How and roughly when did you become a cricket aficionado?
Cricket was always on the radio when I was growing up and my brothers played a lot when I was very young. I definitely have a strong affection for listening to test matches. Of any sport, cricket is the one that really translates well to radio. It is especially grand to have test match on the radio while painting the out side of a house (something my family did a lot of growing up as my Mum is a serial mover/renovator).
Sam Scott (far right, in beard) with son Ralph (2 on the left), niece Lorna (2 next along) and nephew Max (5) at the Wellington test during the first rain delay.
Do you play yourself, now or in the past? Do any memorable innings / wickets / fielding feats stand out?
I've always loved playing with mates, but alas I am afflicted with odd vision. I don't see in stereo and my lack of depth perception makes me a pretty awful batsman against even the vaguest bit of pace. I did play for the Wellington High School team though. Batted at 11, fielded at third man, bowled a few overs as the specialist confusing bowler.
Yourself and Lawrence Arabia are known for being cricket fans – why is the game a favourite among musicians, do you think?
I'm not sure why musicians are drawn to cricket. It does seem to be a bit of a thing. I think the slower pace of it is appealing. It's not a macho sport, it's more about cunning and temperament.
Have you ever tried to arrange band commitments (tours etc) around cricket watching opportunities?
Not deliberately, but through some amazing stroke of luck we are touring the UK at the same time as the BLACKCAPS this May. Furthermore, Lawrence Arabia is doing some shows with us. So now setting aside a day for a visit to lords has become a tour priority. Our manager has been know to shift gig start times to fit in the end of rugby games but test cricket (my favourite form of the game) is quite obliging in it's day time hours, it doesn't really clash with gig times.
Who is your favourite current NZ player? Who is your all-time favourite?
I am pretty excited by Kane Williamson. Not just for his batting, but the way he puts so much effort into his part time bowling and fielding and what not. It's great to have young players who that intense about trying to win every little battle on the field. My favourite all time player is Chris Harris. For much the same reason really, that intensity and drive to win. Harris never once seemed intimidated by the opposition.
We thoroughly enjoyed your piece for the Guardian about the Basin test. If you weren’t a musician, would cricket scribe be an attractive alternate career?
Writing about cricket is second on the list of my dream jobs, the first being a travel writer… neither is about to happen though so I best keep going at this music stuff!
Cheesy question alert - if the recent third test against England was a classic album, which one would it be?!?
Well seeing as we didn't actually win it would have to be an all time classic that was actually a bit of a commercial failure. So let's roll with The Velvet Underground & Nico (self titled) and excellent document with ups and downs, frustrations and freak outs, which totally flopped but somehow changed the world.