Alannah Currie

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Alannah Currie
Alannah Feb 84.jpg
Alannah Currie, Bristol, February 1984
Background information
Birth name Alannah Joy Currie
Born (1957-09-20) 20 September 1957 (age 59)
Origin Auckland, New Zealand
Genres Pop, rock, dance, new wave, synthpop
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter
Instruments Marimba
Years active 1979–1997
Labels Arista Records, Warner Bros. Records
Associated acts Thompson Twins

Alannah Joy Currie (born 20 September 1957, in Auckland, New Zealand[1]) is a musician and artist, best known as a former member of the UK pop group Thompson Twins.


Born in New Zealand and trained as a journalist, Currie emigrated to the UK in 1977. Currie squatted in various places in South West London, ending up in Lillieshall Road, Clapham Old Town. In 1979, with her across-the-road neighbour, Trace Newton-Ingham (Traci Newton), she co-founded the dread-punk-improvising group, The Unfuckables. The Unfuckables performed one "gig" at an Anti-Psychiatry Conference in early 1980, held in the Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, London. For this particular gig the group comprised the two co-founders, plus an array of musicians from London's "underground" music scene — Viv Albertine (The Slits), Gareth Sager (The Pop Group), Charles Bullen and Charles Hayward (This Heat), Tom Bailey (of Thompson Twins, whom she would later marry), Jimmy Cauty (later of The KLF, and her current husband) and improviser Steve Beresford, amongst others.

In 1981, Currie joined Tom Bailey, Joe Leeway, and others to form part of the Thompson Twins, the line-up of which included up to seven members in its early days. The Thompson Twins became a trio in 1982 and signed two major record contracts with Arista Records before signing with Warner Bros. Records. Currie was a lyricist, percussionist, visual stylist and singer in the band and co-wrote and recorded 6 albums which included gold and platinum records and the hits Doctor! Doctor!, Hold Me Now, and You Take Me Up.[2] The band performed at the JFK Stadium, Philadelphia for the 1985 Live Aid concert and worked with artists including Nile Rodgers, Madonna, Grace Jones, Alex Sadkin and Jerry Harrison of the Talking Heads amongst others.

In 1984 the band participated in the "first international satellite installation" by Nam June Paik, Good Morning, Mr. Orwell.[3]

Her songwriting credits also include "I Want That Man", an international hit for Deborah Harry in 1989.

By 1992, Currie and her husband, fellow Thompson Twins band member Tom Bailey, had grown tired of being expected to chase chart success with new Thompson Twins material.[citation needed] After touring India collecting inspiration and audio samples, they elected to form Babble, featuring Currie as lyricist, percussionist and visual artist, as a means of creating music without the commercial expectations that were placed on the Thompson Twins. By 1994 Babble had released their first album. Currie later returned to New Zealand working primarily as a glass artist and environmental activist. She was founder of the women's anti-genetic engineering movement Mothers Against Genetic Engineering in Food and the Environment (MAdGE).[4] In 2004 she designed a series of protest billboards that caused controversy in New Zealand but won several international art / science awards.[5]

In 2004 she returned to London where she now works under the name Miss Pokeno and continues to make protest art and build chairs that "tell dark tales".[6] She is also a member of the Sisters of Perpetual Resistance, who make "militant feminist art", and the Armchair Destructivists.[7]

Personal life[edit]

Alannah was married to fellow band member Tom Bailey (musician) from 1991 to 2003. They have two children, Jackson (b. 1987) and Indie (b. 1992).

In 2011, Alannah married Jimmy Cauty (formerly of the KLF).

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Songwriting credits on
  3. ^ Good Morning Mr Nam June Paik, frieze (magazine), Issue 116 June–August 2008, [1]
  4. ^ "Moms Battle Genetic Engineering". Wired. Archived from the original on 10 November 2012. Retrieved 8 June 2013. 
  5. ^ Why Not Just Genetically Engineer Women For Milk?, Scoop, October 2003
  6. ^ Currie, singer in the 80s band the Thompson Twins, on her new incarnation as an artist-upholsterer, The Guardian, 26th April 2008, [2]
  7. ^ Pilger, Zoe, Miss Pokeno and the Sisters of Perpetual Resistance: Review – 'militant feminist art', The Independent, 5 December 2013, [3]

External links[edit]