As Paul Weller returns with his 24th studio album, he talks MOJO magazine through his extensive songbook. On sale in the UK from Tuesday, April 28, the latest issue (June 2015/ #259) sees the former Jam and Style Council man reliving 20 of his most significant compositions, including toff-baiting breakthrough single Eton Rifles, telling our writer Tom Doyle that he’s still staggered that David Cameron has claimed it as one of his favourite songs.
“People say, Why don’t you write any more political songs?”
“The whole thing with Cameron saying it was one of his favourite songs… I just think, Which bit didn’t you get?,” wonders Weller of the Old Etonian Prime Minister.
“People say, Why don’t you write any more political songs? But I would just write exactly the same f**king things I wrote thirty-odd years ago. Every time they fire a missile in the Middle East, that’s 850,000 pounds, right? And then they talk about the NHS, f**king selling it off or it crumbling. So nothing’s really changed, has it?”
As for the origins of The Jam’s iconic single from 1979’s Setting Sons, a wet weekend rather than a summer of rioting was primarily responsible for Weller’s call to arms.
“We had a week off and I never even thought about going abroad for a holiday at that time. So I went down to my mum and dad’s caravan in Selsey and it pissed with rain for the whole week, so I just ended up writing,” he recalls. “And I wrote Eton Rifles. I thought it was a powerful statement.”
Order your copy of the new MOJO now for the exclusive interview with Weller, spanning his first compositions to new record Saturns Pattern.
The issue comes with a covermounted free CD, Beyond Saturn featuring 15 mind-blowing cosmic tracks personally approved by Weller, including Panda Bear, TOY, Public Service Broadcasting, Neu! and more.
PHOTO: Tom Sheehan