Green (Scritti Politti)

He was born in Cwmbran, South Wales on 22nd June 1956, Green Gartside was the founder member of Scritti Politti. He is a songwriter, vocalist and guitarist. He keeps the identity of his first name a secret having decided on Green at the age of 16. In his younger days, his surname was Strohmeyer, but when his parents separated he was able to adopt his step-father's surname of Gartside. He attended Leeds Art School, and studied the philosophy of art history. During his days at Art School, Green lived in a squat, read a lot of philosophy and went to gigs every night. It was then that he formed Scritti Politti, a punk-rock band. The group disbanded having released only two albums and a handful of singles. Green later turned away from punk rock. He was lured by the appeal of pop music, particularly black pop music - his influences varied from musicians and bands such as the Beatles, Elvis, Little Richard, Chic and the Jacksons. Green later met New Yorkers David Gamson and Fred Maher and formed the band Scritti Politti. The band became established in the pop world, which resulted in the release of two albums and some hit singles. For the first of the two albums, 'Cupid & Psyche 85', Green paid for all of the studio time, musicians, producers and managers from his advance on royalties from Virgin records. The first advance, to cover the singles that culminated in the album, was half a million dollars. Green became established as an eighties pin-up icon. He does not read or write music - his tunes come first - composed on his guitar guitar and the words come last. Green's lyrics are an important part of his work. Green is also interested in law and once studied to be a lawyer. Over the years he has written for and sung with numerable artist including the Eurythimics, Chaka Khan and Heaven 17. In 1988, Scritti Politti dropped his surname to become just Green. Between 1991 and 1997, he withdrew from public view and returned to Wales.

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