We got up close and personal with James Rees [AKA Jimmy Giggle] and got all the goss on how he’s coping as a new dad, his new Christmas album and show and one very embarrassing episode with a Mum-fan!
Jimmy Giggle’s Christmas Party brings together Hoot, Hootabelle and some very special guest appearances on stage between 19 and 23 December and on his Christmas CD, available in stores now.
1. James, you’re a successful entertainer and TV Host, ABC Kids favourite, an Aria nominee and a household name to many. Were you always destined to work in the entertainment industry and how did you get your big break?
My family tells me that all I wanted to do was entertain everyone, so I guess you could say I was practicing for my career, haha! I knew that I wanted to be on TV in some capacity but I wasn’t sure how I would get there. So, I saw an open audition for new talent on ABC and sent away my video audition. A few weeks went by and I got a call back and following that my audition tape was sent to the guys at Giggle and Hoot who wanted to audition me as well. The rest is history I guess. I think I landed the best job ever. We have an absolute ball on the set.
2. Can you tell us about your career highlight so far?
I wouldn’t say I have one big moment. The highlight is always getting out as Jimmy Giggle to meet the people who watch the show. Kids really are a wonderful audience and it is amazing to meet them and talk about Giggle and Hoot.
3. Congratulations on your success as Jimmy Giggle but also on the birth of your gorgeous son Lenny in April. How have things changed for you since becoming a parent?
I’m sure any parent will tell you it is a crazy ride but what an amazing ride it is at the same time. Watching him grow and learn new things is an awesome experience. and he is SO CUTE!!! #biased
4. In a previous interview, and before you became a father, you were quoted saying you hoped to take on a “laid-back” approach to your parenting, much like that of your own parents. So, are you a laid-back parent or a stress-head”?
Haha, I’m pretty laid back, I’ve got the entertaining thing down pat. But when it is the middle of the night and the little fella is crying and you just cant figure out what he wants it’s hard not to be a little stressed. All you want to do is help the little man.
5. No doubt you’re a very busy man – how do you best manage work and family commitments, in particular time spent away from your family as you tour?
Being away these days is definitely harder. I have just had a few weeks where I was away a lot and I think in the future I will plan things a little better. The best part of my job is that when I am home, I’m home. I can spend all the time in the world with my family and I live on the Mornington Peninsula which has so many brilliant features to explore. It’s a relaxing part of the world! 🙂
6. You’re pretty much a rock star with the preschool demographic. How do you prepare before a performance in front of hundreds of highly excited little people?
I find it easy to get ready for a performance, people forget that it’s really exciting for us as performers as well. Although I may have performed the same show over and over there is a particular unknown element of a live performance which is both exciting and nerve wracking. I love the feedback you get at a live performance, “He’s behhhhiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnd you” haha!!
7. You have connected with thousands of children during your career, made a lasting impression and have made a positive difference to many. Have any of these particular experiences or meetings made an impact on you and can you tell us about one?
I have the privilege of being about to use the world of Giggle and Hoot and Jimmy Giggle to bring joy to kids but a moment for me that stands out is being able to visit a hospital where kids are facing all sorts of adversity and put a smile on their faces. Hoot and I have done this a few times and it’s always a humbling experience.
8. Your fan base also extends to mums and I have heard many Mums compliment Mr Giggle. Perhaps it is the pyjamas? Or maybe it is because Hoot’s Lullaby has the power to send their children into slumber each night at 7pm. Whatever the reason, can you share a funny encounter or meeting with one of your older fans?
It’s always a little awkward when someone comes up for a photo and doesn’t have any kids! haha! You know it’s all a bit funny! I had a lady pass Tori her phone number to pass on to me once! A little embarrassing for all involved.
9. At one point my son’s bedroom resembled a Giggle and Hoot merchandise stall usually positioned outside one of your concerts. We had it all but have recently discovered a Jimmy Giggle plush toy now on the market – how does it feel to be made into a doll and how many do you have at home?
That’s a sign you can retire I think! haha! Yeah, that was a fun moment when that hit the market. I only have one at home, the dogs took to it first but now it is in Lenny’s room!
10. We’re all really excited about your new Christmas Party album – a perfect Christmas gift for the little ones but some great collaborations with Tina Arena, Deb Mailman, Ali McGregor, Justine Clarke, David Campbell and Kate Miller Heidke to name a few. Do you have a favourite song on the album and will the Christmas Party album be played at your place on Christmas Day?
Haha, my mum has a Frank Sinatra album that has been played on every Christmas morning that I can remember so Jimmy Giggle’s Christmas Party will have to knock off Franky. I had such a great time working with all the wonderful artists on the album, everyone is so great. I hope you all enjoy it! 🙂
I’m sure we will Jimmy!
Finally, we wish you the very best as you embark on your Christmas Party tour on 19 December with dates in Sydney and Melbourne.
Tickets can be purchased via Live Nation here and the new Jimmy Giggle’s Christmas Party album is out now – a perfect Christmas present for our little ones.
To celebrate Jimmy’s upcoming Christmas Party tour, we’ve got 2 family passes up for grabs to his Sydney and Melbourne shows PLUS 10 x copies of his CD up for grabs.
1 x family pass (admission for four) to the Sydney on Saturday 19th December, 1.30pm show at the Concourse in Chatswood.
1 x family pass (admission for four) to the Melbourne show on Monday December 21, 1.30pm show at the Art Centre.
To enter, simply complete the entry form below and you’re in the running. Remember that the more friends you refer who enter the more chances to win so be sure to share across social media to increase your chances.