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Born: September 26, 1962
Biography (via Wikipedia): Tracey Anne Thorn (born 26 September 1962) is an English singer, songwriter and writer. She is best known as being one half of the duo Everything but the Girl. The youngest of three children, Thorn was born in Brookmans Park, Hatfield, Hertfordshire. She grew up in Hatfield and studied English at the University of Hull, where she graduated in 1984 with First Class Honours. She later took an MA degree at Birkbeck College, University of London. After 27 years as a couple, Thorn and the other half of Everything But The Girl, Ben Watt, married in 2008 at Chelsea Register Office. They live in Hampstead, North London. The couple have twin girls, Jean and Alfie, born in 1998, and a son, Blake, born in 2001.
Thorn began her musical career in the punk-pop hybrid group Stern Bops playing guitar and providing some vocal backing. Thorn then formed Marine Girls as primary songwriter, playing guitar and sharing vocals. The band released two albums (Beach Party in 1981 and Lazy Ways in 1983) and three singles. The group disbanded in 1983.
Thorn met Ben Watt at the University of Hull where they were both students, and both signed as solo artists to Cherry Red Records. Their first album together was Eden, released in 1984. Everything but the Girl released a body of work that spanned two decades. Their biggest chart success came in 1995, when DJ Todd Terry remixed a song from their Amplified Heart album. "Missing" became a huge hit all over the world, including in the United States, where it peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100. Everything but the Girl has been inactive since 2000. Watt has played on some filmed performances of Thorn's solo work and on her 2011 recording of the xx's "Night Time".
Thorn's first solo work was a mini-album entitled A Distant Shore (1982). A re-recorded version of the track "Plain Sailing" was released as a single, and was included on the Pillows & Prayers Cherry Red records compilation album.
In the 1980s, Thorn contributed guest vocals and backing vocals for The Style Council on the track "The Paris Match" (from the album Café Bleu), The Go-Betweens on their track “Head Full of Steam, Working Week” on the single "Venceremos (We Will Win)" and Lloyd Cole and the Commotions on the track "Big Snake.”
In the 1990s, she collaborated with Massive Attack on several projects, including the soundtrack for the motion picture Batman Forever where she contributed with "The Hunter Gets Captured by the Game.” Their first project together was the song "Protection" (for which she wrote the lyrics and melody) from the album by Massive Attack of the same name. She also co-wrote and sings on the track "Better Things.” She also sang "The Tree Knows Everything" on Adam F's debut album, Colours. Just prior to her return to recording in 2007, Thorn contributed vocals to the song "Damage" by the band Tiefschwarz on the album Eat Books.
In March 2007, Tracey Thorn released her second solo album Out of the Woods on Virgin Records (Worldwide) and on Astralwerks (USA). Thorn cited her post-punk peers and idols Terry Hall (from 2-Tone Records ska-revivalists The Specials, and New Pop trio Fun Boy Three), Edwyn Collins (of Postcard Records' jingle-jangling Scots Orange Juice) and scene-queen Siouxsie Sioux in the song "Hands Up to the Ceiling.” The record includes contributions from Cagedbaby, Ewan Pearson, Charles Webster, Sasse, Darshan Jesrani, Martin Wheeler and Alex Santos.
The first single from the album, "It's All True,” accompanied by remixes from the likes of Kris Menace & Martin Buttrich, was released on 7 February and the second single, "Raise the Roof" was released on 18 June. The third single, "Grand Canyon" was released on 30 October. A fourth single, "King's Cross" (which is a cover version of a Pet Shop Boys song) was released on 12 December.
In 2008, Thorn collaborated with the Hungarian acoustic downtempo group The Unbending Trees on their single "Overture", which also featured on their album Chemically Happy (Is The New Sad), released by her partner Ben Watt. In 2009, Thorn collaborated with the Swedish singer-songwriter Jens Lekman for a cover of The Magnetic Fields' "Yeah! Oh Yeah!" for a compilation album commemorating twenty years of Merge Records, Score! 20 Years of Merge Records: The Covers!.
Thorn's third solo album Love and Its Opposite was released in May 2010 on Ben Watt's Strange Feeling Records in the UK, and on Merge Records in the US. Recorded in London and Berlin and produced by Ewan Pearson, it contained eight new songs and two cover versions, "Come on Home to Me" by Lee Hazlewood, and "You Are a Lover" by The Unbending Trees.
Thorn's fourth solo album was a Christmas album entitled Tinsel and Lights. It was released in late October 2012, and included covers of songs by Carol Hall, The White Stripes, Ron Sexsmith, Randy Newman, Joni Mitchell, Sufjan Stevens, Low and Scritti Politti, plus two original songs and contributions from Green Gartside and Ben Watt. The original song "Joy" is featured in the 2012 film All Is Bright with Paul Giamatti and Paul Rudd.
In 2013 Thorn wrote and recorded the original music for The Falling, the debut feature film by filmmaker Carol Morley, which premiered at the London Film Festival 2014. A compilation album, Solo: Songs and Collaborations 1982 - 2015, was released in the UK on 23 October 2015. It features 34 tracks on two discs.
Virago published Thorn's memoir Bedsit Disco Queen: How I Grew Up and Tried to Be a Pop Star, early in 2013. It received widespread critical acclaim and was a Sunday Times Top Ten bestseller. In 2014, she began a regular column for the New Statesman. In 2015 Virago published her second book, Naked at the Albert Hall, about singers and singing.