On August 15th 2004, Todd Sharpville casually strolled out onto the stage as the opening act for Pink at the arena in Colmar, France and delivered an impassioned and rocking set with his band to 10,000 eager music fans. Always one to mock his own aristocratic roots, the crowd had just been treated to a ""Monty Python'esque"" mini-comedy movie on the plasma screens featuring Todd playing poker (& sharing a bottle of bourbon) with Queen Elizabeth II (AKA pop icon, Leo Sayer playing the Queen in drag...). Moments into the show, he was lying down next to the drum riser with a young naked woman feeding him grapes mid guitar solo. He proceeded to belt out a series of highly charged self-penned anthems, whilst dominating the stage with abandoned ease & confidence. The show concluded as Todd passed his guitar to a tech whilst proclaiming ""gotta go, my lift's arrived!"" On cue, a large glossy motorcycle glides across the stage, ridden by a Queen Liz II lookalike (with ermin robes & crown to boot); Todd hops on the back, salutes the crowd, and is promptly driven off stage by her Majesty as the band rocks on! This was the opening night of a European tour with Pink, and I wondered what she'd make of her new support act... Indeed, as he left the stage to tumultous applause, I chuckled with the knowledge that this was in fact his first performance after having been released from a month's stay in a mental hospital...
Yes, Todd had been suffering from reactive depresssion due to the collapse of his marriage, and this performance was the first step towards getting back on his feet & getting back in touch with what he does best. The breakdown also marked the beginning of a new chapter for Todd artistically, as he has since deviated from his bluesy roots and has ventured out into a much broader singer/songwriter territory. After a stint of collaborating with The Strokes guitarist's dad, Albert Hammond snr (Los Angeles's best known song-writer), Todd is now set to carve out a name for himself as a heavyweight writer & lyricist. Those of you familiar with the international blues scene already know him as the young guitar slinger with heaps of attitude. However, since the hospital saga, Todd has chosen to express his innermost thoughts & feelings by means of his new studio album ""Diary Of A Drowning Man"" which exposes all of the cross-genre musical influences that have affected him. The album therefore exudes an eclectic blend of cross-styles that can best be described as Todd Sharpville in the raw, pure & simple. Recorded in Denmark at Lundgaard Studios (currently one of the top five studios in Europe), and co-produced with Dave Hyatt (of Stone Roses/Ian Brown fame) Todd offers up a musical version of the roller-coaster ride that helped bring him back to sanity:
- Dragan Nikitovic 2006
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