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Thom York

Singer and songwriter Thom Yorke is celebrating his birthday today! Here are some interesting facts about him.

(Photo: Jim Dyson)

1. He was born in Northamptonshire, England on October 7, 1968.

2. As a child his family lived in Scotland and when he was 7 they moved to Oxfordshire in England.

3. York's father was a nuclear physicist and also an amateur boxer.

4. He was born paralyzed in his left eye. By the age of 5, he had undergone five surgeries, the last of which left him with a drooping eyelid.

5. He got his first guitar at age 7.

6. He was very influenced by Brian May and already at the age of 10 built a guitar for himself, similar to Brian May's "Red Special" guitar.

7. Yorke also mentioned John Lennon and "The Plastic Ono Band" as a musical influence on him.

8. He became a vegetarian following The Smiths' "Meat Is Murder" album.

9. Already at the age of 11 he formed his first band, "Headless Chickens", and wrote his first song.

10. York's first band with Colin Greenwood was called "TNT".

11. He met Colin's brother Johnny Greenwood and the other members of "Radiohead" at the "Abingdon" boys' school.


12. He said that the reason he connected with them in the first place, was the fact that everyone had an interest in the same musical styles and among other things loved "Joy Division".

13. In 1986 he formed the band "On a Friday" with them, named after the only day of the week when they could have rehearsals.

14. In a short time the band recorded their first demo and they received an offer for a recording contract from "Island Records".

15. At the same time, the band members decided that they wanted to finish their studies at the university first, so they took a break from the band's affairs until graduation and returned to activity only in 1991.

16. While in college Thom was also part of a techno band called "Flickernoise" and also worked as a DJ.

17. Upon returning to activity, "On a Friday" changed their name to "Radiohead" and signed a recording contract with "Parlophone".

18. In 1992 the band released their first hit, "Creep", which made them very famous.

19. Yorke wrote the hit about an unrequited love he had while in college.

20. The Israeli audience discovered the band in real-time when the song "Creep" was used for a "Castro" commercial that aired on Israeli Channel 2.

21. The person who sang the song in that commercial was Jeremy Kaplan, due to copyright issues and the desire to save costs.

22. York admitted that the huge success of the debut album, "Pablo Honey", caused him unbridled behavior.

23. In 1993, Yorke and "Radiohead" came to Israel for three performances at the mythical "Roxanne" Club. Yorke returned with the band to Israel shortly afterward in 1995, for a performance at the Ramat Gan Stadium, in 2000 for three more performances, and another mythological performance at the Yarkon Park held in 2017.

24. He was quoted saying that the song "High and Dry" from the album "The Bends" is not bad, but a very bad one!

25. The number 1426148550 that appears on the cover of the "EP Airbag" is the pager number of Yorke.

26. York was greatly influenced by Jeff Buckley. He recorded the song "Fake Plastic" Trees after attending his show. He immediately ran away to the studio and in two takes recorded the vocals. Immediately afterward he burst into tears.

27. He said that the band "PIXIES" is the best band in the world.

28. The song "Exit Music (For A Film") was written by Yorke after he already knew that the song was going to be part of the soundtrack of the movie "Romeo and Juliet", so he used words that matched the storyline.

29. In addition to being a singer, Yorke plays many instruments. Among others, are electric guitar, acoustic guitar, piano, bass guitar, piano, and drums.

30. In 1987, Yorke had a car accident with his girlfriend. The incident caused him a kind of phobia of vehicles, following which he wrote the following songs: "Airbag", "Killer Cars", "Stupid Car", and "The Drunkk Machine". This effect can also be seen in the video for the song "Karma Police".

(atoms.for.thom Instagram)

31. Thom Yorke was quoted as saying he regrets the inclusion of the song "Electioneering" on the album "Ok Computer".

32. He experienced a nervous breakdown after the release of the album "Ok Computer".

33. York recorded the vocals for most of the songs on the album "Ok Computer" in one take.

34. The vocals of the song "Planet Telex" were recorded by Yorke while lying on the floor, drunk.

35. Yorke does not like the sound of his voice. This is one of the reasons why in the songs "Myxomatosis" and "A Wolf At The Door" you can hear him talking and not singing.

36. Together with his band "Radiohead" he has released to date nine studio albums, six EPs, four compilation albums, and one live album.

37. In 2006 he released his first solo album, "The Eraser" which received positive reviews. Since then he has released two more albums as part of his solo career. The latest, "Anima", came out in 2019.

38. He dedicated the album "The Eraser" to his daughter Agnes and the album "Amnesiac" to his son Noah.

39. Since 2009 he has been the lead singer of the super-band "Atoms For Peace" along with bassist Flea from "Red Hot Chili Peppers" and producer Nigel Godrich who plays keyboards and guitars.

40. York is responsible, along with Stanley Donwood, for designing some of the covers of Radiohead's albums and solo albums. He uses fictitious names for this purpose such as: "The White Chocolate Farm", "Dr. Tchock", "Tchocky" and more.

41. In 2021, Yorke formed the band "The Smile" together with Johnny Greenwood and drummer Tom Skinner.

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