Penny Lancaster, 48, and Rod Stewart, 74, take in the sights of Portofino before the rock star kicks back and relaxes shirtless aboard lavish yacht

They are currently enjoying a family break across Europe on their £125,000 a week Emotion 2 superyacht.

And Penny Lancaster, 48, and Rod Stewart, 74, looked relaxed as they took in the sights of the fishing village of Portofino on Monday.

Penny looked every inch the holiday babe in a striped vest teamed with tiny denim shorts that showcased her fabulously bronzed pins.

The age-defying beauty strode along the cobbled streets in gladiator style sandals and covered her eyes with aviator sunglasses.

Rod rocked a blue linen shirt paired with light-wash denim jeans rolled up at the ankles.

The trendy musician sported embroidered espadrilles and donned a navy and white polka dot neckerchief.

Tanning time: Later on, they retreated to their mega yacht where Rod showcased his carefree nature by whipping off his shirt

He hid his famous mullet under an indigo fedora whilst strolling behind his wife. 

Following their saunter around the town, the couple returned to their lavish yacht to relax.

Rod showcased his carefree nature by whipping off his shirt, allowing him top up his tan.

Portofino is particularly significant to the couple as it was the setting for their wedding in 2007. 

They tied the knot at a medieval monestary, La Cervara, before honeymooning on board a yacht, Lady Ann Magee in the port there.

Rod Stewart, 74, and Penny Lancaster, 48, nail their summer style as they enjoy hand-in-hand stroll in Portofino

They're currently holidaying on their super-yacht in Italy with their family.

And Rod Stewart, 74, and Penny Lancaster, 48, looked happy and relaxed as they strolled hand-in-hand around the fishing village Portofino with their family on Friday.

The rocker cut a casual figure as he donned an all white ensemble of white ripped skinny jeans and a white open shirt with butterfly pattern that showed off his bare chest.

Rod Stewart, 74, is the height of relaxation in a cosy dressing gown as he reclines in a superyacht on the final days of his Italian break

Low-key: Rod Stewart, 74, was every inch the man of leisure on Saturday as he enjoyed the final days of his family break on a superyacht in Italy

As he exited the boat for the outing, Rod opted for an unbuttoned white shirt to display his tanned physique, which the star teamed with ripped taupe trousers.

The Maggie May legend teamed the outfit with necklaces paying tribute to the beloved Celtic football team, but kept himself shielded from the sun with a yellow umbrella.

After the stroll, Rod changed into a relaxed white dressing down before reclining on the deck of his lavish superyacht in the blazing sunshine.

Casual: The music legend proudly displayed his tanned physique as he donned a suave all-white ensemble for the outing on the boat

The family have been enjoying some time away on the £125,000 a week Emotion 2 yacht in Cannes, which sleeps up to 10 guests in five rooms, including a master suite, two VIP staterooms and one double cabin. 

The yacht, which can host up to 50 guests, comes complete with jet skis, water skis, a deck jacuzzi, an upper deck alfresco cinema and a private side terrace in the master suite.    

Penny and Rod's getaway comes after she recently revealed they considered expanding their brood through adoption during a candid discussion on Loose Women last month.

Sightseeing: Earlier the hitmaker sported a white shirt and matching nude trousers as he strolled through the fishing village of Portofino, keeping shaded with a yellow umbrella

Penny Lancaster, 48, zips through the waves on a jet-ski lesson as husband Rod Stewart, 74, watches on from £125,000 a week yacht in Cannes

They are enjoying an idyllic family holiday in Europe on a £125,000 a week yacht.

And Penny Lancaster and Rod Stewart made the most of their summer holiday as she took to the waves for a jetski lesson in Cannes, France on Tuesday.

The model, 48, looked relaxed as she was guided through the water by an instructor while a dapper Rod, 74, proudly watched on.

Here he is: Rocker Rod, 74, proudly watched on as Penny took to the waves

Penny revealed her toned frame and endless legs in a fuchsia swimsuit as she confidently steered the jetski.

Her caramel tresses were styled in a tousled ponytail while her sparkling peepers were hidden behind stylish shades.

Do Ya Think I'm Sexy singer Rod looked typically trendy in a crisp white shirt paired with matching shorts and a rakish fedora.  

The star later donned a a powder blue cover-up as she took in the scenic views with the couple's son Alastair, 13.

  • Sir Rod Stewart. Former Scotland manager Craig Brown, CBE, talks football in a World Sport Exclusive to Andrew  Atkinson.
 

SIR ROD Stewart’s love affair with football began over half a century ago – when his dad Bob took him to watch Scotland against England at Hampden Park in 1964.

Scotland beat England 1-0. And the seeds of football were planted into Celtic supporter Sir Rod’s blood.

Little did he know at that time, that the Hampden Park path would one day lead to him training with the Scotland national team – and become good friends of Craig Brown – along with a plethora of football managers and players across the Globe.

“Sir Rod trained with the Scottish team in New Jersey – and we were all invited to his show at Maddison Square Garden, New York,” said Craig.

“Many of the players went up on stage with Sir Rod – while he performed – singing in his Scotland top!,” recalled Craig.

Sir Rod, 74, who first played at Madison Square Garden in the seventies, said: “Madison Square Garden was a great evening.”

Sir Rod, on record as saying that he would like some of his ashes scattered at Hampden Park, added: “I wouldn’t have missed it for the world!”.

Craig, 79, in charge of the Scotland national team during 1993-2001, recalled the day Sir Rod contacted him, ahead of the Celtic versus Blackburn Rovers European Cup tie at Ewood Park in 2002.

“At the time I was manager at Preston North End and I received a call from Sir Rod, asking if I could recommend somewhere he could dine (away from Blackburn) and I arranged a dining place in Preston,” recalled Craig.

“I went to Woolworths on Fishergate, Preston, and purchased a dozen Rod Stewart CDs – and got him to sign them!,” said Craig, Scotland’s most successful manager.

After dining, Sir Rod Stewart jumped into his chauffeur driven limousine, and headed to Ewood Park to watch the Rovers versus Celtic tie.

“Billy Davies (assistant manager at Preston) and I sat with Sir Alex Ferguson at the match, while Rod was just sitting along from us,” said Craig.

Another football memory is Sir Rod so emotionally taken aback – after Celtic’s win against Barcelona in a Champions League tie in 2012 – he burst into tears.

Speaking about the Champions League 2-1 win against Barcelona, Sir Rod said: “It meant that much to me. It was about me and Celtic – and my dad – I was full of pride, and it overcame me.”

Sir Rod’s father Robert, who died in 1990, used to take him to watch Arsenal – and Scotland – as a kid in the early years, inaugurating him into The Tartan Army.

Sir Rod was sailing on a cruiseliner this weekend (July 20) in France with his wife, model Penny Lancaster, star of ITV’s ‘Loose Women’ programme, relaxing after his British summer concert tour – with the Celtic Bhoys Crest on the liner.

“Sir Rod has the Celtic Crest on his drums when playing in concert. He’s a good guy,” said Craig.

Penny Lancaster, 48, wears sheer leopard print dress for golf session while Rod Stewart, 74, dons a white djellaba on £125,000 a week yacht in St Tropez

Penny Lancaster and Rod Stewart relaxed in style as they cruised around St Tropez in a £125,000 a week yacht on Monday. 

The Loose Women panellist, 48, took a walk on the wild side as she slipped into a sheer leopard print minidress to play golf on the Emotion 2's expansive sundeck. 

Penny appeared to be having the time of her life as she took a swing with the club, while Rob, 74, who rocked a white djellaba, opted to keep cool in the shade.  

Holiday: Penny Lancaster and Rod Stewart relaxed in style as they cruised around St Tropez in their £125,000 a week yacht

Rocking a large straw sunhat, Penny wore a matching leopard print bikini underneath her slip-on dress and beamed as she competed with her son Alastair, 13, and pals.

Rod donned a white djellaba, a loose, long-fitting unisex robe, as he relaxed on deck with his other half. 

The couple have splashed out the cash to stay on the Emotion 2 yacht, which sleeps up to 10 guests in five rooms, including a master suite, two VIP staterooms and one double cabin.

Couple: Rod was joined by his wife Penny, who slipped into a leopard print minidress to play golf on the Emotion 2's expansive sundeck

Amazing: The yacht, which can host up to 50 guests, comes complete with jet skis, water skis, a deck jacuzzi, an upper deck alfresco cinema and a private side terrace in the master suite

Trip: Rod Stewart, 74, took some time out of his schedule to board his yacht in Saint Tropez, France where he sported a white djellaba 

The yacht, which can host up to 50 guests, comes complete with jet skis, water skis, a deck jacuzzi, an upper deck alfresco cinema and a private side terrace in the master suite.  

The couple have been enjoying their time abroad and recently hosted the party aboard their yacht for their nearest and dearest. 

Penny and Rod's glamorous getaway comes after she recently revealed she and Rod considered expanding their brood through adoption during a candid discussion on Loose Women last month.

 

Alone time: The pair ensured they had some alone time away from their guests

Rod Stewart Taps Into 'Emotion' During Vacation On Mega Yacht

Rod Stewart knows how to get some R&R, and he has proven it once again by charting a luxury yacht to sail the seas.

 
 

74-year-old Stewart, along with his wife Penny Lancaster, 48, and their kids are all in St. Tropez having what looks like the best time ever on a massive yacht.

The yacht, which rents for around $156,000 is massive. It has an interior layout that sleeps up to 10 guests in 5 rooms, including a master suite, 2 VIP staterooms, 1 double cabin, 1 twin cabin and 1 pullman bed.

 
 

The ship, named "Emotion 2," is also capable of carrying up to 9 crew onboard to ensure a relaxed luxury yacht experience. Timeless styling, beautiful furnishings and spacious seating featured throughout the vessel to create an elegant and comfortable atmosphere.

Penny Lancaster and Rod Stewart's sons Alastair and Aiden make rare appearance in family video

The family are currently on holiday

Penny Lancaster and Rod Stewart's sons Alastair and Aiden are growing up quickly, but luckily for the doting parents, they still enjoy spending time with their parents on holiday! Over the weekend, Penny captured a sweet moment between Rod and their boys as they enjoyed a game of Monopoly. In an Instagram video, the trio were sitting at the table in full game mode, and Penny captioned the short clip: "Games day with dad." There were other popular board games at the table too, including Scrabble and Pictionary. Many fans adored seeing a snippet into their family life, with many taking to commenting on the post. One wrote: "These are the best times!" while another added: "These are the simple things kids love so much. Such a wonderful, loving dad."

Rod Stewart and his two sons Alastair and Aiden had fun playing board games

The family are currently cruising around the south of France. Penny shared a video of Rod climbing up onto the deck of a ship on Sunday morning, and also revealed that they were in Provence, after sharing a picture on Instagram of a cat they had met in the streets. The quality time together will no doubt be cherished following Rod's busy tour earlier in the year. Now that the boys have finished school for the summer, they can well and truly relax too. It's been a busy time for Penny too, who recently returned to Loose Women after having a short break during Rod's tour. The doting mum revealed to the panel that they were about to adopt a puppy, and has since been helping to settle their dog – who they have named Lily – into their family home.

HOOPY DAYS 

Celtic-daft Rod Stewart proudly flies Hoops flag from yacht as he enjoys glorious sunshine

 

SIR Rod Stewart has been proudly flying a Celtic fag from a yacht, as he basked in the sun.

The Hoops-daft crooner, 74, was seen in an Instagram video enjoying life on his boat in the glorious sunshine, and he couldn't help showing off his club's colours.

He rarely wastes an opportunity tho show where his footballing allegiances lie, and this was no different, as a tricolour with the Parkhead club's badge on it blew in the wind above his head.

Rod posed for the camera for a video later posted on the Instagram stories of both him and wife Penny Lancaster.

Sir Rod Stewart ditched his hell-raising ways for collecting colourful socks

SIR Rod Stewart has swapped his love of hell-raising for collecting pairs of colourful socks.

The Maggie May singer, 74, told The Sun he carries a minimum of 50 fresh pairs from his huge set to each gig so he always has plenty of choice over which ones to wear.

Speaking backstage at Lytham Festival while showing off his impressive collection, Rod said: “I’ve got a tray of 30 out on the dressing room table here and another two trays back there, there’s got to be at least 50 with me.”

Rod today announced a third date at London’s O2 in December as part of his 19-date UK tour.

A source close to the star added: “Rod takes his sense of style very seriously and likes to have plenty of choice for each gig.

“He always has extra blazers to choose from hung up around the dressing room and his socks are just as important.

“It’s not quite an obsession yet but he does enjoy collecting them.”

Wife Penny Lancstaster, 48, revealed in an interview that his cold feet are the reason behind his love of socks.

Rod Stewart voices his support for “my mate” A$AP Rocky following his arrest in Sweden

The singer has spoken out following reports which claim the rapper has been held in "inhumane conditions" in Sweden

Rod Stewart has voiced his support for “my mate” A$AP Rocky following the rapper’s recent arrest and incarceration in Sweden.

Rocky was arrested in Stockholm on July 2 along with two members of his entourage on suspicion of assault following a performance at the Smash music festival. The Harlem rapper was apparently set to be incarcerated in Sweden for two weeks in order for police to investigate the case.

It’s since been claimed that Rocky has been held in “inhumane conditions” while in prison, with the case prompting an outpouring of support from artists such as Tyga and Tyler, the Creator, who appeared to vow last week that he would never perform in Sweden again as a result of the case.

Rocky has also now received a message of support from Stewart, who said he was “dismayed” at Rocky’s alleged “mistreatment… at the hands of Swedish police”.

 

Rod Stewart's wife Penny Lancaster shares glimpse inside their Essex home

The celebrity couple live with their two sons Alastair and Aiden

Rod Stewart and his wife Penny Lancaster spend the majority of their time in England, and live in an incredible home in Essex. And this week, Penny has given fans a glimpse inside the stunning property. The Loose Women panellist shared a picture on Instagram of her two dogs looking out of the window and out onto the garden. The window featured a beautiful cushioned ledge and floral blinds, and the family have the most perfectly cut lawn – which is no doubt a great place for sons Alastair, 13, and Aiden, eight, to run around on. The photo also showed a glimpse of a tan corduroy sofa, and a forest green wall.

A glimpse inside Rod Stewart and Penny Lancaster's home in Essex

The couple also have a home in LA, where they spend a lot of their summers. For Rod and Penny, their home is a sanctuary away from their busy lives in the public eye, and they even chose to renew their wedding vows there in June 2017. The pair tied the knot for the second time in their garden in a star-studded event that was covered by HELLO!. They chose to exchange the same vows as they used in their original ceremony before joining their guests in a marquee for an evening of eating and dancing. "Being able to reflect on those ten years, and say those words to one another and still know we mean them is important. This felt more special," Penny said.

Rod Stewart phones the Hotline as Celtic 'global ranking' gives superstar reason to believe 'it's all bulls***'

Keith Jackson and Gary Ralston took your calls and were left flabbergasted as they picked up the phone to the Hoops-daft Rock and Roll Hall of Famer.

THE first call is the deepest. But I don’t want to talk about it.

Oh who am I kidding? I was only joking.

Let’s face it, it’s not every day you just happen to pick up the Daily Record bat-phone and hear Rod Stewart going full Celtic Da on the other end of the line.

Well, you know what they say, some guys have all the luck.

And so it came to pass that this morning football’s favourite Hotline just happened to take arguably its greatest ever call from a Knight of the Realm, Grammy Award winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer.

Calling from his holiday home in England shortly before boarding a private jet for a gig in Aberdeen, the great man said: “I read the Record every day. If I can’t get the paper then I catch up on line and this morning I saw a story about some chart which ranks the most successful football teams in the world.

 

“The guy who wrote it said that Rangers were far ahead of Celtic. But when I looked up the chart this morning it was the other way around.

“It starts off with the likes of Manchester City and Barcelona and then all the way down it’s got Celtic and Rangers. But, in actual fact, Celtic are above Rangers.

"Now, how they work out this chart I don’t know. It’s all bulls***.

“But I just thought there was a little error there that I would like to correct on behalf of Celtic!”

OK, some quick housekeeping at this point.

Turns out both Rod and the Record on-line team were actually correct. At the time of publication - on Monday afternoon - Rangers did top their old rivals in the latest Global Club Soccer Rankings, released ahead of the new domestic campaign.

But those positions flipped overnight - leaving Rod as mystified as us as the countdown to the new season.

What a palaver. This old heart of mine can hardly cope with the excitement.

Rod went on: “I must say, I’m looking forward to the challenge next year. Rangers seem to have about 200 players and I don’t know how they’re going to boil them down to 11.

“But I’m certainly looking forward to the challenge next year from Rangers. It’s good for the Rangers supporters. It’s wonderful to have this level of excitement and competition again.

“Now I need to leave for a concert in Aberdeen in a couple of hours where I’m told it’s p*****g down with rain!”

'COUNT ME IN' 

Sir Rod Stewart is backing The Sun’s Never Forget Them veterans campaign and says ‘We need to be doing more for them’

Sir Rod spoke ahead of a gig in which he dedicated chart-topping ballad Rhythm Of My Heart to British forces veterans.

The Sun’s campaign has been launched to battle injustices against veterans and introduce a Minister for Veterans in the next Cabinet.

Rod told a crowd of 20,000 at the Lytham Festival in Lancs: “Three weeks ago I had the great pleasure of being introduced to some of the D-Day veterans.

“I’m going to dedicate this one to those guys, those precious men who gave their lives, the ultimate sacrifice, for our freedom.”

Photos of fallen troops flashed up behind the rocker along with a photo of wartime Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill.

Penny Lancaster highlights her toned pins in leopard print dress as she enjoys night on the town with husband Rod Stewart in London

They have been happily married since 2007, and share two sons - Alastair, 13, and eight-year-old Aidan.

And Rod Stewart, 74, and Penny Lancaster, 48, looked in high spirits as they enjoyed a night at Annabel's private members club in London on Thursday.

Penny looked nothing short of sensational for the evening, donning a leopard print dress that highlighted her toned pins.

Couple: Rod Stewart, 74, and Penny Lancaster, 48, looked in high spirits as they enjoyed a night at Annabel's private members club in London on Thursday

She added height to her frame with a pair of heels and let her blonde locks fall loose down her shoulders for the evening. 

Rod sported a white blazer and matching shirt for the evening, pairing it with a loose fitting black tie and black trousers.

The couple posed alongside a group of pals after they enjoyed their night at the venue before heading home in a taxi. 

Penny recently revealed she and Rod considered expanding their brood through adoption during a candid discussion on Loose Women last month. 

Rod Stewart and Penny Lancaster introduce new addition to their family

What a cute four-legged friend!

Rod Stewart and Penny Lancaster have expanded their family by adopting a puppy from Battersea Dogs Home – and she's the cutest! The celebrity couple had previously decided to call their dog – who is a mixture between a Labrador and a Poodle – Blondie, and Penny has since shared some seriously sweet photos of her on Instagram. Referring to Blondie as her "Battersea baby," Penny shared a picture of her puppy, settling into their family home, and wrote: "Or Battersea baby is very much at home on just her second day with her new family."

The Loose Women panellist also posted a picture of Blondie with their other dog posing on a bench in the garden. Penny and Rod have been praised for adopting a puppy, rather than buying one, by many of their fans. Penny had revealed that her family was getting a puppy during an appearance on Loose Women. The mother-of-two admitted that both she and Rod would have been open to adopting a child, but that after discussing it with their two young sons, they decided that it would be better to leave their family unit as it was. She told the panel: "We even considered adopting, but after discussing it with the little ones, they said they love our little brood the way it is, and that there may be too much of an age gap. So we are getting a puppy instead."

Penny continued to say that Rod would also have been up for adopting a child. "He's got eight children altogether. We are fortunate enough to have a big house, there's a spare room. Extra love and funds that families need these days. And we thought 'why not, give another child that needs a home a home'. But it has to be a consideration of the whole family, not just Rod and I, so as I say, we have decided on getting a puppy instead and they are coming on Thursday from Battersea. It's a mix between a Labrador and a Poodle, so a Labradoodle. It's a girl, and it's blonde, so I think we will call it Blondie."

Rod Stewart plays the County Ground in Hove

Picking up the call from Palm Beach to be put through to Rod Stewart, there’s no mistaking the gravely tones of a musical icon who’s been honoured the world over. WEEKEND speaks to the legend himself ahead of his show at the County Ground in Hove this Friday.

DURING his six decades in the music industry – with chart-topping albums in each one of those – that distinctive voice has kept Rod Stewart at the top, with success across most genres of popular music, from rock to folk, soul and the classic American Songbook, with record sales totalling more than 200 million worldwide.

Following on from his latest release – Blood Red Roses, which debuted at number one in the UK album chart – Sir Rod Stewart will once more be touring the country, and promises fans a special night.

At 74 the touring schedule – billed as his biggest UK tour to date – could be daunting, with sold-out football stadiums and indoor and outdoor arenas in the diary, but there’s clearly no sign of Rod retiring, as many of his peers have… Yet.

 

Rod said: “Not at all – I’m proud of my age… And most of my peers are dead, not retired.

“I enjoy it, that’s what it comes down to. There will be a time, I’m sure, for retirement and I’m closer than I was years ago.

“To me, retirement is not a lovely word. People always talk about ‘looking forward to retiring’ but for me that’s an awful thought. I’m lucky I have a brilliant job that I love, and as long as I enjoy it and people are coming out in their droves to the shows then I will go on.”

And to keep up physically, Rod reels off a string of activities: Three personal trainer sessions a week, swimming, playing football with his youngest sons, rowing.

Explaining his regime, the star said: “I always make the comparison with football, which I’ve played all my life; it’s an ugly game if you’re not fit and everyone’s running past you, leaving you behind.

“But if you’re keeping up, it’s beautiful.”

With Blood Red Roses, his 30th studio album, there’s plenty of tracks to choose from when it comes to planning a tour – the hits from his career really are too many to mention. How do you create a set list with that many songs available?

“We know there are certain songs people love to hear, of course, but I like to bring back ones from way back when, and there’ll be a fair sprinkling of those, probably two from Blood Red Roses and a couple from the two albums before that, Time and Another Country,” Rod explains.

“People want to hear the songs like I Don’t Wanna Talk About It, and that keeps them in the show. And we don’t really drop tracks, we change the show every night; from a set list of maybe 20 songs, for example track 15 every night we’ll change it and decide each night what it’ll be, so every crowd gets a slightly different show.

“It keeps the band on their toes – and they keep me on mine! It’s a big band, six girls, six men and they’re very lively, it’s good to have the youngsters around.”

Also featuring in the 2019 tour will be special guests Johnny Mac And The Faithful, opening the summer shows after being hand-picked by Rod himself.

After hearing their music at Celtic matches and events, Rod had fallen for their barn-storming Irish-influenced Americana sound, with one instrumental especially standing out.

“I’d heard them play over the years but never knew anything about who they were,” he said.

“And one time I was watching footage of the players training on Celtic’s TV channel, and I loved the background music which was being used. I looked all over the place to find out what it was. I thought it was a band from Australia and we’d tracked it down.

“But it turned out it was Johnny, and they were on the doorstep. I instantly had lyrics to go with the music, and that led to us co-writing Julia on Blood Red Roses.

“Johnny supplies all the music for Celtic Football Club and is a big supporter, like I am, and I think they’re brilliant. I really like the music; it’s real party music, just what you need to warm up the audience, but they are a very, very flexible band and very talented. I wanted to give him a chance.”

Recent years have seen Rod back writing, after his exploration of the Great American Songbook in the Noughties. He’d turned away from penning his own music for several years after losing confidence in the early Nineties, as documented in his 2012 book Rod: The Autobiography.

“When I wrote my book, that sparked in me the realisation that I had stories still to tell, about my early beginnings, my dad, and that book spawned the writing, it came back to me,” he said.

“I had thought it had gone and left me, but it doesn’t really, it’s not a physical thing, you just have to put your mind to it. I teamed up again with Kevin Savigar, my co-writer and producer now, and he brought it out of me again.

“There was a point when I didn’t even want to go into the studio again too. I couldn’t bear the thought of going into the dark studio space. But again, it was Kevin who got me back, he came along and we started doing it on our computers.

“He would write a tune, send it to me, I’d ‘la-di-diddly-dah’ over it and send it back. We’d add drum machines or whatever, and see how it sounded, then if we felt it needed a drummer, we would get a drummer in, and embellish it with real musicians… And all the while, I’d be seeing daylight and enjoying fresh air.

“I don’t think I jump on bandwagons, maybe a little bit with disco and Do Ya Think I’m Sexy, but mainly I’ve followed my own instincts and I’m glad to see changes in the industry, and it stepping up a bit.

“What we do, rock and roll, is such an innocent form of music, using the same chords and themes time and time again, but it stays fresh.”

Then there’s the variety of each show and each audience bringing something different.

“Whether it’s a small festival or a bloody great big one, we give every show the same 110 per cent. We have played to 54 people once, for a wealthy Russian man in Rome who must have only known 50 people – and he invited all of them.

“He paid me a lot of money, and we gave the same show as we would at Madison Square Garden.

“It’s funny when it’s smaller like that, or in Vegas, not everybody there is a Rod Stewart fan so you have to win them over, it’s not like doing a show in Britain where everybody wants the night to be a success and to have a good time.”

And what can fans heading to the shows this year expect?

“A total load of flipping rubbish,” he jokes followed by that gravely laugh, and a simple explanation. “I can only do what I do, sing a collection of wonderful songs; new ones, old ones, a few surprises, and there’s a whole new visual going on.

“I’m not going to take my trousers down, not this time, maybe when I get really desperate I will.

“When you forget to put your trousers on, maybe that’s the time to pack it in.”

So, Sir Rod will be keeping those Hot Legs under wraps… For now, at least.

Rod Stewart plays the County Ground, Hove on Friday, July 12.

Rod Stewart: "I'm all for a second Brexit referendum; we were lied to before the first"

 
 

"Energy, the element of surprise and being able to make people happy," are what keeps the veteran rock star going, he told SUR ahead of this week’s concert at Marenostrum Fuengirola

Rod Stewart has lived his 74 years "to the limit". More than four decades as a rock star have brought him innumerable hits, awards, including the title of Sir, and international fame. The son of a Scottish master builder living in London, who started out as a busker in the 1960s, is due to play to thousands in Fuengirola this Wednesday night.

At this stage in his career, Sir Rod appears to have everything. But is there anything he has yet to achieve?, we enquired in the exclusive interview he gave to the SUR group prior to his Costa concert.

“For Celtic to get in the last 16 of the Champions League,” was his reply.

 
 

He may have (almost) everything but sitting back on his laurels is not among his plans. “Energy, the element of surprise and being able to express myself,” is what he says keeps him hooked on the life of a rock star.

The British star with his gravelly voice and carefully dishevelled blond hair still appears on stages around the world with a playlist full of timeless songs.

This Wednesday he is due to pour out all his energy out onto the 9,000-strong crowd on Fuengirola’s Marenostrum stage, at the foot of Sohail Castle, one of just two concerts in Spain this year.

Huge show

Six trucks and five buses have brought his equipment to Fuengirola, and the whole show involves 120 people from roadies to local recruits. Front and side panels, lighting effects and six backing singers and dancers promise to make the show all the more spectacular.

It’s 14 years since Rod Stewart last performed on the Costa del Sol; his last visit being in 2005 at the Mijas racecourse.

Before he arrived, however, he agreed to answer this newspaper's questions about his career and his opinions on issues such as Brexit by email.

Tricky question

He is asked about Donald Trump, whom he has in the past referred to as a “friend”, but in the return email this question has been erased. It has been replaced with: “What memories do you have of your time spent on the Costa del Sol?”

“I had a house in Estepona and I only have fond memories of colourful holidays,” is his reply.

So we never found out what advice he would give to the US president, but Rod Stewart did make his position on the current situation in the UK very clear.

“I have strong thoughts on Brexit,” says the London-born musician of Scottish origin. “At the moment basically I feel the same way as most British people, tired of procrastination, tired of politicians who are full of self-interest. I am all for a second referendum because we were lied to in the run-up to the first.”

No beating around the bush there, then. He speaks as Rod the artist and Rod the individual as he maintains they are the same person: “I don’t think there’s much difference from my stage persona to my own persona,” he explains.

“Being able to hopefully make people happy,” is among the factors that motivate Stewart to keep his career going, releasing new records, despite fans demanding to hear old favourites such as Maggie May, Forever Young, Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?, among others.

Old favourites

Of course tracks from his latest album, Blood Red Roses, appear on his playlist. His songs, he says, are stories with “a beginning, a middle and an end” and are the result of “having lived a full life”. That’s where his inspiration comes from, he says.

Nevertheless he is aware that things are very different today from when he started out in the business. He admits that with the rise in the feminist movement and initiatives such as #MeToo, today some of his earlier lyrics would not be approved of. “Hot Legs, Stay With Me, Do Ya Think I’m Sexy, Tonight’s the Night... I could go on and on, but that was then and this is now,” he points out.

Before his musical success the young Rod Stewart tried his luck as a footballer, worked for the family business as a newspaper delivery boy and was even a labourer at Highgate Cemetery.

Then he decided to pack a rucksack and guitar and go round the world with folk musician Wizz Jones.That was when he came to Spain for the first time, in the early sixties.

Spanish experience

He landed in Franco’s Barcelona but didn’t stay long: the now Knight of the British Empire was deported under the vagrancy law when he was found sleeping in the street by police. Then he became involved in the Mod movement, and after his spell in The Faces, launched his solo career that still thrives.

We ask him if there is anything left of that rebellious spirit associated with rock music, or if it has been silenced by success, fame and money. “It all depends on how you describe a rebel. Music can be rebellious but it can also be thought-provoking, comforting and joyous,” he responds, skirting the question.

What hasn’t changed over the years is his musical tastes. “I still listen to all my favourites, Sam Cooke, Otis Redding and Muddy Waters.”

Father of eight children, whose age difference he describes as “quite radical” (his oldest is in her 50s and his youngest eight), Stewart agrees that he is kept up-to-date with modern music. “I’m not a great lover of rap,” he says, before describing himself as a “big fan” of young singer George Ezra.

Looking back at his 74 years Rod Stewart concludes that he has lived life to the limit, although there are still places he would like to visit. “I’ve had a wonderful life; all I can ask for now is good health and happiness,” he says.

Ball – The first practice of Rod Stewart season (Balanceense)

Particular attendance in the first training of the Balanceenes for the new season. Rod Stewart was in the national stadium on Monday and was in line with the team of blues and technical team

Scottish singer-songwriter, Celtic fan Sharp, is in Lisbon for a concert tonight in the Alties Arena.

 
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