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Higgs Boson Biography

Higgs was born and raised in the small town of Bideford in North Devon, England. His parents separated when he was just 4 years old.

Higgs started playing the piano at the age of 8 and studied the instrument classically while still at school. At the age of fourteen he became a rock drummer, playing mainly original material in local bands. The most notable of these was Helter Skelter, a band managed by Will Palin, former sound engineer to David Bowie and subsequent tour manager to Chris de Burgh. Higgs says that among his favourite bands at that time were Yes, Frank Zappa, Genesis, Wishbone Ash, Led Zeppelin, The Who, and Deep Purple. The usual influences for the typical teenager musician in the 70’s.

His first introduction to contemporary jazz influenced music, music that wasn’t based on relatively simple chord structures, happened whilst at a friend’s house. The radio was playing a track by Steely Dan entitled ‘Don’t Take Me Alive’ from the album ‘Royal Scam’ (according to Higgs, still a favourite) –. Obviously some classical music and early 70’s rock had an effect on Higgs but hearing Steely Dan for the first time was clearly a profound experience. This eventually led him to less mainstream albums such as Bill Brufords ‘One of a Kind’ and great musician-technicians like Allan Holdsworth.

At the age of 21, still a drummer Higgs headed for London. It wasn't until he was asked to play in a jazz trio that his interest in the piano was rekindled and spent the next 5 years fanatically pursuing knowledge of his newfound love - Jazz. Higgs studied under Malcolm Cliff, a jazz pianist on the London circuit, and big band arranger Ian Gardner and for a short while the virtuoso jazz pianist Peter Sander.

Higgs spent a number of years playing solo modern jazz piano in clubs and restaurants in and around London while developing his own unique musical style. His early compositions drew heavily on his mid to late 70’s influences, Chic Corea, Holdsworth, Steely Dan, John McLaughlin, Brand X and even Pete Barden’s Camel.

In 1986 Higgs moved back to his native Devon to focus on more writing. Since then he has worked in a number of musical situations. He wrote and produced a demo that was immediately taken up by Elysium Records which was to involve Elton John’s producer Gus Dudgeon (‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’ ‘Captain Fantastic’etc.). Gus had agreed to produce the album, on the strength of the demo. Sadly Gus and his wife Sheila were tragically killed in a car accident.

Moving on from that experience, Higgs’ material developed in complexity. He then produced a self-named CD album which received excellent reviews from the British music press and was featured on Humphrey Littleton's "Best of Jazz on Record" show on BBC Radio 2.

The three track demo which included the tracks Penumbra, Synthetic Spring and Neptune, produced by Gareth Young, was sent to Dave Stewart (the keyboard player on Bill Brufords ‘One of a Kind’ album. Dave phoned Higgs and praised the demo to such an extent that it encouraged Higgs to carry on with the project.

The CD album Higgs released has now received high praise from Alphonse Mouzon, Tony Levin and a number of other high-ranking jazz notables.

For those of you interested in the origin of the name Higgs Boson - visit Wikipedia

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