TONY WATKINS - BIOGRAPHY

Tony Watkins (Singer/Songwriter) hails from Co.Tyrone, N.Ireland and spent most of his youth in the town of Dungannon and farmlands of Carrickmore. He has lived in a number of different locations since leaving Ireland at the age of 18yrs. These include Stirling in Scotland, Kansas in the USA, London and Moscow.

He began writing poetry at an early age but developed this into songwriting after learning to play the guitar shortly after leaving university.

He recorded his first album "Life Goes On following the death of a close friend - Christina – who died from cancer at the age of 27.

From that point onwards, he sought new challenges from music and life in general and a chance visit to Moscow in 1995 resulted in a new album "Dancing in Red Square" and the decision to take up residency in Russia on a more permanent basis.

…Shortly after his arrival he established a rock n roll band ‘Smokebreakers’ (www.smokebreakers.com) completed 5 more albums, several video-clips, Russian tours, several corporate music projects and a musical. He has also been heavily involved in writing creative for several TV Commercials for top International fmcg brands.

From 2000 – 2005 Tony and his group were actively touring Russia – and other parts of CIS and Europe – including Germany and Denmark. The group always play ‘live’ and their style has evolved over time with covers of hits from over 50 years of rock n roll and original songs combined with humour and interaction with audiences – who can often be invited on stage to perform with the group – singing, dancing or playing.

2009 heralded a new era for Tony and the group with release of his first book ‘Loves Roads’ by UK Publishing House ‘Guild Book Publishing’ and simultaneously a ‘Loves Roads’ album with songs written and performed by Tony dedicated to the chapters in the book. The Loves Roads story is set in Moscow with flashbacks to New York and N.Ireland as we follow one man’s journey following the tragic loss of his girlfriend in New York 9/11. This unique concept allows the reader to read the story and then listen to the song related to the particular chapters.

The album was arranged and recorded in Moscow under the stewardship of Natan Morgunov – but was mastered in Munich’s MSM Studios in Germany. Igor Narkhov – lead guitarist with the Smokebreakers also features heavily on the album.

A sequel to the first book with similar music concept is already in process and should be completed in 2010.
In February a new song written by Tony dedicated to the computer game ‘Warhammer Online’ (www.WAR-RUSSIA.ru) was produced - the night before battle between the armies of good (Empire) and evil (Chaos). The song ‘This Night’ is featured on a YouTube video clip

In the summer of 2009 Tony – for the first time – took his band and show program for a tour in Ireland – at the same time promoting the Loves Roads project. The main program for the tour was the show ’50 Years of Rock n Roll’ - the story of Rock music through video, spoken word and, of course, the music itself.

A lot of people have helped to bring Loves Roads to life in the past few years and I would particularly like to thank the following :
Natan Morgunov – producer and arrangements
Igor Narkhov – guitar
Svetlana Morgunova – backing vocals
MSM Studios, Munich for mastering
Oxana Rastegaeva: designer for the album and website designs

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