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Sophie B. Hawkins

Sophie B. Hawkins

American songwriter Sophie B. Hawkins was born in Manhattan, New York City on November 1st 1967 and studied music, graduating in the 80's when she became a session musician.
Her debut album, 'Tongues And Tails' was released in 1992 to critical acclaim. The first two singles 'California Here I Come' and 'I Want You' failed to chart, but the third 'Damn, I Wish I Was Your Lover' gave her a massive hit around the world.
Her follow up, 1994's 'Whaler', was even better, spawning three great singles : 'Right Beside You', 'Don't Don't Tell Me No' and 'As I Lay Me Down'. 'Timbre' followed in 1999 but she fell out with her record company, re-releasing it two years later on her own label. A 'best of' was released in 2003 and new material followed in 2004.

Chart Singles : 4 - Chart Albums : 2

Where is she now?

A keen artist, her paintings have been well received in the States where she lives.
2004 saw the release of 'Wilderness' and a Live CD came out in 2006. She still regularly writes and tours.

Phactoid : The B. stands for Ballantine.
Strawberry Switchblade

Strawberry Switchblade

They were formed originally during the height of punk as a four piece but, by time they had learned their instruments and wrote some songs, it was the 80s and things had changed. Jill Bryson (left, vocals,guitar) met Rose McDowell (right, vocals, guitar) in Glasgow in 1977, and like most punks formed a band. They were named after a Glasgow music fanzine and soon became friends with many local bands, Teardrop Explodes, Orange Juice and Bill Drummond (later of The KLF), who became their manager.
Now down to a duo, it was because of their association with these bands that they soon recorded radio 1 sessions for John Peel and David 'Kid' Jenson, which led to an indie record deal bringing them an indie top 10 with 'Trees And Flowers'. In 1984 they signed to Korova (on WEA) and hit the mainstream later that year with 'Since Yesterday', a number 5 hit, taken from their eponymously titled album. The bolshy Scots weren't happy with the production and arguements started on a follow up, but the rot had set in. 'Let Her Go' made number 59 and their version of 'Jolene' faired a little better. They split up before the second album was even recorded.

Chart Singles : 3 - Chart Albums : 1

Where are they now?

Jill Bryson move abroad but carried on songwriting with her husband, who was Julian Cope's bassist.
Rose McDowell carried on touring, using the name, much to her former bandmate's ire, with members of primal Scream, later forming several other bands. She still tours and writes and has formed a band with her husband.
Jill Bryson now works with stained glass and sculpture.

Phactoid : Jill Bryson was one of the '20 Mothers' on the cover of Julian Cope's 1995 album of the same name.
Tasmin Archer

Tasmin Archer

Signing to EMI in 1990, Tasmin Archer became an overnight success due to arguably one of the best number 1's of the 90's, "Sleeping Satellite". The accompanying album "Great Expectations" spawned three other hit singles, the most famous being "In Your Care" which many people believe to be called 'Son Of A Bitch' from the line ending ... you broke my heart. "Lords Of The New Church" and "Arienne" being the lesser known, but not inferior, other two. An Elvis Costello covers EP "Shipbuilding" followed in 1994, and spent two years recording her follow up "Bloom". Due to EMI's lack of support, the album and singles flopped, which left her disillusioned with the music industry.

Chart Singles : 6 - Chart Albums : 1
Recommended : "Great Expectations" EMI CDP7801342

Where is she now?

She was born in Bradford but now lives near Leeds. After spending the turn of the century painting and watching football (a Sunderland fan) she has been back writing songs for a new album "On" released in 2006.

Phactoid : She won a Brit award in 1993 for Best New Artist

Ray Parker Jnr

Ray Parker Jnr

Ray Parker Jnr was born in Detroit, MI on May 2nd 1954. Songwriting from an early age he formed his first band in the early 60's before going on to do session work with some of the most famous soul stars in the world including Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Barry White and Herbie Hancock. He formed his "Raydio" and had hits in 1978 with "Jack And Jill" & "Is This A Love Thing". His biggest hit was 1984's "Ghostbusters", although he had more success in the USA but he still managed minor hits in the UK with the anti-gay "Girls Are More Fun", "I Don't Think That Man Should Sleep Alone" and "Over You", the last time he troubled the charts in 1988.

Chart Singles : 4 - Chart Albums : 1

Where is he now?

He retired in the 90's when his parents became ill, but recorded a new album released in 2006. He can now be seen on the 118 advertisement having rerecorded "Ghostbusters" for it.

People used to compare the similarity of "Ghostbusters" to Huey Lewis & The News' "I Want A New Drug", but the latter sounds very close to M's "Pop Muzik".
Phactoid : He wrote "Mr Telephone Man" (a hit for New Edition in 1985) in the mid 70's.