Thursday, August 31, 2006


You could almost snuffle out a tear wrapped in pound notes as Robbie Williams looks in the mirror and realises he's actually quite naff:

“I’m never going to be RADIOHEAD or MUSE or whoever — I’m Robbie Williams.

“To the six million people who keep buying my records, I’m the best thing out there. But there’s a whole group of people think I’m a joke, that I am some end-of-the-pier entertainer, which I am.

“I was brought up on holiday camps.

“My father is a cabaret artist — in the Eighties I saw shed-loads of cabaret. It’s where I grew up, that’s where I learnt my craft, so that’s what I am.

“Now some people like to pretend that they never went to Blackpool on holiday, or spent a week in their caravan in Great Yarmouth.

“I did! I’m a Bluecoat.

“I’d be an entertainment manager in Caernarvon Bay, if I hadn’t written Angels.

“Some people will look at that and go, ‘Well that’s un-credible, and comes from a naff place.’ Yeah we do! That’s Britain! That’s where we come from.”

But surely, Robbie, you don't really embrace the naffness of your life - oh, you might do an interview like this, all Mavis from Corrie voices and pity me: but what about the bold claims of capturing America? The hanging out with Oasis, hoping whatever it is they had would rub off on you? If you really believe you are Val Doonican, what's with the rat pack stances and the attempts to be Sinatra?

Oh... and didn't someone else write Angels?

“We didn’t all come out of the womb and put a parka on and Wallabies and say, ‘Listen I’m 18 months old, but what I’d really like to do is ride a scooter.’

“We didn’t do that. We all went on holiday to holiday camps.

“That’s where I come from. I’m not THOM YORKE.

“Don’t know where he went on holiday, he probably went to museums and burlesque theatre or something.

“But I went to Tenby!”

Victoria Newton is full of praise for this "bravery":

And I have to say I think he’s got it spot on. He’s got nothing to be ashamed of.

He should be proud of his working-class Stoke-on-Trent roots because they made him what he is today — and that’s why the nation loves him.

Or - as he himself acutely notes - it's his past twenty years of trying to shake off his roots that have turned him into a national joke.

There's nothing wrong with cabaret and holiday camps (well, up to a point - Filey was pretty bleak) but Williams now trying to peg himself as a kind of musical Alan Bennett is just a hilarious attempt to find another persona that people might like. Unless he's turning the full size footy pitch in the back of his LA mansion into a donkey derby track, we're not believing a word of it.