You're back on tour very soon. Are you looking forward to getting started?

Getting back on the road is a continuance of the fact that I’ve never really left the road. Touring is all I've done and I'm still on the road but I am certainly looking forward to playing these shows in the UK again.

Do you still get that same buzz playing live as you did when you first started Slade?

I certainly do. We did two shows in the Czech Republic and two shows in the Ukraine recently and they were pretty moving. They were all packed out and the passion of the response to us was incredible. The audience weren't all in their 50`s either – there were quite a lot of people in their 20s which is amazing. The response we got was absolutely incredible. I kid you not, they would not leave the building, we'd done the Christmas song and everything. I can't think of anything else apart from family that gives me a greater reward.

What about the setlist. What have you got lined up for this tour?

Of course, we do all of the hits that people want to hear and we'll do one or two treats maybe In For A Penny which wasn't really a big hit but I really like it as it has a guitar passage that's quite haunting a bit like Parisienne Walkways by Gary Moore. We'll also probably do How Does It Feel. That always goes down well and I know that it's Noel Gallagher's favourite song.

You have Mal McNulty on vocals and he's been with you since 2005. How difficult was it for you to find someone who could sing the songs as well as Noddy?

You might be able to replace your guitarist but your singer is something else. Noddy was a hard act to follow.

When I lost Noddy, it wasn't unpleasant but it was hard. It was hard because I still had the passion. He was totally unique and came from a similar working-class background. His voice was like the cry of a working man surrounded by pumping factories and noise. It was so difficult to find someone who could sing the songs like Noddy but I think we found the right person in Mal.

Where did you first come across Mal?

He was actually in Sweet for a while and it was Andy Scott who suggested him. We did have a different singer before but he didn't have the grittiness of Mal. He's a nice bloke too.

You've just released your biography, So Here It Is. How long did it take you write this?

It's taken about 69 years. I always wanted to do it but because I didn't do it years ago when we went back on the road, I think it makes for a better story. I had to survive Nod leaving, I had to keep it going. The book explains the depression I went through. I was walking on stage to huge crowds but I was taken over by depression for three years and I had to drag myself onstage. Coming to terms with depression is very difficult, for a start, you don't understand why you`re like that. The book is a bit of a period drama with ups and downs and lessons and tells how I had a stroke on stage in Germany ten years ago. These are the things I wanted to talk about as well as the great times I had with Slade.

Merry Christmas Everybody is an evergreen Christmas favourite. What do you put its popularity down to?

Good music comes from real life. The phenomenal popularity of the Christmas song reflects a time of strikes of problems. The nation related to the lyrical content of the song as it was exactly what the people were doing at Christmas time. We weren't preaching, we were being real. I think the song has just become engrained with the whole atmosphere of Christmas over the years so that when you hear it, it reminds you of having a great time at Christmas.

Christmas is just a few weeks away and we'll undoubtedly be hearing your song many times between now and then. How will you be celebrating Christmas this year?

I'm a family man and will be having a big family Christmas with my kids and grandkids. When I walk out on stage, I become that rock star person but when I walk off stage I'm just Dave and love being with my family.

Slade play at the O2 Academy, Newcastle on 5th December. Tickets available from or