Marriage and three kids have changed his life

Bass player Alex James once missed a Blur gig in Sam Remo, Italy, because he was too drink to perform. His place was taken on stage by a cardboard cutout.

The musician’s rock ’n’ roll lifestyle – which at one time meant downing three bottles of champagne a day – was a blast while it lasted but now, at nearly 38, Alex lives a quiet life on his farm in Oxfordshire.

‘It was bloody good fun,’ he recalls of his days on the lash, ‘but I was probably very unhappy and unfulfilled.’

Alex married video director Claire Neate three years ago and they now have three children – Geronimo, two, and seven-month-old twins Artemus and Galileo.

‘Boozing is incompatible with marriage for me,’ Alex tells Weekend magazine. ‘People who drink a lot either become fighters or seducers.

‘My marriage is too precious to mess it all up.’