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Jake Bugg's mum

February 2013

IT makes me feel old knowing that Jake’s 19th birthday is coming up, but I’m only 40 years young!
He was born at Nottingham City Hospital. I was living in a one-bedroom flat in Clifton at the time and I remember the day I brought him home. I’ll never forget it. I often think about those days.
When he was growing up his guitar was as important to him as his PSP and Xbox.
My dad, Charles Kennedy, used to play a bit of guitar back in the day. He was very much into his folk music and would spend hours playing Donovan and Dylan songs to us kids, keeping us entertained while my mum was pottering around in the kitchen, making our dinner.
That’s how I first discovered the simplistic beauty of the lone acoustic guitar.
I also grew up listening to bands like the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. My music taste has always been very varied. It can be anything from classical to folk and country or rock and pop. If I like it, I’ll buy the CD.
His grandma and grandad are from Clifton but they moved to Mablethorpe a few years ago to run a B&B.
All our holidays were spent there. As a working, single parent with a mortgage, I didn’t have the money for holidays abroad. Jake loved it. He would often jump on a train and go to see them during the school holidays. They are both extremely proud of him.
When his album went to No. 1 in October I was elated.
It was nail-biting stuff at the time. I remember thinking “It can’t be possible, he’s my son and he’s up against the likes of Leona Lewis!” When he phoned me at around 2 that afternoon to tell me he was officially No. 1, I remember jumping up and down on the spot. To say I was proud is an understatement. It was one of the best moments in my life.
My boy had just made history as the youngest male solo artist to debut at No.1.
Jake seems to become more accomplished every time I see him perform live. When I saw him at the Rescue Rooms in November he really blew me away. He’d been on tour with Noel Gallagher in the US just before and I noticed that he’d developed a real air of confidence about him.
It’s been pretty manic for him over the past few months and I hardly get to see him but the fact that he’s living out his dream right now fills me with such pride.
That last time he was home before his Rock City show last night was a couple of weeks ago. But it was a flying visit on a Sunday afternoon. He’d just flown back from Vienna but then had to shoot off again to get ready for his UK tour.
It was great to spend time together, as I know he’s going to be so busy this year.
He had his suitcase with him but, fortunately for me, he didn’t ask me to wash anything as he was leaving for London the next morning.
He brought me a rather nice bottle of my favourite Chanel perfume although the best present for me is getting to see him, whenever his hectic schedule allows.
It’s natural for any parent to worry about their child growing up and flying the nest. Given the nature of his job, Jake is often thousands of miles away from home. Learning to let go has been tough for me at times. I miss him so much.
However, I know he’s got a great bunch of people around him, who have his best interests at heart.
And we do talk on the phone regularly; at least a couple of times a week. He always makes time to get in touch, even when he’s really busy.
He’s a good lad and he’s very proud of where he comes from. That’s why Nottingham features so heavily in many of his songs. He’s so proud that the people of Nottingham support him the way they do.

Jake, who turns 19 on February 28, will headline the Splendour festival at Wollaton Park on Saturday, July 20. For more details go to

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