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Jonathan King
Born Kenneth George King
December 6, 1944(1944-12-06)
London, England
Nationality British
Education M.A. (Cantab)
Alma mater University of Cambridge
Occupation Record producer, impresario, singer, songwriter
Years active Since 1965
Website
www.kingofhits.com

Jonathan King (born Kenneth George King, December 6, 1944) is an English singer, songwriter, impresario, and record producer.[1] He first came to prominence in 1965 as an undergraduate at the University of Cambridge, when he wrote and sang "Everyone's Gone to the Moon," which reached the top five in the UK singles chart that year, and became an international bestseller.[2] He went on to become a media entrepreneur, discovering and producing material for a number of artists, including Genesis, whom he signed up in 1967, giving them their name and producing their first album, From Genesis to Revelation, though it was a flop at the time because shops placed it in the religious music sections.[3]

King was sentenced to seven years in prison in November 2001 after being convicted of sexually assaulting five teenage boys, aged 14 to 16, between 1983 and 1989.[4] He was refused permission to appeal in January 2003 by the Court of Appeal in London,[5] and was released on parole in March 2005. His first application to have his case examined by the European Court of Human Rights was rejected, but it was reported in February 2008 that the court had agreed to look at a new application.[6]

Contents

Early life and education

Born in London to an American father and English mother, King was educated at Charterhouse School and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he was awarded an M.A. in English literature.

Career

1960s and 1970s

As an undergraduate, he wrote and sang his first hit, "Everyone's Gone to the Moon", in 1965 which reached number four in the UK singles chart, number five in the New Musical Express chart, [7] and number one on the pirate radio charts.[8]The song was performed by Marlene Dietrich, Nina Simone and others. Before graduating, he wrote and produced further hits such as "It's Good News Week" by Hedgehoppers Anonymous and later "Johnny Reggae" by The Piglets, and also discovered, named and produced Genesis, whose founding members had also been at Charterhouse and whom he named to commemorate the start of his production career.[9][10][11] Soon after graduating, his Saturday evening ITV series Good Evening; I'm Jonathan King, was broadcast nationally for six months.[12]

Under various different names he performed and produced a large number of songs. Among these were "Let It All Hang Out" (a cover of the 1967 track by The Hombres), "It Only Takes A Minute" (a cover of the Tavares track), "Sugar, Sugar", "Loop di Love", "Hooked on a Feeling" (a cover of the track by B J Thomas), "Lazybones", "It's The Same Old Song" (originally by The Four Tops) and "The Sun Has Got His Hat On". He produced such hits as "Leap Up And Down Wave Your Knickers In The Air" for St Cecilia and also the Bay City Rollers; singing backing vocals on their first hit, "Keep on Dancing". He was one of the investors of the London production of the play The Rocky Horror Show and recorded the original cast album.

His own record label, UK Records had dozens of hits with artistes such as 10cc, whom he also named,[13] Terry Dactyl and the Dinosaurs "Seaside Shuffle", Roy C "Shotgun Wedding", Carl Malcolm with "Fattie Bum Bum", The First Class with "Beach Baby", Lobo "Baby I'd Love You To Want Me", and many others, sometimes three or four on the charts at the same time. King frequently performed under pseudonyms such as "Shag", "Sakkarin", "Bubblerock", "100 Ton and a Feather" and "Nemo", although, in 1975, a rendition under his own name of "Una Paloma Blanca" was named Record of the Year at the Ivor Novello Awards.[14]

In April 1978, standing under his real name (Kenneth George King) as a Royalist candidate he polled 2,350 votes (5.3%) in the Epsom and Ewell by-election.[15]

1980s and 1990s

King moved on from the music industry in the 1980s, to further his involvement in television and radio. He presented a daily talk show on New York's WMCA radio from 10-12 weekday mornings throughout 1980 and 1981 and regularly reported from the US on Top of the Pops.[12] A spinoff series, Entertainment USA, was very successful on BBC Two, getting over 9 million viewers. He also created the Youth TV show No Limits which topped the BBC ratings.[12] King wrote a page in The Sun for eight years called 'Bizarre USA' and his criticism of Band Aid and Live Aid provoked 18,500 letters in one day. He wrote regular features in many other newspapers and magazines. King also completed two published novels, Bible Two and The Booker Prize Winner.[12] He continued some music projects, including the bizarre supergroup project "Gogmagog" with ex members of Iron Maiden, Def Leppard, Whitesnake and other classic rock bands.[16]

In 1987, he accused the Pet Shop Boys of plagiarising the melody of Cat Stevens's 1970 song Wild World for their UK #1 single It's a Sin. King also released his own cover version of Wild World as a single, using a similar musical arrangement to It's a Sin, in an effort to demonstrate his claims. The single flopped, while Pet Shop Boys sued King, winning out-of-court damages, which they donated to charity.

King wrote and hosted the BRIT Awards for BBC Television in 1987. After 1989's uninspired Samantha Fox/Mick Fleetwood production, he took over and wrote and produced them from 1990-1992.[12] He produced A Song For Europe, the BBC quest for a Eurovision Song Contest winner.[12] The 1996 entrant by Gina G, "Ooh Aah... Just A Little Bit", went to number one in the UK Singles Chart, and the 1997 entry by Katrina and the Waves', "Love Shine a Light", won the contest. [17] He is also responsible for the concept and format of the Record of the Year shows on British television, regularly shown in December, which continue online.[11] At the end of the Thatcher government, he released "We Can't Let Maggie Go"; it did not chart.

In 1993, he founded The Tip Sheet, a music weekly publication, which also continues online as a message board discussing and promoting unknown and unsigned musical acts.[11] In 1995/1996 he hosted the 10-12 daily show on Talk Radio in the UK, now TalkSport. In 1997 he was awarded the BPI Man Of The Year Award in a ceremony at the Grosvenor House Hotel with a message of support from the then Prime Minister, Tony Blair for his "important contribution to one of this country’s great success stories."[18]

King was also an early fan of the Harry Potter books, releasing a tribute CD in 1999.[19]

2000s

In November 2000, King was charged with sexual offences dating back to the early 1970s. After the case attracted publicity, several more men came forward with complaints, and further charges were laid. Following a trial in September 2001, he was convicted and received a seven-year prison sentence for four indecent assaults against 14 and 15 year old boys, and two offences of buggery and attempted buggery against two boys of 14 committed between 1983 and 1989.[20] He was refused permission to appeal in January 2003 by the Court of Appeal in London,[5] and was released on parole in March 2005. As of February 2008, a further appeal was reported to be before the European Court of Human Rights.[6]

On his release he stated his intention to return to the music and entertainment industries.[21]

King's involvement with prison and justice reform continued; in June 2006 he addressed an audience in The House Of Commons alongside Jonathan Aitken and spoke at length on the need for reform of the system, an appearance covered at length in The Times on June 27th.[22] In 2007 he released a collection of mainly new songs, entitled Earth to King. One of these attracted criticism in July 2007, because it was seen as defending the world's most prolific serial killer Dr. Harold Shipman.[23]

In May 2008, he released a 96 minute film called "Vile Pervert: The Musical," which includes 21 characters all portrayed by King. Described as a 'bizarre home-made film', and available for free download on the internet, the film features full-frontal nudity from King and comprises many pieces to camera dressed in various outfits while caricaturing the Police, the media, the PR industry, the legal system and his accusers. He also sings many of his own compositions during the film.[24]

In December 2009 he published his autobiography, 65 My Life So Far.[25]

References

  1. ^ Eder, Bruce. “Jonathan_King” at allmusic.com, 2009 Macrovision Corp, 2009, accessed June 18, 2009
  2. ^ Warwick, Neil; Kutner, Jon; Brown, Tony. The complete book of the British charts: singles & albums. Omnibus Press, 2004, p. 602; for its becoming an international bestseller, see Nite, Norm N. Rock On. Crowell 1978, p. 262.
  3. ^ Welch, Chris. The complete guide to the music of Genesis. Omnibus Press, 1995, pp. 1–3; Ronson, Jon, The fall of a pop impresario, The Guardian, December 1, 2001.
  4. ^ Jonathan King jailed for child sex abuse, The Guardian, November 21, 2001; Barber, Lynn. The King and I, The Observer, October 20, 2002.
  5. ^ a b King loses appeal bid, BBC News, January 24, 2003.
  6. ^ a b Silver, James. Convicted Sex Pervert Jonathan King Protests His Innocence, Sky News, February 27, 2008; also see Jonathan King wins right to appeal to Europe over his convictions for sexual assaults on teenage boys, Daily Mail, November 10, 2007.
  7. ^ http://www.skidmore.edu/~gthompso/britrock/NME/nme6508.html
  8. ^ http://www.radiolondon.co.uk/rl/scrap60/fabforty/65fabs/aug65/fab150865/fab150865.html
  9. ^ Eder, Bruce. (©2009). "Genesis". Allmusic: Macrovision Corp.. http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=11:fiftxqe5ldke~T1. Retrieved 18 June 2009. 
  10. ^ Metzer, Greg (2008). “Rock Band Name Origins: The Stories Of 240 Groups And Performers”. McFarland & Company. ISBN 0-7864-3818-5. Accessed as: Cohen,Claire. “The Boll Weevils, the Beatals, The Arkansas Rollers - Now that's what I call music”. Daily Mail, 4 June 2009. Retrieved on 18 June 2009
  11. ^ a b c King, Jonathan (16 January 2006). "A brief synopsis of JK’s career". King_of_Hits / Biography. http://www.kingofhits.co.uk/content/view/6/24/. Retrieved 18 June 2009. 
  12. ^ a b c d e f "Jonathan King (IV)". IMDB.com: IMDB. 10.2006. http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0454909/. Retrieved 18 June 2009. 
  13. ^ Dolgins, Adam (1998). "10cc". Rock Names: From ABBA to ZZ Top (Secaucus, NJ: Carol Publishing): pp. 254–255. ISBN 0-8065-2046-9. http://www.snopes.com/music/artists/10cc.asp. Retrieved 10 August 2007. 
  14. ^ http://www.songfacts.com/detail.php?id=11790
  15. ^ Malcolm Farnsworth. "U.K. Political Quiz" (Questions). http://australianpolitics.com/about. http://australianpolitics.com/uk/quiz.shtml. Retrieved 18 June 2009.. "Q: 6. j). Which broadcaster polled 5.3% of the vote as a royalist candidate (1978)? A: Jonathan King. Standing under his real name (Kenneth George King) he polled 2,350 votes in the Epsom and Ewell by-election on 27 April 1978." 
  16. ^ Munro, Eden (26 March 2009). "Old Sounds: GOGMAGOG" (26 March 2009). http://www.vueweekly.com/about/. http://www.vueweekly.com/article.php?id=11450. Retrieved 18 June 2009. 
  17. ^ O'Connor, John Kennedy. The Eurovision Song Contest — The Official History. Carlton Books, UK. 2007 ISBN 978-1-84442-994-3
  18. ^ Rosenbaum, Danny. "Tony Blair Archive from October 1997" (© 2002-2009). Tony Blair News and Articles (http://www.biogs.com/privacypolicy.html). http://www.biogs.com/blair/blair7.html. Retrieved 18 June 2009. "“From the Independent, 24 October 1997: "Ian Burrell reveals that Tony Blair is a secret fan of Jonathan King, the man who brought the world 'Una Paloma Blanca'. "" 
  19. ^ King, Jonathan. "Harry, Ron, Hermione and the Wizards" (Audio CD). 27 Nov 1999 (amazon.co.uk: UK Records). ISSN ASIN_B00003G1GJ. http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00003G1GJ. Retrieved 18 June 2009. "Jonathan King joins the Harry Potter craze with this unoffical tribute album" 
  20. ^ Jonathan King jailed for child sex abuse, The Guardian, November 21, 2001; Barber, Lynn. The King and I, The Observer, October 20, 2002.
  21. ^ "Jonathan King freed from prison" (03.29.2005). http://www.bbc.co.uk/info/: BBC News. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/4388913.stm. Retrieved 18 June 2009. "Like most people, I had the view that once the prison gate slams shut, hell takes place, but the reality couldn't be further from the truth." 
  22. ^ http://en.allexperts.com/e/j/jo/jonathan_king.htm
  23. ^ "Families' anger over Shipman song". BBC News. 12 July 2007. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/manchester/6896298.stm. 
  24. ^ "Jonathan King makes Vile Pervert: The Musical". 15 May 2008. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/1958447/Jonathan-King-makes-Vile-Pervert-The-Musical.html. 
  25. ^ 65 My Life So Far, website by Jonathan King, accessed February 26, 2010.

External links


Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Jonathan King (born Kenneth George King, 6 December 1944, London, England) is a British singer, songwriter, TV personality, impresario, and pop music producer.

Sourced

Song: Everyone's gone to the Moon

  • A church full of singing, out of tune
    Everyone's gone to the moon
  • You see a long time ago life had begun
    Everyone went to the sun

External links

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