This much I know: James Morrison

The singer, 27, on camping, getting married, and standing behind James Blunt in a taxi queue

Most blokes don't like bloke singers. Even I don't, and I'm aware of the irony. But I'm proud of what I've done. I've been in the music industry for five years and I've made good music. And I've resisted becoming a knob, which would have been easy.

I'm aware of playing into my own cliché. On my last album I wrote a lot of songs about my relationship because I'd been away from it and it hadn't always been good; it was stressful. But there are only so many love ballads you can do. My new album goes deeper. It's not all, "I love you baby, I'm coming home".

I haven't got any weird feelings towards James Blunt. I can see why people lump us in the same category, but it's annoying. A lot of people think he's wet. I've never met him, but I stood behind him in a taxi queue once and it was awkward. I was admiring his leather jacket and didn't realise it was him.

People ask me how it felt to lose my dad last year and I have to remind them that he was an addict. It was probably similar to how a lot of people felt when Amy Winehouse died; you feel robbed, even though you expected it. I hope he's found his way now and that he's happy, at least.

When you're on the road touring and promoting you get a lot of compliments. There's a lot of adulation and, "Oh, you're so good looking." And then you get home and it's: "Where have you been, you bastard?"

I'm finally getting married. I've got a date and a venue booked. I think the delay was about me wanting to be ready, even though Gill [his partner of 10 years] and I have a daughter, and that was the ultimate commitment for me.

Things with my mum are probably the best they've ever been. I had a lot to deal with when I was younger [his alcoholic father left when he was four and his mother struggled as a single parent]. But I also think having a career in the spotlight has been difficult for my family. They've taken a lot of shit from the newspapers, which hasn't been helped by the fact that, when I first started out, I was too open about things.

Will I serenade Gill at our wedding? No, she's a northern girl and she'd find it embarrassing. She tells me to take off a hat when it looks silly.

My most embarrassing moment recently involved forgetting to feed Elsie, my three-year-old, some lunch before my sister's wedding. She spent the whole ceremony screaming "I'm hungry", and I had to scrabble around like an idiot to find her something to eat.

I've just spent most of my money on a house in Brighton. It's not a mansion. OK, yes, it is a mansion. If I saw it as a kid, that's how I would have described it.

Some of my best holidays have been camping. I go with my friends or my brother and sister and it's great – unless I get kicked off the site for playing music. Last time it was a guy on a bike with a whistle in France that got me.

A surname like Catchpole isn't catchy. My middle name is Morrison, so that just seemed easiest.

I don't need a special place to write music. I'm not that wanky. Most of the time it's in my kitchen, where everyone hangs out. We've had some cracking house parties.

James Morrison's third album, The Awakening, is out now on Island Records


Interview by Megan Conner

The GuardianTramp

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