Roman Kemp can ‘never live up to his dad Martin’ after pop star fame and brain tumour battle

Roman called his dad his 'best mate'

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Roman Kemp previously shared how he thinks he can “never” match up to his much-loved dad Martin Kemp – but the radio DJ is okay with that.

Spandau Ballet singer Martin is a proud dad to daughter Harleymoon and son Roman, who is hosting The Finish Line on Wednesday (June 5). Martin shares his children with his wife Shirlie.

And it’s fair to say Martin has been busy over the years – from stints on EastEnders to Celebrity Big Brother. But he’s also had his fair share of real-life drama too, having had a brain tumour scare back when he was in his thirties.

Roman Kemp and his dad Martin
Roman previously made the sad confession (Credit:

Roman Kemp on dad Martin’s brain tumour scare

Musician Martin had a huge scare at 34 when he found out that he had two brain tumours. Recently, Martin opened up about the ordeal in his and Roman‘s new podcast, FFS! My Dad’s Martin Kemp.

But back in 2019, Roman made a sad confession about his future – noting how his father’s success and ability to have overcome his personal issues, is something he “could never live up to.”

Roman Kemp ‘can never live up to’ dad

Chatting to GQ, he said: “I still find it shocking that he went from 16 years old, being in one of the biggest bands on the planet, to acting, to then getting hit by two brain tumours and then coming out of that and still having a smile on his face and still being known as one of the nicest guys in this industry.”

I feel like that’s something I can never live up to.

Roman added: “I feel like that’s something I can never live up to. And I like that. I’m just lucky enough that that person is the person closest to me and my best mate.”

Martin Kemp on This Morning
Martin had a brain tumour scare back when he was in his thirties (Credit: ITV)

Martin Kemp on health scare

Last month, Martin spoke about his brain tumour scare. Martin had been diagnosed with two benign tumours after wife Shirlie noticed a mass growing on his head.

He said on THE podcast, FFS! My Dad’s Martin Kemp: “I don’t know how long I’ve got left, but I will tell you, since I was the age of 34, when I went through all of that brain tumour scare, I spent two years of my life thinking I was going to die.

“And I will tell you something, it’s really strange that when I was 34 and stuff and I went through that brain tumour stuff. I was practically resigned to the fact that I was going to die. But I was quite happy with my lot, because I had lived the most incredible experiences,” he later added.

Watch Roman on The Finish Line on BBC One on Wednesday (June 5) at 4:30pm.


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Read more: Roman Kemp on dad Martin’s brain tumour scare: ‘I always think how scary it is’

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Joey Crutchley
Freelance Writer