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Stereophonics frontman Kelly Jones has opened up about how his first child’s cancer diagnosis inspired his music.

The Welsh musician has described the “serious and scary” period where his first child was being treated for cancer as a baby and the impact this had on his later music.

He said that the song ‘Forever’ on the band’s new album Oochya! is inspired by this time in his life.

Read more: Kelly Jones says his kids love taking the mick out of his Welsh accent

Despite only now being released, the song was actually written over a decade ago when his son Colby, who now attends the prestigious Brit School in south London, was around 18 months old.

Jones rediscovered the unused track while working on new Stereophonics material during lockdown and felt the sentiment would resonate with listeners today.

On the melodic down-tempo song, he sings about wishing he could “fly away forever” and “take your pain for you and release you”.



Kelly Jones of the Stereophonics on stage at the Global Awards 2020

He told the PA news agency: “Forever was written quite a long time ago lyrically and at the time it was about being faced with something that was quite serious and scary in my life.

“Not knowing how I was going to deal with it and trying to protect the person who was going through it.

“It became like wanting to escape, but you can’t escape because you have to face whatever is going on.

“So it’s about freedom and it’s about escapism, but it’s also about, I guess, you have to keep on keeping on through it, throughout whatever the tough times are.”

Jones has two children with his former partner, Rebecca Walters, and two with his wife, MTV journalist, Jakki Healy. Colby, his oldest, is transgender.

“That song was about where my youngest – my first kid at the time – was going through cancer when they were like 18 months, 19 months old.

“It was relevant then but I never released the song.

“But then as life goes on you have other challenges in your life and I just thought the lyric was quite… It wasn’t ambiguous but it was open for interpretation.

“I hadn’t forgotten about it. I had the song there, but it fitted the feeling of the record.

“Because I think as much as the song was about something very, very personal, the sentiment of how the song makes you feel is quite celebratory.

“It’s a kind of strange juxtaposition really.”

The Stereophonics are set to perform two huge homecoming shows in Cardiff this summer alongside Welsh legend Tom Jones.



Tom with Kelly Jones, Cerys Matthews and the late Stuart Cable at the launch of The Pop Factory TV studio in Porth
Tom Jones with Kelly Jones, Cerys Matthews and the late Stuart Cable at the launch of The Pop Factory TV studio in Porth

The shows in the Principality Stadium were due to take place in December 2021 however were postponed until June 2022 due to Omicron fears.

Speaking to BBC Radio 2 ahead of the Stereophonics new album release on March 4, the band’s frontman described his relationship with his fellow Jones.

The pair watch Welsh sports matches together and Kelly said that he loves the Treforest singer ‘to bits’.

He said: “We’ve got some good stuff in the summer, we’ve got the two shows with Tom Jones and Catfish and the Bottlemen in Cardiff. we’re doing some stuff in Hyde Park with Pearl Jam.

“I love him [Tom] to bits, I can’t wait to see him and June, both our birthdays are in June so there’ll be a celebration.”

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