WORDS, it seems, do come rather easy to Dave Spikey.
Films, television, sell-out stand-up shows, the popular comic has lent his verse to many successful ventures in recent times and shows no sign of slowing down.
He brings his “Word’s Don’t Come Easy” tour to the Burnley Mechanics on Saturday, April 2nd, and admits he loved visiting the town – a home away from home for the Bolton-born performer.
“I’ve been to Burnley a few times. In fact we used to alternate it Burnley, Colne, Burnley, Colne. It’s always great coming here, you have a bigger connection. It’s like a home game for me because of course I’m from Bolton and now live in Chorley.
“I always start my tours close to home because on the way home after the show I start thinking about how I can change things from that night’s performance and how I can add things in. I’m always trying to improve the show but you’ve also got to try and keep the show fresh for yourself. The world is always changing and I’m always seeing new things on TV or hearing something in the pub and I think to myself ‘I need to get that on stage’. If you look at my show at the beginning of the tour and then watch the last date I bet it would be about 40% different.”
This show focuses squarely on Dave’s fascination with the English language and examines those situations in life where words really don’t come that easy.
Ridiculous newspaper stories, magazine poems and pathetic adolescent chat-up lines all come under the spotlight as well as song lyrics that range from the lazy through surreal to the ridiculous.
“For every tour I have a loose theme to hang it on. I’ve always been obsessed with the English language and how it is used in everyday life and in newspapers, things likes that. One headline I saw once was about and arts and crafts for the elderly and it read ‘Pensioners make great rugs’. I imagined looking down and seeing a grandad lying down on the floor.”
Despite Dave’s prominent rise and lofty standing within the upper echelons of comic fame he has never once been tempted to abandon his northern roots.
“I’ve never wanted to move down to the bright lights of London. I’ve lived in Chorley for 20 years now and all my mates are working class lads who go to the pub. It’s not like that in London. In fact I get a lot of my material from going down to the pub. If I see something on the TV that’s interesting, I’ll go into the pub, not tell my mates what I’m doing, bring up the topic and just sit back and listen.”
Audience wise he admitted there was a bit of a difference when it came to the north/south divide.
“When you get to the level at that I’m at, and I’m not being big-headed at all, people are paying to come and see you so it’s a similar cross section who know what to expect. There is definitely an attitude difference. When you are stood behind the curtain there is certainly more of a buzz up north coming from the audience.”
His tour may be taking precedence at the moment but television is never far from his mind nor the hit-comedy Phoenix Nights.
“I would do Phoenix Nights tomorrow if given the chance. I’m not sure if anything is going to happen though. I’ve actually just done a film with Neil Fitzmaurice, who wrote the programme with me and Peter, but neither of us have heard anything about it. I would love to do a Christmas special and just see if it’s still wanted by the public.
“I enjoy both stand-up and television, I do like the creative process when it comes to being live. You can think of something on the way to the gig and use it there and then whereas if you think of something for TV it can be weeks, months or even years before people hear it and of course you are not there to hear them laugh at it.”
Future projects include a ballroom comedy sitcom written with Neil Fitzmaurice and a short film with a young and upcoming writer.
“I get a lot of scripts sent through to me and a lot of them aren’t very good. However, I’ve had a couple of good things from two young lads and I’m going to be making a short film with one of them for a comedy festival in Manchester later in the year. I think it’s really important to re-invest in talent that’s coming through.”
Tickets are £18 and available by calling the Burnley box office on 01282 664400 or visiting www.burnleymechanics.co.uk.