and push for victory in Athens for the UK.

Esctoday.com: When we spoke at the launch of Making your mind up, you admitted that you were dead nervous. Have your nerves calmed down a bit after such as strong show of support from the British public?
Daz: I�m not nervous any more, I�m enjoying every minute. To get over 50% of the vote was incredible. I didn�t have the publicity of former band members like Antony and Kym, so this is a real pleasure to succeed.

Esctoday.com: It�s been publicised that you won anything from £8000 to £85,000 by backing yourself to win, will you be putting the winnings back on yourself to win the Eurovision Song Contest?
Daz: Actually, it wasn�t quite as much as £85,000. I�ve already given £10,000 to charity, and the rest� well, I�ve got a contest to win!

Esctoday.com: What did you think of the show?
Daz: I felt like I was in a stage bubble. I actually thought I�d lost at the end as the SMS votes were being announced. I thought they were in reverse order when they were actually in song order. It was a great show.

Esctoday.com: How long did you spend rehearsing the routine and will you change the routine for Athens?
Daz: We were rehearsing until just before the show, and we�re going to be doing a lot of rehearsals before Athens. The five girls on stage were phenomenal, they�ve never done TV before. I think we�ll go with what won Making your mind up for us, but we�ll tweak it for Athens.

Esctoday.com: When did you decide that this song was a potential Eurovision Song Contest entry?
Daz: Actually, I was discussing songs with my manager after Jemini. I watch Xfactor and Pop Idol and I usually predict the winner. We thought that Teenage life would work for the Eurovision Song Contest. I wrote the chorus a couple of years ago…

Esctoday.com: Were you worried about the song being disqualified when it became clear that it had been available on the internet prior to the October 1st 2005 cut-off point?
Daz: I was very worried at first. The version of the song that appeared on the internet was a bootleg copy. I never released the song at all. I�d only written the chorus, not the rap or the arrangement. I know that the BBC investigated this and have said that everything�s fine. If its fine by them, it�s fine by me.

Esctoday.com: You said that if you were lucky enough to be sent to Athens, you would take the song on tour. You have some dates pencilled in with Uniting Nations in Poland and Russia� where else are you planning to take Teenage life on the road to Athens?
Daz: Sony BMG are on the case already. I want to pack in as much as possible, we�re saying yes to any tv appearances across Europe and already have offers from Malta and Greece. I�m different to recent UK entries. I�ll talk to everyone, I�ll shout about the Eurovision Song Contest and I�ll talk about the voting. It�s the greatest music show on Earth!

Esctoday.com: Can this song emulate the success of Kung fu fighting and Out of touch?
Daz: I hope so, I was so busy concentrating on Making your mind up, I never really thought about whether it would become a hit record. It�s going to be released on 17th April in the UK. Right now, all I�m focussed on is 20th May!

Esctoday.com: Any further songs or a Daz Sampson solo album on the cards?
Daz: (laughs), It would have to be quick, I haven�t written one yet. It�s just all happening so fast.

Esctoday.com: Belgium are putting the pressure on the rest of Europe by releasing their entry across all participating countries next month in the hope of gaining support and winning the Eurovision Song Contest crown. Will you be calling their bluff and doing the same thing?
Daz: I don�t think so, I think you can risk overkill, with people hearing the song too much before the contest. I haven�t heard the song yet so I can�t comment on the music. I hear it�s an earl favourite, but I�m not looking at the record of songs from the past, they haven�t heard my song yet! Odds on the UK have been cut already, and we�ve gone from 20/1 to 66/1 to get nul points, so that�s a good start. We�ll go further.

Esctoday.com: The majority of UK fans believe that this is our strongest entry for several years. How well do you think this can do at the Eurovision Song Contest?
Daz: I�m in it to win it! I�m not going to Athens to finish 17th. I wouls consider myself a disgrace with a result like that. I�ll be going out and meeting the fans, it�s not just about the song. We need to build bridges in Europe, and if I do everything that I say and come 12th or 13th, I�d be happy. I will do my best and do everything I can do give the UK another win.

Esctoday.com: Have you spoken to any former Eurovision Song Contest acts about what to expect in Athens?
Daz: I spoke to Jenny from Precious. She told me that I wouldn�t know how big or how crazy the Eurovision Song Contest really is until I get there. I�d love to speak to Gina and Katrina!

We kindly thank Daz and his management for their time and effort! Good luck in Athens!

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