Van Morrison, Mark Knopfler and Frank Zappa Were Once Leo Sayer's Backing Singers -
Leo Sayer photo by Ros OGorman

Leo Sayer photo by Ros O'Gorman

Van Morrison, Mark Knopfler and Frank Zappa Were Once Leo Sayer’s Backing Singers

by Paul Cashmere on April 14, 2020

in News

One of the lesser known fun-facts about Leo Sayer is that he once recorded a song titled ‘Passion’ and the backing singers were Mark Knopfler, Van Morrison and Frank Zappa.

The song ‘Passion’ was relegated to a 1986 b-side to the single ‘Solo’ and never made it to a Leo Sayer album.

Speaking on Saturday Night with Dr Sally Cockburn on 3AW, 2GB, 4BC and 2CC Leo told the story. “I went to AIR Studios in Oxford Street,” he said. “Mark Knopfler was recording in the next room and Frank Zappa was recording in the next room to that. I took over Studio One, the big studio. They couldn’t even get in. I had all these musicians and singers.

“Every five minutes Frank Zappa would wander in and ask “what are you recording” and then the next moment Van Morrison would walk in and then Mark Knopfler and they all used to just sit around the studio.

“The backing vocals are all those guys which was just one of those peculiar things that happened. I was burning money in there but I decided to do the track. There was a great guitarist, Big Al Hodge. He was a very underrated British guitarist who worked with me and Tina Turner. He was with me for about 10 years. It is a fantastic track. I only just remembered it recently. I hope you like it”.

Listen to the full interview with Leo Sayer (and hear the Passion story at 28 minutes 45 minutes)-

Leo is working on his autobiography the ‘The Adventures of Leo Sayer: Just A Boy’. He’ll tell this story and more when book is published.

‘Saturday Night with Dr Sally Cockburn’ can be heard live on 2GB Sydney, 3AW Melbourne, 4BC Brisbane and 2CC Canberra Saturday nights between 7 and 10pm.

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