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Sam Fender relishes telling his former classmates to "f*** off" when they ask him to play at their weddings.
The 'Spit Of You' hitmaker felt out of place at a sixth form college in a wealthy part of Whitley Bay, North East England, and while his fellow students used to make fun of him then, they are keen to ask him for favours now he's a star, and he has no problem with turning them down.
He said: "There was a corner of the common room that they used to call peasants’ corner, and that’s where I used to sit.
“But they’re all asking us to play their weddings now. And I subsequently tell them all to f*** off. It’s wonderful.”
When he was 20 and trying to make it as a musician, Sam was diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, but doesn't want to identify it because "it'll just become the story of everything I do".
But the 27-year-old singer admitted his health issues pushed him into making his debut album 'Hypersonic Missiles'.
He recalled to Sunday Times Culture magazine: "I was, like, ‘Well, that’s great —my music’s failed and I’m probably going to die.'
"[I thought] If I’m going to potentially die young, then I’m going to release an album that actually means something before that.”
Fortunately, Sam made an unexpected recovery.
He added: “And now I’ve released two albums that I like. Well, one that’s alreet, and one that’s f****** good.”
The 'Seventeen Going Under' hitmaker is now in "near remission" and although he undergoes regular tests and takes medication, he is able to lead a "completely normal" life.
But he conceded: “I should probably look after myself a bit more. But I’m in my twenties and I just want to live like I’m in my twenties.”
While Sam is preparing to start work on his third album, he insisted it won't feature any tales of stardom.
He said: "I didn’t get famous until I was 25, so a lot of the songs I write are about my life up to then.
"I don’t really write about my life now. No one wants to hear about me globetrotting.”