O'Sullivan Lays Down The Law
Source: The Sun
Writer: Les Daly
Date: 24 October 1980
Gilbert O'Sullivan greeted me with a wet handshake. The man at No.27 in the charts this week with "What's In A Kiss?" had been doing the dishes.
Yet this is no liberated husband. The 33-year-old singer says "I'm a chauvinist at heart and I make no bones about it."
And he went on to tell me why married women should stop work and stay at home, why he will be a strict disciplinarian with his children, and why he is convinced women would rather buy babies in a shop than give birth.
"I honestly believe that one day all children will be born outside the womb," he said.
"The idea of a woman carrying a baby inside her will seem horrendously old-fashioned."
Babies have been on O'Sullivan's mind a lot. He married Norwegian blonde Aase (pronounced Orsa) Brekke, his girlfriend of seven years in January - and the couple are expecting their first child any day now.
Which makes it a bumper year for the man who crashed into the charts in 1972 with "Nothing Rhymed" but who had all but disappeared in the last two years.
As well as a wife, he has a new manager, a new album, and now another hit under his belt. And he could not be happier.
The reason for his absence has been a battle between the Irish born singer and his former manager Gordon Mills over the way his earlier career was handled.
The fight promises to drag on for another two years but O'Sullivan is determined not to let it wreck his career.
"I'm a songsmith first and foremost," he says. "And nothing should get in the way of that."
Except for a baby or two, or three?
"I come from a big Irish family," grinned O'Sullivan. "So I would love at least three and more if I could."
But he added: "Aase is not so keen. I think she would be happy with just two."
The couple met eight years ago at London't Heathrow Airport. Aase, was an air hostess - a job she kept going until earlier this year.
And she has kept her options open to go back to flying when the baby is born. That does not please her husband.
"I would be upset if Aase went back to work after the baby is born," he told me. "But she is a very independent lady and I would not try to stop her."
He would like to though. "I'm totally against women working," he said: "Once a women is married, I feel she should stay at home."
O'Sullivan, whose hits include Matrimony, knows he has a fight on his hands. "But I'm sticking to my guns," he said defiantly.
"The trouble is that women have forgotten that their main function is to rear children."
"For example, ask young women these days what their breasts are for and they will tell you their function is to look sexy, not to feed children."
O'Sullivan has some pretty old-fashioned ideas about the way he will bring up his children, too.
"I will be just like my mother. She was a strict disciplinarian. When I wanted a Beatle haircut, she would not let me. And when I came home after ten, I had a slap."
Is there not a balance between being too strict and too soft?
"Absolutely not," he said. "Children these days have too much freedom. They have seen and done everything by the time they are twenty. That is sad."
How does Aase feel about his views?
A big smile creased his face. "She thinks I'm absolutely crckers," he said.