Fun Lovin' Criminals' Huey Morgan interview: I live to be a hellraiser
THE gravelly voice of Huey Morgan answers the phone.
"Hi, is that Huey?," I say as the line crackles. "Who else would it be?," he says in a thick New York accent, laughing to himself.
The frontman of Fun Lovin' Criminals is unquestionably one of life's personalities. His voice is as thick as treacle and his effortless cool persona befits a rock 'n' roll legend.
Born in the Big Apple, the half Puerto Rican and half Irish musician has established himself as the figurehead of the British-based New York band who became famed for their eclectic style.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
But Huey is not chatting to The Buzz about the success of hit tracks like Scooby Snacks.
He wants people to sit up and take note of his new venture Huey Morgan and the New Yorkers and his new album, Say It To My Face.
Gloucester Guildhall has been chosen as one of 12 small venues that will host Huey's famous gritty vocals and deft blues licks.
"We wanted it to be an intimate experience doing 12 gigs at smaller venues but I shot myself in the foot as the tickets are selling well.
"It's a bit of an experiment really, we are a new band with a new album. I think it's less polished and there's a raw sound.
"There are some country influences in there and it's very introspective. "It's lyrically uncensored. I didn't expect it to be put out there when the lyrics were written. I just wanted to make something with my friends that chronicles our own friendship."
Songs on the album include the fitting Stick It To The Man, a nod perhaps to the rebellious nature of Huey's youth where he ran into trouble with the law.
Given a choice between prison and joining the Marines, he chose the latter. Since moving to London in the mid-2000s, the 44-year-old has become a charismatic presence across the UK's cultural spectrum, and a popular radio DJ on both BBC 6 Music and Radio 2.
Huey, by his own admission, was never going to be normal.
"My music is for people my age. And I tried to stay away from everything that's normal. Because normal is not me.
"I'm a human being and I have opinions, whether they are good or bad. I'm not going to be that guy who just shows his bright white teeth and smiles and reads an autocue."
He admits that he has always had a gravelly voice but the "tequila has helped", and says he never wanted to be the type of artist who was yelling at people with a drink in hand.
"It would have been very easy to have gone down that route if I was successful in the country I lived in," he says.
"But my family and friends definitely kept me grounded.
"People just want to be on TV or on the front of magazines now and I don't understand. It's no big deal man.
"I think there's this fascination with train wrecks as well. It's like when you see a car crash and people slow down to take a look.
"It's the Amy Winehouse syndrome, such a talent wasted but the record companies didn't complain when she died."
In an act of generosity, Huey is donating any money they make from their upcoming gigs to charities. For him, it's all about his love of music.
"I don't care what people think of me and whether they think I am a good guy. Like Frank said, I want to do it my way."
Opinionated, foul-mouthed, but above all, passionate, Huey Morgan is without doubt, a force of nature. Once he may have been seen as a tropical storm, but you'll still need to batten down the hatches.
Tickets for his 7.30pm gig next Thursday cost £15. Call 01452 503050.