Robbie Williams“Our place is like Grafton Street at Christmas.”

As heard on The Ryan Tubridy Show

Share this Post

Can you imagine Robbie Williams presenting the Late Late Show? Well, he certainly can. Robbie and Ryan Tubridy chatted like old mates today, covering everything from making music to the joys of being a dad. Banter aside, it sounds like Ryan needs to watch his back:

“Yeah, I’m coming for your job. I’m gonna be doing TV next year. Not much I can tell you about now, but when it’s about to happen I want it to have the most impact that it can.”

After a stint on the last series of X-Factor, the entertainer made it clear that some form of TV presenting is in his future.  Robbie says he’s really a presenter having a go at singing rather than the other way around:

“I’ve always been a TV presenter; that’s what I am. You know like when you see a TV presenter or an actor that all of a sudden sings and you go, ‘Ah they can hold a tune, good for them.’ That’s me. I’m just heading back to what I actually am, you know: TV presenter, actor”.

With a Christmas album released today, Robbie told Ryan there were times where he couldn’t see the point of Christmas. He gave up drinking 19 years ago, “it was a case of stop drinking or die”, the singer told Ryan. For a long time, nostalgia about alcohol-fuelled festivities prevented Robbie from enjoying Christmas. Everything changed when he met US actor Ayda Field:

“Then I met my wife and she’s like, the spirit of Christmas. She goes over, over board, but you can’t help swinging into, you know, the swing of things with her. […] Our place is like Grafton Street at Christmas.”

Christmas Present, released today, is Robbie’s first ever Christmas album. It’s a mix of covers like Winter Wonderland and Santa Baby and original tracks. The man who wowed audiences as a child playing the Artful Dodger in Oliver was honest with Ryan about his motives for doing it:

*These are my favourite Christmas songs, but they’re actually just a tool to get people to get people to listen to the ones I’ve written myself.”

Family is everything to Robbie Williams these days. He and Ryan swapped stories on the joys of being a dad. Robbie says it’s full of fun, unexpected gifts just like digital ‘Easter eggs’ in a computer game:

“The gamers call it ‘Easter eggs’, like these computer games give you these Easter egg presents that you find as you achieve more levels, and they’re sort of like, surprises. I feel that’s the same way with kids.”

And speaking of family, one thing’s certain to endear Robbie to his Irish audience; his affection for his Irish heritage.

“I’ve always, even before coming to Ireland, grown up being Irish. In many ways I’ve always felt as though a part of my heart’s over there. My family are from Kilkenny and a part of me will always be Irish.”

You can hear more of Robbie on the joys of reading to your kids, subtle hints of a Robbie Williams biopic, and his “huge man-crush” on actor Hugh Jackman in the full interview here.

Ruth Kennedy

© The Listener 2019

Share this Post

Next Up