I was born in London.
My dad is an actor and my mother a chef and restauranteur. From my dad I picked up a keen interest in the arts and from my mum, hard work and the pursuit of perfection.
I credit my love and passion for music to the constantly changing sounds played in our family house and to the amazingly varied cultures that frequent this great Capital City.
“At any given moment you could hear reggae bass from the basement, dance beats from the ground floor, rock guitar from the second floor, classical strings from the third, Moroccan wailing from the cab coming down the street and my dad singing Sinatra in the garden!”
I began my life as a musician, at the famous Elliott Comprehensive school (past pupils include The XX, Hot Chip, Buriel, Rat Skabies and Pierce Bronsnan!)
While at school I played in a number of local bands around South London, as guitarist, keyboards, drummer and singer, often playing covers of the hits of the day, as well as a few originals we could sneak in.
The styles of music were always wildly varied, from a rock band on a Monday, Reggae on Wednesday and Pop/dance hits on Friday.
This fuelled my musical bug and after leaving school, I worked as an assistant in a commercial studio and as a salesman selling musical and studio equipment. From all this I garnered a basic knowledge of the technical side of music production and arrangement.
At the age of eighteen, I realised that carting records around was a lot easier then a whole load of musical equipment!
I started DJing at a local club in South West London and quickly made a name for myself. My career as a DJ spanned 13 years, playing in some of the greatest clubs in the world. I was a resident at Ministry of Sound and a regular at Cream and Back to Basics in the UK, Danceteria, Twilo and DV8 in the US, as well as tours of South America, Europe and the Far East.
I even played in Jordan, at King Hussein’s wedding.
As a musician, I was greatly influenced by DJing. It was only a matter of time before I started making the records I wanted to play. In 1988, the dawn of House music and the modern club scene, I set up my own record label, producing underground 12-inch club records.
The label was successful, with many of the releases getting into the top five of the Music Week and American Billboard club charts.
Around this time, I was asked to remix other artist’s records, for club and radio.
DJing also led me to work with musician/DJ, Jeremy Healy, and together we formed a production duo under the name of the ‘Ezee Posse’. Ezee Posse had a top 10 hit in the UK with ‘Everything Starts with an E’, and top 10 album in 1991.
Around the same time and while DJing in a local club in South London. I became friends with two bothers, who one night, handed me a cassette of songs. One song in particular jumped out at me and I quickly knocked up a demo, in about 3 hours, in my bedroom studio, using only an Akai S1000 and an Atari running Cubase.
I played it to the brothers the following week and we agreed that all it needed was a live bass line, a guitar riff and a vocal. We rented RedBus studios for the day. Phil Spalding played bass. Rob played guitar, we re-vocaled with a couple of takes and threw down the mix. All very quick.
The song was ‘I’m Too Sexy’ and the boys, along with Rob, called themselves ‘Right Said Fred’
‘I’m Too Sexy’, went on to be a top 10 hit in 9 countries, including straight in at No1 in the U.S Billboard chart a feat, up to that point, only the Beatles had achieved. I went onto produce, program and perform their debut album “Up” and follow up singles “Don’t talk Just Kiss” and “Deeply Dippy”.
RSF sold 20 million units in 12 months, a staggering amount, unthinkable in these Internet times.
Sexy is now the 18th most requested song of all time. The phrase is now completely ingrained into modern life, lending itself to T-shirts, Mugs, greeting cards, even a type of Sushi roll!
Not bad for something I made in my bedroom....
I carried on remixing but found that I was continually drawn to producing bands, live music, real songs, while incorporating what I had leant and loved from Dance. My quest to effortlessly implement the two, has been at the centre of my musical vision. Harnessing my technical studio knowledge with my comprehensive musical knowledge and toping it all off with years of watching people dance in nightclubs, I bring it all together, in the studio and to a song.
I produced Two albums for the Welsh band Catatonia. Both albums went to No1 and spawned Five top 10 hits. They were both nominated for the Mercury and Brits awards.
For my work, I was nominated for Q magazine’s Best Producer award.
I helped to develop the careers of both KT Tunstall and Corinne Bailey Rae.
My songs and productions are featured on both their debut No1 Albums.
I have continued to work with a number of different artists as a producer and songwriter. They include Kanye West, FUN, Kylie Minogue, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, Barry White, Sophie Ellis Bextor, Mundy, Appleton, David McAlmont, Bjork, Jessie Jay, Tom Jones, Finley Quaye, Leona Naess, Joss Stone, Taylor Dayne, Tim Hutton, Zascha Moktan, Mic Donet, Bryn Christopher and Sam Obernik.
In 2008, I was the featured ‘Producer’ each week in the BBC TV series ‘Singing With The Enemy’ In each episode, I had to work with and encourage two very different bands, to come together and collaborate on a track, with very conflicting results! Please see the Video Section of the site to see excerpts
In conjunction with my wife and her company Wiredstrings, I have arranged and orchestrated concerts and recordings for Noel Gallagher, Spice Girls, Kanye West, Jay Z, Adele, Tinie Temper, Emeli Sande, FUN, Raleigh Ritchie, MNEK, Frank Ocean, Enya and Beyonce.
In 2010 I launched Graffiti6, a collaboration between myself, the singer songwriter Jamie Scott and artist Jimi Crayon. The NY Post tipped us as a band to watch.
Our debut album, ‘Colours’, released in 2011, garnered huge critical acclaim and spawned a top 5 hit in the US with the track ‘Free’ as well as top 5 singles in Scandinavia, Holland and Belguim. In 2014 we released a follow up ‘The Bridge’
Graffiti6 music has been featured in a vast array of syncs including Greys Anatomy, CSI NY, Covert Affairs, Victorias Secret, Hollister, Heineken, MTV, VH1 and The Sun, to name but a few.
Please see the Graffiti6 section for details
Along with the Music Producers Guild, I’m spearheading, the Credit Where Credit is Due campaign, to highlight the criminal lack of credit info in the digital domain. Crediting someone for the work and effort they have put into a project is a moral duty. It seems crazy to me that our very own industry is oblivious to the importance, marketing and educational aspect, of easily and accurately crediting the myriad of skills that are involved with music production and performance and making those credits easily attainable.
We are making great strides and getting some way to achieving this, by encouraging the industry to implement the ISRC as a standard across all digital formats and thus make that the facilitator of all credit info. Please check the website for more info.
In 2014 I created the 8O8 drinks company. Our first product, the 8O8 Whisky will be available early 2015.
I am proficient in Guitar, Drums, Keyboards and Vocals as well as Programming and Engineering.
I have sold over Sixty million units....(lost count) Read more