Thom Yorke Kelsey Kershaw
Cited as one of the most influential figures in the music industry, and named by Q magazine, the 6th most powerful names in music.
Birth Thom was born October, 7th, 1968 in Wellingborough, Northamtonshire.
Influences / Early Life Thom received his first guitar when he was seven years old, and was greatly influenced by Brian May after seeing a live performance of the back Queen. By the age 11 he had formed his first band and written his first song.
Radiohead When attending an all boys school in Abington, Thom met his future Radiohead bandmates, They formed a band called On a Friday, after the only day the members were able to get together and practice. When Yorke left to go to the University of Exeter, the group disbanded temporarily but reunited to record a series of demo tapes. On a Friday was renamed Radiohead, influenced by a Talking Heads song.
Pablo Honey & The Bends Released by EMI in 1993, the album included Radiohead’s first single, “Creep”. Radiohead’s second album, The Bends was released in 1995 to critical acclaim and commercial success, peaking at no. 88 on the US Billboard 200.
OK Computer With the release of 1997’s OK Computer, Radiohead we among the closely watched bands of the decade, drawing on influences as varied as Queen, R.E.M. an Miles Davis. The album hit number on the UK album charts, adding pressure to Thom and fellow bandmates to release a follow up hit. During this time, Yorke experienced depression and writers block.
Kid A, Amnesiac, & Hail to the Thief. On the band’s next two albums, Kid A and Amnesiac, the band took a more radical approach, adding more processing to the vocals, wrote more obscure lyrics, and taking more of an influence from electronic, jazz, and classical influences – departing from the rock genre.; dividing fans and critics. In 2006, the bands sixth album, Hail to the Thief was released. Yorke described the album as a reaction to the events of the early 2000s, and newfound fear for the future of his children.
The Eraser In 2006, Yorke released his solo album, The Eraser; it was released on the independent label, XL recordings. Yorke denied that he was leaving Radiohead saying “I want no crap about me being a traitor or whatever splitting up blah blah… This was all don e with their blessing.”
DRM Releases After parting with EMI, Radiohead made the decision t release their seventh studio album, In Rainbows, as a digital DRM-free download in October 2007, they let their fans decide how much they wanted to pay for the album. Radiohead released their eighth studio album, The King of Limbs the same way in 2011. Pitchfork.com wrote “The King of Limbs is still likely to go down as Radiohead's most divisive record. A trawl through message boards and social networks leaves the impression that many disappointed fans are still struggling to make sense of the gap between the greatness of the thing they got and the genius of the thing they thought they might get.”
Rolling Stone ranked Yorke No. 66 on its list of “100 Greatest Singers of All Time” calling him “one of the most influential singers of his generation.”
Personal Life Yorke lives in Oxford, with girlfriend Rachel Owen. The couple has two children, son Noah and daughter Agnes. Yorke is active in creating public awareness for cultural and political issues, including Friends of Earth, Amnesty International, and Jubilee 2000.