There’s a clip from a TV show called Check It Out in 1980 where Paul Weller’s dad, John Weller (Paul’s manager from The Jam days until his death in 2009, aged 77), talks about his role as a father to his only son. “I couldn’t give him money,” notes John, a handsome, then 49-year-old cockernee geezer, “I couldn’t give him an education, but I could give him inspiration.”
Paul Weller, just turned 54, ponders these words over a latte at 11am in a comically non-showbiz tapas cafe on London’s Portobello Road and nods in recognition.
“He was a unique character, me old man,” he muses. “He wasn’t in any way academic, or me mum. They were proper old-school, working-class people. He had a really lousy relationship with his own dad and I think you either stay in that cycle or you think – I’m gonna change it. And that’s what he did: he took time, encouraged me and my sister. TBC Here.