JACK Perrett is Newport born and bred. The singer and guitarist has already enjoyed early success in his career, but told Nicholas Thomas he now has his sights firmly set on the big time.

I went to Deryn Road Primary School. It was great – an old-fashioned school. We didn’t have any grass, the yard was concrete. It was an old school but I wouldn’t change it, I enjoyed it there.

When I was a kid I was into sport. I played rugby for Pill Harriers, and I played football for St Julian’s as well.

I played tennis down Firbank Dale Tennis Club, I spent a lot of my time down there because when I was growing up it was like a social club for us to go as mates – I really enjoyed that.

I think as a young lad, anyone really wants to become a professional footballer or a professional rugby player – but I wasn’t good enough for either, to be honest.

Then I went to St Julian’s High School. I really enjoyed it, I got good grades which put me in good stead for the rest of my life.

I’m still good mates with the people I went to school with. They’re still my closest mates.

I was a good student, to be honest. I attended all my lessons, and I did alright.

I’d like to think the teachers would be complimentary about me.

I think school is the best days of your life. Going to school with your mates for six hours and then you’ve got no worries when you get home, no bills to pay.

I stayed on for sixth form and did sports studies, and then I went to university to do a sports degree – I don’t know why, to be honest. Because I was studying sport in school, if I wanted to do a degree, I had to do sport.

But to be honest, I went to university because it seemed like what everyone else was doing. It was either that or work, and I’ve got to be honest, I fancied another three years of not working.

But when I got to about 15 or 16, that’s when music came into my life. My interests changed.

I can remember my mam and dad – especially my dad – always listening to music when I was very young.

My dad’s into all sorts. He’s a big Deep Purple fan, and liked Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin, that sort of thing. He listens to The Jam, he likes soul music, and he likes the music I listen to.

In terms of actually wanting to do it for myself, I think that happened when I got into Oasis when I was about 15.

Just watching them, and seeing documentaries and watching them live – they were working class people from a working class background, and it just made you think that you could do it yourself.

That inspired me to start learning the guitar, which I did when I was 16.

I think I had about 12 weeks off that summer after doing my GCSEs, so I said to myself I would learn how to play the guitar, and that’s what I did.

Shortly after I was writing songs on my own.

The main inspiration was Oasis and seeing them achieve world domination.

Noel Gallagher wrote the songs for Oasis. He didn’t shy away from using his influences, so I’ve done the same for some of my own songs.

I didn’t start gigging until I was 21, but in the meantime I was writing loads of songs.

I think I was expecting someone to just hear them. I remember my brother saying to me: “You need to get out and play.”

You know, Richard Branson isn’t just going to walk past your bedroom, hear you playing and offer you a deal with Virgin Records.

In that time, I was looking for a band, but in Newport there are a few serious musicians around but not that many.

I had a few mates who played instruments but I don’t think they had the same drive as me to get a band going, so in the end I started gigging on my own.

I did my first gig in St Julian’s Rugby Club, in July 2014. I remember I didn’t have a PA system, so I just had one big amplifier which wasn’t mine either. I had to go out and buy a microphone, and then I just did the gig.

I don’t think it sounded very good, but people seemed to enjoy it.

St Julian’s Rugby Club have been really good to me, they’ve given me loads of gigs and they always seem to enjoy it when I play there.

In the earlier days I used to get nervous, but these days I’m just used to it. Now I get more nervous if I’m playing to a room with two people sat at the bar. I find that a lot more nerve-racking than playing to a crowd.

The songs I write are built for a band. I was gigging on my own but still looking for a band. I managed to record my own songs by hiring in musicians to play on the studio recordings.

They got a bit of radio play. I was getting more and more exposure with BBC Radio Wales and the odd play on Radio 1, and that made it easier to find musicians to create a band.

I’ve got my band now, who play with me, but I still do solo gigs.

Morgan Wicks, who plays drums, was in my year at St Julian’s, actually. Dan Burridge, who plays bass in the band, went to St Joseph’s School.

Lyrically, I always find it hard – especially writing in the first person. Mainly, my songs are made up stories.

I saw Paul McCartney in an interview, and he said he wrote more from a third-person perspective. I like to do that as well.

I have a few songs which are from my experiences, and musically I’m influenced by the bands I like – Oasis, Arctic Monkeys, The Beatles, and The Jam.

Portlife last year has been quite important, since it came out last August.

Since then I’ve brought out another song called Like a Fever, and that’s been played quite a lot.

That song’s about people who go out on a Saturday, spending all their money in the same bars with the same people. That idea came from me watching other people do it. I see it in Newport but I imagine it happens everywhere.

Now I’ve got a tour – we were in Sheffield last Saturday, we’re in London this Thursday, and then in Manchester on Saturday.

It feels great to be on tour. I love recording and it’s a buzz when you get your songs on the radio, but at the end of the day, you can get all the radio play in the world – if you’re not playing live, people are never going to see you play.

I’ve got a new song coming out on Friday called Army of Two and I’ve got another one, Going Nowhere, coming out around May.

The lyrics for Army of Two are by Rhys Jones, who used to play bass for me, and I wrote the melody.

I’m playing the Cavern Club next month, which is very exciting. I applied to play at a festival in Croatia, called Inmusic festival, and whoever wins this competition in Liverpool gets to play at the festival.

I’m playing the Great Escape festival in Brighton, a gig in Barry, and hopefully a hometown gig in May or June to follow up the release of Going Nowhere.

Hopefully this is the year everything starts to take off.

I’m very proud to be from Newport. I know it gets a bad name, but especially with how well Newport County have done recently – I’m a County supporter – I’m very proud to be from here.