James Bond, tattoos and why Jasper Carrott rocks

Jasper Carrott
Jasper Carrott

Jasper Carrott rocks. As well as doing two half-hour sessions of stand-up – he, guitar in hand, gets to play music with his mates.

They are Bev Bevan, whose credentials include Move and ELO. He has one of the finest bands around.

The members include Rockin’ Berries lead singer Geoff Turton and Celtic rock band Quills lead singer ‘Joy’.

Jasper – real name Bob Davis – is having a brilliant time back on tour for the first time since 1998 .

He had become disillusioned with touring and playing big arenas but a meeting with his pal Bob and a suggestion they team up has led to the current list of gigs. “It is so enjoyable,” said Jasper. “To get the excitement again was a revelation. We are playing smaller venues and I do two half-hour sets of comedy rather than the whole two hours. It’s like the old days when you are eyeball to eyeball with the audience.”

There is a lot of warmth from the audience – not that he can rest on his laurels – for the Brummie who started his career as a folk singer and also MC in a club he founded called The Boggery.

The tune Funky Moped hit the charts in the mid-1970s and that was it – Canned Carrott, Carrott Confidential and Carrott’s Commercial Break were must-watch series – as was The Detectives in which he starred with another mate – actor Robert Powell.

They were good times, said Jasper as was touring to places in the Middle East including Oman and also to the United States.

In more recent times, he hosted the game show Golden Balls – which has to have the best ending ever. Two people who have ‘won’ money together have to convince each other they will split the spoils rather than steal the lot. It taught Jasper more about human nature in three years then he learned in the previous 30.

“I always thought if I was on a jury I would be able to tell if a person was guilty – not any more. I can’t lie but a lot of people can.”

Next year he does not intend to work – time to collect new material – and to be with his wife Hazel and six grandchildren. The couple also have four children the most famous of which is The Office actress Lucy Davis.

We talk about a range of topics – the Bond movie – fantastic – single mums, tattoos in Chinese and family responsibilities. “As long as they are safe and happy, little else matters,” he said. A wise, as well as a funny, man.

Jasper Carrott’s Stand Up and Rock is at Scarborough Spa on Wednesday November 18 at 7.30pm.

Book tickets on 01723 821 888 or www.scarboroughspa.co.uk