I usually prefer to leave the talkin to the tracks, mainly true stories, but I get that people are often curious as to what and who you're about, My story is way too long, so here's a brief yadda yadda! of how it all began musically up to present day?  Watford born and bred I was raised on a tough council estate and started Songwriting at the age of  five, about nine years later I experienced the birth of Rap/Hip-Hop & from the first time I heard it, it literally stopped me in my tracks like an electric shock, it's  really hard to explain, but the love and excitement I felt at that moment was like nothing I'd experienced before, although new, It felt warm and familiar like a missing limb had been given back. I went on to feel exactly the same about  Black American Gospel.

However, neither genre were  met favorably here in the UK at that time and my attempts to share the love and excitement were often met with racist comments that I sadly went on to endure for many years, it was a real shock to the system because I'd never thought of anything in terms of colour, but it was evident there was no way a UK society would  be accepting and so I went back to being a singer/songwriter in public and did my first performance at 13 in Cassiobury park where they had a talent contest. I practiced the rap/hiphop stuff in the safety and privacy of home . The highlight of my life was the School youth club held twice a week, as there was a record player, I was about the only kid on the block with a job working weekends in a Newsagents, so I spent some of the money on Vinyl and the Youth Club gave me a chance to give it a spin.  

There were two black brothers who used to hang out and stand in the corner listening to the music & when they thought nobody was looking they would throw a few quick Body Popping & Break-dance moves, it was the first time I'd ever been in a room with anyone that might feel the same way as me about the genre, we cut a deal, they could take over spinning my Vinyl for awhile and in return they would dance and try and teach me some  moves, it felt great to finally share this mutual love.

By the time Rap/Hip-Hop started to emerge in the UK mainstream , while thrilled at the possibilities it was a bit of an anti-climax to say the least, it wasn't even close to the calibre of the US sound I'd spent years listening to and honing my craft from. I did attempt  rapping with a purely English accent but by then it felt so uncomfortable and fake. At the end of the day it's about being true to yourself & so I carry on today as I started out, hence the vocal Stateside twang. 

I'd just started getting interest from major labels as a singer-songwriter when I got the debilitating complex chronic illness known as M.E and was told by medical consultants  that the dream was over and making music and gigging would no longer be possible as it would worsen my condition, I lost my day job, my social life and  life as i'd known it in general, not content with that, I  then went on to get diagnosed with ADHD, Fibromyalgia and Osteoporosis , greedy or what?  

I was bed-bound with M.E for two years but during that time recorded a mega rough demo rap/hiphop album on an old 4-track placed on my lap, there were no effects and it was incredibly  poor quality as you can imagine hence the "Raw" title, but it was received well nonetheless, but when I was  eventually able get out again, after two years of being indoors bedbound  i'd developed agoraphobia & having lost all trust in the NHS after years of abuse and mistreatment, it took me another two years to get myself back. 

It was then I went  on to record a studio album "Nobody Want's To Know Ya When Ya Nobody"  with Producer Shane Shannahan, that took 5 years to make, then an E.P "Runnin On Empty" & a number of singles  which took another 4 yrs.  During that time I had to have major abdominal surgery which has unfortunately left me with permanent weakness and problems on my left side . 

I was just about to release the E.P "Runnin On Empty" in 2015 when my brother sadly took his own life, it was a massive shock and then two months later my sister was diagnosed with a rare sarcoma and passed away 10 short weeks later ( You can read the full story: "Give Us This Day")

I'm not going to lie, dealing with the loss of my siblings has been tougher than anything I've ever faced , but whether through loss of loved ones or/and illness that takes away your normality  it's a forever thing that you just have to try and live with, it comes down to choice, Sink or Swim?  I either find ways to cope  and carve out the best life I can with the  cards I've been dealt or I give up? But quitting isn't in my bones and so however long I'm blessed to be here hopefully  I can still leave a positive mark, do my parents proud, continue to carry my siblings torch, help others and maybe inspire a few? 

Everyone's idea of success is different, for me it's not about fame or being popular, It's about sharing honesty, it might not always be popular when it comes to radio play but  I don't pay lip service. When I hit the other-side the main mans not going to be impressed by a chart position .  I'm by no means the best at what I do , but my love, stories and delivery is honest and I just hope people can appreciate that if nothing else? I try to use any platforms given to talk about M.E, Disability, social issues, Mental health etc and in turn try & give others a voice and platform. 

I have kinda been stuck and struggling, flapping about like a butterfly in a spiders web the past seven years, but  it's time  to try and soar again.

No matter how tough life gets, we still have a choice, there is always point and purpose so don't let anyone tell you that you're not capable of achieving  something, each and everyone of us is gifted with being able to make a difference?  

As some of you that follow will know, I recently fell out with  the music distributors Tunecore (read here) they have since apologized & admitted the error on their part, but seeing as all my stuff is taken down from all major platforms now, I've decided I'm happy to stay more low key and exclusive so you will find me on BandCamp.
                                                          Forever A Life Student X


Just a Few Fun Facts.........

1. I've lived a Yogic life for most of my life. For me It's about trying to be a decent human being really, I'm vegetarian, try not to harm any living thing physically or verbally, try to help, support and raise others up ,Someone was once shocked that as a Yogi I swore, I had to explain it's not about being a saint, it's about being aware, living consciously & trying to do your best and like most I'm a work in progress. I lived a yogic life way before I started with the actual physical poses, although a qualified Yoga teacher, due to health issues I don't teach classes but still able to help and advice on a physical and spiritual level and do the odd one to one.

2. Boxing was illegal for women so no trainers would take me on as a kid, but I really wanted to be a boxer. When I was about 18, through a conversation in a pub  one day I got the opportunity to take part in an underground illegal match where I met my European opponent who looked like a 30 stone skinhead, one of her arms seemed longer and bigger than all of me. While I had always been a tough kid , I didn't want to die, hence climbing out the toilet window and scarpering. 

3. I was going to be a nun & had written my letter to the local convent and was about to post it, when my sister, hardly able to stop laughing, took me for a walk and explained I would have to spend alot of time in silence, as someone with ADHD I realized that  would be impossible, plus I wouldn't be able to just eat a bag of revels whenever I fancied so another dream shattered . 🤣

4. There was  once  a competition on Channel 4's Richard & Judy  show  to theoretically write a song for Victoria Beckham, I only knew I'd made the first selection while i was sat in my Pj's noshing ravioli watching the programme and they suddenly mentioned my name and played my track, I nearly choked 🤣 over the weeks a  panel of record industry peeps whittled the 5000 entries down to the final  three and then the public voted me the winner. 😁

5. I once had a music producer who was friends with music composer John Cameron who was working on the film Jack the Ripper starring Michael Caine and wanted some extra singing voices to boost the sound of the pub scenes, so we went to his house and sang some cockney songs, I was buzzing, such a random opportunity, but what an opportunity. 🤣

6. I got to meet the late great Jim Henson, the female usher showing us around said she would go find him as absolutely nobody other than his crew & staff were allowed inside his studio, he was really strict on that. Jim came out of his studio, a gentle giant of a man, we chatted a little and then he asked if i'd like to see his studio. Once inside he said "We can call this work experience if you like, but everything i'm about to share with you stays here in the studio" I promised, and he went on to show me all the puppets and how things were done. When i came out later and found the usher again, she was really offish and said *He has never done that before so i don't know what you have that nobody else hasn't" 😲 There was an awkward silence after that, I didn't know what i was supposed to say. but I've always felt immensely blessed by the experience.

7. Before going to the pub in the evening and on returning home later, myself and a couple of friends used to stand looking over the carriageway where we lived and where there's a film studio and watch all the filming, they didn't always film at the back- lot but when they did it was pretty awesome. One outstanding watch was Sleepy Hollow with Johnny Depp, and a scene where there was an explosion and someone somersaulted off a tower, and we got to watch it all for free 😁

8. I haaaaaate Lindt chocolate, and Olives, the nightmare would be Lindt chocolate covered Olives 🤣

9. I loved acting & was in drama clubs up until the age of 17 & some kids from our school got to perform "Kes" at the Watford Palace Theatre, I played a butcher that provided scraps for the bird  (still have the Theatre program .😁 )  but  overall when it came to trying to get in to acting everything that could go wrong went wrong & then life happened & I had to give it up. 😭

10. First time i turned up in London to a well known indie record company, they'd forgotten I was coming & doubled booked so they re-booked me for another day. Second time i turned up it was literally like walking into a school playground, all the staff all male apart from the receptionist who was painting her nails looked about 14 and were running around chasing each other pinging elastic bands at each other and throwing cups of water. At first I thought i'd walked into some kinda joke TV show being filmed, but nope, eventually an A & R kid called me into his office, all the offices were glass with a corridor running down the middle and while I'm trying to have a serious chat with him two of the guys dance down the corridor sideways giving him the V sign and sticking their tongues out and he's laughing his head off and giving them the V back and then looking back at me " Yeah carry on?" Finally he said as far as they were concerned only Prince could write urban music and dance music so they refused to listen to any from new artists so he wouldn't even play the tape I'd taken and that was the end of that. 🤣

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