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Sonny: Biography

Chapter One

The morning of life. 11th May 1972. West London. T.Rex debut 'Metal Guru' on Top Of The Pops. A good omen. The nurse requires a name. My mother decides on Sonny. It is who I am. Make-believe as a child. Imaginary worlds. The affliction of childhood. Hospitals. 1981. First record: 'Anthem' by Toyah. It becomes my world. I take refuge in music. Adam And The Ants, Siouxsie And The Banshees, Soft Cell, Culture Club, Bauhaus. 1983. The Smiths perform 'This Charming Man' on TOTP. Morrissey. A new world begins to unfold. 1985. First guitar. Poems and lyrics. Songs on a cassette recorder. Marc Bolan obsession. Meat Is Murder. Indie/Alternative. John Peel. Cocteau Twins. Gothic tendencies. 1988. First gig: All About Eve at the Astoria. 1989/90. Everyone's into Madchester. I'm somewhere else. The Eve's, The Lilac Time, George Harrison, The Sundays, The Dream Academy, Dead Can Dance, Shelleyan Orphan. Discover Folk Rock. Donovan, Incredible String Band, Fairport Convention. Finger-picking guitar.

1991. The mourning mist. Soul-searching. Krishnamurti's journal. Nick Drake. The Lilac Time's 'Astronauts'. 21 January 1993. I start composing 'Child Of The River' on a bus journey to a record shop in Birmingham City Centre. Bringing back a copy of Donovan's 'Sunshine Superman' LP, I work out the chords and vocal melody in my room at Wolves Uni. I sing it to my friends on my acoustic guitar. A significant moment. 7th February 1994. Cocteau Twins. Wolverhampton Civic Hall. Meet Stephen Duffy there. Gives advice about going into a studio. Begin to work towards doing so. June 13th 1994. Eight track studio in Birmingham. £32 for four hours. Record four songs without overdubs. Donovan, Nick Drake, Syd Barrett, Marc Bolan influenced. Use the moniker The Quince Tree. September 22nd. Second demo. Ealing Sonic Studios. Eleven hour session. Record each guitar part and vocal separately. An improvement. Search for other musicians, but nothing comes of it. In time I realize I'm a Solo Artist. Henceforth it's just 'Sonny'. 3rd February 1995. Bunjies Folk Cellar, Litchfield Street, London. 60's Folk history. Me and guitar. No microphone. Wracked with nerves. Perform 'Child Of The River'. 27th and 28th December 1996. Vestry Hall demo. Texture. Percussion. Vocal booth. Professional mastering on a CD rather than cassette. 1997. Sing at Bunjies on two occasions. Jan 1998. Yorkshire moors. The Bronte's. Begin to write 'Live In The World'. Trouble on the dole. 11th, 12th and 13th December. Weststar Studio demo. Record 'Live In The World' in its original incarnation with electric guitar. Dreampop influence. July 1999. Play regularly at 'Acoustic Revolution' in Richmond over the summer. My last performances. Beginnings of dissatisfaction with the acoustic singer/songwriter style. A desire for change. Send out the demo to garner feedback. Receive encouragement from singer Sheila Chandra whose Real World trilogy is constantly on my CD player, along with David Sylvian's 'Dead Bees On A Cake'. Ambient. World music. Electronica. Idea to do a CD as opposed to a demo.

Chapter Two