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Last Updated: Thursday, 24 April 2008, 06:54 GMT 07:54 UK
Pete Doherty is 'being positive'
By Kev Geoghegan
Radio 1 music reporter


Pete Doherty is doing well in prison, according to bandmate and Babyshambles bassist Drew McConnell.

Doherty was sentenced to three and a half months in jail on 8 April for missing court appointments and using drugs while on probation.

McConnell claims his bandmate has been writing letters to keep in touch from his cell at Wormwood Scrubs.

He said: "You're not allowed to make phone calls but for a man behind bars, he sounds surprisingly chipper."

You're not allowed to make phone calls in prison but you're allowed to write letters and you're allowed to receive letters
Drew McConnell
Babyshambles bassist
It comes after reports that Doherty has been kept apart from other prison inmates for his own safety.

He was moved to a high security segregated area of the prison in west London last week over fears of an attack.

The rocker was forced to cancel a sell-out solo show at the Royal Albert Hall in London on 26 April after being jailed.

Babyshambles have also missed out on several gigs.

McConnell said: "He's being very positive about the whole situation, he's champing at the bit to play festivals this summer.

"Just to strap his guitar on again and be the front man in Babyshambles."

More cancellations

The band were forced to pull out from a number of European music festivals, including Le Printemps De Bourges in France.

They are still due to play Glastonbury in June, after Doherty's release.

McConnell admitted the band have been finding the cancellations difficult.

He said: "It's upsetting, just on a functional level we were supposed to play a bunch of shows and headline a festival in France which is a drag.

"But not compared to the huge drag of being sat in a prison cell twiddling your thumbs. "

The Helsinki project

McConnell takes to the stage on 27 April with his side project, Helsinki, for the Love Music, Hate Racism Carnival at east London's Victoria Park.

The gig marks 30 years since the first Rock Against Racism gig, headlined by The Clash.

McConnell, who has recorded four tracks with the project, will play alongside guest musicians including The View, Guillemots and The Noisettes.

But he insists his future remains with Babyshambles.

He said: "Peter's personal life is his own business and I'm sure that there are fans out there who care about him because they love his music.

"Babyshambles is my band and the songs Peter writes are why I get up in the morning.

"If that were all to come to an end, I'd be heartbroken."

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