Sonique interview to FHM (UK), March 2001


Blighty's queen of the decks on Olympic ambitions, Bryan Adams' dribble and a lovestruck violinist …

FHM: Before fame strucks with your first hits It feels so good and Sky, you were already a well-known DJ. Did you get any flak for being a lady "spinner"? FHM magazine (UK) #134/March 2001
Sonique: Not really. Besides, if I had, you'd have known about it, because I'd have beaten everyone up! Every time I did a gig, the word would spread. People would come over and say, "I've never seen you do a bad show," which was great because I'll always put in more than 100 per cent. It's weird, actually, I get loads of people coming up to me and kissing my hand. There must be about 20 geezers a night doing it.

FHM: What about deranged stalkers?
Sonique: I've had some strange fan mail. This guy was really getting deep about the way my eyebrows cover the tops of my eyes, and how my soul is the air. He was going on about how lucky anybody would be to be my man and just really went into one about how much he loved me. He even sent me a picture of himself. The weird thing is, he wasn't old or anything, he was actually good looking. He's a violin player. I read the letter to my mum and she was like, "Whoah! Be careful of that." He's never showed up at a gig, I don't think, but then I don't exactly want to meet him.

FHM: At the height of the rave scene, you were singing in legendary dance troop S'Express. Were there boiler-suit clad punters waving luminous light sticks at your gigs?
Sonique: Ha! Yeah, the people we hung around with were quite weird; they used to love getting naked.
Q Ever used your athletic skills in bed?
A Oh yeah. Men are all eyes, so I just crank myself into weird positions.
A lot. There was this one guy who would pour this strange gunk over his head: once it was all over him, he'd let it go dry, then go out and start raving. You could still see his eyes, but not much else. That was really bizarre.

FHM: What's the best outfit you've come up with to cloak your fame from the eyes of lechers and weirdos?
Sonique: I never get away with any of that stuff - all my disguises are crap. I've tried the big hat, the glasses and baggy clothes, but still someone will come up and recognise me. I'm going to have to go for the classic big nose, moustache and funny glasses, I reckon, because I can look like a man, easy. People call me a man all the time. I'll be sitting on an aeroplane and the hostess will say, "Hello sir, what would you like?" I just turn around and say, "You don't want me to take all my clothes off, do you?" and that usually sorts it out.

FHM: Wouldn't it be better to stand up and beat them senseless, man-style?
Sonique: No. But I am very handy with my fists. When I was younger I was a bit of a tearaway. I wasn't a bully - I just wouldn't stand for any crap. I remember once I decked a bird because she was standing in the middle of the road when I was trying to drive past. I beeped my horn, she turned around and was like, "F*** off!" and I thought, "I'm trying to save your life here!"

FHM: And that's when you got out and smashed her face in?
Sonique: Well, I was like, "What's wrong with you, man? Get away from my car!" But she kept telling me to f*** off, so I got out and hit her. I felt really bad about it for weeks, thinking "What if her family comes after me?" I got into another fight one time, but when the girl started, I just let her hit me - I didn't want any more trouble. It was over a man anyway, and I wasn't going to fight over him.

FHM: You were a talented pentathlete as a nipper. Did you ever sit and twiddle your way through Daley Thompson's Decathlon on the Sinclair Spectrum?
Sonique: No! He was such a show-off at that time anyway. He went to the same sports club I did - and he upset me and my friend so much once at the track. All we wanted was an autograph and he didn't want to know. He'd only talk to the fit girls around the track. Anyway, I has to give up the running when I got injured. It was the night before a big race and I was really nervous. For a reason I'll never know I was standing on this wall which connected to the roof of a bin shed. I'd gone to walk across it and I was so busy thinking about the race the next day that I missed it completely, fell and went bang right between the legs. As I went down I hit another brick wall. I was holding my crotch, but the damage was really on the shin - I'd taken a chunk clean out of it.

Sonique - click on image to enlarge FHM: So you were laid up for a while then?
Sonique: No. I raced the next day and came second! But it got me thinking about what would happen if I got a serious injury and was laid up for months. I'm not the sort of person to just sit around doing nothing, so I decided to give up. My mum was really cool about it, and so was my family, but my trainer wasn't so happy. He banged for three months about how I could have been an Olympic star. Running had been my life - I hadn't even experienced the life as a girl then, so it was the time to get out in the world and find me. That's when I went out and did some serious partying.

FHM: Presumably, then, you put the old dear through hell …
Sonique: I put my mum through loads. Every piece of grief you could think of, I put her through. Up until about eight years ago I wasn't really together as a person. I was always rebellious, I was trouble and I was bang out of order. I left home when I was 16 and ended up living in a YMCA in north London. Then my mum got married and left for Trinidad; I stayed and went through every piece of shit you could possibly think of. I was living on the street for a while with no money at all. Sometimes I'd have a single packet of crisps to eat all day.

FHM: You're minted now, though - what's your biggest extravagance?
Sonique: I used to spend all my money flying from Ibiza to England every weekend to DJ - it cost me a fortune. Obviously, I've bought myself a few nice things, a flash watch, some diamonds - I love diamonds. My only other real extravagance is brandy. I drink it all the time, I know it's heavy, but it's my poison. I used to drink a bottle a night when I was DJing - you just don't notice because the crowd's giving you so much adrenalin. Someone could stab you and you wouldn't notice. Then the minute I left I'd be all over the place, we'd get in the car to drive to the next gig and I'd be like, "Stop the car, I've got to get this shit out!" - then I'd puke it up on the side of the road. I don't drink that much now.

Sonique FHM: On the subject of drunken ladies, funny man Richard Blackwood told FHM last year that black women were hard to pull …
Sonique: … I've never been easy to get into bed, but then other times I might think, "F*** it," and go for it, literally, but I've never really enjoyed that as much. It's just not in me to give up the poom-poom that easy. Bryan Adams had a pop at me once. It wasn't such a good thing: he's really short and he's got that face like the moon, craters everywhere. He tried twice, once in Germany and then at the Party In The Park gig in London last summer. He didn't say anything as such, just dribbled and asked if I'd like to do something some time. I did the classic woman thing and gave him hope.

    (© FHM magazine (UK) 2001. Interview by Gavin Brett. Photography by Barry J. Holmes)

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