Robbie Williams Joins Zane Lowe To Discuss Fame, Take That, And More

The 25th anniversary editions of Williams’ ‘Life Through A Lens’ is available for pre-order now.

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Robbie Williams and Zane Lowe - Photo: Courtesy of Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1
Robbie Williams and Zane Lowe - Photo: Courtesy of Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1

Robbie Williams joined Zane Lowe in the Port Vale football stadium for an in-depth and wide-ranging conversation about his career.

Shop the best of Robbie Williams’ discography on vinyl and more.

The English singer and songwriter reflects on his experience as an artist, from beginnings as a teenager in Take That to leaving the group and redefining himself as a solo artist–a path comparable to likes of Harry Styles, Justin Timberlake, and a select few others.

He also discusses his love of Oasis and how Liam Gallagher is “vital,” how the only two people he thinks fame hasn’t impacted are Tom Hanks and Noel Gallagher, why fame impacts boybands and girl groups in the way that it does and wanting to make a documentary about it, being thrust into fame at an early age, addiction and self medicating to survive, parenthood, the past and present media landscape, and more.

Regarding his early experience with stardom, Williams says, “It’s all what goes into the computer program when you were a kid. What mom did, what dad did, what your peers did, what your tribe did or don’t do. Formative moments. And you wouldn’t send a preteen or post toddler to go and do weight training. So what happened was, I wasn’t fully formed when I took the journey into being a pop star and out there. So I was 16. I wasn’t ready for all of this shit. And that mixed with what happened as you’re growing up with this extreme fame sort of causes a huge collision.”

The duo also discuss Williams’ history of self-medicating to deal with the pressures of fame. He says, “…Not blissfully unaware because nothing felt like bliss at the time. I was deep in self-medicating as a way to survive and self-medicating with cocaine and alcohol and all in Sundry. There was… it’s a heady mix that sort of having no self-worth, no self-esteem that I’ve sort of touched on in the past, but feeling as though you’re incredibly special at the same time mixed with cocaine.

“And that is… Mix that with cocaine and you’ve got something incredibly powerful for five minutes before it disintegrates into a hellish journey. It’s indescribable actually, the lack of humanity that existed for the people, the sociopaths that were making money from trauma. It’s like trauma has a s__t and then they sort of delve into the s__t of trauma and pick it apart, salvage it to make money.”

Pre-order the 25th anniversary editions of Life Thru A Lens.

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