Daily Express

‘Not being able to see each other is strange, but my remoteness from the rest of the band isn’t new’


LIVE SESSION: Guy got together on Zoom with the rest of Elbow, inspired by Sir Cliff’s duet with Gary, below

Garvey, helped Guy coronaviru­s to Jack.

Guy recalled: “We were wondering how to tell Jack about it. He was upset that he can’t see his pals, especially Bobbie, the girl next door who Jack is madly in love with.

“My brother has two kids and told me: ‘We’ve told the kids about The Naughty Bug.’ That’s genius language for what’s happening, because it’s not terrifying and me and Rach could explain to Jack that it’s something that’s happened to all the boys and girls.”


Rachael explain

LTHOUGH they’ve got their routine sorted, Guy admitted he and Rachael missed the first two weeks of the Thursday night Clap For Our Carers applause, because 8pm is their son’s bedtime. But they’ve joined in the campaign since.

“The first one was a beautiful evening, made more beautiful by the cheering and the beating of pans. When I went up to see Jack a few minutes later, I said: ‘That was a lovely day, wasn’t it? Did you see me and mummy clapping?’ That’s how you have to treat all this – it’s horrible, it’s depressing, but it’s going to all be memories that we get to tell Jack when he’s older,” he says.

The son of newspaper print worker Don and psychologi­st Shirley, Guy grew up in Bury, Lancs, and lived in the area until moving to London shortly before Jack was born.The rest of Elbow – PeteTurner and brothers Craig and Mark Potter – all still live in and around Manchester. “Not being able to see each other is so strange, but my remoteness from the rest of the band isn’t particular­ly new, because of living in London for three years,” says Guy. “We’re all very lucky in the band, as we’ve all got houses with gardens and we’ve all got family. I really feel for people who are caught in the cracks, being in a small flat and unable to go out, when they’re desperate to go out for their sanity.”

The album is also a personal reminder of Guy’s life before finding success with Elbow. Although they didn’t release their debut album Asleep In The Back until 2001, they met when they were teenagers in the early 1990s, when Guy lived behind the Ritz. He’d regularly see couples “get up to a lot of loving” as well as bouncers eject unruly fans from the venue. At the time, Guy was a bouncer himself, working at the nowclosed Roadhouse club which hosted early shows by Coldplay and The White Stripes. Despite his burly 6ft 2in frame, Guy is a gentle giant, famed in the music industry as one of its nice guys. “I’m a coward,” he laughs. “My natural suspicion of violence meant I could spot trouble a mile away. I’d say to the other doormen, ‘Keep an eye on him’ and, sure enough, he’d cause trouble three pints later.

“The doormen called me Mystic Meg for being able to see trouble coming. I’m proud that there was never a punch thrown at The Roadhouse on my watch. I’ve got a rule for speaking out if someone is out of order: would I say anything if it was a 7ft-tall bloke causing bother? Probably not, I let it play out.”

●●Elbow’s new album Live At The Ritz: An Acoustic Performanc­e is out now on Polydor. They tour from September 17 to October 27

 ?? ?? DUET: Guy was pleased to be working with Gary Barlow
DUET: Guy was pleased to be working with Gary Barlow
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Pictures: GETTY
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