Dave Spikey's Christmas Tour
PUBLISHED: 14:14 17 December 2009 | UPDATED: 16:24 20 February 2013
Comedian Dave Spikey prepares for his favourite time of the year and tells Paul Mackenzie why he'll be on the move on Christmas Day
Dave Spikey always ensures he has the last couple of weeks of December free so he can enjoy Christmas. And although he has just played the last of a hundred and odd dates at theatres across the country, hes already looking forward to his next tour. This one will be closer to his Westhoughton home, though.
On Christmas Day there will probably be four or five couples who will meet in the Royal Oak and have a drink then well go off to one couples house for a glass of sherry, pull some crackers, tell some jokes and have starters.
We might have a soup course next, then the main course - my wife and I are vegetarian so we take our own vegetarian roast with us - and desserts, coffee and biscuits, all in different houses. Its all nice and local and its a real laugh.
I love Christmas, I always have. I leave my Christmas shopping until the last couple of weeks to get the atmosphere. I think its really sad that people do their Christmas shopping in October, you miss out on all the carols and the music and the hustle and bustle. Its all part of the fun for me, going to the Christmas markets in Manchester or Preston and dashing about from shop to shop for peoples presents.
Dave was born in Farnworth and worked as a biomedical scientist at Bolton General Hospital before making the break into showbusiness. He presented day time television quiz shows but shot to stardom as Jerry St Clair in Phoenix Nights, alongside Peter Kay. The show ran for two series but despite frequent rumours of a third, Dave said: I would have thought it would be very, very unlikely.
I would have loved to do something else, a Christmas special maybe, but its been a bit long now since the last one and no-ones mentioned anything. You can leave these things too long and theres always a chance it wouldnt be as good. Peters off doing other things anyway and we couldnt do it without him.
Dave has been busy too, appearing on television comedy shows and touring stand-up shows, the latest of which (The Best Medicine, DVD out now) spawned a book of amusing stories from local newspapers which is called He Took My Kidney, Then Broke My Heart - a headline from his home town paper the Bolton News.
The local papers are full of stories which I thought were funny because I was coming at them from a slightly skewed perspective. I thought maybe Id find one or two but I found hundreds of them and then it was suggested that I put them together in a book.
I have enjoyed this tour so much more than the previous two because I crafted it from scratch. My comedy is all about everyday life and I am constantly making notes and putting them in a drawer then I emptied the drawer and started working them together in sections.
I was on stage about two hours a night with a pop quiz in the middle. Im always singing along to music and on this tour Ive been listening to music as Ive been driving around and I started analysing the lyrics. A lot of the time they are complete rubbish and I think theyll form the basis of my next tour in a couple of years.
My all-time favourite is the Roy Orbison classic I Drove All Night. It goes I drove all night to get to you/ Is that all right?/ I drove all night, crept in your room/ Woke you from your sleep to make love to you/ Is that all right?
Is that all right? That should be your first question, Roy. And he drove all night? He shouldnt be doing that, hes registered blind. Crept in her room? He could be in the wrong house.
That tour should hit the road in spring 2011 but he has plenty of work to be doing in the meantime, once Christmas is over anyway.
Ive got a few projects on the go. Im writing an autobiography for one thing. Its hard because I didnt think anyone would be interested so Im making bits of it up and calling it a sorta-biography. Ive invented bits to make things more interesting - my grandads got a whole new persona he never had.
Theres a couple of television projects that Im waiting to hear about and Ive just done a film with Neil Fitzmaurice and Justin Moorhouse and a few other old mates. Its a comedy drama called Charlie Noades Rest in Peace.
Im working on a longer term project for a play at Bolton Octagon, too. They say write about what you know and this is all sort of medical-based drawing on my time in the NHS. Its about a girl with leukaemia and her search for a suitable bone marrow donor.
Its a comedy-drama, she has a bright, optimistic out-look. We found in hospital that people with cheery perspectives generally had a better prognosis - there you go again, you see, laughter is the best medicine.