The Voice UK: who on earth is Gavin Rossdale?

Gavin Rossdale, who will judge The Voice 2017
Gavin Rossdale, who will judge The Voice 2017 Credit: REX Features

He might have a name like a provincial quantity surveyor but Gavin Rossdale is one of the celebrity coaches on The Voice

Now the crooning contest has moved to ITV, Rossdale will take his revolving red chair alongside will.i.am, Jennifer Hudson and Sir Tom Jones (returning after the BBC acrimoniously dropped him). 

So exactly who is Gavin Rossdale? Here are the six things you need to know…

He's huge in America (but not here)

Gavin Rossdale performing with Bush in 1999 Credit:  AP

Rossdale, now 48, first found quasi-fame as the frontman of Nineties post-grunge band Bush. Not to be confused with other one-word, Nirvana-lite groups of the era (see Reef, Feeder, Stiltskin), Bush were catapulted from the London pub circuit to US arenas. They ended up selling 11 million albums Stateside, receiving Grammy nominations and winning an Ivor Novello award. Rossdale appeared shirtless on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine, with the headline: “Why won’t anyone take Gavin Rossdale seriously?” 

However, very few Brits could name or hum a Bush song even if they had a gun to their head. We were far too preoccupied with Britpop at the time. But just in case the gun-to-head situation ever should arise: Bush’s solitary UK hit, Swallowed, got to number seven - their only Top 20 single here. 

His daughter is in Strictly Come Dancing

Daisy Lowe in Strictly Come Dancing Credit: Guy Levy

In 2004, a paternity test revealed that Rossdale was the biological father of then-teenage Daisy Lowe. Turns out he had a one-night stand with her mother, indie popstrel Pearl Lowe, and had even been made Daisy’s godfather. It was like something out of a rock soap opera.

Daisy is now a fashion model and Strictly contestant, topping the scoreboard on the hoofing contest’s opening weekend - watched by proud Pearl from the studio audience.

He pops up in Zoolander

During the Noughties, Rossdale made a number of film cameos - most notably in ropey Keanu Reeves horror drama Constantine (playing demonic villain Balthazar) and Ben Stiller’s “ridiculously good-looking” cult fashion comedy Zoolander. Rossdale and Stefani appear as themselves in the opening sequence set at the VH-1 Awards, seated next to male model Hansel (Owen Wilson). 

He also played a vampire rock star in CBS crime drama Criminal Minds, while Bush songs appeared over the end credits of movies xXx and Terminator 3: Rise Of The Machines.

He was married to Gwen Stefani

Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale in 1998

Rossdale is the ex-husband of No Doubt singer-turned-pop star Gwen Stefani. They met when No Doubt supported Bush on their 1995 tour, married in 2002 and has three sons with increasingly “interesting” names: Kingston James McGregor, Zuma Nesta Rock and Apollo Bowie Flynn.

Stefani filed for divorce last year after 13 years of marriage, amid allegations that Rossdale had cheated on her with their nanny. It was reported that Stefani discovered explicit texts between Rossdale and the nanny - including nude photos and plans to meet up for sex - on the family iPad, which was linked to his phone. Oops. The nanny has since given birth to Rossdale's child - but they're not together anymore. Double oops.

Coincidentally, Stefani was recently a coach on the US edition of The Voice. Rossdale appeared as her guest advisor on the show two years ago.

 

He’ll be the token rocker on The Voice

Rossdale says: “I’m so thrilled to be joining The Voice UK. I have always been extremely proud to fly the flag for British rock music and I can't wait to join this incredible panel.”

He'll fill the “token rocker on the end” seat, previously occupied by Danny O’Donoghue from The Script and Ricky Wilson from The Kaiser Chiefs. Between them, this pair have mentored three of the show’s five winners. No pressure, Gav. 

 

He dated Marilyn (but not Monroe)

Remember Boy George’s mate Marilyn? Another gender-bending London club scenester who briefly became a pop star, Marilyn had a top five hit with Calling Your Name, appeared on Band Aid’s Do They Know It’s Christmas and promptly disappeared into drug-addled obscurity. 

Well, he had a five-year relationship with young Rossdale during the mid-Eighties. This first emerged in Boy George’s 1995 memoir Take It Like a Man. Rossdale initially denied it but when Marilyn dedicated a record to Rossdale, citing "the years of our passionate relationship" and featuring a photo of them together on the cover, he was forced to admit it was true.  

Rossdale later said it was an “experimental” fling and "part of growing up”. Marilyn’s currently making a musical comeback, so the story is resurfacing, which won’t exactly be greeted with glee by Rossdale.