Profile: Bard of Ely

Steve Andrews was born in Cardiff but now lives in Tenerife. He lived for 25 years on the Ely council estate and was dubbed Bard of Ely by Big Issue Cymru when he had a regular column in the publication.

He has made a name for himself as a singer-songwriter and was released as one of the acts on Meltdown the Album at the tail end of the ’80s and more recently with songs on the Taffia EP on Crai Records and the Green Man Festival album.

He worked for a while as a TV presenter on In Full View on BBC Choice and has also been featured on HTV’s Weird Wales and appeared as musician on BBC Wales‘ The Slate. His song Rubber Ducky was used in Y Ty on S4C.

He has a Cardiff University BA (Honours) degree in Journalism, Film and Broadcast.

Bard of Ely is also famous for growing the first Welsh pineapple and made the HTV Xmas news with his homegrown exotic fruit.

WI: What is your favourite place in Wales?

SA: Tinkinswood Burial Chamber. It was my local sacred site.

WI: Favourite Welsh band or musician?

SA: Gruff Rhys as a musician and Sicknote as a band.

WI: Favourite Welsh food or drink?

SA: Welsh beer – Brains, Buckleys or Felinfoel. Cockles with pepper and vinegar from Cardiff Market.

WI: What does Wales mean to you?

SA: Long walks in the countryside, my old house in Ely, the Welsh Club (Clwb Ifor Bach), Bute Park, fish ‘n’ chips, drinking in the sun in beer gardens and in parks, Swanbridge and Sully Island, the Green Man festival, the Big Weekend, dragons and proof of David Icke’s reptilian conspiracy, holidays as a child in Pembrokeshire, rain, the Welsh Valleys, finding mushrooms in autumn, Kenfig dunes, St Fagans, Cardiff Market, all the brilliant singer-songwriters and bands, Spillers Records, Chapter Arts centre, Cardiff station, Newport, Swansea, Caerphilly Mountain, the Garth, Cardiff buses

WI: What do you most miss about Wales when you are away?

SA: Friends and family, my garden in the house I lived in in Ely, the Green Man festival, rainy days.

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