Dennis back in adopted town

Dennis Locorriere, instantly recognisable as the voice of Dr Hook, insists he’s very much a team player.

But he’s not necessarily a band man.

Dennis, whose Alone Again tour brings him to his adopted home town of Worthing for a solo date at the Pavilion on June 17 (01903 206206), enjoyed phenomenal success with Dr Hook.

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“But I never wanted to be in a band,” he says. “I was an only child. I used to take my guitar down to the park and play by myself.”

When Hook came along, the others were older than him: “I found it interesting. We had our ups and downs, and we got on very well together. But I am a professional only child!

“My career is crowd control with songs. I deal with a lot of people all the time. Really I am a very sociable person. I love to be with people. But I would not say that I am a social person. I am not the kind of person that has to go down to the pub just to hear voices. I can happily spend days by myself.”

He’s delighted to make genuine contact with his audiences, though: “It’s always a dilemma before I tour, to pick the material because I have so many songs, so many years to draw from. There are favourites, there are the hits, and there are some great tracks in between the hits. I could do a different set every night of the week. You want to give your fans things that they know and that they want to hear, but I don’t want to just pander to it and say ‘I am the guy that used to have these hits.’”

Which makes the response to his most recent album, Post Cool, all the more gratifying: “I love the album. I am proud of it, and the people that pay attention think that it is the best thing I have ever done.

“This one is autobiographical in the sense that I can tell you why I wrote every song on there. That’s why I like great song-writers. That’s why I love Paul Simon, because he makes you think ‘I could have said that’. I aspire to that, that people should say ‘I feel like that.

“There are always going to be personal songs on albums. Back when I was with Dr Hook, I was the lead singer, I was responsible for the chart position. We recorded a lot of hits. But Sexy Eyes says nothing about me. I have never met a girl on a dance floor. It was great to have a hit and it brought more people to the band, but these days I don’t want to sing anything that you can’t quiz me on!”