Interview By Kimmo Tattari / June 2015
There have been turbulent times at the Nazareth camp lately. First the legendary frontman Dan McCafferty was forced to quit touring in 2013 due to medical reasons. In 2014 we saw the new singer Linton Osborne behind the mic, but that lasted less than a year. Steel Mill met the new Nazareth singer, Carl Sentance, just before the very first gig of this revised lineup in Hämeenlinna, Finland.
Hi Carl, and welcome to the Steel Mill! Tonight is your first gig with Nazareth, am I right?
It will be the first gig, yes! It’s a very special one. It’s been a while since the audition in January, or was it in February? I’ve been very busy until now, but I’m really looking forward to this gig.
How was the process? Did you apply for the job, or did the guys just call you?
I had a phone call from a promoter agent, and he said there might be a job I might be interested in. And I was like, who is this? And then he told who it was. I didn’t hear from them for a few weeks and thought they might think I’m too busy. I was doing other things at the time. Then I thought it might be really interesting, so sent them a mail telling that I’m still interested, and if they like me to come over for a jam. So they said yes, and the next day I hopped on a plane and went to Scotland, and did an audition. We did a few songs, and the band seemed to be happy. And I was happy too!
So you were offered the job instantly?
Yes, and I was very happy. Wow, this is great!
Like you mentioned earlier, you’ve been quite busy with other projects. Did you guys have
any time to rehearse the Nazareth set?
Yes, we had four days before this. It’s been tough you know, cause there’s a lot to memorise… Less than two weeks to learn 16 songs. That’s not easy.
Speaking about other projects, are you still working with Don Airey?
Yes, still working with Don. Writing new material…
And also your other band Persian Risk?
And with Persian Risk as well. But Persian Risk is not such a well known band, so it’s very hard to get gigs, you know…
(taking out the old 1983 Persian Risk 7 inch single Ridin’ High)
Wow! Fantastic! That’s a really old one! I still have these wristbands!
Yeah, those are a bit Rob Halford style…
Yeah, he is my hero, definitely!
Have you ever met him?
No, but I’d love to meet him. I heard he’s a really nice guy, so that would be cool. Hopefully some day… I saw K.K. Downing in 1977 or 1978 in Cardiff. They were touring the ’Sin After Sin’ album. That was fantastic!
Speaking about your roots, what were your influences, and how did you get involved in metal?
Well, Rob Halford and Judas Priest, really. Sad Wings Of Destiny album just blew me away! And before that it was bands like Deep Purple in the late 70s. Definitely Rob Halford, and also Iron Maiden and bands like this. It was only on later years I got into Ronnie James Dio, and found out what an amazing, fantastic singer he was. What an amazing band that was!
So Persian Risk in the early 80s was your first band?
Yeah, pretty much. And, in 2011, I thought we might bring Persian Risk back together. ’Once a King’ came out in 2012, and then we did ’Who am I’, the latest one, in 2014. Before that I made my own album, simply called ’Carl Sentance’ in 2009. It sold quite a few copies. I was kinda surprised, really. I didn’t expect so many people remember me really, you know. After that I thought, hmm, let’s try to get Persian Risk back together. In the end it was a fresh, new band, so nobody from the original lineup. The other guys were busy doing their own things, you know. Phil Campbell is now with Motörhead, but he came and played two tracks on the latest, ’Who am I’ album.
And before bringing Persian Risk back, you spent a few years with Swiss rockers Krokus?
Yes, Krokus. I joined in 1999, and was with them two and a half years. It was a great experience. We did some really big shows. The biggest one was with AC/DC in a football stadium in front of some 30 000 people. And I made one record with Krokus, Round 13, in 1999.
Should we expect another Persian Risk album in the future?
Yes, sure. At some point. I’m just so busy right now doing this, but I’m sure there will be a time soon when we start writing and doing a few gigs. And I should get back with Don Airey in a week or so, try to get some songs together for a new album, so I’m keeping really busy!
And you’ve got a tour planned with Nazareth right now?
There is, in the summer. We’re going to the US in August. It’s not just advertised yet. I think they are waiting for certain gigs to get booked. And we’ve got some festival gigs, one is actually with Deep Purple, so I get to see Don Airey out there…
So, how do you see the future of Nazareth? It is the second new start for the band…
Yeah, it is. Who knows, it depends on the fans, really. I hope they’re gonna like me. It’s still unknown. Nobody’s gonna replace Dan McCafferty, that’s for sure. He’s got such a special voice, and my voice is completely different… Obviously not everybody’s gonna like it, but hopefully we could win some new fans. Time will tell.
Do you think it will be just touring and playing old songs, or maybe recording new material?
Hopefully record. I really hope next year…
Have you heard anything from Dan? How is he doing nowadays?
Well, he just called Pete some ten minutes ago! He was on the phone wishing us good luck for the gig! That was really nice!
Thank you Carl, have a great first gig!
Click here to revisit our 2008 Dan McCafferty interview and Millworkers’ essential picks from Nazareth discography!
Nazareth official website:
Persian Risk official website: