Adrian Thaws, better known as Tricky, grew up in the Knowle West council estate (projects) in Bristol, UK, the topic of his latest full-length. Tricky became one of the biggest “trip-hop” icons to emerge from the UK, channeling his own mixed heritage to bridge white and black Britain, particularly in his fusion of rock and hip-hop, high art and pop culture. Although Tricky has spent a long time in the United States (most recently in Los Angeles), the accomplished actor, musician, and producer with over 7 albums under his belt has still not forgotten where he comes from.
“Knowle West is where I was born. It’s a white ghetto. I didn’t know what racism was until I left. My family’s mixed race, so we don’t see color. I grew up on a council estate more as a white kid, but with Jamaican roots. But all of us there had something in common…we were poor. I realized that I’d never written anything for these kind of people.”
Knowle West Boy is the album that sums up everything that Tricky has accomplished since his 1995 Maxinquaye debut. From the sardonic bar-room blues of “Puppy Toy” to the haunting quasi-classicism of “Joseph”; the twisted Specials-worshipping punk of “Council Estate” to the bereft torchery of “Past Mistake”; from the Roxy Music’s “The Bogus Man”-at-the-dancehall art-stomp of “Bacative” to the poignant autobiographical tale of teen pregnancy that is “School Gates,” Knowle West Boy sees our misunderstood hero reaching into the post-punk, Two-Tone, reggae, hip hop and pure pop he grew up adoring, twisting it all into surreal Tricky shapes. Underpinning it all is a theme of rediscovery: the American exile rediscovering his love of dear old Blighty; the veteran rediscovering the joy of making music; the experienced player rediscovering the struggle of being Knowle West’s very own Tricky Kid, the weird but defiant teen outsider who knew that with enough lust for life you could become a superstar. On Knowle West Boy, Tricky still sounds like no-one else on earth.
9/3 – Late Show with David Letterman
9/4 – The Fillmore At Irving Plaza – New York, NY
9/5 – The Trocadero – Philadelphia, PA
9/6 – 9:30 Club – Washington, DC
9/8 – House Of Blues – Chicago, IL
9/9 – Phoenix – Toronto, ONT
9/11 – House Of Blues – Anaheim, CA
9/12 – Henry Fonda Theatre – Los Angeles, CA
9/14 – The Independent – San Francisco, CA
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