Sharleen Spiteri: ‘I love getting old – I love the freedom it allows you’

Sharleen Spiteri: ‘I love getting old – I love the freedom it allows you’

Born in Scotland, Sharleen Spiteri, 56, worked as a hairdresser before forming Texas with Johnny McElhone aged 17. They went on to have hits I Don’t Want a Lover, Say What You Want and Inner Smile. Last year they released The Very Best of 1989-2023 and played Glastonbury. This March, Texas released The Muscle Shoals Sessions with Spooner Oldham, and in September there will be a UK arena tour. Spiteri has a daughter and is married to the chef Bryn Williams. She lives in London and Wales.

What is your greatest fear?
When I was little, a couple of rapes took place in Glasgow. I remember my mum saying to walk in the middle of the pavement, and to this day I am very conscious of where I am.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
I’m impatient.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Schemes. I hate schemers.

What was your most embarrassing moment?
Going on stage and saying, “Good evening Lyon!” I was in Marseille.

What is your most treasured possession?
A little three-legged stool that belonged to my grandparents. When I got the house in Wales, my mum gave it to me as a house-warming present.

Describe yourself in three words
Quiet, noisy, androgynous.

What would your superpower be?
To magic myself places.

What makes you unhappy?

What do you most dislike about your appearance?
Hundreds of things – because of that I’m quite happy with it.

If you could bring something extinct back to life, what would you choose?
Marvin Gaye.

What scares you about getting older?
Nothing. I love getting old – I love the freedom it allows you.

Who is your celebrity crush?
Emma Stone.

What did you want to be when you were growing up?
An artist, an interior designer and a vet.

What is the worst thing anyone’s ever said to you?
Somebody wrote that my voice was more numbing than novocaine.

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Would you choose fame or anonymity?

What was the last lie that you told?
When my daughter’s cat, Cool Cat, had a neurological problem and had to be put to sleep, I told my daughter the cat had gone to a special hospital for badly behaved cats.

What does love feel like?
Uncontrollable, wonderful.

Have you ever said ‘I love you’ without meaning it?
Never. It takes a lot for me to say I love you.

What has been your biggest disappointment?
Feeling so helpless. You feel that governments should be making better choices; people are speaking out and nothing seems to be done about it.

When did you last cry, and why?
Turning on the news.

What would you like to leave your children?

What single thing would improve the quality of your life?
Not being in pain – I have back problems and had shoulder surgery just before Christmas and there isn’t a day that goes by when I am not in pain.

How would you like to be remembered?
As a great songwriter.