Up close and personal with the ‘Original Rude Boy, Neville Staple – formerly of the Specials, Fun Boy Three and Special Beat.
TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF
I am a singer, songwriter and producer. I perform across the UK, Europe and internationally with my super-talented wife Sugary Staple and the Neville Staple Band. We perform hit punky 2Tone, Ska, and Reggae songs from my 40-year music career, plus classic party favourites and new tunes from Rude Rebels and Return of Judge Roughneck Albums. We also promote our new single #PutAwayYourKnives. We regularly perform in Birmingham.
HOW DO YOU GET INTO TOWN?
We mostly use the A45 and sometimes the M6 to get into Birmingham from Coventry, where I live. It depends on if we are on the tour bus with our driver heading in to perform at a show, or if I am visiting family and friends when Sugary Staple usually drives.
HOW’S THE COMMUTE?
Can we be honest here? It’s become quite a chore in the last few years, with roadworks everywhere, traffic chaos and lots of general lack of road manners, too.
IS BRUM A GOOD PLACE TO WORK IN?
Our last few shows have been brilliant. The crowd love to let their hair down and dance and sing along. However, I keep hearing that many places are closing down, so there are less places for bands to perform. I hope that’s not true, as music, dancing and singing along are a great way for a hardworking city to let off steam in a positive way.
Sugary and I love sushi, so we would most likely eat at the Shogun Teppan-Yaki sushi restaurant in the Cube, though we also love most of the other restaurants in the Cube too.
I wish I had more time for that. I’d walk in Cannon Hill Park, as the wife loves it there and says it reminds her of Victoria Park in Hackney East London, where she was born.
WHERE’S YOUR FAVOURITE PART OF THE CITY?
Handsworth, because my brother Franklyn lives there, and Bournville because my buddy, the late Ranking Roger, who recently passed away, lived by there.
I don’t drink so tend to go to carvery pubs on a Sunday afternoon with people who do. They can drink and I can eat! Sugary is a foodie like me and friends have recommended we try the Bistro du Vin or Piccolino as they’re both pretty good.
HOW CAN THE CITY BE MADE BETTER?
More live music venues (of course!) and get the big roadwork contracts finished, or not so many at once. I would also like someone to have a good look at the city skyline of old-meets-new buildings and just see what we all see. It’s a great city, so let’s look after its finest heritage features without swamping them with in cheap modernisation!