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Sam Fender announces huge show at Newcastle’s St James’ Park

The Geordie hero will play a huge homecoming next June. Read our exclusive chat with Fender now.

By Nick Reilly

Sam Fender has announced details of a huge homecoming next summer at St James’ Park, the home of Newcastle FC.

The Geordie singer will play the biggest show of his career on June 9, following in the footsteps of Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan in playing a show on the hallowed turf.

He’ll be joined by Inhaler and Holly Humberstone for the huge shows, with tickets going on sale from 10am on 9th September and you can buy them here.

It’s the perfect way to begin the next step of the journey for Fender, having played to 45,000 fans at London’s Finsbury Park in July and made his Glastonbury debut in June after ‘Seventeen Going Under’ secured him his second number one album last year.

But, as he explains in our exclusive interview, he’s still trying to take it all in…

This has been quite a year. You’ve played Finsbury Park and now you’re announcing a show at St James’ Park, which feels like the spiritual homecoming for Geordies…

Aye! It’s been mad. It’s felt like a baptism of fire. There’s been a lot of serious highs and there’s been a lot to take in. It’s been a very transitional period for us as a band, but for me I needed to figure out how to navigate the madness without losing my marbles!

To play St James’ Park just adds to that madness, right?

We’re actually the first Geordie band to ever do it. You can fact check that, but to headline it I’m pretty certain we were!

What was it like when someone first presented you with that prospect

To play St James’ Park has kinda always been a bit of a daft joke, ever since we started the band five years ago. I’ve always said ‘Imagine if we could play St James! That would be something else’. We came to the point where my manager said it’s happening and I was just like ‘oh my god!’ It’s fucking mind-boggling.

There’s a real buzz around Newcastle on the pitch too at the moment, which could make your gig feel like even more of a celebration

Fingers crossed eh! The way they’ve started the season, anything seems possible. Especially after that Man City game where we drew 3-3, it’s mad. That was a real moment for our city.

Is the gig going to be a celebration of all things Geordie then? I’ve got a mental image of you bringing out Alan Shearer and Ant & Dec on stage

Ha! Well I’ve got a few things in mind, but they’re not confirmed yet. There’s a few exciting things in the works. You never know, you just don’t know…

You’ve been playing arenas on your latest tour too. Has playing those shows allowed you to adapt as a performer to take in bigger gigs?

It’s like a footy match now, but without half time. It’s a headline set, but for us all the extra production, we don’t see much of it. But there’s lots of stuff going on behind the scenes that I don’t pay attention to. I didn’t realise how good some of the stuff at Finsbury Park looked until I watched it back, y’know. When we’re on that stage, it’s no different to when we’re playing a pub. For me and the boys it’s just getting up there, playing our set and it’s just our job. It is what it’s always been.

Even still, how was that experience of playing to 60,000 people at Finsbury Park?

It was just surreal. I’d been in there walking around before, but looking at that stage and where we were playing felt like such an ‘oh shit!’ moment. This all happened from writing songs in my mum’s bedroom, or the YMCA centre when I’d go down there to make a racket instead of upsetting the neighbours in my mum’s flat because the walls were thin. I’d be in the YMCA sat in an empty classroom with an amplifier, coming up with early ideas for ‘Hypersonic Missiles’. To think from there to here, that’s quite mind boggling.

Are you anticipating new music to be released by the time St James’ rolls around?

Potentially! I’ve been writing loads and we’re all gonna focus and start working on something. There might be a new single out by that point. You never really know when that stuff is gonna coming around until you get into the bulk of it, and we haven’t got into the bulk of the third record just yet. There usually tends to be a main idea that we run with and I’ve got that, but nothing much. I’ve got 20 songs written, so we can work from there.

Well here’s hoping for a new single at St James’ Park. We’ll see you there.

Yes! I cannot wait.