DRIVING BASS: Guy Berryman

When Coldplay guitarist Guy Berryman isn’t on the road with the biggest band in the world, he can be found at his English country home indulging in one of his passions: car restoration and collecting. He invited The Rake to the Cotswolds for an exclusive tour…

As the train pulls noisily into the station, The Rake’s photographer Rikesh Chauhan and I can make out the figure of Guy Berryman in his Mercedes AMG, a vehicle altogether more futuristic and impressive. There is something charming about the sight of the bass guitarist of one of the world’s most successful bands — Coldplay — waiting to pick us up.

We are on the way to his house in the Cotswolds to discuss his passion for and profound knowledge of cars. Even though Guy is more famous as a musician and producer, he is a genuine connoisseur when it comes to cars, though music had to take the lead early in his life. When he met the other members of Coldplay — Chris Martin, Jonny Buckland and Will Champion — they were studying at University College London. Berryman says: “I always wished I could do music. I went to university to study mechanical engineering, but I actually went to university to be able to meet other people to create a band. You know that it could happen — but the chance was really small to make a living out of it.”

Any semblance of doubt was laid to rest when, after their second album, A Rush of Blood To the Head, they were invited in 2002 to headline Glastonbury for the first time, a career highlight for Berryman and a moment in musical folklore. It also meant that Guy’s hobby had to take a back seat. “For the first 10 years of Coldplay I was not really focused on cars,” he says. “We were so busy recording and touring while I was living in London, which is not the right place to have, keep and work on cars as well as drive them. One day I decided to live here full-time in my house [in the Cotswolds], where I can live out my passion for cars.”


Francois Pourcher


May 2020


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