Tricky Tricky
British rapper
Tricky Tricky
Tricky is an English musician and actor. As a producer and a musician, he is noted for a dark, rich and layered sound and a whispering sprechgesang lyrical style. Culturally, Tricky encourages an intertwining of societies, particularly in his musical fusion of rock and hip hop, high art and pop culture. His debut album Maxinquaye was nominated for the Mercury Prize and voted Album of the Year by NME Magazine.
Tricky's personal information overview.
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  • 2011
    Age 43
    On 26 June 2011 Tricky appeared on stage during Beyoncé's headline slot on the pyramid stage at Glastonbury for the track "Baby Boy".
    More Details Hide Details In April 2012 tricky performed Maxinquaye with Martina Topley-Bird at several concerts around the UK including, for the first time in several years in his home town of Bristol. The concerts featured regular interruptions orchestrated by Tricky, where he brought his youngest brother, Marlon Thaws to rap on stage alongside other local rappers as well as encouraging the audience to come up on stage.
    In early 2011, Tricky was booked to headline Blissfields Festival.
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  • 2010
    Age 42
    On 13 December 2010 Tricky's tour bus was caught in a blizzard near Sarnia, Ontario, Canada (near the U.S./Canadian border).
    More Details Hide Details The band was scheduled to play Tuesday night in Minneapolis, but had to cancel because they didn't make it out on time. A local farmer, John Prins, came to their rescue. The farmer reported that "they were sitting in their tour bus for 30, 35 hours, without any food", and said, "They said they were surviving on Jack Daniels."
    During an interview on 1 July 2010, Tricky stated that his new album, titled Mixed Race, was scheduled for release on 27 September 2010.
    More Details Hide Details The first single from the album became available on 23 August. The album included contributions from Franky Riley, Terry Lynn, Bobby Gillespie, Hamadouche, Blackman, and Tricky's youngest brother Marlon Thaws.
  • 2009
    Age 41
    On 10 December 2009, Daddy G. revealed that he met Tricky in Paris and asked him to work on a future project.
    More Details Hide Details Tricky agreed.
    On 8 December 2009, Tricky's 1995 debut album Maxinquaye was reissued with a bonus 13-track CD featuring B-sides, out-takes and 7 previously unreleased mixes including three new mixes of "Overcome", "Hell is Round the Corner", and "Black Steel".
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  • 2008
    Age 40
    In an interview with The Skinny in July 2008, Tricky mentioned that it was the first time that he had decided to let someone co-produce an album with him, the person in question being Bernard Butler, ex-Suede guitarist.
    More Details Hide Details Less than enamoured with Butler's technical prowess, Tricky finished by totally re-recording all of the material.
    Tricky's 2008 studio album, Knowle West Boy, was released in the UK and Ireland in July 2008 and September 2008 in the U.S. The first single was "Council Estate".
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  • 2001
    Age 33
    In 2001 Tricky appeared in online advertising for the web series We Deliver, about a marijuana delivery service in New York.
    More Details Hide Details Though he did not actually appear in any episodes, in the advertising it appears as if he is a customer of the service. Tricky's website last reports him busy at work with the musical acts signed to his Brown Punk record label. Several new solo works have been featured in television programs such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, The L Word and Girlfriends, and he contributed "Au Revoir Emmanuelle" to a compilation entitled Monsieur Gainsbourg Revisited.
  • 1997
    Age 29
    He also appears briefly in both the 1997 John Woo directed Face/Off (his single "Christiansands" is also played during his brief cameo) as well as the 2004 Olivier Assayas film Clean, playing himself, and had a large role in the music video for "Parabol/Parabola" by Tool.
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    Tricky has also acted in various films. He appeared in a significant supporting role in the 1997 Luc Besson film The Fifth Element, playing the right-hand man "Right Arm" to evil businessman Mr. Zorg.
    More Details Hide Details He reportedly put off actor Gary Oldman (who played Zorg) because, while he had his back to the camera, he was eating a Twix bar, to Oldman's anger ("He's facking eatin' a Twix!"). "But Gary Oldman took me in, used to make me cups of tea and shit like that. He's got a real deep soul. Y'know, he permitted me to hang out with him and he's up there."
  • 1996
    Age 28
    In 1996, Neneh Cherry and Björk appeared as guests on his second album Nearly God.
    More Details Hide Details The opening number was a cover of the Siouxsie and the Banshees pre-trip-hop song "Tattoo" that had previously inspired Tricky when he forged his style. In 2001 Tricky appeared on the Thirteen Ghosts soundtrack with the song "Excess" which (briefly) features Alanis Morissette during two of the choruses. In 2002 that song also appeared on the Queen of the Damned soundtrack. By the time Pre-Millennium Tension was released, Tricky was increasingly irritated with the press, particularly articles written in The Face magazine. The Face had been an early champion of Maxinquaye, but saw Tricky as more a duo than a solo project. The Face published an article claiming that vocalist Martina Topley-Bird had to single-handedly bring up the child that Tricky had fathered. He has also been concerned with racial stereotyping of the media. In the documentary Naked & Famous he explained how photographers want him to frown angrily in photos, because that is how black artists are marketed. He points to a recent cover of The Big Issue, where he has a more ambiguous, confused look on his face, as being more how he feels. In the song "Tricky Kid" from Pre-Millennium Tension, he wrote "As long as you're humble/Let you be the king of jungle." (This lyric is a reference to Goldie and their spat over Björk.)
  • 1993
    Age 25
    So in 1993 he decided to press a few hundred vinyl copies of the song.
    More Details Hide Details He cut it directly off of the tape, so that the song is basically "just bassline and hiss". (NME 1994). Finally, a white label got him a contract with Island Records and he started to record his first solo album. Tricky left Massive Attack to release his debut album, Maxinquaye. The album was a massive success and Tricky was catapulted to international fame, something he was notably uncomfortable with. This was because the impact of his album truly set the stage for trip-hop within the United Kingdom. Tricky was able to do so much with his music by incorporating different musical genres in his sound, but ultimately making sure he made the overall product his own. In fact, the Maxinquaye album review by the Rolling Stone magazine read, "Tricky devoured everything from American hip-hop and soul to reggae and the more melancholic strains of 80s British rock." It is important to note that Tricky paid tribute to early hip-hop artists whose music was, and still is, influential in the hip-hop scene. He also incorporated commercial pop music into his music, and by combining early hip-hop and pop samples in his music, he found a way to appeal to both audiences, which rarely happens. As Hesmondhalgh and Melville wrote, "Tricky showed his debt to hip-hop aesthetics by reconstructualizing samples and slices of both the most respected black music (Public Enemy) and the tackiest pop (quoting David Cassidy’s “How Can I Be Sure?”)."
  • 1991
    Age 23
    In 1991, before the release of Massive Attack's album Blue Lines, he met Martina Topley-Bird.
    More Details Hide Details Some time later she came to his house, and mentioned to Tricky and Mark Stewart that she could sing. Martina was only fifteen years old, but her 'honey-coated vox' impressed them and they recorded a song called "Aftermath" (though The Face '95 mentions that the first song they recorded together was called "Shoebox"). Tricky showed "Aftermath" to Massive Attack, but they were not interested.
  • 1987
    Age 19
    Eventually he met DJ Milo and hung out with a sound system called The Wild Bunch, which by 1987 evolved into Massive Attack.
    More Details Hide Details He received the nickname 'Tricky Kid' and at 18 he became a member of the Fresh 4, a rap group built from The Wild Bunch. He also rapped on Massive Attack's acclaimed debut album Blue Lines (1991).
  • 1968
    Age 0
    Born on January 27, 1968.
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