Biography by Corey Apar
As the frontman for San Francisco-based rock outfit Highwater Rising, singer/songwriter Aidan Hawken found many of his band's songs appearing on various hit TV shows over the years, including The OC, Sex and the City, Boston Public, and One Tree Hill. A Bay Area native, Hawken relocated to Los Angeles in spring 2005. That same year, he issued his first solo effort, Pillows & Records, on Box 29 Records. Comparable to Elliott Smith, Hawken enlisted various musician friends to help with the album, including guitarist Chuck Prophet.
Meaghan Smith was coming off her 2011 Juno Award win for Best New Artist. It was for her critically acclaimed album The Cricket’s Orchestra, which had been lauded for its honest, insightful songwriting and vintage sound. Despite all this, Meaghan wanted to take a chance. She knew that she wanted to make an entirely different album; a pop record with big choruses and ambitious production – it was the best way for her to connect with more people than she ever had in the past. This meant moving outside of her comfort zone and working with new collaborators on songwriting and production. This was not going to be easy. Meaghan’s recent attempts at working with co-writers hadn’t been productive, so she wasn’t optimistic that someone else would be able to help her capture what was in her soul and turn it into big, lush pop songs.
Ironically, given their obsession with America's favorite pastime, the Outfield got their start in London's East End. Playing under the name the Baseball Boys, the trio of bassist/singer Tony Lewis, guitarist/keyboardist John Spinks, and drummer Alan Jackman played around London and recorded some early demos, attracting the attention of Columbia/CBS Records. They were signed shortly thereafter and began working on their debut album, Play Deep, which was released in 1985. The album was a smash success, going triple platinum, reaching number nine on the album charts, and producing their biggest song, "Your Love," which was a Top Ten hit. To support the album, they launched an international tour opening for Journey and Starship. They began recording their second album in 1986 and in 1987 issued Bangin'.