Steve Hogarth

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Steve "h" Hogarth
Hogarth2.jpg
Steve Hogarth onstage at Marillion's weekend festival in Montreal Canada, April 2009.
Background information
Also known as H
Born (1959-05-14) 14 May 1959 (age 54)
Kendal, England, United Kingdom
Genres New wave, art rock, neo-progressive rock
Instruments Vocals, piano, guitar, hammered dulcimer
Years active 1980–present
Labels Racket Records
Associated acts The Europeans
How We Live
Marillion
The h-Band
Website stevehogarth.com

Steve Hogarth (born Ronald Stephen Hoggarth[1] on 14 May 1959[2][3] in Kendal, Westmorland) also known as "h", is the lead vocalist and occasional keyboardist/guitarist with the British rock band Marillion. Hogarth was formerly a keyboard player and co-lead vocalist with The Europeans and vocalist with How We Live.

Early life[edit]

Hogarth was born in Kendal in Cumbria. His father was an engineer in the British Merchant Navy. He was brought up on a council estate in Doncaster from the age of two. As a child he became interested in music, his earliest influences being The Beatles and The Kinks. He taught himself to play piano. Leaving school at the age of eighteen, Hogarth spent three years studying for a degree in electrical engineering at Trent Polytechnic. He was also a member of a band during this time, Harlow, who played working men's clubs. They recorded the single Harry de Mazzio on the Pepper record label in 1978. The band split in 1981 and Hogarth left his engineering degree, moving to London to further his music career.[4]

Career[edit]

In London, after responding to an advertisement in the music press Hogarth joined the band Motion Pictures. They were subsequently renamed The Europeans. Initially joining just as a keyboard player, Hogarth later shared the vocal duties with Ferg Harper. Signed to A&M Records, The Europeans released two studio albums and one live album. On the first studio album Hogarth sang one track, and five of the second album.

In 1985, Hogarth and guitarist Colin Woore left the band to form How We Live, The duo were signed to Columbia Records. In 1987, following record company changes, How We Live's debut album Dry Land was unsuccessful. Hogarth considered leaving the music industry and becoming a milkman or postman. However, a meeting with his publishers arranged by friend, Darryl Way, sometime of Curved Air, persuaded him to send a tape to Marillion, who were recruiting for a new lead vocalist following the departure of Fish in late 1988.

Marillion heard the tape and were interested enough to ask for a meeting with the singer. Later accounts of this first meeting record that Hogarth turned up at band member Pete Trewavas' house with his demo tapes contained in a red plastic fire bucket - the audition taking place in Trewavas' garage, due to the presence in the house of cats (see below). The band were immediately impressed by his vocal prowess. Hogarth himself, however, took a little longer to make up his mind, holding as he did at the time a potentially lucrative offer to tour the U.S. on keyboards with The The. As he later recalled, he had a choice 'between joining the most hip band in the world at that time, or the least...'. In the end he accepted the position with Marillion, won over as the band wanted an equal partner.

Hogarth's first album with the band, released in September 1989, was Seasons End, their fifth studio album. Since then, Marillion have recorded a further twelve albums with Hogarth on vocals, the most recent being Sounds That Can't Be Made released in September 2012.

Hogarth has also released one solo studio album under the name 'h' called Ice Cream Genius. This album had contributions from ex-Japan/ Porcupine Tree synthesiser/keyboard maestro Richard Barbieri, former XTC guitarist Dave Gregory, Blondie drummer Clem Burke, bassist Chucho Merchan and percussionist Luís Jardim.

Subsequently, Hogarth's side-project, The H-Band, has played live across the UK and Europe featuring a variety of musicians, including former The Stone Roses MKII guitarist Aziz Ibrahim, Massive Attack and The Bays drummer Andy Gangadeen, session musician Jingles on bass, Aziz's regular musical partner Dalbir Singh Rattan on tablas and Stephanie Sobey-Jones on cello. With Barbieri and Gregory, this line up recorded a double album entitled Live Spirit: Live Body in 2001 (released in 2002). Writing for a forthcoming second solo studio album occurred in December 2004.

in Spring / Summer 2006 Hogarth undetook a solo, 'h Natural', during which he played around 20 dates in the UK and Europe . It was billed as an evening of music and conversation with Hogarth at the piano. These shows were mixed and released for download, one at a time and for a limited period only, on Hogarth's H-Tunes site.

On 14 May 2010 Hogarth performed at the Relentless Garage in London to celebrate his birthday. On the following two days he also performed in Liverpool and Sheffield. To coincide with these shows a CD was released featuring some of the best tracks taken from his H Natural shows. This collection is called H Natural Selection and was available at the shows and from the Marillion website.

In 2012 Hogarth joined forces with Richard Barbieri again, releasing an album as a duo called Not the weapon but the hand.

In 2014 it was announced that Hogarth was releasing two volumes of diaries, written between 1991 and 2014. The first will be released in June 2104 by Miwk Publishing and is called 'The Invisble Man'. Volume 2 is expected to follow in December.

Personal life[edit]

Hogarth has three children; a daughter called Sofi and a son called Nial with his first wife Sue,[5] and a son called Emil in his current relationship with Linette.

Hogarth is violently allergic to cats - first learning this when hospitalised as a child after visiting a Liverpudlian Auntie "...whose house was full of 'em!"[citation needed]

His hobbies include football and he is known[by whom?] as a devoted Manchester United fan.

Solo discography[edit]

  • 1997: Ice Cream Genius
  • 1998: Ice Cream Genius (Re-release)
  • 2002: Live Spirit: Live Body
  • 2010: H Natural Selection
  • 2012: Not the weapon but the hand (with Richard Barbieri)
  • 2013: Arc Light (with Richard Barbieri)

Guest appearances[edit]

Personal quotes[edit]

I’m getting paid 10p per copy of every album I’m selling and they’re (EMI) selling it for 15 quid. That’s outrageous but it’s quite typical.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Steve Hogarth, writer search at ASCAP ACE
  2. ^ "Marillion Biography". NME. Retrieved 2009-05-21. 
  3. ^ marillion.com | BAND - Members - Steve Hogarth | The Official Marillion Website
  4. ^ Mick Wall Pre-Season Friendlies Kerrang! 23 September 1989
  5. ^ "Our dad's a rock star". BBC News. 26 April 2004. Retrieved 13 Nov 2011. 
  6. ^ BBC2 The Future Just Happened, 12th August 2001.

External links[edit]