As Rod Stewart responded when I said, "Do you regret womanizing and drug use?" (2023)

One of my favorite moments from the interview was when I once asked Sir Rod Stewart during our life story meeting, "Do you regret all those years of prostitution, drinking, drug use and vandalizing hotel rooms?"

"Yes," he replied solemnly, his face looking lined with sincere, thoughtful remorse.




"YES REALLY?" I exclaimed, stunned and disbelieving.

The tall man paused for maximum effect and shook his head slowly and very seriously.

Then a big smile appeared on his "tormented" face and he cackled loudly, "Fuck me!! Loved everything!"

And we both burst out laughing.


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Those few seconds perfectly embodied the character of the man I am lucky enough to call a friend and believe to be Britain's most honest, down to earth and entertaining star.

But, as we were reminded a few days ago, there is much more work to be done.polethan just a big scratchy voiceiconic spiky barnettand quick-witted humor.

he is one tooincredibly big and generous guywho is passionate about his country.

So I wasn't surprised to see him.i called sky news by chance last thursday(although I emailed him shortly afterwards with the suggestion that the next time he feels like doing something like this, please call MY show!) for his raw anger expressing the terrible state of thingsNHS.

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In an emotional exchange, Rod said he had "never seen it that bad" and raged: "There are people who die because they don't get tests."

He then offered to pay for "ten or 20 scans" for people who can't be private like he is - something that may have saved his life when he got it.prostate cancer a few years ago, but survived because he was luckily captured early.

"I don't need publicity," he said. "I just want to do some good stuff and I think that's good.

"If other people follow me, I would love that."

Watch Piers Morgan's uncensored weekdays on Sky 526, Virgin Media 606, Freeview 237, Freesat 217 or on Fox Nation in the US

The next day, he sent me an email: "I don't know how to organize and pay for 20 exams for desperate people." . . Any idea?"

I'm sure there will be a way for Rod, who turned 78 two weeks ago, to fulfill his extraordinary promise and I will help him in any way I can.

But even more important is his unexpected public intervention in the growing crisis ofNHS waiting timesDays of newspaper headlines and debates on TV and radio can compel the government to do more and faster to give people the life-and-death treatment they so desperately need.

It's not the first time Rod has put his money where his mouth is.

extraordinary promise

Three months ago it emerged that he had rented and decorated a house in Berkshire for a family of seven.ukrainian refugees, including five children aged between two and 17, after he and his wifePennycried when they saw the horrors of the Russian invasion on television.

"Words could not describe what we saw," he said.

“The bombing of innocent children, hospitals and playgrounds. Like everyone else, we were completely out of our minds. This is pure evil.”

Again, he spoke publicly about his act of compassion because he wanted others to follow his example.

I am a knight now", he said. "I should use my power to do something for people. I'm sure if there are people out there who see what I'm doing, they'll relax a bit too."

Rod also rented three truckloads of relief supplies for refugees and took them to Ukraine, where he used them.Transport 16 people safelyfrom the war-torn country to safety in Germany.

None of this surprised me.

Despite long-standing rumors about his supposed evil (Ronnie Woodlabeled it "tight as two coats of paint" andGeorge Michaeltold me that he isElton Johnconvinced that Rod once served triangles of Dairylea cheese as an appetizer at a fancy dinner party at his Beverly Hills home and claimed it was a rare imported cheese), I've always found him remarkably generous, both with his money and his time.

Three years ago my father Glynne suddenly announced that he had bought four expensive tickets (£250 each) to see Rod perform at the Sussex County Cricket Ground in Hove.

He had never done anything like this before. In fact, after he dropped the bombshell, my shocked mother revealed that they hadn't seen a single concert in their entire five-decade marriage.

But Dad, who used to play drums in a jazz band, explained, "I'm 78, Rod is 74, and I want to see him play live before any of us die."




When I emailed Rod with this scary news, he replied, "Brilliant Piers! I'd like to meet you!"

He then arranged for me, my parents and my sister to park our car backstage next to his chauffeur driven Bentley - and invited us to a meal in the Green Room with some of his lovely family including his 90 year old older sister Mary and brother Don, 89.

Later, after a brilliant show, he invited us out for a few bottles of fine wine in front of his trailer, where he chatted endlessly with Mom and Dad as if they were old friends.

(When she got home, my mom posted a photo on Facebook of herself hugging Rod happily, with the caption, "Died and gone to heaven!"

Still, Dad proclaimed it "a wonderful night - worth every penny".)

Anyone who knows Rod well has stories like that, especially when it comes to his family, which is the most important thing in his life.

honest and hilarious

He is a rarity for a popular celebrity: someone who is as charming off-camera as he is on camera.

There's no scary dark side to him and no rabid narcissistic ego lurking beneath the cheeky grin.

Rod is just a really good guy who loves his wife, kids, brothers (Don and his other brother Bob have sadly passed away in recent months), country, and football.

When we met at a party in Los Angeles just before the 2015 Champions League Final and I said I would watch it alone, he exclaimed, "You can't! Come see it with me at my friend Eddie Kerkhofs' house.

Eddie is an acclaimed restaurateur who ran LA's hottest restaurant, Le Dome, for 25 years.

We had a great afternoon, including a long, soggy lunch, during which Eddie revealed that he once banned Rod from his restaurant.

"Why?" I asked.

"Because Dudley Moore threw a pork chop at him and Rod threw back a piece of calf's liver . . . Then all hell broke loose."

As for the unsubstantiated Hollywood folklore that he once had sex in the bathroom at Le Dome between courses, Rod chuckled: "No comment. Some things are best left to the imagination, old man.

I've interviewed him many times and he's always sincere, honest and hilarious.

After replacing the chat program captionLarry KingCNN did promos where I described myself as "a little dangerous".

So when I showed up at Rod'sBeverly HillsWhen he came home to interview him during freshman week, he greeted me at the door by throwing a very convincing toy hand grenade at me and yelling, "I heard you were DANGEROUS so I thought I was prepared." !“

When we walked in, Rod squeezed my ass for the CNN cameras, which made me scream.

"That will kill your female audience," he chuckled.

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Too often these days, the words 'national treasure' are used to describe luminaries, which I would consider more like the comedian Jack Whitehall once described me - 'a regional gem'.

But Sir Rod really is a national treasure; he's one of Britain's greatest musical talents, a lover of fun, a thoroughly decent family man and, as we saw again last week, an awfully proud patriot who wants to help those less fortunate than himself.



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