I is so excited, I got this interview, Michael is an English singer /song writer who has worked with many artists but his French connection is his work with Julien Clerc and Serge Gainsbourg.
Born in Bethnel Green London in 1959, His early career he had a contract as a singer/songwriter with Phonogram and Warner Brothers. He was nearly killed in a traffic accident in 1991. (The Sun) after that he studied acting for three years at the Lee Strasberg Institute, His theatre work includes a Midsummer Nights Dream, Flip, and the title role in MacBeth at the lyric theatre Hammersmith. He made his west end début playing the narrator in Blood Brothers at the Phoenix Theatre and appeared as Stoner in the musical Tonight's the night at the Victoria Palace Theatre in London.
His TV career includes playing D.S./D.I. Trevor Hands in the ITV drama M.I.T. and Dr. Nick West in Doctors, he was also in a Kavanagh QC, Touch of Frost, Urban Gothic, Lock Stock the series, Blessed, The Bill (Joseph Ferdinand)and NCS, He played Carter in EastEnders and just recently he played DC Nick Henshall in Emmerdale.
On the big screen Michael appeared alongside Sean Bean in Essex Boys and played the starring role in Beneath Still Waters, he also appeared in many other films.
But to be included in my blog there has to be a connection with either France or food, and its his music career (Michaels early music career was under the name of Michael St James) I'm particularly interested in. touring with his band Park Avenue and writing songs for the likes of Toyah, Elaine Page and Dollar and touring with 10cc, are interesting but when he told me about his times working with Julien Clerc and Serge Gainsbourg I knew I needed to find out more.
Michael wrote English lyrics to the songs on Julian Clercs album Aime-moi including the track La Fille aux bas nylons he also wrote Julians first English language song I Dont Ever Want To Go Away, and went on tour with Julien notably he played at the Bercy Omnisport in 1985. Michael was involved with writing English lyrics to other French composers songs, he told me that while working with Serge Gainsbourg they would both get very drunk during what he called "the creative process". He also spoke about the time he was accused (jokingly) of trying to kill Clerc, he organised a football match and Clerc suffered a major Asthma attack. He will always be grateful to Julian Clerc for the chance to tour with him and says that Clerc was a major influence on his career.
I asked Michael about his favourite restaurant and proved to be a man of taste with his choice of The Pigalle a 1940s-inspired supper club in the heart of the West End and his love of art by artists as diverse as Dante Gabriel Rossetti and Edward Hopper.
Musically he's a fan of Bruce Springsteen and Born to Run is his favourite song. His favourite book is Last train to Memphis a book about Elvis Presley. Actors he admires are Al Pacino and Steve McQueen, not surprisingly saying that The God father and Bullit are amongst his favourite films. His also a fan of TV's The Sopranos.
When I asked what the future held for him he said " I want to act/ Sing / write/ rule the world and In 10 years have enough money to choose what work I do and give my kids a safety net" and he has " a total belief that all things are possible".
He then spoiled his image of a man of great taste by admitting that he was a Tottenham Hotspur fan, but then we can't all be perfect.
Michael has an Album out (Shower over Moon Street) which can be downloaded via Michaels web site.
Here's the title track from the album;
The new single "Save me" is also available.
Thank you Michael for the interview.
While searching for some videos of Michael I came across this, enjoy.