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Tricky - August 13, 2009.jpg
Background information
Birth name Adrian Nicholas Matthews Thaws
Also known as Tricky Kid
Born (1968-01-27) 27 January 1968 (age 55)
Origin Knowle West, Bristol, England
Genres Trip hop, Alternative
Occupation(s) producer, mixer, musician
Instruments Vocals, Keyboards, Harmonica
Labels Island Records, Domino Records
Associated acts The Wild Bunch
Massive Attack

Tricky (born Adrian Nicholas Matthews Thaws, 27 January 1968) is an English musician and actor. As a producer and a musician, he is noted for a dark, rich and layered sound and a whispering lyrical style. Culturally, Tricky encourages a togetherness of societies, particularly in his musical ensemble of rock and hip hop, high art and pop culture. His debut album Maxinquaye was nominated for the Mercury Prize and voted Album of the Year by NME Magazine.

Early life

Tricky was born in Knowle West, Bristol, England. His father left the family before he was born and his mother, Maxine Quaye, died when he was only four. He named his solo album after her - Maxinquaye - and once said that though he hardly knew her, he feels like she's speaking through him with his words.

He spent his childhood and teen years in the care of his grandmother, who often let him watch old horror movies instead of going to school. At 15 he began to write lyrics ("I like to rock, I like to dance, I like pretty girls taking down their pants" MixMag 1996) At 17, he spent some time in prison because he bought forged £50 notes from a friend, who later told the police. In an interview, Tricky said: "Prison was really good. I'm never going back" (NME 1995).


  • Maxinquaye (1995) #3 UK
  • Nearly God (1996) #10 UK
  • Pre-Millennium Tension (1996) #30 UK, #140 US
  • Angels with Dirty Faces (1998) #23 UK, #84 US
  • Juxtapose (1999) (with DJ Muggs and Dame Grease) #22 UK, #182 US
  • Blowback (2001) #34 UK, #138 US
  • Vulnerable (2003) #88 UK
  • Knowle West Boy (2008) #63 UK, #147 US
  • Mixed Race (2010) #118 UK
  • False Idols (2013) #66 UK, #149 US
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