I am quite ashamed to say that I have only been a fan for just under two years. Gareth Gates in my opinion is one of the most underrated celebrities out there, probably because he is so modest, quite shy and doesn’t feel the need to put his whole life in the press. As he once said in an interview on the tv docmentary ‘Whatever Happened to Gareth Gates’ back in 2006 “My private life is my private life”. I think he has gone against this slightly as he has now been using twitter for around 2 years posting fairly regular statuses about what he has been up to. He also takes time to write replies to fans which is fantastic…I have received many 🙂
He began his career in 2001/2002 on the ITV television talent contest pop idol where it ended up as a neck and neck final between him and Will Young. Will won the public vote . He was so young at the age of 17 but was quickly signed up to Simon Cowell’s record label then called “Sony BMG” .He had 4 number ones including : Spirit in the Sky a cover of the original with the Kumars in 2003 for Comic Relief , Any one of us, Unchained Melody and Suspicious minds an Elvis Presley cover. As he was so young the fast fame became too much for Gareth .It worked at the time but his fame fizzled out for the first time at the end of 2005 after 3 years in the music industry.
Gareth said himself on an interview with Jonathon Ross after he made a comeback in 2007 that he didn’t really know what artist he wanted to be so he just let his record company mould him into the popstar with the ‘squeaky clean’ image that they wanted him to portray. A three month fling with a glamour model back in 2003 left this image somewhat tarnished. Gareth denied everything at the time but Katie Price had other ideas, running to every paper possible and maliciously spreading all the details when they had made an arrangement with eachother to keep everything private.
Gareth seems to alway be up for a challenge in 2008 he took part in the 3rd series of dancing on ice partnered with Bulgarian pro skater Maria Fillipov. He did extremly well finishing fourth, wowing the judges and audience. The only thing that let him down I think was his self esteem and confidence which held him back. I can really relate to this as I too am my own worst enemy at times!!
Why do I admire Gareth Gates so much?
I often get critacized for being a Gareth Gates fan…Some people are just ignorant, know nothing about what he does for example all his charity work and just come out with brash statements such as ” Urgh I can’t stand him” I ask why…they have no valid reason. I suppose one of the main reasons why I look up to him is the fact that he has lived with such a debilitating stammer ever since he could speak. His infamous audition on pop idol is remembered by all, when he couldn’t say his name for around a minute the nations heart sank yet he began to sing and had such a beautiful voice, ‘the voice of an angel’ . Nine years have passed since that audition. After pop idol Gareth was introduced to ‘The McGuire programme’ the UK’s number one leading therapy for stammerers…It has changed his life for the better and now as a qualified instructor he continues to change the life of others. In interviews he ALWAYS promotes the programme but stresses that it is NOT a CURE. He is the youngest person ever to qualify as a speech coach and was leading classes of stammerers by the age of 20. Since then he has taught classes regularly with two upcoming courses at the end of 2011 such an amazing achievement. Even though his speech is incredible compared to what it once was he still has ‘bad days’ where he struggles and recognises that as soon as he becomes “Complacent” with the required breathing exercises to control his diaphram from going into spasms his speech suffers. He has created a tv show for the BBC called ” Gareth Gates’s Stammer House” which is due to be aired at the end of this year. He will be working with and supporting 6 stammerers by teaching them the clever techniques of the McGuire programme and transforming their lives forever.
I have met Gareth on a couple of time at Les Miserables. The first time was unexpected, I felt very embarassed…the blame entirely goes to my Mum however I’ve to to thank her to as if it wasn’t for her eccentric behaviour I would not have met Gareth on that day. It was a cold February afternoon and we were due to see the matinee of the 25th anniversary tour of Les Mis at 2.30pm. My Mum, Dad and I were in Manchester and decided to walk closer to the theatre as it was around 1.40pm. We casually walked down Oxford Road.
All of a sudden a tall willowy figure emerged from one of the side streets and walked directly in front of us at a rapid speed. My heart literally skipped a beat I knew…It was Gareth Gates !! I froze, blurted out “Ohmygod theres GARETH GATES” and hesitated…my mum however did not, she had other ideas. She took off atfer full speed after him I ran after her to try to slow her down. I didn’t want to scare the life out of him AND he was on his phone!! We must have looked an absolute sight my little mum running at full speed and me trying to slow her down ! I’m sure that any passers by would have had a good giggle at us. I’m also aware that Gareth is fairly shy to some extent…I didn’t want to startle him! Well anyway he must have heard the clattering of heels on the pavement as he turned around I nearly had a heart attack. I swear it was the moment that his beautiful brown eyes met mine..that was it! I was completely starstruck…lost for words! I just gawped at him I think like an idiot. What really struck me is how ridiculously young he looks. Its lucky that hes such a lovely person really as otherwise with any other celebrity I would have been A) arrested B) They would have given me a load of abuse C) I would have been ignored and they would have walked away. What happened next is some what of a blur…somehow I got a picture with him and an autograph. Gareth had clearly been running late..he still had his car keys in his hand!! My dad was standing to one side at this point chuckling and finding the whole thing highly amusing…I’m surprised he didn’t disown us. I just remember at the end managing to blurt out “Thankyou so much” to which Gareth answered “you’re welcome, no problem babe” Our first meeting was over as quick as a flash as off he went down the street. He was wearing the most random cardigan that I have ever seen. It was grey made from an aaron jumper type material as I said RANDOM!
At this point I was still in a state, well a complete daze atchually. I swear I have never been that starstruck in my whole life and I don’t think I will be ever again. Our meeting was pure luck as he did not come out of the stage door at the end of that performance. I was the only fan to meet him at that matinee. So anyway my Mum and Dad had to guide me into the nearest McDonalds and sit me down where I just sat with a massive smile on my face…I must have looked extremely stupid. What a day!!
To conclude many people will judge a celebrity like him as a failure and will automatically brush him off pre- judging him before they know his talents. He is such an underrated celebrity, people should remember him as he has changed so many peoples lives for the better and remember him for his strengths NOT his weaknesses! I’m not asking you to LOVE him! just to recognize him as a person!!