Happy Mondays frontman Shaun Ryder is coming to Rugby for a fascinating night to discuss his colourful life of Pills, Thrills and Bellyaches...we caught up with him before next month’s show

Manchester icon Shaun Ryder is coming to Rugby to lift the lid on more than 30 years of ups and downs of being in one of Britain’s most notorious bands.

Shaun Ryder.

Rugby’s event creators Enterlude & Toura Toura management present an evening of chat with the Happy Mondays & Black Grape legend, giving the Rugby crowd a fascinating insight into life in one of the UK’s most loved bands.

Hosted and presented by Brody Swain (BBC Coventry & Warwickshire Introducing presenter), the night is being supported by hotly tipped Rugby indie band The Estates.

Reporter Lucie Green caught up with Shaun today (Tuesday).

Shaun on stage at Victorious Festival. Picture: Vernon Nash

Lucie: Hi Shaun, how you doing?

Shaun: Well, I’m breathing. How are you?

Me: I’m good.

Thanks for talking to us Shaun, it’s a refreshing change for me. To think I started my career in journalism writing about cats stuck up trees.

The Happy Mondays.

Shaun: It’s better, yeah? Only just though. Now you’re talking to a t**t stuck up a tree.

Both laugh.

Me: You’ve been to Rugby before, we took your photograph at Brownsover Hall a few years back, what were you doing in the town?

Shaun: Yeah, I’ve been to Rugby, but I can’t remember the visit. I’m sure it’s a smashing place and I’m looking forward to meeting the crowd there in March.

Me: Tell me about an audience with Shaun Ryder, what’s the format?

Shaun: Whoever the interviewer is will sit there for an hour with all sorts of questions. The questions are always different because I never know who is interviewing me. Then, it’s over to the audience to ask questions.

Me: Are any questions off limits?

Shaun: No. If I don’t want to answer a question, I won’t answer it, but I’ve got nothing to hide and wouldn’t see the point of doing it if I wasn’t going to be open.

Me: How many of the shows have you done now?

Shaun: I’ve done 20 now.

Me: Do you enjoy doing them?

Shaun: I love them. Back in the day, band members went onto doing DJ sets, now they get into Q&A sessions. I’d much rather be doing this. We always have a laugh and I love the interaction.

Our audience attracts a wide range of people, so it’s always interesting. I’ve spoken to doctors, dentists, politicians, all the football nutters, Sun readers, Guardian readers, it’s a real mixed bag.

Me: (my 12 year old daughter asked me to ask this) What’s your favourite Happy Mondays song?

Shaun: I don’t have a favourite. I like different bodies of our work for different reasons and different times in my life. I don’t look at singles.

Me: Do you miss the old ‘Madchester’ days?

Shaun: No. I wouldn’t want to be a 20 year old again to save me life. That was then, this is now. We had a great time, but we grow up. Yes, the sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll was great in me 20s, 30s and even 40s, but I’m very content and I’m very happy now.

Me: How old are you now Shaun?

Shaun I’m 57 or 58, one of the two.

Me: Good luck with the shows Shaun, it’s been a privilege.

Shaun: Cheers.

Salford born Shaun Ryder formed the Happy Mondays in 1980.

The band signed to Factory Records and their releases included the two classic albums ‘Bummed’ in 1988 followed by ‘Pills ‘n’ Thrills and Bellyaches’ in 1990.

Later Shaun started Black Grape releasing the album ‘It’s Great When You’re Straight.. Yeah’. Following his achievements with both bands he received the ‘Godlike Genius Award’ from NME in 2000.

Shaun also moved into TV taking part in the tenth series of the TV show ‘I’m a Celebrity.. Get Me Out Of Here!’ in 2010 where he was runner up. He also went on to have his own TV programme ‘Shaun Ryder on UFOs’ on The History Channel in 2013.

Shaun has recently been a guest on several TV shows including ‘Room 101’ with Frank Skinner, ‘Stars and Their Cars’ with Paddy McGuinness, ‘The Chase: Celebrity Special’ with Bradley Walsh, ‘Sam Delaney’s News Thing, This Morning and ‘Big Star’s Little Star’.

He also wrote his autobiography ‘Twisting My Melon’ in 2011.

Shaun continues to tour with both Happy Mondays and Black Grape and is due to record new albums with both bands as well as releasing a solo album as SWR.

Shaun’s coming to Rugby

What: Enterlude Presents – An Evening With Shaun Ryder

When: Friday, March 20

Where: The Benn Hall, Newbold Road, Rugby

Doors open: 7pm From: 8pm – 10.30pm

Tickets: www.enterlude.co.uk or www.ticketsource.co.uk/enterlude

Over 16s only.