Quickfire: Singer and actor David Essex on surprise honeymoons and meeting Little Richard
The chart-topping singer, West End stage veteran and EastEnders actor opens up about his long career: ‘Biggest lesson I’ve learnt about money? It’s hard to come by but easy to lose’
Singer and actor David Essex
Career plan B? A professional footballer – or a lorry driver.
Where is home? A two-bedroomed flat in a converted fire station in London’s Covent Garden, where I live with my wife Susan and our four-year-old, Sonny.
Guilty pleasure? My 750cc Triumph Bonneville motorcycle.
Biggest lesson you’ve learnt about women? They are usually right.
Earliest memory? Our brilliant East End street party for the Queen’s Coronation in 1953 when I was six.
Secret to a happy relationship? Never go to bed after a disagreement without making up.
Your best quality? Patience.
And your worst? I’m a bit slapdash when it comes to DIY.
Most romantic thing you’ve ever done? Organise a surprise honeymoon to the Seychelles when I married Susan in 2010.
Last meal on earth? Sole meunière with sautéed potatoes and spinach.
Dream dinner-party guests? Three people I’ve played on stage: Che Guevara, Lord Byron and Jesus Christ – plus John Lennon, who I knew when I had a flat in New York.
Cat or dog? Both – we have a jack russell crossed with a patterdale terrier called Levi and a cat called Pickle.
Starstruck moment? Meeting Little Richard at a concert of his in New York.
Big break? Appearing in the musical Godspell, the film That’ll Be the Day and my first hit single ‘Rock On’ all played an important part.
Career highlight? ‘Rock On’ going to number one in the US Cash Box chart in March 1974.
Favourite tipple? Red wine, preferably a rioja or merlot.
Hangover cure? I don’t get drunk.
Top of your bucket list? To travel off the beaten track in South America.
One thing that would make your life better? Later mornings – I’m up at six with my four-year-old.
Philosophy? Do to others as you would have done to you.
Biggest lesson you’ve learnt about money? It’s hard to come by but easy to lose.
First record you bought? ‘Tutti Frutti’ by Little Richard.
Most extravagant purchase? A Bell 47 helicopter – I bought it in the early 80s for touring.
Best present you ever received? My 70th birthday party last year which was organised by my wife and children.
Happiness is… Good health and my family.
- David will be appearing in the ten-date Legends Live Tour 2019, beginning at the O2 Apollo Manchester on 4 April. Full details, including venues and the other artists taking part, at legendslive.org