Maxim from the Prodigy

Maxim biography

Full name: Keith Palmer
From: Peterborough
Bord: March 21 1967
Role: MC (Master of the ceremonies)

Maxim is the oldest member of the Prodigy and his real name is actually Keith "Keeti" Palmer (don't ever call him Keith, HE HATES IT!). Maxim was born in Peterborough, the youngest of seven children, and he attended Jack Hunt secondary school in Peterborough. He enjoyed writing poetry and verse and began MC-ing around the age of 14. He gained inspiration from his ten year older MC brother, Hitman, who introduced him into the Peterborough Reggae Soundsystem Scene.

Maxim was often seen at soul all-dayers at Nottingham's Rock City. During the peak of the ska movement in the early 80s, it was not uncommon to see Maxim in Peterborough town centre with his mates, trying to look like The Specials, with the all important black-suit-and white-socks look. Also in the 80s, hip-hop took off, and Maxim, one for evolving with musical trends, became quite a fan. His jaunts around local shopping precincts in the area to do breakdancing 'battles' with 'rival crews' became part of the urban tapestry in Peterborough. This had earned him his first ever TV appearance, on the regional ITV station Anglia, in the local news programme About Anglia.

At the age of seventeen he had his first gig in Basingstoke. Ian Sherman, a fellow musician from Nottingham teamed up with Maxim and they formed Maxim and Sheik Yan Groove, where Sherman made the music and Maxim contributed with lyrics. After recording some tracks together and not getting any attention from the record industries, Maxim decided to disband and went on a three month travel throughout Europe and North Africa. Upon returning to England he moved to London to get more into the music and reggae scene of the metropol. Before joining up with Prodigy, he has worked as sound engineer on many reggae sound system festivals.

In 1990, Maxim was founded by friend Ziggy, who was managing a rave act in Essex, which needed an MC for their first live show. After an unexpectedly successful show, he was congratulated by Liam Howlett, who only had one criticism - he wanted Maxim to tone down the reggae-isms in his MCing - which Maxim did for the next show. He was planning to do just a few gigs with the band, but he later decided to stay. During a date on their first US tour, Maxim was very ill and Leeroy Thornhill had to take over MC duties for the night. Since then, Maxim has developed his own distinct MC-ing style: short snappy lines directed toward getting the crowd going. It often difficult to interpret what he is actually saying, since it is mostly encoded in 100+ decibel screams. Maxim is the band's voice. Though he performed the vocals on some recent Prodigy tracks, his real talent is shown in his way of boosting the live shows. With him, the live songs get a feel totally different from that of the album tracks.

Like Keith, Maxim is a fan of unusual dress and make-up. That's why he is very recognisable not only by his awesome MC-ing but also his bad-ass contact lenses (back cover of the Music For The Jilted Generation album, he can be seen wearing his famous cats-eye contact lenses.) and those kilts he loves to wear! In live shows he looks very scary and he try to scare people! He had started out in Prodigy with a shaved head with a small quiff at the front, giving rise to "Tin Tin" jibes from the other band members. Since then he have had many different hair styles and variations. He's a really strange figure - for example sometimes he wears a green skirt (because it's comfortable) and has gold braces over his teeth, just to mention a few of his crazes. His aim is to appear on stage as a knight in a full suit of armour and a gauntlet, so he can scare seven shades of the brown stuff out of everyone in the audience!

Maxim, according to his own words, has always been writing music. He has filled cassettes and cassettes with music, and written tons of lyrics, yet he didn’t disclose any of his works for a very long time. He has written tons of songs and lyrics, most of which have never been released. In fall 2000 he released his own hip-hop style solo album. Maxim is married and has a child called Kai, who was born in March 1999.

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