Thursday, April 17, 2014

Steve about his childhood

THREE months after the death of his beloved mother pop heartthrob Steve Balsamo today speaks movingly of his loss and his happy childhood.

In an exclusive interview with
Wales on Sunday Steve, 29, recalls growing up in Swansea
and opens his heart about his mum Elaine's death from lung cancer earlier this summer.

``Everyone was present at her death,'' says Steve. ``Andrew, Michael and me (Steve's brothers) were all singing and we could all feel in harmony with each other. It was beautiful and profound.

``She died three months ago from lung cancer, she was 62 and she was first diagnosed fifteen months earlier, the doctors said she had only three months to live. ``Before she died I said, `When you go, come back,' and she has, I've seen her.

``My mum was a big Jim Reeves' fan and I'm going to record I Love You Because for her, and me, one day.''

Musically, Steve is celebrating the release of his long-awaited new album All I Am. He is fast establishing himself as one of
's finest singer-songwriters. Here, he unveils a variety of photos from his youth. They reveal a time full of dodgy barnets, angelic looks, dubious tank-tops, curtains ahead of their time and a dad with an uncanny resemblance to Austin Powers.

Welcome to Steve's world.


I LOVE these pictures of me with Mum aged a few weeks, right and about eight months, above. I'm about to sneeze in the top one. My mum, Elaine, loved watching TV, she was a soapaholic.

I get my stubborn streak from mum. Along with Dad she tried to instil honesty, manners and being polite. Mum told me not to swear, dad didn't mind so much! My mum didn't do any outside work, she was totally devoted to her boys. Most people say I take after my mum, I've got her eyes and a bit of my dad's nose.

Michael looks like me and Andrew looks like my dad.


EIGHT months old and I still have the poodle. I love toys. My first musical toy was a small piano and I also had a wind-up TV that played`Row, row, row the boat gently down the stream.' Mum said I'd sing myself to sleep, I was very serene.

I loved Action Man, and I used to play war games with Marcus Hopkins next door. I love children and the idea of being a dad in the future and learning from them is very appealing to me.


I'M 18 months older than my brother Andrew, here wearing the football shirt. He's a lovely guy and started singing before me - he's got a band as well. We were thick as thieves when we were young, we hardly ever fought but we made mischief.

We'd give Mum hell and sometimes we'd fight over girls. We've always been close but with mum dying that brought everyone closer. I feel very protective towards Andrew. Our brother, Michael came later - he's taller and looks like Tom Cruise!


THINK this was taken in
Argyle Street in Swansea
, the street where I used to live,outside the Glamorgan pub. remember going to Sunday school which is ironic when you consider I went on to play Jesus in Jesus Christ Superstar.

was conscientious at school, I enjoyed art and had great days at St Helen's in
and then Dynevor Comprehensive. When Mum was ill I came back to see her as often as could and I met some familiar faces.


I'M about six-years-old here with Andrew, cousin
and my nana Ivy in the background.

Andrew looks like he wants to get up to some mischief.

's got two kids now. We had great fun in those days.

The last big family get together we had was for John, my grandfather's 90th birthday a couple of years ago. He died a few months later but it was a great family occasion.

My uncle Gerwen, got up and sang miners' songs and Andrew, Mike and me sang some songs acappella.


I LOVE that shirt! I was about six then and I never went to bed early used to drive my mother crazy. All kids go through phases and I wentthrough mine when I was about 15, I was very keen on music, and girls of course.

was always asking big questions about God. Dad was into philosophers like Kant and I'd go through phases of, `What's it all about?' I'm still searching. Now I'm doing a course on Gurdjieff.


LOOK at that hair, I sure don't recognise that guy! This was After Dark, the band I was in - from left to right: Lino, Stuart, Rhod, Steve, Miles. This was taken between 1989 and 1991.Stuart wrote all the songs, I learnt a lot from him and we were really good, doing 80s melodic rock like Bon Jovi. I heard some of our songs recently and didn't wince as much as thought would.''


JESUS Christ Superstar was my early musical break, but some of my earliest music memories are of dad belting out Mario Lanza and my mum doing Jim Reeves love songs.

Jealousy motivated me to sing at 17 when I suspected my girlfriend loved Jon Bon Jovi more than me!


ME at 18 months with Dad on the beach - look out Austin Powers!

My girlfriend
Tracy spotted the similarity, he has got a bit of Tony Blackburn too! This was taken in Venice
, where my dad, Luciano, who is very fun and loving, was born.

When I have a beard I look like my dad - sometimes I look in the mirror and see him. I'm fine with that, it's good to accept that your parents are part of you.

I think if you run from that idea you quickly become like your parents.

I've definitely got my dad's Latin temper which combined with my Welsh blood is an explosive mix. But I rarely lose it, I'm a placid guy. I don't know if I'll resemble Austin Powers when I get older but I'm a fan of Mike Myers, just give me the girls! I'd pose nude again for the right price - about a tenner!


VERY 70s wallpaper! And love those curtains, they're hip again now! My taste is simple and I do like retro styles though I wouldn't say my flat is like Gracelands!

This was taken at Uncle Amleto's in
, like dad he's a chef and he cooks amazing food. Mum was expecting Michael at that time in this photo.

The best thing my parents taught me was not to be afraid, to have a go at anything, if you want to do it give it a go.

A lot of parents are career-minded when it comes to their children but mine said that if you want to do it go for it.

I remember coming home to my dad and saying, `I'm going to be a singer'.

He said: `Go on then.' I think he sensed how much wanted it.

STEVE'S new album and single of the same name, All I Am, are both out now. You can see Steve on HTV's Pop Factory on Friday September 27 at

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