Biographies

Freddie Mercury

Freddie Mercury, originally named Faroukh Bulsara, grew up in India and moved to Britain in 1964 to work for a time in Heathrow airport.

Initially a vocalist in a band called Wreckage, Mercury joined Queen in 1971. At this point, the band was made up of ex-Smile members Brian May on guitar and Roger Taylor on drums. John Deacon answered an advert in the music press to become the band’s bassist.

Their early career saw them release the poorly received album 'Queen' in 1973, and go on tour extensively, supporting Mott the Hoople

 

Michael Jackson

First taking to the stage at the age of just 11 as part of his family's gig The Jackson 5, Michael Jackson grew quickly into the superstardom which would both reward and plague his life. An apparently unstoppable creative and financial force through the highs of his career, 'The King of Pop' struggled with a confused and turbulent private life that was often made appalling public. In the wake of his shock death though, it is for his artistry - and not his controversies - that he will be remembered and sadly missed.

Jackson was born 29 August 1958, in Gary, Indiana, to an African-American working-class family. His father, Joseph Jackson, had been a guitarist but had put aside his musical aspirations to provide for his family as a crane operator. Believing his sons had talent, he molded them into a musical group in the early 1960s. At first, the Jackson Family performers consisted of Michael's older brothers Tito, Jermaine, and Jackie. Michael joined his siblings when he was five, and emerged as the group's lead vocalist. He showed remarkable range and depth for such a young performer, impressing audiences with his ability to convey complex emotions. Older brother Marlonalso became a member of the group, which evolved into the The Jackson 5.

 

Phil Collins

Phil Collins was born Philip David Charles Collins to insurance salesman father Greville and talent agent mother, June Collins. The Collins’ were a gifted family, with elder brother Clive going on to become a professional cartoonist, and sister Carole competing as an ice-skater.

Phil started playing the drums at age five, when he received a toy drum kit as a gift and his interest in music grew during his school years. He got his first proper drum kit at age 12 and took every available opportunity to play, often drumming to songs on records or the radio. He was quite precocious as a child and strove for perfection, entering talent contents, acting and doing some modelling. He also loved playing football.

Collins attended Chiswick Grammar School and at age 13 won the role of the Artful Dodger in the West End production of ‘Oliver!’ (1964). His headmaster said he had to leave the school if he was going to take the role and his mother said the decision was his to make. Collins promptly left Chiswick Grammar, accepted the Artful Dodger role and joined the Barbara Speake Stage School, with which his mother was, and still is, involved.

 

Adele

One of the best-selling artists of our time is Adele due to her powerful and incredible voice, moving lyrics and outspoken personality.

Adele is one of the UK’s best-selling singer/songwriters of the present day and while she is currently putting her feet up to await the birth of her first child, we are sure she will grace us with more moving lyrics and powerful songs in the future. But when did it all start?

Her full name is Adele Laurie Blue Adkins and she was born to single mother Penny Adkins on 5 May 1988 in Tottenham, North London. She is estranged from her Welsh father Mark Evans. She started singing at the age of four years and has stated the Spice Girls heavily influenced her decision to start.

Talking about her unmusical family, Adele has said: "It all comes from impersonating The Spice Girls and Gabrielle." She used to give little concerts in her room for her mother and her friends. As her mother was quite arty, she helped a young Adele impersonate Gabrielle by making an eye patch for her to wear. At the age of 11, the family moved to Brighton but returned to Brixton where Adele remembers watching Pink in concert.

 

Jon Bon Jovi

John Francis Bongiovi Jr was born in New Jersey, and was then raised in nearby Sayreville. Both of Jon’s parents - Carol Sharkey and John Sr - were US Marines.

Jon spent most of his adolescence bunking school to opt for music activities instead and he ended up playing in local bands with friends and his cousin Tony who owned the then famous New York recording studio, the Power Station. As a result, his academic records displayed less than spectacular achievements and poor grades.

After leaving school, Jon was hired as a janitor and thanks to his family connections he was lucky enough to record musical demos with several famous musicians at the Power Station studios. One demo in particular, Runaway caught the attention of the local New Jersey radio station and Jon recruited a band to support the song. Soon the band attracted a record company bidding war with some major labels and upon signing to Mercury/Polygram in 1983, the band became known as Bon Jovi - a diversion from his real surname in order to generate a wider audience fan base due to its disconnection with Jon’s true Italian ethnicity.

 

Green Day

Part of the northern Californian underground punk rock scene, Green Day was formed by childhood friends Billie Joe Armstrong (lead guitar, lead vocals) and Mike Dirnt (bass guitar, backing vocals). They built a cult following during the early 1990s and are credited, along with bands The Offspring and Rancid, for reviving mainstream interest in the punk rock scene.

 

Bob Sinclair

Bob Sinclar, mistaken many times as "Sinclair" (born Christophe Le Friant, 10 May 1969) is a Grammy Award-nominated French record producer, House music DJ, remixer and owner of the label Yellow Productions.

The Seven Wonders of the World