It's a strangely appropriate occasion, since you could argue that Blunt is a kind of pop equivalent to Beadle. Both have dodgy beards, of course.
But it's the way the two men's marketability clashes with their apparent unpopularity that makes them oddly similar. Beadle's Daily Telegraph obituary noted sagely that he "achieved the paradoxical double distinction of being voted Britain's second most- hated man after Saddam Husseinand of being the most avidly watched presenter on television".
This, too, is the James Blunt paradox. James Hillier Blount, to quote the full name often employed by his sneering critics, has achieved huge commercial success. His debut album, Back to Bedlam, sold 11 million copies, and in was the bestselling record anywhere in the world. He's cracked both America and Japan. His new album, All the Lost Souls, has been selling at a healthy rate, and he is about to embark on yet another sell-out UK tour.
Yet something about him winds people up. There's the music: after heavy radio play, the ever-so-catchy "You're Beautiful" began to get on everyone's nerves. So did Blunt's posh background, earnest delivery and shrill, other-worldly voice. Eventually, the fickle mistress of fame turned on him. One poll of "the most annoying things in life", published in July, put him at number four, just behind cold-callers and queue-jumpers. Eventually, and, in retrospect, perhaps inevitably, his surname became cockney rhyming slang for a word unsuitable for any family newspaper.
Firstly, because he's about to go on tour, and has a new single out called "Carry Me Home". Secondly, because it's about time that people gave him a fair hearing. As Charone herself puts it, the success of his current album, which has soldWhen You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again - Barbara James With National Dance Orchestra (2) - When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again / So Long (Vinyl), copies in the UK, has made "way too easy and cheap a target for all the James-baters out there".
What's it like, I ask, being called the most unpopular man in pop? For me, the truth comes from the people who come to the shows and sing the words to the songs back to me. It's a great thrill when people say to me that a song of mine describes perfectly how they are feeling.
It's not something I expected to happen. Blunt looks everything you'd expect him to be. He has at When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again - Barbara James With National Dance Orchestra (2) - When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again / So Long (Vinyl) a centimetre of stubble, and wears a raggedy T-shirt under a jacket, which he keeps on, jeans and a pair of very battered-looking brown biker boots.
He holds your gaze while he talks, sometimes with an intense, John the Baptist-like stare. The strangest thing about him is his hair, which is hanging about in his eyes and has been flattened into a monk's tonsure where it has been squashed under his baseball cap. We move on to the safer ground of his new album. To go by its lyrics, All the Lost Souls is preoccupied with miscommunication and damaged women.
Simone, the muse of the song "", is looking a bit haggard from spending too much time in the Ibizan superclub Pacha; "Carry You Home" laments a girl whose only friend is "trouble"; "Annie" is about a woman reaching for stardom but falling short.
There's an awful lot about not being heard or understood, and references to screaming and shouting. What's he getting at? There are some women in this album, but there were boys in the first one.
So that one was about boys and this one is about girls. The not-being-able-to-hear stuff I think is just because I find it difficult to express myself. The album, Blunt insists, is about your past making up your present and future, which is why the front cover is a picture of his face now, made out of hundreds of older, smaller photographs.
He didn't even want his face on the front cover. He wanted a skull, but the record label balked. Inevitably, All the Lost Souls is actually a lament about the irritants of fame — and one of those irritants is newspapers, and therefore people like me. Again, his lyrics occasionally make reference to this age-old celebrity dilemma.
It's a remarkable eye-opener. So, yeah, I'm less trusting of journalists. I did an interview in LA and I said, 'It's nice here, isn't it? Then, he says, there are the hundreds of inane questions he gets asked by lazy interviewers on the pop PR merry-go-round so frequently that he has stock answers at the ready. My tone of voice really changes when I start saying them.
I can actually feel my throat change shape when I say them. It's really strange, and by the end of the day I'm exhausted because my mind hasn't really been working at all but my throat has just repeated certain shapes over and over again.
It's mind-numbing. I'll think, 'Right, I know where we've started, let me just give you the whole thing now in When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again - Barbara James With National Dance Orchestra (2) - When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again / So Long (Vinyl) an hour, and we've done it and you've got what you want.
I got asked two really awful questions earlier," he goes on. And the other one was, 'So, who's the real you? James Blunt was, as we noted earlier, born James Blount. There are all sorts of stories as to why he changed his name. One is that his management thought the original spelling, with those elongated vowels, sounded too "posh" there's that word again. The official line, however, is that "Blount" is actually supposed to be pronounced "Blunt", and so, rather than having to correct the mistakes of every journalist and fan, he agreed to drop the stray When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again - Barbara James With National Dance Orchestra (2) - When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again / So Long (Vinyl).
He is 34 and the eldest of three, with two younger sisters. The Blounts are from Wiltshire but, since Blount Snr was in the Army, they moved every two years or so during his childhood, with James and his sisters rebuilding their lives and friendships every time they moved. He ended up at Harrow. After school came Bristol University, where Blunt started out studying aeronautical engineering as he was good at maths and had a pilot's licence, but then switched to sociology, which seemed less taxing.
It's Blunt who brings up the four years he later spent as a soldier, not me. I was trying, for reasons I can't fully remember now, to ask about his star sign. You'd think he'd be sick of talking about When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again - Barbara James With National Dance Orchestra (2) - When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again / So Long (Vinyl) military career, but perhaps he just wants to get the subject over and done with and crossed off that mental list?
He served in the Life Guards, part of the Household Cavalry. His CV includes stints doing armoured reconnaissance in Kosovo, with his guitar strapped to the outside of the tank so that it didn't get sat on; then as captain of the Household Cavalry Alpine ski team; then, latterly, with the Queen's Life Guard, and even a stint guarding the Queen Mother's coffin.
The things that I dealt with were very real and necessary and important. It was often a question of life and death. At school, when I was very young, I remember someone calling me posh, and I hadn't been called posh since then, until I got into this industry. Now I'm in the most judgemental industry in the world, and yet I'm supposed to be in an industry that deals with something true.
But the music industry doesn't give a stuff about music as a connective medium, it just cares about who's cool and who's not cool, and my background and, 'Can can we get played on that radio station? He sympathises, by the by, with Prince Harry's determination to do a tour of Afghanistan. I read one quote from him in which he said that he felt like an ordinary bloke until the press turned up.
It doesn't matter who you are as long as you can work with other people. I'm sure he brings a lot to the team. When he's not on a tour bus, Blunt now lives in Verbier and Ibiza. Some reports have suggested that he's a tax exile and that's why he doesn't have a house in the UK. Blunt insists that's not true. I bought it because I love skiing. And I live in Ibiza because if I only get two weeks off a year, I might as well spend it somewhere my friends might want to come and visit me.
I haven't got a house in the UK just because it wouldn't be practical. Being away on tour so much of the time also means that his relationships — with friends, family and, yes, girlfriends — suffer. He affects discretion about his private life, but we know, roughly, that the Blunt roll call of former girlfriends has included casting director Dixie Chassay, blond heiress and socialite Camilla Boler who spilled all to the papers about his alleged affair with model Petra NemcovaTara Palmer-Tomkinson brieflyand holistic therapist Mika Simmons.
I Did It Again". A second sample of When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again - Barbara James With National Dance Orchestra (2) - When You Put On That Old Blue Suit Again / So Long (Vinyl) I Did It Again" by Britney Spears, in which she sings about playing with her lover's emotions and claims "I'm not that innocent".
European CD single "Oops! We Remixed Again! Baby One More Time". Hung Medien. Retrieved August 21, I Did It Again Media notes.
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Archived from the original on October 4, Soundtrack by Various Artists". Apple Inc. What's the billing at your house? Because at ours, going by last names, we are the Mosher-Dwyers, but going by first names, people call us Pat N Ste. How was the couples' billing determined by your household? JD: Our names are so long that we invented a mashup: "Donninelli" MT: People call us Marc and James mostly.
I am very loud and, like they say the squeaky wheel gets the grease, it also gets top billing. So, let's start with the most obvious topic of conversation: Baking with Marc and James. How did this little bit of magic begin? JD: Marc baked a box cake on his Instagram story back on Easter to "celebrate" four weeks of being in this apartment. People liked it, so we decided to make chocolate chip cookies together MT: I am basically an idiot and I do not understand anything in the kitchen.
James cooks all the food. I am excellent at reheating things. Like really good. Anytime you want like some frozen nuggets, I am your man. But baking is not my strong suit. JD: I am a pretty good cook I just have experience reading a recipe. Also, Marc's not an idiot. In fact, we risk that he might get too good at baking, and the show will be ruined.
JD: Does it have an impact? It is surprising that people message us with recipes and asking what the next episode will be Someone sent us a Kitchenaid stand mixer! Out of the blue! I think watching James help me figure it out is more entertaining than we thought. It's really fun to do so I am thrilled that people are liking it. And when we got that fancy mixer I was shocked. So what I am saying is keep the gifts coming. JD: Let's also be clear that nobody is coming to us to learn to bake things.
Essentially, we make a seven minute blooper reel every weekend, and people laugh at us. Editor's note: Anything that is brightening lives in quarantine makes an impact. And keep the gifts coming. How did you choose the date of your anniversary - first date, or the day you decided to call it "Official" or what? JD: We celebrate our first date anniversary, which is May 27, and our wedding anniversary, June When we started dating, we couldn't have gotten married, so that's the date we celebrated.
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