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Arthur Baker & Hooky On (Piers Morgan’s) CNN

Reported by JontySkrufff on January 14, 2011

(Picture; Arthur Baker): to watch the Piers Morgan CNN promo clip, click HERE

Freebass’ ‘You Don’t Know This About Me”, Arthur Baker remix has been chosen to soundtrack the advance 30 second trailer for Piers Morgan’s CNN show ‘Piers Morgan Tonight’ which launches on Monday 17th January in the news channel’s prestigious former Larry King slot.

The track features vocals by Tim Burgess of the Charlatans fame and came out last year on Freebass' debut album 'It's a Beautiful Life'.

Both New Order/ Joy Division legend Peter Hook (Hooky) from Freebass and 80s electro pioneer Arthur Baker chatted to Skrufff about the unlikely link-up this week, which Arthur admitted he had no idea was happening.

“I'm in Miami right now and about a month ago when I got here I had CNN on in the background and I heard some music that sounded familiar- and noticed that it was an ad for the Piers Morgan Show,” he said.

“It wasn't until I heard it the second time around that I realized that it was my version of Hooky and Freebass's track "You Don't Know About Me", he chuckled.

Hooky in turn revealed he’s long been a fan of the British tabloid editor turned TV celebrity presenter (‘I like the way Piers always tells people to piss off’) and said delighted about their Freebass song being unexpectedly selected.

“The license for the track wasn’t for a huge amount of money or anything like that but I am quite proud it’s used on such a high profile show launch,” he said.

“Having travelled the world for as long as I have, I’ve also got a great affinity with CNN because in the early years it was the only news channel you could get abroad and I still watch it now in preference to the others.”

Arthur Baker, who first worked with Hooky in the early 80s when he produced New Order’s earliest material such as Confusion and Thieves Like Us, was equally pleased.

“I felt great about the use because firstly I was real happy for Hooky and the guys in Freebass and secondly because I felt vindicated, since I had really believed in the track when I had done it but then it had gone absolutely nowhere. 

“Both this track and my Hurts mix that went gold in Germany have given me back some self belief in my music-making ability, since the amount of really good tracks I've done in the past few years that have been basically ignored by A&R brats has been pretty ridiculous,” he continued.

Forging his reputation in the early 80s producing seminal club/ crossover hits including Afrika Bambataa’s Planet Rock and Cyndi Lauper’s Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, in 2005 he turned Princess Superstar into a global artist, producing her wildly successful artist album My Machine and pop smash Perfect. 

More recently, he’s worked as a show music producer for his wife’s high profile fashion line Felder, and produced tracks and remixes for acts including Little Boots, Florence, I Blame Coco and Leila of the Duke Spirits though said hardly any have subsequently been released.

“With the exception of the Leila track- which I did with Hooky, by the way- the acts’ A&R reps have pretty much ignored what I’ve done and not one of these tracks has been made commercially available,” said Arthur.

“Though trust me when I say that each one was more then worthy of release.  The amazing egos of all these arrogant little would-be Simon Cowells has been fucking amazing,” he stormed.  “Their attitude was, if they didn't originally conceive of the idea then it couldn't possibly be good.”

He also admitted becoming grudgingly enthusiastic about watching the latest season of Simon Cowell’s X Factor (‘my wife Annette dragged me into it’, and was unexpectedly receptive to musical talent shows in general.

“I was a mentor in a BBC talent show over 10 years ago presented by Ronan Keating called ‘Get Your Act Together’,” Arthur recalled, “One season and off, I guess it was ahead of its time,” he mused.

Hooky admitted to being equally open minded about talent shows and their cartoon villain judges.

“Piers has done very well out of them, Simon Cowell and Cheryl Cole too. Oh how I ache for that phone call,” he laughed.

”Though musically they don’t do anything for me. I suppose the judges find laughing at the poor unfortunates too much fun but wouldn’t you also like in real life to be able to press a big red button that went “urrggghh” and then have the person that’s annoying you instantly disappear?”

“They should be paying to do that job, not the other way round. The negative is that they make people feel that all they have to do is get on the show to succeed and then they are set for life. Unfortunately it doesn’t work like that,” he noted.

“I’m really pleased about Piers and his music programmer picking ‘our track for the trailer and hopefully it’ll bring more attention to the Freebass album,” Hooky added.

“After working for what was a long time on pulling together what I thought was a very good album, I felt that the music got overshadowed by everything else but that’s life. You pick yourself up, dust yourself off and carry on.”

New Order’s classic 80s video for Confusion (includes Arthur): http://bit.ly/MvO8E )

Jonty Skrufff: http://listn.to/JontySkrufff