Johnny Hates Jazz play their classic songs LIVE and look ahead to their upcoming tour

Virgin Radio

23 Feb 2024, 13:06

Johnny Hates Jazz played an amazing session on Virgin Radio’s Stool of Rock, and spoke to Chris Evans about how, after 36 years, they are embarking on their first ever headline tour of the UK and overseas.

Original members Clark Datchler and Mike Nocito, along with guitarist Nick Keeble, joined the Chris Evans Breakfast Show with cinch to play some iconic tracks, and to look forward to the live dates, which run from March until October. The band will also play a special headline show at the O2 Indigo in London on the 19th December. 

Speaking about how the band “came to prominence” with singles such as Shattered Dreams, I Don’t Want To Be A Hero and Turn Back The Clock in the late 1980s, Clark said: “Shortly after that we parted ways, very early on, and actually me and Mike didn't speak for 20 years.”

Mike interjected: “It was 22 years, and so one day, 22 years later, Clark called me and I said ‘Hey, Clark’. So it was literally like just your brother you hadn't spoken to him for a while, and it’s the way it is.”

Of the band then reuniting in 2010, Clark said: “And then, 22 years later, we got together and decided to do a new album, an album called Magnetized. And since then we've done a couple of others. We're going to do another one coming up, but our big thing, of course, is that we're going on tour this year.”

Mike said: “The records have just lasted on the radio all this time.” 

Talking about their break-up, Clark told Chris: “You have to celebrate how your life has turned out and the experiences you've had, but years later, I think there was always a nagging feeling with me that there was somehow unfinished business. I don't mean business in a cold way. I mean, there was still more to do creatively."

Regarding what the two musicians got up to in the years away from Johnny Hates Jazz, vocalist and keyboardist Clark said: “We both kept working in our own ways. Mike produced some great records. 

Mike explained: “I produced the winning song of the 1997 the seven Eurovision Song Contest, Katrina and the Waves, and a few other things.” 

“I moved to Holland,” Clark added. “Then I moved to the United States. I built a solar powered studio in Arizona. I went on quite a journey!”

Talking about embarking on their first ever headline tour, Clark said: “We haven't done our own headline tour before, and that's obviously what we're doing this year, our very first headline tour. But when we played in the past, and obviously a lot of other musicians have similar stories, the audience come up to you and say how important those songs were for them, personally, and that actually makes it even more rewarding.”

Mike added: “One of the advantages of us splitting up is we didn't play the songs for 30 years. So we're almost playing them fresh.”

Clark told Chris: “ Of course, all of us have regrets and we carry things with us, baggage that we want to deal with, but at the end of the day, it is important - and this is what I've done - to celebrate the journey that I've had. And it's been magical and very unusual.”

For tickets to Johnny Hates Jazz’s live dates visit

For more great live sessions and interviews listen to The Chris Evans Breakfast Show with cinch weekdays from 6:30am on Virgin Radio, or catch up on-demand here.