Ainslie Henderson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Ainslie Henderson
OriginEdinburgh, Scotland
GenresAcoustic, alternative, indie rock
Years active2001–present
LabelsMercury Records (2003)

Ainslie Thomas Henderson (born 28 January 1979, Edinburgh, Scotland) is a Scottish singer-songwriter. He is best known as a BAFTA award-winning animator,[1] his appearance on the BBC's television programme, Fame Academy,[2] and his subsequent Top 5 UK single, "Keep Me a Secret".[3] In 2006, he independently released his debut album, 'Growing flowers by candlelight'.

Fame Academy[edit]

In 2002, Henderson was chosen to appear in the first series of the BBC talent/reality show Fame Academy, and was initially one of the favourites to win. During his time at the Academy, he became known for his energetic performances as well as being a prolific songwriter. He wrote "Keep Me a Secret" with Malachi Cush and Sinéad Quinn and "Take Out Time" with Mark Hunter and Saul Davies of James, as well as co-writing "Lullaby" with Lemar Obika. All three tracks would later reach the Top 5 in the UK Singles Chart, the latter two as B-sides. He was voted off the show in the penultimate week, coming fourth.

After his departure from the show, he was signed to Mercury and, in March 2003, released a solo single of "Keep Me a Secret" with "Take Out Time" as the B-side, which entered the UK Singles Chart at No. 5.[3]

Henderson became increasingly unhappy with the direction his musical career was taking with Mercury. In late 2003, before releasing the album or a second single, Henderson was dropped. Although he was allowed to retain the rights of the songs he had already written and recorded, they have never been released. He did, however, reveal one track, "Coming Up For Air", on his MySpace profile in 2006. This has since been released officially as a download only track.


Prior to Fame Academy, Henderson had been a member of the rock band Suburbia, with guitarist Peter Deane, Alasdair Crooks (bass), Chris Plews (guitar) and Simon Usher (drums). Forming in 1998, they had just secured a recording contract with the Los Angeles record label City of Angels when the label went bankrupt, and although the band continued to perform together, they split in 2002. One of their songs, "Always", appeared on the soundtrack of football simulation video game, FIFA 2004.

In 2004, he visited the US, collaborating with the American singer-songwriter Jason Mraz, and co-writing the song "Clockwatching" which appears on Mraz's album, Mr. A-Z.

Later that year, he returned to his home city, joining the rock band The Last September as guitarist and backing vocalist, along with his friend Pete Deane from Suburbia. They performed in London and at several venues in Scotland. He left The Last September in 2005.

Debut album[edit]

After a three-year break from his solo career, Henderson revealed new material to the public for the first time with the creation of a Myspace profile in early 2006, featuring new tracks "Day Trip" and "While They Wait". He performed a number of new songs whilst supporting Unkle Bob on several gigs around central Scotland in the following months. Henderson released his debut album, Growing Flowers By Candlelight, on 15 July 2006, on his own independent label, Amphibian Husbandry.

In May 2007, Henderson supported Marillion on two dates during their UK tour.

In 2013, he worked with Shane Filan in Ireland.



  • "Keep Me a Secret" (Mercury, March 2003) No. 5 UK[3]
  • "Coming Up For Air" " (Amphibian Husbandry, June 2007)


  • Growing Flowers By Candlelight (Amphibian Husbandry, July 2006)


Ainslie won a BAFTA in 2013 for co-writing and animating the film The Making of Longbird,[4] and was nominated for his directorial work in I Am Tom Moody in 2014.[5][6] He made the animated video for the single "Moving On" by the band James, released in 2014.[7]


  1. ^ "2013 Film Short Animation | BAFTA Awards". Retrieved 17 September 2017.
  2. ^ English, Paul (15 July 2006). "The Big Intervgiew: Go Fourth from Academy". The Daily Record. Retrieved 6 September 2010.
  3. ^ a b c Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 250. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  4. ^ English, Paul. "Fame Academy Scot Ainslie Henderson tells how he won BAFTA after quitting music business to make animated films". Daily Record. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
  5. ^ English, Paul (19 January 2014). "Video: Former Fame Academy star Ainslie Henderson up for BAFTA for short film". Daily Record. Retrieved 10 August 2014.
  6. ^ "British Council Film: Ainslie Henderson". Archived from the original on 7 January 2014. Retrieved 10 August 2014.
  7. ^

External links[edit]