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|Born, Alexandria Thom, 11 August 1981, Banff, Scotland. Singer-songwriter Thom reached the top of the UK charts in summer 2006 with the simple but infectious "I Wish I Was A Punk Rocker (With Flowers In My Hair)". Tellingly, it was her PR company's use of the Internet and "viral marketing" to promote her music which generated the column inches rather than her conventional pop rock material, which is similar in tone to fellow Scottish artist KT Tunstall.|
Thom played in a number of local bands as a teenager before moving to Liverpool to attend the Institute of Performing Arts. During her time at the college she sang with a gospel choir and worked with other aspiring musicians in a seven-piece funk band. After returning to Scotland, she began recording demos of her own material while paying the rent as a session vocalist. She was signed to the independently financed Viking Legacy label and also landed a publishing deal with Windswept Pacific Music. Her debut single, "I Wish I Was A Punk Rocker", charted at the lower end of the UK listings at the end of 2005, thanks in no small part to the enthusiastic support of veteran radio disc jockey Johnnie Walker.
Between February and March, Thom played a series of webcasts from her new residence, a basement in Tooting, London. By the end of the 21-night run, which featured Thom and her live band playing a mixture of original material and covers, the "shows" were attracting web audiences in the region of 50,000. The story surrounding Thom's webcasting exploits quickly spread to the national press, and by April the artist had secured a major label recording contract with Sony Records. "I Wish I Was A Punk Rocker" was re-released (initially as a download-only single) and began racking up the sales. In June, it finally knocked US outfit Gnarls Barkley off the top of the charts after their record-breaking nine-week run. Thom's debut album, Smile ... It Confuses People, also reached the top of the UK charts. Of equal note was the amount of negative press directed at Thom, with many web commentators viewing her rise to fame as a PR stunt rather than a genuine "rags to riches" story.
1. When Horsepower Meant What It Said - Sandi Thom
2. I Wish I Was a Punk Rocker (With Flowers in My Hair)
3. Lonely Girl
4. Sunset Borderline
5. Little Remedy
7. What If I'm Right
9. Human Jukebox