Where were you born ? and what inspired you to start a career in the music industry ?
I was born in London. I love music & I’ve always been creative. As I didn’t go to school much, I had a lot of time to follow a creative path. I actually grew up surrounded by music as my father was in the music industry as well. So it was an obvious career path for me.
What was the first band you were in ?
A punk band called The Deviant, we were pretty loud and controversial & played the London gig circuit. I actually put on my first concert at the London Electrowerkz for us to be a supporting act but the headlining band actually played a free show the night before which totally sabotaged the night.
Where do you record your music ? and who else has recorded there ?
I’ve been a lot of recording studios but Metropolis Studios has to be one of my favourites. It’s been host to some top names such as Michael Jackson, Queen, Adele, Amy Winehouse, Jimmy Page & many more
When did you rise to fame ? tell us about your success.
Well I quickly noticed my band mates weren’t as ambitious as I was, so I put out an announcement on MySpace that I’d quit the band and they soon broke up. I was asked to join some other bands and go touring but I declined instead I wanted to focus on my own original material. I was backed by members of UK new wave group Squeeze I still work with today. My debut single was a pop reggae song I composed called Dream A Little Dream which was quickly followed up by a song called See You Upstairs, this was the first song I co-wrote with my Dad. I quickly rose to fame on social media, building a huge following on MySpace, Bebo, Facebook and YouTube which lead to Bebo featuring me on the reggae page next to Shaggy & Sean Paul. I followed up these singles with a Ska sing along called Ain’t Gonna Let You Go. I became the 18th most viewed musician on YouTube, Garage Band awarded me numerous honours for my songs including Track Of The Day, Track of The Week, Best Male Vocal, Best Lyrics, Best Melody and Best Feel Good Track, all of which helped me to rank on the top of the Reverb Natuon reggae charts. I even knocked Cher Llloyd from the number one spot with my own Christmas song in Christmas 2010 who was competing on X Factor at the time. My Christmas song was Dream A Little Dream This Christmas a reworking of my debut release Dream A Little Dream, I later reworked this track again with a new title Santa Is Comin. I returned to my punk roots after this to produce some humorous punk rock ditty’s such as My Girl Sharon & Pretty Damn Cool. I have a swathe of unreleased songs, maybe I’ll put them out in the future.
Do you like Christmas and have you ever written a song about it ?
I have always loved Christmas & Christmas music. The lights, the decorations, giving presents, the atmosphere. I knew I wanted to keep making Christmas music for years to come. I co-wrote a Christmas song with my Dad in 2018 called Rock With Rudolph. We recorded it in aid of Great Ormond Street Hospital & gathered together a group of celebrities to perform it including Gail Porter, Kara Tointon, Emma Samms MBE, Eastenders’ Shona McGarty and the late, great Lionel Blair. I actually had to help him put his tap dancing shoes at ITV studios before he went on Loose Women as their Secret Santa guest to do an interview about Rock With Rudolph.
Do you have any other interests or business ideas outside of music ?
Yes, I do. I also write film scripts & I own a handful of e-commerce businesses including the oldest one called Egg n Chips Clothing which sells alternative clothing and licensed merchandise. http://www.eggnchipsclothing.co.uk
I was nominated for FSB young business person of the year in 2013. I was a runner up, coming 3rd.
Tell us about your company Saga Entertainment and it’s releases?
Saga Entertainment emerged out of a desire my father & I had to put our musical abilities together & raise money for charity. We’ve still got a lot of work to do and big plans for 2021. We’ve been working on a very big project which will move into its next stage of development early next year, so watch this space.
What celebrities have you worked with ?
I’ve had the honour of working with the legendary Lionel Blair who sadly passed away last month. The Chase’s Anne Hegerty who is actually a really lovely lady. Boxing champion Frank Bruno MBE, when I was at school he’d be all over the papers, I never thought I’d have the opportunity to record him singing Merry Christmas Everyone. The famous Whispering Bob Harris, Kara Tointon, Kellie Shirley, GMBs Laura Tobin a great many other talented people.
What charities have you worked with ?
GOSH! Charity which is a Children’s hospital in Great Ormond Street, they do such tremendous work sick children and their families. Also worked with BBC Children in Need which is also a Children’s Charity who run a great many projects up and down the country. Action For Children, another Children’s Charity which provide emotional care & support for children. Alzheimer’s Society, a charity to support anyone with dementia and currently Mind, the mental health charity.
Tell us about your new single and cover of the Beatles classic ‘Let it Be’.
We knew we didn’t want to do another Christmas song this year, we wanted to do a song that would mean something to people, where they could enjoy it all year round and really make a difference throughout the year. So we worked on the idea of doing a cover of a Beatles song. It was nearly All You Need Is Love but we settled on Let It Be as it means so much to so many people. We actually put this together at really short notice and lost some really important names, we had to change the dates to fit in with Shona McGarty’s filming schedule. Shona loves to sing & so I wanted her to take the lead on this one. She did a fantastic job singing this beautiful song by Sir Paul McCartney.
Why did you choose to support and work with the MIND charity?
So many people struggle with their mental health & it’s still such a taboo subject, so we felt it prudent to help bring attention to the charity & the great work they do. Especially in light of the covid-19 pandemic which has had such wide reaching affects.
Who are your favourite artists of all time ?
There’s truly so many artists out there worthy of praise, I couldn’t possibly list them all here. Despite having a huge punk rock background I’m influenced by music producers such as Max Martin, Jim Steinman, George Martin, Chris Thomas & even Dr Dre.
What’s next on the horizon for Saga Entertainment ?
We have some big projects coming up in the future but they’re all top secret right now 😉
Where can we find you online ?
I can of course be found in all the coolest places, follow me on Insta, Twitter or Facebook
Let It Be by Shona McGarty is out now: https://li.sten.to/LetItBe