Richard Darbyshire

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Richard Darbyshire
Birth name Richard Simon Darbyshire
Born (1960-03-08) 8 March 1960 (age 54)
Origin Stockport, Cheshire, England
Genres R&B, soul, pop
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter, producer, songwriting coach
Instruments Vocals, guitar, piano
Years active 1980–present
Labels Chrysalis Records, Dome Records, Warner/Chappell Music, EMI, Polygram
Associated acts Living in a Box
Website richarddarbyshire.com

Richard Darbyshire (born 8 March 1960) is an English singer, a songwriter, a producer and a songwriting coach. Darbyshire is best known as the frontman for the 1980s Sheffield band, Living in a Box.

Biography[edit]

Early years[edit]

Richard Darbyshire was born in Stockport, Cheshire, in England. He went to school in Manchester, where he briefly attended Manchester Grammar School. At the age of 13, he followed his parents to Japan, where he attended an American boarding school.

Bathing in the sound of The Beatles, Darbyshire's interest in a musical career began early; he first took up the clarinet but then switched to guitar. While in Japan, Darbyshire was introduced to the soul music of Marvin Gaye, Al Green and Curtis Mayfield via U.S military station. He joined a band with a group of Americans playing Allman Brothers type of material.

Back in England, Darbyshire sat his exams at the Manchester Grammar School and played with various bands of the Northern Music scene, such as Gammer and his Familiars. He also went to Oxford University, where he studied English literature.

Career[edit]

After university, Darbyshire briefly joined a Manchester band called Zu Zu Sharks, composed of Adam and the Ants bassist Gary Tibbs and Alistair Gordon on keyboards. Their single "Love Tumbles Down" was a number 1 hit in Spain, but Darbyshire left the band in 1983, unhappy with their pop sound.

Darbyshire continued writing songs. One of them, "Put Your Foot Down" was recorded by The Temptations for their album Together Again, released in 1987. He also co-wrote songs with singer Tessa Niles in 1985 for her upcoming album (which ultimately went unreleased). He also performed session work for Polygram and EMI.

In 1985, Virgin Records wanted to sign Darbyshire to a contract, while Chrysalis Records asked him to be the vocalist/guitarist for a fledgling band consisting of drummer Anthony 'Tich' Critchlow and keyboardist Marcus Vere. After he sang the vocal on a track the band was working on called "Living in a Box," he chose to sign a five-year contract with the band, who ultimately named themselves after the song, Living in a Box. The band released two albums: Living in a Box (1987) and Gatecrashing (1989). Their eponymous single was a smash hit, cracking the Top 20 in the US.

In 1990, while the band was recording their third full-length album, artistic differences between EMI (who had bought Chrysalis Records) and Darbyshire resulted in the split of the band before the album was completed.

In 1991, he sang "I Love A Lady" with Bandzilla, a big band created and led by composer-arranger Richard Niles. His performance can be heard on Richard Nile's website.[1]

His debut (and to date, only) solo effort, How Many Angels was released in 1994. Singer Lisa Stansfield co-wrote two of the songs, "This I Swear" and "Tell Him No," and sang backing vocals on the album. How Many Angels also featured songs originally written for Living in a Box's third album, and new songs written by Darbyshire and Frank Musker. The album would be re-released in two different forms: Love Will Provide (1999) and This I Swear (20 tracks special edition) (2009), each including b-sides and new tracks.

Darbyshire then continued to write and produce songs with and for other artists, particularlyLisa Stansfield, but also Mike Francis, Frank Musker, Richard Niles, James Last, Level 42, and Jennifer Rush, amongst others.

In 2004, Darbyshire won the First Prize in USA Songwriting Competition in R&B category.

More recently, he opened several songwriting workshops in London, and give writing lessons to young artists, such as Max Tuohy. He works closely with vocalist and vocal coach Sonia Jones.

Personal life[edit]

Discography[edit]

1984 "Eyes of the World" (7") ZuZu Sharks

Date Album Artist Contribution
1980 Accelerate with the Mercurians Accelerate with the Mercurians Vocals, Guitar
1981 Rocket Ticket Gammer and his Familiars Composer, Guitar
1983 Love Tumbles Down (unreleased album) Zu Zu Sharks Composer, Vocals, Guitar
1985 Tough Girls (unreleased album) Tessa Niles Composer, Guitar, Backing Vocals
1986 Salamandra Miguel Bosé Backing Vocals
1987 Living in a Box Living in a Box Composer, Vocals, Guitar, Backing Vocals
1987 Together Again The Temptations Composer
1988 Jellybean Rocks the House Jellybean feat. Richard Darbyshire Guest Artist (Vocals)
1989 Passion Shirley Lewis Composer
1989 Gatecrashing Living in a Box Composer, Vocals, Guitar, Backing Vocals
1991 Music of Quality and Distinction, Vol. 2 B.E.F. (British Electric Foundation) Guest Artist, Vocals
1993 The Art of Romance Mayumi Composer, Vocals
1994 How Many Angels Richard Darbyshire Composer, Vocals, Guitar, Mandolin, E-bow
1994 Marie Claire D'Ubaldo Marie-Claire D'Ubaldo Composer
1994 Forever Now Level 42 Composer
1994 Francesco Innamorato Mike Francis Composer, Guitar, Backing Vocals
1995 A Different Air Mike Francis Composer, Guitar, Backing Vocals
1995 Man on a Mission Bing Abrahams Composer
1997 Lisa Stansfield Lisa Stansfield Composer, arranger, Backing Vocals
1997 Credo Jennifer Rush Composer, Backing Vocals
1999 Love will Provide Richard Darbyshire Composer, Vocals, Guitar, Mandolin, E-bow
1999 Swing: Soundtrack Lisa Stansfield Composer
1999 Distance Charlotte Composer
1999 Knockout: Soundtrack Various Artists Composer
2000 Sooner or Later Hamish Stuart Composer
2000 Minage Mónica Naranjo Composer
2001 Face Up Lisa Stansfield Composer, Guitar, Backing Vocals
2001 Tommi Mischell Tommi Mischell Composer
2003 Temporary Madness Jodie Brooke Wilson Composer, Backing Vocals
2004 The Moment Lisa Stansfield Composer, Guitar, Vocal Arrangement, Backing Vocals
2004 Elements of James Last Vol. 1 James Last Composer, Vocals, Guitar, producer, Vocal Arrangement, Backing vocals
2005 Pour être Libre Lââm Arranger, Release Coordinator
2006 Love in a dangerous World Kira Small Composer
2009 This I Swear (20 tracks special edition) Richard Darbyshire Composer, Vocals, Guitar, Mandolin, E-bow

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Richard Niles Official Website | Ideas make you better". Richardniles.com. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 

External links[edit]