Liam Howlett from the Prodigy
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Liam Howlett biography

Full name: Liam Paul Paris Howlett
Born: August 21, 1971
From: Essex, United Kingdom
Currently lives at: Dunmow, Essex, United Kingdom
Role: The founder, writer, mixer, producer (The soul of the Prodigy)

Liam Howlett (born on August 21, 1971) is from Cressing in Essex. He's a classically trained pianist and DJ. His father had made him take up classical piano lessons since the age of 13 (but he still can't read notes). His very first record was Ska's Greatest Hits, containing tracks from The Selector and The Specials. When he went to school he learnt break-dancing and danced a lot with his crew Pure City Breakers. He is the man behind the Prodigy. He is a musical genius. He writes, produces, mixes, performs and basically just does it all for the Prodigy. His history includes DJ-ing for a hip hop act Cut 2 Kill which he became discriminated with, because he is white and there before was not as accepted as the others. From this he purchased a keyboard with the intention of making a few songs for fun.

The name of the band comes from the first synthesizer Liam purchased used in his early tracks. The synthesizer was called a the Moog Prodigy (Liam has said that's not the full story of it. He has also given some other reasons to choose that name but it's clear that he spotted it from that synth). Incidentally MOOG have now gone bust (more info can be found from equipment page!). After checking out a rave for the first time in 1989, at the age of 17, Liam started a fresh as a rave DJ at The Barn in Braintree. It was there he met Keith and Leeroy, and the rest is history!

On weekends, he went to all the raves and when the clubs closed down in the early morning those ravers went on to party on the beach while Liam played a compilation of the latest rave tracks out of a van. One day, Keith Flint approached him and asked whether Liam could do some mixtapes for him. When Liam had done the mixes he would pass it to Keith. One night, when Keith and Leeroy Thornhill were returning from a rave, they flipped Liam’s tape onto side B (which was titled "the prodigy" in reference to the Moog synthesizer used) to find some of Liam's own tracks on it and got completely hooked. They decided to approach Liam and ask him if he wanted to play on stage with Keith and Leeroy dancing at the front of the stage. Liam agreed, and The Prodigy was born.

The first demo that Liam produced featured tracks What Evil Lurks, We Gonna Rock, Android, Everybody In The Place, Charly (Original), Spacehopper, Come Correct, Demons, Drumscape. Liam Howlett signed to leading UK rave label XL Recordings on the strength of several tracks played to XL boss Nick Halkes and in 1991 the debut Prodigy single What Evil Lurks' was released. This included an early version of 'Everybody In The Place'. After this, came' Charly' and the rest falls into place...

He has a very positive attitude, not really care what people say about his music and prefers if the band just remains to be called a dance group then anything else. Liam is known to be the most quiet one in the band. Except when he comes to interviews. He is always throwing in swear words somewhere. Especially when someone is complaining about his music. Nothing that anyone says will change the attitude.

Liam has towards his music and the way he makes it. He is the brain of the Prodigy. It's him who writes, produces and performs most of the music using various kinds of synthesizers. But don't be fooled by those saying he's the Prodigy - without the others, the whole Prodigy spirit would be nothing. He always works alone in his studio, he can write music only if he's on his own and no one else is around and he like to work at night (he usually starts at 10 in the evening).

He lived in Braintree for a long time (until the age of 26), but then he moved out of there setting up his studio in the Essex countryside. He also built a brand new home studio The Dirtchamber when he moved there. His old studio was called The Earthbound Studios. He also have a shared flat with Keith Flint near London clubland’s nerve centre of Hoxton Square.

He used to date a girl called Angela Potter for years. Her name has had mentioned in the press a few times. On 6 June 2002 he married All Saints' Natalie Appleton The couple were romantically linked since 2000 summer and in January 2001, at the World Sports Awards, Natalie was spotted wearing a tee shirt with the legend: "I Love Liam.'' And finally in April 2001 the press reported that they are engaged to be married next year. Their son, Ace Billy, was born on 2 March 2004. He is also a stepfather of Rachel Appleton. Brother-in-law of Nicole Appleton, Liam Gallagher and Noel Gallagher from the Oasis.

Facts and trivia

He loves fast cars – among others, he had a Ford Cortina, a Mercedes Sport and an AC Cobra. His favorite car is the Ferrari F40. Maybe the most expensive car that he owns is a McLaren Mercedes F1 supercar, one of the 106 ever manufactured. He also used to clean cars with Empirion member Jamie at the garage of Jamie’s brother. They are still friends and frighten skiers on snowboarding trips.

He's a big fan of horror films. Many of his tracks contain samples from films such as "Poltergeist III" (Crazy Man) and "The Shining"(The Heat The Energy) (notice all samples that he has used, check the samples page). He has a strange collection of horror film memorabelia in his house, and even a 3' (90 cm.) green rat standing up in his sitting room!. And rumors tell at he even has a 6-foot sword hanging on the wall, and a full-size coffin (inspired by a scene in the film Poltergeist), which is actually his drink cabinet. He also has a gold fish Harry Potter.

In 1997 Select listed the 20 most important people in the world. Liam Howlett was the 2nd. Beck was listed as the most important people.

His favorite band is Rage Against The Machine ("Any Rage Against The Machine album. They're my favorite band. " - ATN). Music he likes is like Tom Morello of RATM ("Liam is a big fan of Tom's guitar style and the noises that he comes up with" - NME), John Lydon ("I'm a fan of Lydon" - ATN), Renegade Soundwave, Meat Beat Manifesto, Sex Pistols, Joey Beltram, the ska sounds of the Beat, the Specials, and the Selector, the older stuff of Apollo 440 (now they sampling  too much other bands), but for example he is NOT a fan of Kula Shaker, despite their collaboration ("To be honest, I'm not really a fan of Kula Shaker. I've got to be honest. I think that I'm not really into what they do. " - ATN). And he likes of coz hip hop (espessially the old school stuff).

 

KROQ Weenie Roast Survey filled out by Liam, 06/1998
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Best band to do shots of tequila with... The Cannonballz
Best band to eat tons of burritos with... The Lardy Jakes
Best band to break a pinata with... what the fuck?
Best band to get arrested in TJ with... The Tarporlins
Record listened to most while on tour... "Liquid Swords", Genius
Best album of '98 (so far)... "Mezzanine", Massive Attack
Favorite TV show... Italian Housewives on Bravo Channel
Favorite Movie... Casino
Favorite Movie Star... Gary Oldman
Favorite Food... cooked, not burnt
Favorite Band... The Cannonballz (blowing up in 1999!)

 

Guardian Unlimited - Brittish young millionares
Sunday March 12, 2000

23. Liam Howlett, 28 Singer/songwriter, the Prodigy. £6 million. Howlett, as the creative force behind dance act the Prodigy, has netted an estimated £6m from the band's worldwide sales. He receives a larger proportion of the sale value than the rest of the band and also reaps publishing royalties. Historically, the band's most lucrative deal came from an arrangement with the Allied Domecq-owned drinks brand Ballantine, which sponsored the band's tour from 1996 to spring 1998. The deal, it transpires, was worth less than the £3m initially reported, and is partly why Howlett's value has been reduced. His income has not been helped by the Prodigy's Bulgarian tour, which saw little profit and poor sales for his own solo remix collection, The Dirt Chamber Sessions.

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