London, England musician Alex Clare grew up listening to his father's jazz records, was drawn to blues and soul (Donny Hathaway, Stevie Wonder), and eventually drum'n'bass and U.K. garage. Though Clare took up the trumpet and drums as a youngster, he eventually placed an emphasis on guitar and songwriting, playing open mike nights with original material. A demo earned him a deal with the Island label in the U.K., and he was set up with producers Diplo and Switch, who contributed to the making of Clare's first album, The Lateness of the Hour, released in July 2011. Despite the producers' reputations for creating busy, bass-heavy club music, the album did place something of a spotlight on Clare's soul-searching songwriting and deep, rich voice. ~ Andy Kellman
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