Gaz Coombes has released a new track today (June 7) called ‘Sonny The Strong’. Listen to it below.
The Supergrass frontman wrote the song about a semi-fictinalized British boxer in post-World War II Britain.
“This track was always going to have a biographical story arc to it,” Coombes said of his latest song. “For me it was just a case of finding the inspiration. I developed an interest in forgotten heroes and human stories of struggle, those who triumphed over adversity. Also, the idea of someone being drafted into war while at the top of their game and how insane that would’ve been to deal with and process. ”
He continued: “I came across the story of ‘forgotten’ British world championship boxer, Randy Turpin who, in his heyday, fought and defeated the great Sugar Ray Robinson. That was some life, incredibly tough beginnings, success, fame, crime, apparent dealings with the mob and a tragic end. A fascinating rise and fall story.
“Randy became the seed of the story about my character ‘Sonny The Strong’ and it just evolved from there,” he added.
The haunting track features sparse piano, Americana sonics and songwriting, a lo-fi beat, and slowly building guitars. In it, Coombes sings about the love, loss, and life of the fictional boxer.
In April, Coombes played a round of solo tour dates where he performed tracks from his albums ‘Matador’ (2015) and ‘World’s Strongest Man’ (2018) as well as ‘Sonny The Strong’ live.
In May, Supergrass appeared on American television for the first time in nearly 16 years, going on Jimmy Kimmel Live to perform ‘Richard III’. First released in March 1997, ‘Richard III’ is one of Supergrass’ most commercially successful singles. It peaked at Number Two on the UK singles charts, which ties with their 1995 hit ‘Alright’ as their highest-ever chart position. The song was the second single from their album ‘In It For The Money’, which also peaked at Number Two and went on to achieve Platinum certification in the UK.