Biography

A brief history of
Leee John & Imagination

Biography

One of the most unique, genre defining and flamboyant soul groups of the past three decades Imagination will return on 7 October 2013 with Flashback: The Very Best of Imagination via Sony Music. Featuring 13 uplifting soul classics that helped cement Imagination’s dominance of the charts in the early 1980’s, the album also contains two brilliant new Imagination tracks, the first recorded as Imagination in over 25 years.

From the very opening bars of the oozing soul of ‘Body Talk’ through the sparkling and uplifting ‘Flashback’ and ‘Just An Illusion’, Imagination presented perfect pop songs for a more daring and experimental age. As lead singer and co-songwriter Leee John dressed in gold lame crawled his way on all fours, through the audience, and onto the Top Of The Pops stage, he secured Imagination’s position as essential 80’s crossover soul-dance hit-makers and influencers for future generations of pop stars.

Over the years, Leee John, the North London soulboy-made-good has created an impressive inventory of top-drawer projects as solo artist, songwriter and performer. However, for the release of Flashback: The Very Best of Imagination, he has returned to his roots, adding to the Imagination legacy of ‘Music and Lights’ and ‘In and Out of Love’ with the first new Imagination tracks for 25 years, bringing the story full circle. Ably demonstrating John’s rare vocal versatility, ‘The Truth’ is a bold and romantic ballad with gospel overtones, while ‘Krash (All Nite Long)’ echoes the vibe of Imagination’s hedonistic heyday.

Leee John is one of the hardest working men in music, touring both as Imagination and as Leee John dipping into the pop and jazz pool, he has his own radio show, has recorded songs for charity and is currently producing Flashback, a film of the history of British black music for which more than 80 interviews are already in the can, including Beverley Knight, Eddy Grant, Trevor Nelson, Omar, Geno Washington, Shalamar’s Jeffrey Daniels, Boney M’s Bobby Farrell and Ruby Turner.



Full Biography

2014

  • February - Broadcasting Of Vintage TV Recording
  • January - Performance: Nice, France
  • January - Performance: Toulouse, France

2013

  • Broadcasting Of Vintage TV Recording
  • A Very Vintage Christmas (TBC)
  • Performance Special, Dijon, France
  • Performance Special, Dubai
  • TV Special, Dubai
  • Top of the Pops 50th Anniversary Party/ Book Launch, London, UK
  • Pizza Express Jazz Club, Dean St, W1, London, UK
  • Radio 2: Tracks Of My Years with Ken Bruce
  • Personal Appearance at the opening of Fortnum & Mason's new store in St Pancras Station
  • Performing @ The Regent Street 'Christmas Lights' Ceremony, Regent Street, London, UK
  • Butlins, Minehead,
  • Smooth Radio - IMAGINATION Campaign: St Lucia Competition
  • Imagination (Featuring Leee John) - Live Tour!!!!, Jam House, Birmingham, UK
  • Imagination (Featuring Leee John) - Live Tour!!!!, Thekla, Bristol, UK
  • Imagination (Featuring Leee John) - Live Tour!!!!, Norwich, UK
  • Imagination (Featuring Leee John) - Live Tour!!!!, The Stable, Milton Keynes, UK
  • Imagination (Featuring Leee John) - Live Tour!!!!, Under the Bridge, London, UK
  • Imagination (Featuring Leee John) - Live Tour!!!!, Band on the wall, Manchester, UK
  • Imagination (Featuring Leee John) - Live Tour!!!!, Button Factory, Dublin, UK
  • The Radio Diamond 87.7fm promotion for Imagination/ Leee John Gig at Band on the Wall Manchester. Including the running of competition.
  • INTERVIEW: PRE RECORDED INTERVIEW, BBC RADIO 2, JANICE LONG SHOW
  • INTERVIEW: PRE RECORDED INTERVIEW, LBC, STEVE ALLEN IN CONVERSATION. GLOBAL RADIO
  • New Album Launch: Flashback: The Very best of Imagination is released via Sony Music on 7 October.
  • Smooth Radio - IMAGINATION Campaign: Greatest Hits album: Smooth Radio Album of the Week
  • MUZU.TV Promotion for Leee John MUZU.TV feature to promote the release of 'Flashback: The Very Best Of Imagination'.
  • ALBUM REVIEWS: BBC RADIO 2, JANICE LONG REVIEW SHOW - 12.15pm - 3.15pm
  • MUZU.TV Promotion for Leee John Global premiere of the video for "Truth" through MUZU.TV onsite and offsite network.
  • Smooth Radio - IMAGINATION Campaign: Leee John: In Conversation One Hour Special with Andy Peebles
  • Butlin`s, Bognor Regis
  • Interview: Scotland Radio Network - Clyde 2 [Glasgow]
  • Interview: Scotland Radio Network - Northsoun 2 [Aberdeen]
  • Interview: Scotland Radio Network - Westsound AM [Ayr]
  • Interview: Scotland Radio Network - Forth 2 [Edinburgh]
  • Interview: Scotland Radio Network - Tay AM [Dundee]
  • Interview: Scotland Radio Network - Moray Firth [Inverness]
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - Metro/ Magic (Newcastle)
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - TFM/ Magic (Teeside)
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - CFM (Carlisle)
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - Viking/ Magic (Hull)
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - Rock/ Magic (Preston)
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - Key 103/ Magic (Manchester)
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - Hallam/ Magic (Sheffield)
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - Aire/ Magic (Leeds)
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - Radio City/ Magic (Liverpool)
  • Interview: Magic Network Group - BFBS (British Forces Radio)
  • Interview: The Bay (Lancaster)
  • Interview: BBC Eastern Counties (Essex, Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire)
  • Interview: BBC Stoke
  • Interview: Unique Broadcasting Entertainment News (250 Stations)
  • Interview: BBC Bristol & Somerset
  • Interview: Downtown Radio (Belfast)
  • Interview: BBC Merseyside (Liverpool)
  • Interview: Swansea Sound
  • Interview: BBC Devon
  • Interview: BBC Manchester
  • Interview: BBC Swindon & Wiltshire
  • Interview: BBC Humberside (Hull & North East)
  • Interview: BBC Birmingham
  • Interview: Signal 2 (Stoke on Trent)
  • Interview: Anglian Radio Group - The Beach (Suffolk)
  • Interview: Anglian Radio Group - Kestrel FM (Basingstoke)
  • Interview: Anglian Radio Group - Town 102 FM (Suffolk)
  • Interview: Anglian Radio Group - Channel 100 FM (Jersey)
  • Interview: Anglian Radio Group - Dream 100 (Colchester)
  • Interview: Anglian Radio Group - Radio Norwich (Norwich)
  • Interview: Anglian Radio Group - North Norfolk Radio (Norfolk)
  • Interview: Anglian Radio Group - Island FM (Guernsey)
  • Interview: BBC Radio Derby
  • Interview: Isle of Wight Radio
  • Interview: Metro FM (Newcastle)/ CFM (Carlisle) / TFM (Stockton)
  • Interview: Free Radio (Birmingham) [Ex BRMB]
  • Private Performance, France
  • Smooth Radio - IMAGINATION Campaign: Smooth Radio Love Live Music event
  • INTERVIEW: LIVE INTERVIEW, BBC RADIO 2, SHOW - GRAHAM NORTON SHOW (MARIA MCERLANE IN FOR GRAHAM NORTON)
  • Private Performance, France
  • INTERVIEW: MAGIC FM, RICK ASTLEY
  • Smooth Radio - IMAGINATION Campaign: Smooth Radio Love Live Music event - Pre promotion
  • Private Performance, France
  • In Italy (28-29 Inclusive) - TBC, Italy
  • MUZU.TV Promotion for Leee John Feature around back catalogue - introduce Leee John to MUZU.TV audience and create foundations for premiere.
  • Henley Rewind Festival, Henley-On-Thames, England
  • East End Festival - Under The Stars, London, UK
  • Private Performance, France
  • MUZU.TV Promotion for Leee John Global premiere of the video for "Krash" through MUZU.TV Onsite and Offsite Network.
  • Online Interview: Blues & Soul
  • Surprise Appearance At Event At Colleseum (TBC)
  • The Greatest 80'S Party.....Ever!, Audley End House, Saffron Walden, England
  • Private Performance, France
  • Private Performance
  • Private Performance
  • Private Performance
  • Festival (Details TBC)
  • KRASH Video Shoot (3-4 Inclusive)
  • Isleworth Cricket Club - 80's Re-visited/ The Revival.
  • Cannes Film Festival (28-29 Inclusive), Cannes, France
  • Leee John Birhday !!! Bah Humbug
  • Private Performance, France
  • 80's Butlin`s Party, Skegness, UK
  • Pizza Express Jazz Club, Dean St, W1, London,
  • In Italy (13-17 June Inclusive), Italy
  • 80's Butlin`s Party, Minehead, UK
  • The Truth Video Shoot
  • JAMES WHALE Charity Gig
  • Happy Festival, , East Molesey, Surrey, UK
  • New Album Launch News Piece: Glasswerk
  • Interview: Eile Magazine
  • New Album Launch Review:Record Collection
  • New Album Launch Review:Sunday Express
  • New Album Launch Review:Daily Mirror
  • SPECIALIST RADIO Interview:D Lux (Deja Vu FM)
  • Online Interview: Huffington Post Blog (including Homepage)
  • New Album Launch Review:Milton Keynes Citizen
  • New Album Launch Review:Blues & Soul
  • Online Interview: Yorkshire Times
  • Interview or Review: MUZU.TV
  • SPECIALIST RADIO Interview:Baby Face Sean (Lightning FM)
  • New Album Launch Review:The Sun
  • New Album Launch Review:Jazzwise
  • New Album Launch Review:The Star
  • SPECIALIST RADIO Interview:Sly (Bang Radio)
  • Online Interview: Soulmusic Q&A
  • SPECIALIST RADIO Interview:Silky D (Kemet FM)
  • New Album Launch Review:Hartlepool Mail
  • New Album Launch Review:Daily Record
  • Online Interview: Entertainment Focus
  • New Album Launch News Piece: Sonic Shocks
  • SPECIALIST RADIO Interview:Rhodium (The Soul Of London)
  • Interview: The Soul Survivor Magazine
  • Interview: The works Magazine
  • New Album Launch Review:Music week
  • New Album Launch News Piece: M
  • SPECIALIST RADIO Interview:Dez Parkes (Colorful Radio)
  • SPECIALIST RADIO Interview:Rhodium (TSOL)
  • Online Interview: Pink News
  • New Album Launch Review:Classic Pop
  • New Album Launch News Piece: Echoes
  • New Album Launch Review:Gay Times
  • New Album Launch Review:Q Magazine
  • Online Interview: Polari Magazine

2010

  • Leee tours Brazil - show in Rio de Janeiro.
  • Imagination feat Leee John begins UK Tour.

2009

  • Sensuality enters top 20 in Billboard Hot 100.
  • Leee starts documentary Flashback Project about the history of the black music in UK.
  • RTL Disco Tour in France which Leee did also in 2008 with artists from USA and EU.
  • French version on X Factor appears with Celine Dion where the contestants pay tribute to Imagination and did the hit songs with Leee.
  • Leee published his book "From Within the Heart" for SOS Children with pictures he took in South Africa.
  • Leee various appearance on Pizza Jazz Express
  • Live on Italian TV Rai 1 singing New Year song.

2008

  • Played in Kremlin in Russia - TV Performance
  • South Africa - Documentary for SOS Children Charity
  • Documentary for RTL

2007

  • Promotion and touring for the Jazz Album "Feel My Soul" in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Benelux. Further collaboration with many other artists including Jane Fostin.
  • The Leee John Quartet releases "Live in Paris" on the Kudos label, a CD with Live versions of "Feel My Soul".

2006

  • Official release of the Jazz Album "Feel My Soul".

2005

  • The release of 'Feel my soul ' is being prepared.
  • Maurizio 'Jazz Voice ' Verbeni finalizes remixes of Passion. Mariah Carey uses 'Just an Illusion' as background for track 'Get your number' entering UK top 10 in October; Famous international Dj Dero remixes 'Just an illusion' featuring newly recorded vocals by Leee , released thru Subliminal Records in October topping dj charts everywhere.
  • Feel my Soul UK tour gets underway to raving reviews.
  • Leee performing in New York in remembrance of 11/09; visit to Afrika for WOW (World of Orphan Week). Leee interviews african orphans and relates their experiences in a gripping documentary on behalf of SOS children villages 26th October at Bush Hall : Exclusive launch gig with Candid for the industry.
  • 31st October : FEEL MY SOUL is released on Candid Records .....

2004

  • Mighty Power of love' is remixed and released thru Delicious Records and is a big floorfiller in Germany and Austria reaching clubs on import everywhere in Europe;
  • In February Leee, accompanied by John Watson travel to Rochefort (France) to record his jazz album at Christal Records, a documentary of the event and additional recordings is being filmed by Stefane Peyrolo. The well known independent jazz label Candid Records will take care of release and distribution in UK and further roll-outs in Europe.
  • Leee tours in the Benelux, Germany, Switzerland , France where Imagination are the top act for a massive show in Cannes celebrating 20 years of duty free, a live orchestra accompanies Leee and Imagination.
  • A well publicized event in support of Kingston Hospital and their projected cancer unit culminates with a fantastic gig at the famous Works club in Kingston, appearing next to Leee are Junior Griscombe and Jaki Graham.
  • Reelhouse releases 'Could have been me, could have been U' on vinyl, the 2001 collaboration of Leee with Lenny Fontana.

2003

  • Leee participates in the TV show "Reborn in the USA" together with fellow artists such as Tony Hadley and Peter Cox.
  • Leee collaborates together with Bill Sharpe and Shakatak on their album 'Blue Savannah'.
  • Various performances in countries such as Holland, France, Germany, Lebanon and Italy.
  • Leee participates in ITV REBORN IN THE USA show taking him and fellow contestants Tony Hadley, Elkie Brooks and Peter Cox ... through 7 cities in the USA where they perform US classics to sell out crowds he records a funky dance track with Dj Maze and Ricky Bailey from Delegation.
  • The track 'fool in love' co-written with Bill Sharpe features on Shakatak's Japanese release 'Blue Savannah'
  • Touring in the Benelux, France , Lebanon, Germany , Italy with an exclusive gig in Puerto Cervo in Sardinia.
  • In november Leee appears next to Tavares and the Trammps in Rotterdam at the Ahoy Hall perfoming to an audience of 20,000

2002

  • Leee features on The Morne's "I can see for miles".
  • Club Mixes of "Passion" are released.
  • Numerous TV appearances and shows in the UK, the Benelux, France, Tahiti, Algeria.

2001

  • Leee Performs in the musical "The Hot Mikado" in the summer.
  • Leee visits Tahiti and performs there. He meets with the president of Tahiti.
  • "Passion" gets released in France.
  • Throughout 2001 numerous performances and TV shows.Leee John and Johnboy launch of www.leeejohn.com in May 2001 coinciding with 20th anniversary of Body Talk.

2000

  • Leee signs a worldwide recording deal with French multi-media company M6 and undertakes another long 35 date tour of France.
  • Leee John official website is being prepared.

1999

  • Songwriting and performing in USA. 25-day tour of France, 27-day tour of United Kingdom.
  • Writes and records "Your Mind Your Body Your Soul" licensed for release throughout Europe in 2000.

1998

  • Tours of the Reunion and surrounding Islands, 3rd tour of Russia, Europe and America.
  • Roving reporting and interviewing for VH1.

1997

  • Dedicated to writing and producing.
  • Leee has been songwriting throughout and his credits include Maxi Priest, Byron Stingly, Club 69, MOBO award winner Pete Hunningale, Alison Limerick, Ultimate Chaos. Leee writes, records and produces with David Morales and Nick Martinelli. "Call on me", released under the pseudonym Johnny X, enters the UK Dance chart at number 14.

1996

  • The Leee John single "The Mighty Power of Love" is released, a big club hit in the UK. It also made number 9 on the USA Billboard Dance chart.
  • Tour of France and Rusia. Co-writing with Peter Rauhofer for Club 69 project scoring in Us with ´Sugarpie Guy´ and lead vocals on ´Pleasure'.

1995

  • The release of a "Greatest Hits" album that accrues Platinum status in France keeps Leee in Europe for the year.
  • So successful is the group that for the first time in the history of France a horse race is named after a performing artist. "Le prix de Caen' has become 'Le prix Imagination". Just an Illusion Correct Claps remix gets released in France and filling the floors again.

1994

  • Imagination featuring Leee John toured South Africa.

1993

  • Tours of the Middle and Far East and Europe.

1992

  • Leee takes a well-deserved break.

1991

  • Leee signs Music Publishing contract with Notting Hill Music which enables Leee to indulge in his passion for songwriting.
  • Tours of India, Sri Lanka and Angola. Ashley Ingram leaves group to concentrate on producing and songwriting, scoring big with Des´re.
  • Nat Augustin (Light of the World) joins Imagination. `The Fascination of the Physical` is recorded and released through Europe.

1990

  • 6 week tour of former Soviet Union..
  • Leee secures own chat show "Leee's place" on LWT with guests such as: Sean Young, Victor Kiam, Mica Paris (first TV interview), Courtney Pine and Will Downing.
  • Leee co-writes ´Let there be love´ with Arthur Baker and ´C´mon, C´mon´ appearing on ´Give into the rhythm´;´Let there be love´ reaching number 1 on US dance Charts

1989

  • "Like it is" album reaches Number 4 in UK charts in 4 weeks. Double Gold status in just 12 weeks. Album stays in the charts into the 1990's, 44 weeks in all.
  • Imagination closed the 1980's on December 17th with their Christmas Show, the last of an 18 date sell-out tour at Hammersmith Odeon, 105 weeks on the UK singles chart and 108 weeks on the UK album chart.

1988

  • Achieved Number 1 spot in American Billboard Dance Chart with "Instinctual", caused uproar in New York when x-rated version of "Instinctual" video was shown on cable TV by mistake.

1987

  • Imagination sign to RCA records and leave for USA to record the album "Closer" with Arthur Baker, Nick Martinelli, Preston Glass, Ron Kersey and Robert Kraft. Errol Kennedy leaves group and is replaced by Peter Royer.

1986

  • 5th Anniversary year. Celebrated in style with a capacity audience at the Royal Albert Hall, London and the smash hit single "Thank you my love" remains 17 weeks in UK charts.

1985

  • "Thank you my love" released in November is Imagination´s eleventh hitsingle;
  • 2nd major European Tour. Sold out.

1984

  • "State of love" released May, entering top 10 US dance charts rmixed by Kevorkian.
  • Huge demand for TV appearances this year: from Tiswas to Des O'Conner, BBC Breakfast Time to No.73.
  • LEEE hosts 8 week Malibu World Disco Dance Championships.

1983

  • "Nightdubbing" album released May. Double Gold.
  • "Looking at midnight" released June - "New dimension" released November.
  • "Scandalous" album released November. Double Gold.
  • LEEE secures a place in TV history by getting lead role of Mancel in now cult programme Dr. Who.

1982

  • "Just an illusion" released March - Diamond Award winner for sales in excess of 1 million copies.
  • "Music and lights" released June - "In the heat of the night" released September - "Changes" released December.
  • "In the heat of the night" album released September. Double Gold.
  • First European Tour with all 22 UK shows sold out.

1981

  • As a tribute to John Lennon and "Imagine" IMAGINATION was formed.
  • "Body Talk" released May - "In and out of love" released September - "Flashback" released November
  • "Body Talk" album released October. Album achieves Double Gold status and remains on charts for 51 weeks.