Crown­ing glory

Rob­bie Wil­liams is poised to be the prince of pop again, but he’s just as happy be­ing king of the kids, as Cameron Adams dis­cov­ers.

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - MUSIC - TAKE THE CROWN Out now ( Univer­sal)

ROB­BIE Wil­liams is a new fa­ther and a well rested one at that.

‘‘ I have never had so much sleep in my life,’’ he chirps.

His daugh­ter Theodora Rose ( or Teddy) with Amer­i­can wife Ayda Field is six weeks old. She is not a mir­a­cle baby sleep­ing through the night. But Wil­liams is a lucky man.

‘‘ I’ve got a very un­der­stand­ing wife and a nanny,’’ he ad­mits. ‘‘ This hav­ing kids thing is easy, I don’t know what peo­ple are go­ing on about . . .’’ He’s ( half) jok­ing. But Wil­liams, 38, says fa­ther­hood has lobbed at the ideal time in his life. His daugh­ter is a liv­ing, breath­ing and defe­cat­ing re­al­ity check for some­one who’s been fa­mous since he was 16 and joined UK boy band Take That.

A claim Wil­liams was en­joy­ing hav­ing some­one in his life who didn’t ‘‘ give a s---’’ he was a popstar, was seem­ingly gar­bled.

‘‘ Oh, she has been giv­ing a s---,’’ he clar­i­fies. ‘‘ And I have been chang­ing those s--- s. They look like chicken tikka masala.

‘‘ I didn’t know I was go­ing to en­joy chang­ing nap­pies so much. I was ter­ri­fied be­fore she came that I wasn’t go­ing to want to do any­thing, be­cause, well, I’m a lazy bas­tard and self­ish.

‘‘ But the amaz­ing thing is you ac­tu­ally want to do it. I want to change the nap­pies. I want to cud­dle her. It’s magic.’’

Fa­ther­hood has ar­rived just as Wil­liams is back in pop star mode. He re­paired the friend­ship with for­mer Take That band­mate Gary Bar­low which led to Wil­liams re­join­ing the band for the 2010 al­bum Progress and a 2011 tour of the UK and Europe that gen­er­ated $ 180 mil­lion from just 29 shows. The show in­cluded a solo seg­ment for Wil­liams – his first ma­jor tour since 2006.

That 2006 tour, which sold 1.6 mil­lion tick­ets the day it was an­nounced, sent Wil­liams back into re­hab once it ended in Aus­tralia. Since then he’s man­aged to get his life to­tally back on track and a ma­jor part of his ar­se­nal in re­build­ing Rob­bie has been the re­lease of his ninth solo al­bum. How­ever, he freely ad­mits his past few al­bums have been patchy and that in the cur­rent cli­mate a flop al­bum can end your ca­reer.

‘‘ I named the record Take The Crown,’’ he says. ‘‘ The ti­tle is ob­nox­ious and ego­fu­elled. I put that car­rot in front of me to live up to it. I can take my eye off the ball some­times and not con­cen­trate.’’

The bulk of the al­bum took shape af­ter a chance meet­ing with two Aus­tralians. Mu­si­cians Tim Met­calfe and Flynn Fran­cis, two 24- year- olds from Mel­bourne, were in LA on one of their many trips to do in­tern work in US stu­dios. They met Dy­lan Trus­sell, who is in LA hip- hop band The Con­nects, and also brother of Ayda Field.

Met­calfe and Fran­cis started writ­ing songs with Trus­sell, who played them to Wil­liams.

‘‘ Dy­lan’s mu­sic got 50 per cent bet­ter overnight,’’ Wil­liams says.

‘‘ He met this Aus­tralian dude in a bar. It was Tim. He brought Flynn and we wrote an al­bum in 10 days. I love them to bits. They’re re­ally tal­ented song­writ­ers. Com­pletely and ut­terly delu­sional. Full of ego. They re­mind me of some­one I used to know when I was their age. They’ve got the sort of delu­sion and ego that could take over the world.’’

There are no songs for his daugh­ter on the al­bum how­ever, there are plenty of an­thems ready for his long- awaited come­back tour for 2013 which could in­clude Aus­tralia.

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