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Blur bassist Alex James admits parenting is a lot harder than touring the world: 'It's terrifying'

The musician has toured around the globe with his rock band for decades but for him, parenting is way more challenging than playing music at several concerts in a row.

Blur bassist Alex James admits parenting is a lot harder than touring the world: 'It's terrifying'
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Jim Dyson

Parenting is no child's play and British rockstar Alex James—the bassist of the iconic 90s band Blur—knows it pretty well. According to The Mirror, James is a father of five kids, sons Geronimo and twins Artemis and Galileo and daughters Sable and Beatrix with his wife of 20 years, Claire Neate.

In recent weeks, the 54-year-old musician has been playing shows across the United Kingdom and Europe, including two shows at Wembley Stadium. He has also released his ninth studio album with his band, titled "The Ballad of Darren." But compared to all the glitz and glam of being a rockstar, parenting his kids still stands as the most challenging task for James.

Image Source: Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon and Alex James from the band Blur perform for fans during Splendour in the Grass on July 26, 2015 in Byron Bay, Australia. (Photo by Cassandra Hannagan/Getty Images)
Image Source: Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon and Alex James from the band Blur perform for fans during Splendour in the Grass on July 26, 2015, in Byron Bay, Australia. (Photo by Cassandra Hannagan/Getty Images)

James recently appeared on a podcast called "Parenting Hell," hosted by Rob Beckett and Josh Widdicombe, where he reflected on his life as a parent as well as becoming a cheesemaker on his Cotswolds farm while being a touring rockstar.

"Playing the bass in a rock band is the easiest thing, compared to parenting," he said during the podcast. "It actually is relaxing going back into that Blur bubble." He also shared how his five children are way more into the "rock n roll lifestyle" than he ever was.

James admitted that he finds it "terrifying: how immense some of his children's parties can be." "I think 16th birthdays are the worst of them all, all the years of rock 'n' roll, nothing can hold a candle to those parties when you're like 16, rock 'n' roll had nothing on that actually. At 16, you're in the speedboat and you want to know how fast it goes, and by the time you're 18 you've kind of worked out where your limits are a little bit," he added. "I always try and get them to have their 16th birthdays at Feastival [his farm's annual kid-friendly music festival] so that the liabilities are not mine! It's terrifying, it is really terrifying."


 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Alex James (@alexjameshq)


 

The bassist also spoke about the differences between his life on the road and his life at home during an interview with Red Magazine via Virgin Radio. "The last time I went away, I dropped the kids at school and flew to Mexico City, where there were thousands of people waiting for us at the airport and hotel. When we got to the venue – a stadium – it was huge," he explained. "But afterward, you get home and you have to wash up and the kids are like, 'Dad, stop being a wanker.'"

Image Source: Alex James and Claire Neate arrive at the Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition on June 4, 2008 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Image Source: Alex James and Claire Neate arrive at the Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition on June 4, 2008, in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

According to The Mirror, James is a man of many talents, even as he tries to ace the parenting game. He has won praise for his cheese-making skills and is now venturing into the sparkling wine market. The bassist says his rustic country life is a complete alternative to his tumultuous days as a rockstar in the 90s. In his autobiography "Bit Of Blur," he admitted to having spent over £1 million on champagne.

At the end of the day, James is just another father who worries about his children and the daunting task of being an ideal parent to them. The indie rock band also performed songs from their latest album, "The Ballad of Darren," at a live-streamed gig at London's Eventim Apollo in Hammersmith which took place on July 25, 2023, before performing at more concerts on their European festival dates and appearing in Asia and South America, reports NME.


 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Alex James (@alexjameshq)


 

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