Author Topic: BIOGRAPHIES!  (Read 11828 times)

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Offline JASON

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BIOGRAPHIES!
« on: December 13, 2003, 20:41:07 PM »
A NEW THREAD FOR YOU!
DO YOU WANT TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR FAVOURITE ARTIST OR ARE YOU JUST INTERESTED IN THEM FAMOUS BANDS THAT MADE POP MUSIC GREAT?
I AM GOING TO START WITH ONE OF THE BANDS THAT MADE POP MUSIC ENTERTAINING,AND A BAND THAT YOU DANCE TO AT DISCO'S

HAPPY READING

Offline JASON

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2003, 20:51:53 PM »
ABBA

The most commercially successful pop group of the 1970s, the origins of the Swedish superstars ABBA dated back to 1966, when keyboardist and vocalist Benny Andersson, a onetime member of the popular beat outfit the Hep Stars, first teamed with guitarist and vocalist Bjorn Ulvaeus, the leader of the folk-rock unit the Hootenanny Singers. The two performers began composing songs together and handling session and production work for Polar Music/Union Songs, a publishing company owned by Stig Anderson, himself a prolific songwriter throughout the 1950s and 1960s. At the same time, both Andersson and Ulvaeus worked on projects with their respective girlfriends: Ulvaeus had become involved with vocalist Agnetha Faltskog, a performer with a recent Number One Swedish hit, "I Was So in Love," under her belt, while Andersson began seeing Anni-Frid Lyngstad, a onetime jazz singer who rose to fame by winning a national talent contest.
In 1971, Faltskog ventured into theatrical work, accepting the role of Mary Magdalene in a production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Jesus Christ Superstar; her cover of the musical's "Don't Know How to Love Him" became a significant hit. The following year, the duo of Andersson and Ulvaeus scored a massive international hit with "People Need Love," which featured Faltskog and Lyngstad on backing vocals. The record's success earned them an invitation to enter the Swedish leg of the 1973 Eurovision song contest, where, under the unwieldy name of Bjorn, Benny, Agnetha & Frida, they submitted "Ring Ring," which proved extremely popular with audiences but placed only third in the judges' ballots.

The next year, rechristened ABBA (a suggestion from Stig Anderson and an acronym of the members' first names), the quartet submitted the single "Waterloo," and became the first Swedish act to win the Eurovision competition. The record proved to be the first of many international hits, although the group hit a slump after their initial success as subsequent singles failed to chart. In 1975, however, ABBA issued "S.O.S.," a smash not only in America and Britain but also in non-English speaking countries such as Spain, Germany and the Benelux nations, where the group's success was fairly unprecedented. A string of hits followed, including "Mamma Mia," "Fernando," and "Dancing Queen" (ABBA's sole U.S. chart-topper), further honing their lush, buoyant sound; by the spring of 1976, they were already in position to issue their first Greatest Hits collection.

ABBA's popularity continued in 1977, when both "Knowing Me, Knowing You" and "The Name of the Game" dominated airwaves. The group also starred in the feaure film ABBA—The Movie, which was released in 1978. That year Andersson and Lyngstad married, as had Ulvaeus and Faltskog in 1971, although the latter couple separated a few months later; in fact, romantic suffering was the subject of many songs on the quartet's next LP, 1979's Voulez-Vous. Shortly after the release of 1980's Super Trouper, Andersson and Lyngstad divorced as well, further straining the group dynamic; The Visitors, issued the following year, was the final LP of new ABBA material, and the foursome officially disbanded after the December 1982 release of their single "Under Attack."

Although all of the group's members soon embarked on new projects — both Lyngstad and Faltskog issued solo LPs, while Andersson and Ulvaeus collaborated with Tim Rice on the musical Chess — none proved as successful as the group's earlier work, largely because throughout much of the world, especially Europe and Australia, the ABBA phenomenon never went away. Repackaged hits compilations and live collections continued hitting the charts long after the group's demise, and new artists regularly pointed to the quartet's inspiration: while the British dance duo Erasure released a covers collection, ABBA-esque, an Australian group called Bjorn Again found success as ABBA impersonators. In 1993, "Dancing Queen" became a staple of U2's "Zoo TV" tour — Andersson and Ulvaeus even joined the Irish superstars onstage in Stockholm — while the 1995 feature Muriel's Wedding, which won acclaim for its depiction of a lonely Australian girl who seeks refuge in ABBA's music, helped bring the group's work to the attention of a new generation of moviegoers and music fans.

Offline JASON

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2003, 20:54:12 PM »
OMD

Featuring the core members Paul Humphreys and Andy McCluskey, the Liverpudlian synth pop group Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark formed in the late '70s. Humphreys and McCluskey began performing together in school, playing in the bands VCL XI, Hitlerz Underpantz, and the Id. After the Id split in 1978, McCluskey was with Dalek I Love You for a brief time. Once he left Dalek, he joined with Humphreys and Paul Collister to form Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark. The group released their first single, "Electricity," on Factory Records; the record led to a contract with the Virgin subsidiary DinDisc. Using their record advance, McCluskey and Humphreys built a studio, which allowed them to replace their four-track, and recorded with drummer Malcolm Holmes (formerly of the Id) and Dave Hughes (formerly of Dalek I Love You).
In 1980, the group released their self-titled debut album. Organisation appeared the same year, which featured the U.K. Top Ten single "Enola Gay"; Hughes was replaced by Martin Cooper after its release. The band's next few albums — Architecture and Morality (1981), Dazzle Ships (1983), and Junk Culture (1984) — found the band experimenting with their sound, resulting in several U.K. hit singles. Recorded with two new members, Graham and Neil Weir, Crush, their most pop-oriented album, found more success in America than in Britain, as the single "So in Love" hit number 26 on the charts. "If You Leave," taken from the Pretty in Pink soundtrack, was their biggest American hit, climbing to number four in 1986. The Pacific Age was released the same year, yet America was the only country where it was popular. Shortly after its release, the Weir brothers left the band, followed by Holmes, Cooper, and Humphreys. McCluskey continued with the band, releasing Sugar Tax in 1991; in the meantime, Humphreys formed the Listening Pool.

After Sugar Tax failed to gain an audience, Orchestral Manoevres in the Dark returned with Liberator in 1993, which also was ignored. It was followed three years later with Universal. The OMD Remixes appeared in 1998.

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2003, 20:55:48 PM »
DEPECHE MODE

Originally a product of Britain's New Romantic movement, Depeche Mode went on to become the quintessential electro-pop band of the 1980s; one of the first acts to establish a musical identity based completely around the use of synthesizers, the group began their existence as a bouncy dance-pop outfit but gradually developed a darker, more dramatic sound which ultimately positioned them as one of the most successful alternative bands of their era.
The roots of Depeche Mode dated to 1976, when Basildon, England-based keyboardists Vince Clarke and Andrew Fletcher first teamed to form the group No Romance in China. The band proved short-lived, and by 1979 Clarke had formed French Look, another duo featuring guitarist/keyboardist Martin Gore; Fletcher soon signed on, and the group rechristened itself Composition of Sound. Initially, Clarke handled vocal chores, but in 1980 singer David Gahan was brought in to complete the lineup; after one final name change to Depeche Mode, the quartet jettisoned all instruments excluding their synthesizers, honing a slick, techno-based sound to showcase Clarke's catchy melodies.

After building a following on the London club scene, Depeche Mode debuted in 1980 with "Photographic," a track included on the Some Bizzare Album label compilation. After signing to Mute Records, they issued "Dreaming of Me" in early 1981; while neither the single nor its follow-up "New Life" caused much of a stir, their third effort, "Just Can't Get Enough," became a Top Ten U.K. hit, and their 1981 debut LP Speak and Spell was also a success. Just as Depeche Mode appeared poised for a major commercial breakthrough, however, principal songwriter Clarke abruptly exited to form Yazoo with singer Alison Moyet, leaving the group's future in grave doubt.

As Gore grabbed the band's songwriting reins, the remaining trio recruited keyboardist Alan Wilder to fill the technological void created by Clarke's departure; while 1982's A Broken Frame deviated only slightly from Depeche Mode's earlier work, Gore's ominous songs grew more assured and sophisticated by the time of 1983's Construction Time Again. Some Great Reward, issued the following year, was their artistic and commercial breakthrough, as Gore's dark, kinky preoccupations with spiritual doubt ("Blasphemous Rumours") and psychosexual manipulation ("Master and Servant") came to the fore; the egalitarian single "People Are People" was a major hit on both sides of the Atlantic, and typified the music's turn towards more industrial textures.

1986's atmospheric Black Celebration continued the trend towards grim melancholy, and further established the group as a major commercial force. After the superb single "Strangelove," Depeche Mode issued 1987's Music for the Masses; a subsequent sold-out tour yielded the 1989 double live set 101, as well as a concert film directed by the legendary D.A. Pennebaker. Still, despite an enormous fan base, the group was considered very much an underground cult phenomenon prior to the release of 1990's Violator, a Top Ten smash which spawned the hits "Enjoy the Silence," "Policy of Truth" and "Personal Jesus."

With the alternative music boom of the early 1990s, Depeche Mode emerged as one of the world's most successful acts, and their 1993 LP Songs of Faith and Devotion entered the charts in the number one slot. However, at the peak of their success, the group began to unravel; first Wilder exited in 1995, and then Gahan was the subject of a failed suicide attempt. (He later entered a drug rehabilitation clinic to battle an addiction to heroin.) After a four-year layoff, Depeche Mode — continuing on as a trio — released 1997's Ultra, which featured the hits "Barrel of a Gun" and "It's No Good." The release of Singles '86-'98 was celebrated with a major tour.

Offline AndrewR

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2003, 21:27:23 PM »
SOFT CELL


A synth-pop duo famed for its uniquely sleazy electronic sound, art students Marc Almond and Dave Ball formed Soft Cell in Leeds, England in 1980. Originally, vocalist Almond and synth player Ball teamed to compose music for theatrical productions, and as Soft Cell, their live performances continued to draw heavily on the pair's background in drama and the visual arts. A self-financed EP titled Mutant Moments brought the duo to the attention of Some Bizzare label head Stevo, who enlisted Daniel Miller to produce their underground hit single "Memorabilia" the following year.
It was the next Soft Cell effort, 1981's "Tainted Love," that brought the duo to international prominence; written by the Four Preps' Ed Cobb and already a cult favorite thanks to Gloria Jones' soulful reading, the song was reinvented as a hypnotic electronic dirge which became the year's best-selling British single, as well as a major hit abroad. The group's debut LP, Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret, was also enormously successful, and was followed by the 1982 remix collection Non-Stop Ecstatic Dancing.

While 1983's The Art of Falling Apart proved as popular as its predecessors, the LP's title broadly hinted at the internal problems plaguing the duo; prior to the release of 1984's This Last Night in Sodom, Soft Cell had already broken up. Almond immediately formed the electro-soul unit Marc and the Mambas; another group, Marc Almond and the Willing Sinners, followed before the singer finally embarked on a solo career in the late '80s. After a number of years of relative inactivity, Ball later resurfaced in the techno outfit the Grid.

Offline AndrewR

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2003, 21:30:02 PM »
KIM WILDE

The daughter of '50s British pop singer Marty Wilde, Kim Wilde had several pop hits during the '80s. Initially, her synth-driven pop fit in with the new wave movement, but as the decade progressed, it became clear that her strength was mainstream pop.

In 1980, Kim Wilde signed with producer Mickie Most's Rak Records, releasing her first single, "Kids in America," early in 1981. "Kids in America" climbed to number two on the British charts that spring, while her second single, "Chequered Love," made it into the Top Ten; her self-titled debut album performed as well as her singles. The following year, "Kids in America" became a Top 40 hit in America, while Select kept her in the British charts. However, Wilde wasn't able to keep her momentum going and it wasn't until late 1986 that she had another hit with a dance cover of the Supremes' "You Keep Me Hangin' On," which charted in the Top Ten on both sides of the Atlantic. Wilde never had another hit in America, yet she was back in the charts in the summer of 1987 with "Another Step (Closer to You)," a duet with Junior Giscombe. After the single's success, she began changing her image, becoming sexier. The approach didn't entirely pay off, though she had a handful of hit singles from her 1988 album, Close, including "You Came," "Never Trust a Stranger," and "Four Letter Word." Wilde continued to record in the '90s, scoring the occasional hit, either in the dance or adult contemporary field.

Offline JASON

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #6 on: December 13, 2003, 21:31:56 PM »
YOU SHOULD HAVE PUT THAT ON THE KIM WILDE THREAD.......LOL ;D
I DIDN'T THINK ABOUT HER WHEN I DID THEM 3!!

Offline AndrewR

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #7 on: December 13, 2003, 21:32:44 PM »
Surprised you left out Soft Cell too ;D

Offline JASON

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #8 on: December 13, 2003, 21:33:48 PM »
I THOUGHT PEOPLE MIGHT GET A BIT PISSED OFF WITH ME POSTING ALL THE BIOGS! ;)

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #9 on: December 13, 2003, 21:37:47 PM »
Emm...we now have *2* Soft Cell biogs on this thread!! ;D

Offline JASON

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2003, 21:40:05 PM »
I REALLY AM LOSING IT TODAY!! :-/

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #11 on: December 13, 2003, 21:41:24 PM »
Should we call an emergency AA Meeting?? LOL! ;D ;D

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #12 on: December 13, 2003, 21:45:18 PM »
YES I THINK SO!! :o

AMBULANCE AMBULANCE.............TAKE ME AWAY.......ARGHH........CRACKING UP CRACKING UP!! [smiley=eusa_wall.gif]

Offline JASON

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #13 on: December 14, 2003, 21:17:55 PM »
KATE BUSH


One of the most successful and popular solo female acts of the past 20 years to come out of England, Kate Bush is also one of the most unusual, with her keening vocals and unusually literate and complex body of songs. As a girl, Catherine Bush amused herself playing an organ in the barn behind her parents' house. By the time she was a teenager, Bush was writing songs of her own. A family friend, Ricky Hopper, heard her music and arranged for a demo to be recorded, which brought Bush to the attention of Pink Floyd lead guitarist David Gilmour. By the time Bush was 16, she had signed to EMI Records, though the company made the decision to bring her along slowly. She studied dance, mime, and voice, and continued writing. By 1977, she was ready to enter the recording studio and begin her formal career, which she did with an original song, "Wuthering Heights," based on material from Emily Bront๋'s novel.
"Wuthering Heights" rose to number one on the British charts. Bush became an overnight sensation at the age of 17 and was obligated to turn in an accompanying album in short order. This she did with The Kick Inside, a collection of material she had written over the previous three years; the album reached number three and sold over a million copies in the U.K.

Bush's second album, Lionheart, reached number six but didn't achieve anything like the sales totals or critical acclaim of its predecessor. In England during the spring of 1979, Bush embarked on what proved to be the only concert tour of her career to date, playing a series of shows highlighted by 17 costume changes, lots of dancing, and complex lighting. The tour proved both exhausting and financially disastrous, and Bush has avoided any but the most limited live concert appearances since, primarily in support of certain charitable causes.

By this time, Bush was established as one of the most challenging and eccentric artists ever to have achieved success in rock music, with a range of sounds and interests that constantly challenged listeners. "Babooshka" (1980) became her first Top Five single since "Wuthering Heights," and her subsequent album Never for Ever entered the British charts at number one in September of 1980. During this period, Bush began co-producing her own work, a decisive step toward refining her sound and also establishing her independence from her record company. Although 1982's The Dreaming reached number three, the single "There Goes a Tenner" failed to reach the charts, and most observers felt that Bush had lost her audience. Bush was unfazed by the criticism, and even began taking steps to make herself more independent of her record company by establishing a home studio.

After two years' absence, Bush re-emerged in August of 1985 with "Running Up That Hill," which reached number three on the English charts and became her second biggest-selling single. The accompanying album, Hounds of Love, the first record made at her 48-track home studio, debuted on the British charts at the number one position in September of 1985 and remained there for a full month, and soon after "Running Up That Hill" gave Bush her long-awaited American breakthrough, reaching number 30 on Billboard's charts. The changes in her sound and her development as a writer/performer were showcased in the January 1987 best-of collection The Whole Story. That same year, Bush won the Best British Female Artist award at the sixth annual BRIT Awards in London. In October of 1989, Bush's first new album in almost four years, The Sensual World, reached the British number two spot. Bush's next album, The Red Shoes (1993), debuted in the American Top 30, the first time one of her albums had ever charted that high.



Offline JASON

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Re: BIOGRAPHIES!
« Reply #14 on: December 14, 2003, 21:19:34 PM »
TEARS FOR FEARS


Tears for Fears were always more ambitious than the average synth-pop group. From the beginning, the duo of Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith were tackling big subjects — their very name derived from Arthur Janov's primal scream therapy, and his theories were evident throughout their debut, The Hurting. Driven by catchy, infectious synth-pop, The Hurting became a big hit in their native England, setting the stage for international stardom with their second album, 1985's Songs from the Big Chair. On the strength of the singles "Everybody Wants To Rule the World" and "Shout," the record became a major hit, establishing the duo as one of the leading acts of the second generation of MTV stars. Instead of quickly recording a follow-up, Tears for Fears labored over their third album, the psychedelic and jazz-rock-tinged The Seeds of Love. While the album was a big hit, it was the end of an era instead of a new beginning. Smith left the group early in the '90s, and Orzabal continued with Tears for Fears, pursuing more sophisticated and pretentious directions to a smaller audience.
Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith met as children in Bath, England. Both boys came from broken homes, and Smith was leaning toward juvenile delinquence. Orzabal, however, turned towards books, eventually discovering Arthur Janov's primal scream therapy, a way of confronting childhood fears that John Lennon embraced after the Beatles disbanded. Orzabal turned Smith on to Janov, but before the duo explored this theory further, they formed the ska-revival band Graduate in the late '70s. After releasing a handful of singles, including "Elvis Should Play Ska," Graduate dissolved in the early '80s, and the duo went on to form Tears for Fears, a synth-pop outfit directly inspired by Janov's writings.

Riding in on the tail end of new wave and new romantic, Tears for Fears — which featured musical contributions from former Graduate keyboardist Ian Stanley on early albums — landed a record contract with Polygram in 1982. The following year, the band released their debut The Hurting, which became a major hit in Britain, generating no less than three Top Five hit singles. Two years later, the group released Songs from the Big Chair, which demonstrated a more streamlined and soul-influenced sound. Songs from the Big Chair became a huge hit in America, rocketing to the top of the charts on the strength of the singles "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" and "Shout," which both hit number one, and the number three "Head Over Heels," which were all supported by clever, stylish videos that received heavy MTV airplay.

Instead of quickly following Songs from the Big Chair with a new record, Tears for Fears labored over their new record, eventually delivering the layered, Beatlesque The Seeds of Love in 1989. Featuring soulful vocals from Oleta Adams, who dominated the hit "Woman in Chains," the album became a hit, reaching number eight, while the single "Sowing the Seeds of Love" reached number two in the U.S. Again, Tears for Fears spent several years working on the follow-up to Seeds of Love, during which time they released the collection Tears Roll Down (Greatest Hits '82-'92). Smith and Orzabal began to quarrel heavily, and Smith left the group in 1992, making Tears for Fears' 1993 comeback Elemental essentially a solo record from Orzabal. On the strength of the adult contemporary hit "Break it Down Again," Elemental became a modest hit, reaching gold status in the U.S., yet was hardly up to the group's previous levels. Smith, meanwhile, released a solo album in 1993, Soul on Board, which went ignored. Orzabal returned with another Tears for Fears album, Raoul and the Kings of Spain, in 1995, which failed to make much of an impact. In late 1996, the group released a rarities collection.