Jack Steadman – Pieces Of Me

The Bombay Bicycle Club man on the style of Ron Burgundy, the philosophies of Flea and the joys of walking round Hampstead Heath

Bombay Bicycle Club

My first gig
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
“I think my first proper gig was Black Rebel Motorcycle Club playing somewhere in London. I was 13 and a big loser, I remember thinking, ‘Oh my, is that a joint going round?’ and my mother picked me up afterwards.”

The first song I fell in love with
‘Urge For Going’ by Joni Mitchell
“I first fell in love with a girl listening to this song in her bedroom over and over. Joni Mitchell is the most beautiful songwriter in the world, and this part of my life was the most significant. The songs I was writing finally became deeply personal and emotional, with Joni Mitchell my mentor.”

My style icon
Ron Burgundy
“He’s my hero. When I grow old I want to be as charming and well dressed as he is. At the moment our band don’t really have the style part down. This was made clear when a journalist sat with us in a dressing room and asked us when the band were turning up.”


The book that changed me
Flea Master Session
“This was actually a VHS, but it did come with a book inside. This was Flea talking about his philosophies of life and then playing some bass. I was very young and all of a sudden thought how cool it was to just love everyone and everything and harness all this ‘cosmic energy’.”

My favourite film
‘Tokyo Story’
“I love the films of Yasujiro Ozu. I saw Tokyo Story at the BFI after reading a review and shortly after we played in Tokyo, and I developed somewhat of an obsession with Japan. His films are perfect for a hangover in that the camera never moves, he simply finds his perfect frame and leaves it there.”

My favourite painting
‘The Elephant Celebes’ by Max Ernst
“When I saw it in the Tate I was blown away, which rarely happens to me with art other than music. I know little about painting but am happy to continue this way. Sometimes I wish I knew nothing about music and still had that child’s naïve appreciation.”

Right now I love
Flying Lotus
“I have loved everything he has done since ‘1983’. He is the nephew of Alice Coltrane and makes electronic music somewhere between J Dilla and Sun Ra.”

My favourite lyric
‘Dramamine’ by Modest Mouse
“Any of the lyrics from that song are great but I particularly like: ‘We kiss on the mouth but still cough down our sleeves‘. Isaac Brock is one of my favourite lyricists, and this song describes perfectly any long-term relationship, when one starts hiding things.”

My favourite place
Hampstead Heath
“This is where I have spent all my summers since I was 14, and I still get lost and find new parts of it. Me and my friends spend the day swimming in the ponds and having barbeques and then we might make a bonfire when it gets dark. I find that the best way to have a conversation with someone is walking side by side around Hampstead Heath, because you don’t have to look at them, and I feel more relaxed.”

This article originally appeared in the August 21 issue of NME

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