June 18, 2024

An Interview with Paul Roberts ‘’Sniff ‘n’ the Tears’’ The band’s…sole constant member


Sniff ‘n’ the Tears is a British band, best known for their 1979 amazing hit song by the songwriter Paul Roberts, ‘’Driver’s  Seat ‘’, with more than 10.500.000 You tube views .

‘’Driver’s Seat ‘’ was a hit song, which has been loved all over the world and this song remains alive till today!     

The British band Sniff ‘n’ the Tears are led and remain alive in the year 2018 by the singer and songwriter Paul Roberts, who is the band’s sole constant member.    

Sniff ‘n’ the Tears  band, last studio album, released  in the year 2017 with the title  ‘’Random Elements‘’ , this album contains eleven amazing songs.

The album was recorded over four years with long-time collaborator keyboardist Robin Langridge and Sniff ’n’ the Tears guitarist Les Davidson who both contributes to the songwriting. Joining them, old Sniff alumni, bass player Nick South and drummer Paul Robinson. Seven years since the last album, “Downstream”, a new chapter begins with “Random Elements”.

We also, have to say about, Paul Roberts that he is a photorealistic painter, is also responsible for painting all of Sniff ‘n’ the Tears  album covers.

One day of November listening again and again the song ‘’One love’’ from the album The Games Up , surfing the internet we chatted with Paul Roberts.


ATHENS CALLING: Hello Paul! Really I am happy! It is very important to chat with Sniff ‘n’ the Tears , the band’s sole constant member, also  I believe  that ,with a noted  photorealistic painter!   

PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): Hi.

ATHENS CALLING: Sniff ‘n’ Tears   is a band that still alive until today, with two years active (1977-1983) and (1992-present). How do you feel and what you have to say about it? 

PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): The first Sniff ‘n’ the Tears was in 1972 we played the pub circuit in London. That stopped because the guitarist had to do military service in Iran. I went to France for two years and when I came back the new Sniff was born, but that’s another story. It’s still going because I love doing it and there is still enough of an audience to justify it.

ATHENS CALLING: And about the name ,who was the godfather of the band name?

PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): With the first band we tried a few names and the I came up with “The Tears” our manager suggested  Sniff ‘n’ the Tears  because I had Hay fever and sniffed a lot.

ATHENS CALLING: Many of the past years bands, returned today with concerts and with new albums! What is the reason? They return with a commercial purpose or for an artistic interest?

PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): I think mainly because there is an audience and they still want to do it. It’s not just kids listening to music now.

ATHENS CALLING: One song, one hit from 1978, “Driver’s Seat’’, till today that song it remains a hit. What is the secret that keeps it alive?

PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): I don’t really know. I think it has an energy and it’s unusual in its structure, the lyric is positive.  People seem to love it.

ATHENS CALLING: And after six years without c.d from the band …the amazing new album in the year 2017 release with the name Random Elements. Tell us about this album… about the music and the lyrics.

PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): The world is changing rapidly, new challenges and a lot of uncertainty. A lot of the songs are concerned with that. The contrast of obscene wealth and abject poverty is creating a schism, which politicians are not dealing with.

ATHENS CALLING: Which one of the songs, from this album, is your favorite and why?


PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): Maybe “Following Rainbows” a song about identity in a world where so much is promised. We are all more connected than ever before but also more isolated.

ATHENS CALLING: O.k.  Paul. Let’s talk now about the World music scene, tell us please who are your favorite Musicians or Groups or Album.


PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears):I listen to a lot of different music so hard to say. Rhiannon Giddings, Valerie June. I’m enjoying Paul McCartney’s new one.

ATHENS CALLING: Dear Paul I think that You are a noted photorealistic painter and now I want to know you, that I love your painting art. Really I believe that they are all amazing paintings. What is the cause of your inspiration?


PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): People. I’m interested in humanity and all its foibles. The way we express ourselves. The  intricacy of that expression and the beauty of the world.

ATHENS CALLING: Sorry, Paul  but at this moment that we are chatting , there is a reportage  from TV Euro News , about BREXIT . Sorry but I want to ask you about it. What have you to say? 


PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ Tears): It is a joke. Delusional and backward looking. David Cameron made a massive miscalculation which will be the only thing he’s remembered for. It’s also part of populism which has produced Donald Trump and affected other European countries. Which is either a cry of despair, or a protest against being told to adapt to a changing world by people they don’t trust.

ATHENS CALLING:  And for the immigration problem?


PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): What was called “the third world” can no longer be ignored. People, who want a better life, traditionally migrate. I think this is just the start of it.

ATHENS CALLING: Yes .Let’s ’’ travelling ‘’ now in Greece. Would you like to tell us, if you know a Greek songwriter or a singer or a song? 


PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): My dad was really in to Nana Mouskouri but I must confess I don’t know any of today’s Greek singers.

ATHENS CALLING: Before to say good bye to you, something about your future plan any concerts or a new album?


PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears):Me and guitarist Les Davidson just did our first gig in over twenty years, as an acoustic duo, which went so well we will definitely do more. Just need to organize  it.

ATHENS CALLING: All the best to you …Many thanks Paul for the interview.


PAUL ROBERTS (Sniff ‘n’ the Tears): Thank you.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *