b. Zoe Pollock, Peckham, London, England. Zoe made a huge impact in 1991 with the release of her debut single, "Sunshine On A Rainy Day", a perfect Europop cover version that went to number 4 in the UK charts. It had originally been released a year earlier when it reached the Top 60. However, subsequent efforts "Lightning" and "Holy Days" fared poorly. When her solo debut also flopped, she found herself in conflict with her label bosses over the extensive personal appearances she was required to perform at tawdry discos throughout Europe, and the relationship almost collapsed. Pollock had joined her first band, the soul outfit Cacique, after leaving stage school aged 16. She eventually regrouped in 1995 and began working on new tracks with her partner Youth, whom she first met while auditioning for Brilliant at his Butterfly Studios in Brixton. When she presented these to her record company M&G Records, new A&R director Jack Steven was impressed, and arranged for a concurrent US release of the album by RCA Records. Most of the instruments on Hammer were played by Youth, though the duo's emotional relationship had sundered during the sessions - leaving Youth doubtlessly wondering at whom some of the more pointed lyrics were aimed. Rather than the slightly sickly pop of her debut, Hammer comprised a number of bittersweet lyrics and harsh vignettes, typified by "Love Is The Beast" and the title track. Zoe's interest in the ethnic music of Ireland and India was also well represented in the Buddhist mantra "R.A.M" and "Down The Mountain". "The Lion Roars", meanwhile, was written in tandem with Anthony Thistlewaite, formerly of the Waterboys, and co-produced by revered Irish producer Donal Lunny in Dublin with Davy Spillane contributing uilleann pipes.
Meanwhile Zoë had embarked on a world of new opportunity, living in India, Sicily, Ibiza, Brazil and the USA, becoming a talented sculptor and potter and studying herbal medicine and yoga – all the while continuing to write music and collaborating with other artists. Under the alias Hephzibah Broom, she released an EP on the Manchester underground folk label Red Deer Records.
The original free spirit, Zoë is now back in the UK, happily rooted near Land’s End in wild west Cornwall in a windswept cottage by the sea.
In 2008, Zoë finally reclaimed her landmark song. Recorded in the Chyglidden studio of Irish sculptor Tim Shaw near the small Cornish village of Mabe, the single features the same four-piece lineup as the ensuing album – Zoë, Sarah, Tiffany and Jarvis, all of whom also appear on the video version of the song, which was filmed by Stephen Jarvis in and around Falmouth, on the Cornish coast.
|Zoë||Scarlet Red And Blue (Album)||Polydor, M&G (2)||UK & Europe||1991||Sell This Version|
|Zoë||Hammer (Album)||BMG||Europe||1996||Sell This Version|
Singles & EPs
|Zoë||Sunshine On A Rainy Day (Single, Maxi)||M&G (2), Polydor, WAU! Mr. Modo Recordings||France||1990||Sell This Version|
|Zoë||Lightning (Maxi, Single)||M&G (2), M&G (2)||UK||1991||Sell This Version|
|PROMO-3||Zoe*||Scarlet Red & Blue (12", Promo)||Not On Label||PROMO-3||UK||1991||Sell This Version|
|Zoë||Holy Days (Maxi, Single)||M&G (2)||Germany||1992||Sell This Version|
|PROMO-2||Zoe*||Red Dublands I & ll (12")||Not On Label||PROMO-2||UK||1992||Sell This Version|
|Zoë||Hammer (Single, Maxi)||Wired Recordings||Australia||1996||Sell This Version|
|ZOE 001||Zoë||Hammer Sampler (CD, Promo, Smplr)||BMG||ZOE 001||UK||1996||Sell This Version|