Sophie Ballantine Hawkins, 1 November 1966, Manhattan, New York, USA. Born of liberal, wealthy East Manhattan parents (her father a lawyer, her mother British writer Joan Winthrop), Hawkins family background also boasted an aunt, Linda, who had been masseuse to Paul Simon. By the time she moved with Aunt Linda to the arty environs of West Greenwich, she had already began to develop her musical talent, taking drum lessons at an East Harlem jazz school from the age of nine. Her teens were spent studying New York percussionist Gordy Ryan (she also shared a room with him at the age of 14). By her late teens Hawkins and Ryan also shared a stage together, touring a show around New York State. In the meantime she had started to write her own material, and by the age of 20 had enough to approach prospective record companies. Between bar-tending stints she spent two months rehearsing with Bryan Ferry (who eventually sacked her before taking her on tour), then met Marc...
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