Entertainment

Ronan Keating on an unlikely I’m A Celebrity friendship

Ronan Keating with his great friend Mike Tindall

REALLY: Ronan Keating with his great friend Mike Tindall (Image: Getty)

Describing the former rugby player as a very special person, Ronan says the couple often hang out at each other’s houses with their families. Their close friendship is the reason the former Boyzone star and his wife Storm are rooting for Mike to win this year’s I’m A Celebrity.

“We play a lot of golf together, we’ve done charity work together and we’ve known each other for a long time,” he confesses. “We’re family friends; we all connect and they’re a very special family, we love them. He’s a gentleman.”

“We’re all screaming for Mike in this house.”

Ronan refuses, however, to talk about how he thinks the former health secretary, forced to resign after a lockdown affair with an aide, is faring, declaring, “I’ll stay out of it!”

But he singles out Seann Walsh for praise.

“I’m really enjoying Seann. He’s showing up really well. I’ve never met him, but he’s a legend. His approach and attitude are refreshing.”

So did seeing Mike make you want to be on I’m a Celebrity?

“They ask me,” he smiles. “And they also ask me to do Strictly. They’re all brilliant and I love them, but it’s not for me.”

Not that the 45-year-old has a need to boost his career by participating in reality TV.

Ronan, Storm, Mike Tindall and Westlife star Brian McFadden

Ronan, Storm, Mike Tindall and Westlife star Brian McFadden (Image: Getty)

Co-hosting BBC1’s The One Show every Thursday and Friday with Alex Jones, a breakfast DJ on Magic FM with Harriet Scott, and with countless pop concerts taking place across Europe every weekend, Ronan is in such high demand that he admits he’s looking forward to it. to get back on track with your work/life. balance.

“I would like to find a better balance,” he says, reflecting on what other ambitions he would like to fulfill. “I took on a lot of work during the pandemic because there was no live music. Now that live music is back, I can’t do everything.”

He smiles as he continues to admit that he still can’t get used to the fact that he’s a TV presenter on one of the BBC’s most popular consumer series, The One Show.

“I still don’t see myself as a television presenter,” he confesses. “I’m a singer, but it seems I found myself with the role on The One Show and Magic. Alex is the boss on One Show though. JJ [Jermaine Jenas] and I just slip there on the tails of his coat!

“She’s a legend; she’s so good at it, she can do it with her eyes closed. I’ve learned a lot from Alex: her composure, the way she delivers, and the pace of the interviews. It’s very interesting to watch.” “

We’re chatting on Zoom today to discuss Ronan’s involvement as “love director” for a rousing new campaign from Costa Coffee in which the coffee chain will be giving away millions of free coffees to new customers.

The singer, who despite getting up at 5am to present his radio show is only having his second cup of the day, chuckles: “We’re showering people with love.

“It’s very lighthearted and we don’t take ourselves too seriously. I’m well known for my love songs and I like coffee, so it seemed like a good fit. It’s been great to get involved.”

Yet it’s stage acting that still holds a special place in his heart nearly 30 years after he first rose to fame in Boyzone at just 16 years old.

One wonders if he would be as willing as his own parents to allow their children to join a pop group at such a young age.

“If any of my children were passionate about singing, I would definitely support it,” he insists. “He wasn’t very academic and interested in more creative things when I joined Boyzone. It was a big risk, but I promised I’d go back to school if it didn’t work out.”

Fortunately for Ronan, he didn’t need to go back to school.

Performing with their bandmates for 25 years, the group enjoyed incredible success selling 25 million records worldwide.

Ronan, who also enjoyed a glittering solo career selling another 20 million records, says they remain good friends.

Ronan in Reading at this year's Flackstock Festival

at Rronan in Reading at this year’s Flackstock Festival (Image: Getty)

“It’s great that we’ve had 25 great years together,” he continues.

“We went out on a high and now it’s a closed book. For me, the band ended when Stephen [Gately] he died, but we went on a little longer because we thought it was the right thing to do. To me, she never felt right after that.

“But we’re all good friends and I don’t want to tarnish that.”

Do you consider yourself a pop legend?

“I would never use that word,” he replies. “We were lucky, that’s what we were.”

Today he believes that the music industry has changed beyond imagination. “It is flooded. I think social media has made the world a much smaller place, which means there are a plethora of artists from all walks of life.

You can communicate and access it on your smartphone, Instagram, Spotify and TikTok. I know some might say we had it easy and yes we did to some extent.

“But we still grafted. We were on two planes a day, traveling constantly, but we loved it and I’m not complaining. We were living the dream. I’ll still never say no to performances. I don’t want to stop singing.” Every weekend I have concerts, but I love acting.”

One of the nicest people in the music industry, it’s easy to see why Ronan has achieved such success. Down-to-earth and funny, he appreciates everything that’s come his way, but nothing will make him prouder than his family. He has three grown children, Jack, 23, Missy, 21, and Ali, 17, with his first wife, Yvonne.

Now happily married to his second wife, Storm, since 2015, Ronan has a son, Cooper, five, and a daughter, Coco, two, with her.

“Family is absolutely everything,” he says.

“My afternoons are precious with the family. I want to be there for bath time, story time, and quality time at home with the kids. It’s important to me and Storm.”

Their eldest daughter, Missy, has just immigrated to Australia.

Two weeks later, it’s still very difficult, he admits. “We miss her terribly. It’s hard, but I’m proud of her and it’s the right thing for her. My children come to me for advice and I have a wonderful relationship with them.”

Also close to his own siblings, Ronan admits that 24 years after his beloved mother Marie died of breast cancer at the age of 51, he still finds her loss utterly heartbreaking. He set up a charity in 2001 in his name raising vital funds for cancer research and this weekend he will be performing an annual ball in London.

Mike Tindall, Ronan Keating and Frankie Dettori performing

Mike Tindall, Ronan Keating and Frankie Dettori performing (Image: Getty)

“We’ve reached £10m now and I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved,” he adds. “His death prompted us to do something positive and help other people. But obviously it’s bittersweet. Looking back now, we were so naive about the disease. It’s still sad and heartbreaking years later.”

Taking a leaf out of his own book when it comes to trying to forge a better work-life balance, Ronan is looking forward to some time off over Christmas to spend with his family. “We’re going to get in it together and I can’t wait,” he adds.

As for whether he regrets anything, that’s a resounding no, but he acknowledges that sometimes he wishes he hadn’t taken himself too seriously. “If he could say anything to my 18-year-old self, it would be for him not to take himself too seriously,” explains the suave star.

“I don’t regret it, but it’s gone by so fast and I wish I could have taken it in more.”

And with that parting shot, Ronan smiles as he reveals that he can’t wait to see another installment of I’m a Celebrity and hopefully see his grounded, fantastic friend, Mike Tindall, eventually become “King of the Jungle.”

“What a season it’s been,” he jokes, smiling. “The lineup has been iconic.”

Ronan is working with Costa Coffee to give away millions of free coffees to new customers through November 24. Download the Costa Coffee Club app for more details



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