As the 25-year-old N-Dubz frontman unleashes his debut solo album, Time Out went fishing with Costadinos ‘Dappy’ Contostavlos
He loves fishing more than music, and was once on the cover of Total Carp (‘The UK’s Biggest-Selling Carp Magazine’). Last year he nearly released an N-Dubz fishing DVD called Reel Big Fish.
‘Fishing is everything to me. I’ve been doing it pretty much since I came out my mum’s womb. If I had my line in the water now, I’d be so excited I probably wouldn’t even listen to you. Anyone who says that badman can’t fish is wrong. Not that I’m a badman. I keep fishing reel. Reel. Geddit?’
He’s lost a lot of weight putting together his debut solo album, Bad Intentions.
‘I’ve been in the studio for four months solid recording my debut album, going to sleep at 7am, waking up at 6pm and hardly eating. I’ve lost all my weight, man.’
He’s not as stupid as he looks.
‘There’s a lot more to me, man. People might’ve seen me on [UK TV show] Never Mind the Buzzcocks and thought I was a joke. But I’m not stupid, innit? I know all my times tables. I know how to spell. I know how to read and write. I could tell you some next [stuff] about the Illuminati and then you’d think: This guy knows a lot.’
When he was a guest on the UK’s Radio One in January 2010 he secretly copied down the number of a texter and later bombarded her with abusive phone calls and texts (for which he later apologised).
‘That is the worst thing I ever done, definitely. I looked at her messages, went “Aargh!” and took my phone out. I wish I’d never done that. I grew up in a negative environment, which has given me a lot of anger. But hopefully scandals about me are a thing of the past now. I’m a good human being and I’ve got a warm heart.’
Despite topping the charts with the Auto-Tuned synth balladry of single ‘No Regrets’, he’s preaching for purity.
‘Music will never be the same as it was in the ’80s. It was all so natural and epic then. Now everything’s digitally edited. N-Dubz was electronic, but now the majority of [my music] is live. I want that big, one-take feel.’
On follow-up ‘Rockstar’ he worked with Queen guitarist Brian May.
‘Working with Brian was one of the biggest moments of my life. Made me want to buy a wig.’
Who else would he like to work with?
‘Right now? Gaviscon!’
How about actual musicians?
‘Phil Collins: we have similar top-line melodies. Or Freddie Mercury. He was the greatest performer of all time.’
Interview: Alexi Duggins. Bad Intentions is out now. thedappy.com.