It has been 20 years since Fun Lovin’ Criminals released their compilation album Mimosa, a collection of rarities, b-sides, remixes and covers.
To celebrate in January they released a follow-up of sorts, Another Mimosa, featuring a range of eclectic original covers from Tom Petty’s Mary Jane’s Last Dance to Ice Cube’s You Know How We Do It.
So how did they pick the songs they wanted to include?
“I don’t think there is any recipe as to how we pick the songs,” reveals Fun Lovin’ Criminals frontman Huey Morgan.
“The Neil Diamond song Hello You, I used to sing to my daughter and when we would go on the tour bus we would sing hello you to each other, so we have always liked that song.
“The Tom Petty one we did before he died so it took on a new meaning afterwards.
“But I have no idea where the Ice Cube song comes from, we just like to do things differently. People don’t tend to cover rap songs but we do.”
The album also includes a reworking of their own song Love Unlimited and Southside plus new track Sunset.
“The album is just us goofing around,” explains Huey.
“It is like when you are in the car listening to the radio and a song comes on and you become part of the band.
“We like to mix it up do some hip hop, soul, but put our New York twist on to it.”
Mimosa originally came out between the bands second and third album with Huey saying that the album holds a special place to people so they wanted to revisit it and produce something else like it.
“We decided we just wanted to make music without the songwriting,” he adds.
“Do the songs we love and just look more at the producing side and putting it together.”
Fun Lovin’ Criminals burst onto the music scene in 1996 with debut single ‘Scooby Snacks’. The New York trio consists of frontman Huey, his founding partner Brian ‘Fast’ Leiser on bass, trumpet and samples and the groups longest-standing drummer Frank ‘The Rhythm Master’ Benbini.
“It is great to be able to do what we do at 50 to go out and play for fans be that of 12 years or 40 years, they understand what we do,” says Huey.
With a number of years in an industry that is ever changing, what does Huey think has seen the band carry on doing what they love?
“I have done some dumb stuff over the years but I like to think I have learnt from it,” he answers.
“I never got into the showbiz side of music just doing things for the sake of it.”
His advice to new musicians is: “Don’t listen to what anyone else says as it can be a distraction. Over the years I haven’t listened to people.”
Alongside the band Huey also hosts The Huey Show on BBC 6 Music on Saturdays at 10am and is on BBC Radio 2 on Saturdays 4am until 6am.
“I get to put a roof over my family’s head, make music with my band, do a radio show playing music to people, playing live and not be involved in that celebrity scene,” he says.
“I love my life that I can support my wife and kid and that I don’t have to go and sit in a jungle for two weeks of the year or have all that bull that new singers have to deal with now.”
Looking ahead to new music, Huey thinks that Another Mimosa will be their last of covers and says the band is already working on original material.
The band is currently on tour which kicked off in Birmingham at the end of January and will play Worthing Pavilion on March 7.
“Great to play live and be understood by the fans, we love touring and getting out there and playing,” he says.
“I’m not reinventing the wheel just putting my mind and soul into what I do and putting it out there for people to listen to.
“As musicians, artists and writers you put out what you do and then it is up to the public to do their own thing on it.”
“It is about playing music with my mind and heart.”
For more information on Fun Lovin' Criminals visit the website here