October 21 2012
JAKE Bugg has thanked the people of Nottingham for helping him reach No. 1 in the UK albums chart.
The 18-year-old from Clifton beat pop superstar Leona Lewis in a close run battle to the top.
“The whole city has got behind it, been really supportive and I’m very grateful for that,” said Jake, who was told the news by his record label at lunchtime today, hours before it was officially announced on Radio 1.
It’s the first time a solo musician from the city has topped the albums chart.
There were just a few thousand copies between his self-titled debut and Lewis’ third album, Glassheart. The former X Factor singer had topped the UK chart with her first two albums.
How well did he know his closest chart rival?
Said Jake: “I know that she’s off X Factor and she probably doesn’t write any of her songs.”
He was typically laid back about achieving a No. 1 album at the age of just 18.
“It feels cool, you know. I’m just a bit tired. I’m chilling out.”
Then added: “It’s mad, isn’t it?”
Jake spent today nursing a hangover in his hotel in London after staying out until 3am.
“I had a bit of a heavy one,” he said. “I got hammered and had a bit of a laugh with a couple of lads from my label. I think I fell asleep in the taxi.”
It was at the end of a long day of promotion that started with Soccer AM.
“Apparently I was the first Notts County fan they had on there. I really enjoyed it. It’s a bit of a mental show.
“Then I was on Radio 1 to do Vernon Kay, then XFM for a session, then another session with Ian Wright on Absolute.”
He said: “I wanted to try and get some sleep this afternoon but I don’t think there’s much chance of that.”
After more interviews he’ll be celebrating the number one tonight.
“I’ve a couple of my mates from Clifton coming down to see me so we’ll have a few beers.”
Even though he’ll be heading off to the US tomorrow to support Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds?
“It’s the only way if you are going on a plane for nine hours to have a few drinks the night before,” he laughed, adding: “And maybe a few on the plane as well.”
Jake has already played shows in Europe with the former Oasis guitarist.
“They were incredible, big shows, some of them 7,500 people. European crowds are great. They all got in early and watched the show and they were all listening. During the acoustic songs you could hear a pin drop.”
Did he speak to Gallagher?
“Yeah, Noel’s sound. We talked about football and stuff. No doubt there’ll be plenty of time to talk to him more in the States.”
Jake phoned his mum with the news of his No. 1 as soon as he heard.
“To think that he has achieved No. 1 in the albums chart fills me with such pride,” said mum Leeysa Kennedy, 40, a sales account manager for an IT company in Ruddington.
“I could hardly sleep I was so excited. And I think he has made not just myself and my family proud but the whole of Nottingham.”
Mike Atkinson, who included Jake in a piece about Nottingham’s music scene in The Guardian last year, said: “Jake is the first truly home-grown act to make it all the way to the top. And as if that wasn’t enough of an achievement, he’s done it with his debut album.”
Mark Del, who promotes local music through his organisation Nusic, said: “Jake’s success speaks volumes for the healthy state of Nottingham’s music scene, which gave him so much vital exposure in his formative years. Without that early backing – from venues, promoters, scene champions and local media, as well as his ever-supportive group of fellow artists – Jake’s climb to the top could have been a much harder one.
“The city is bursting with great home-grown talent, from every musical genre.”
Jake, who has sold out his shows at the Rescue Rooms on November 23 and Rock City on February 15, reckons his No. 1 album success could only be topped one way.
“If Notts County win the Premiership... with me in the line-up.”