Perrett performing live in 2015
|Birth name||Peter Albert Neil Perrett|
8 April 1952 |
Camberwell, South London, England
Peter Albert Neil Perrett (born 8 April 1952) is an English singer-songwriter, rhythm guitarist and record producer, best known as the frontman of The Only Ones.
Prior to forming the Only Ones, who were initially active between 1976 and 1982, Perrett formed England's Glory who's recordings were finally released in 1987. Following the split of the Only Ones, Perrett retreated from public life before forming The One in 1994. The Only Ones reformed in 2007, who despite debuting new material on tour are yet to release anything.
Born in Camberwell, South London, Perrett's father was first a police officer and then a builder, and his mother was an Austrian Jew. Perrett attended boarding school, where he was expelled at the age of 15 for rebellious behaviour. He was again expelled from his next school at age 16. He left home after that and learned how to support himself within the London drug scene.
Prior to forming the Only Ones, Perrett had recorded material with England's Glory in 1973. At that time, his singing style was so similar to Lou Reed's that it nearly led NME journalist Nick Kent to believe that he was listening to unreleased Velvet Underground material. Although the band did not officially release any material at the time, an album of demos was released in 1987 due to interest in Perrett's next band, the Only Ones.
Perrett formed the Only Ones in 1976 with his wife Zena as manager. After self-releasing their debut single "Lovers of Today", the band signed a recording contract with CBS Records and released three studio albums: The Only Ones (1978), Even Serpents Shine (1979), and Baby's Got a Gun (1980), before splitting up in 1982.
Perrett re-emerged in 1994 with a new band called The One. The band released their debut EP Cultured Palate via their manager's record label Dwarf Records, before signing to Demon Records and releasing their debut album Woke up Sticky in 1996. The band split up that same year, with Perrett disappearing again until April 2004 when he made an appearance on stage with the Libertines. He also appeared on stage with his sons Jamie and Peter Jr.'s band Love Minus Zero. Long hiatuses in his music career have been ascribed to his enduring struggles with heroin and crack cocaine addictions.
The Only Ones reunited in 2007, following the use of "Another Girl, Another Planet" in a Vodafone advertising campaign and a subsequent request to perform at the All Tomorrow's Parties Festival in Minehead. The band first played a brief UK tour in April and June of that year, and then continued performing as far afield as Japan through 2009. Despite reports that the band was working on a new album and performing new songs live, including "Dreamt She Could Fly" and "Black Operations" (which the group played on Later... with Jools Holland), the band went on hiatus again without releasing any new material.
After the Only Ones performed in Japan in 2014 without their drummer Mike Kellie, a press release announced that Perrett would play a one-off solo date in England at the Trades Club in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire in January 2015. Perrett played the gig to good reviews with his two sons performing as the backing band.
At age 16, Perrett ran away with his girlfriend, Xenoulla "Zena" Kakoulli. In 2015 Perrett has been married to Zena, who is a clothing designer, for about 45 years. Both suffer from COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) as a result of decades of smoking crack cocaine and heroin.
According to biographer Antonia, drugs did affect Perrett's sound because his guitar had a specially-hollowed-out section where he could use the space to take drugs through customs.
The Only Ones
- Green, Thomas H. (2 May 2015), Theartsdesk Q&A: Musician Peter Perrett The Only Ones' elusive frontman tells all, retrieved 15 September 2015
- "England's Glory". Ruffstream.com. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- "England's Glory". HoZac Records. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- "England's Glory". discogs. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Antonia, Nina (2001). The One And Only: Peter Perrett, Homme Fatale. SAF Publishing Ltd.
- Petridis, Alexis (5 April 2007). "'Junkies today are disgusting'". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 11 November 2011.
- "Peter Perrett". Thetradesclub.com. 29 January 2015. Retrieved 16 September 2015.
- Grundy, Alan (29 January 2015), Peter Perrett - Hebden Bridge Trades Club, retrieved 15 September 2015
- Brokenmouth, Robert (26 April 2015), The One and Only. Peter Perrett, Homme Fatale by Nina Antonia (Thin Man Press), retrieved 15 September 2015