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Jane McDonald

Jane portrait Jane McDonald, much loved singer, Loose Women host and star of BBC show The Cruise – releases her highly anticipated new album ‘Jane’ later this month. Bent decided it was time for a chinwag with the Yorkshire lass.

What are your thoughts on the other Loose Women?

I know you’d probably love me to say that we all hate each other and that we’re at each other’s throats all the time when we’re off air but, in fact, the exact opposite is true. We are actually all very good friends. We are just like the “Sex And The City” girls. We tell each other everything, and I really do mean EVERYTHING!! We love going out together and having a meal or a social drink or two and having a really good laugh and a good old natter.

Don’t you ever just want to punch their lights out?

lol..well !!..There have been moments when it has crossed my and I am sure that there must have been times when they have felt like  punching my lights out too, but surely that’s the same for everyone.

Tell us about the new album?

I love it… love it… love it! Every time I complete an album it instantly becomes my favourite and, although I am proud of all my previous albums, I feel that the production values are much higher on this one. I simply love every track. The album includes 5 of my own co-written songs that I am immensely proud of and a few fantastically, camp covers including, from the 70’s- “Sunny’s”  “Doctors. Orders” and the brilliant Northern Soul Classic “9 times out of 10”. I just can’t stop singing them!!! I am really excited about it all, and the fact that it is being released on my own label. (Yes! my own record label), who would have thought it… fab darling!

Are you still followed by the gay crowd who find you a bit…camp?

I am so pleased to be able to answer that question with a very big YES !! I have always had many gay friends and to be honest, I have always said that, if I hadn’t been born a woman I would have been a man in drag!! And I mean it ! lol. I always find gay people so easy to be around, we just “get” each other and again, let’s be honest, they have the absolute best taste darling!! So, after my success on “The Cruise” I was over the moon to discover that much of the gay community had accepted me as some kind of “camp” diva (because, after all, that is what I am! lol). Again, you see, we just “get” each other.

Didn’t you present the Mr Gay UK competition on TV once… how was that for you?

Yes I did, I think it was 1999 and I can honestly say it was one of the wildest, fun nights of my life. I was in my element surrounded by the some of the most outrageous, fun loving, gorgeous happy people it has ever been my pleasure to meet. The only downside to the entire evening was that I (obviously) went to bed on my own!!!

Do you ever miss the Cruise lifestyle?

I don’t get the chance to miss it!! Once or twice a year I perform, in concert, on some of the finest ships in the world, although these days I reside in the finest suites on board darling, as opposed to being in a tiny cabin next to the engine room. Many people think I am crazy to continue performing on the ships when I did it for so long in my early career but I absolutely love it! It is where everything started for me and, although some people knock it and think I should be ashamed of it in some way, I am very proud of it! That period in my life was a fantastic learning experience and it is a very valuable way of mastering the art of being able to entertain people from all walks of life and from all nationalities. It’s also bloody good fun and a real laugh!

What was better; Receiving Yorkshire Woman of the year or selling out the MGM Grand in Las Vegas?

It is difficult to say which one is best because they are both so special to me for different reasons. Performing at the MGM grand in Las Vegas is a magical experience for any entertainer, it is such a special place. Receiving Yorkshire Woman of the year however, was so humbling. I love my native Yorkshire- the people, with their great personalities, determination and humour

Which is your ideal venue to perform – Heaven or The Palladium?

Well, I have to say The Palladium as, to date, I have never performed at Heaven!

I would love to- and I look forward to, hopefully being able to do so soon. I am sure I would absolutely love it!!

Jane McDonald’s new album ‘Jane’ is out on 11th August  on JMD.