Biography Gaz Coombes
Gareth Michael Coombes, referred to as Gaz Coombes in music circles, was born on March 8, 1976 to John Coombes and Eileen in Oxford. The English musician, singer and songwriter sported large sideburns during the 1990s and was best known as the lead vocalist/guitarist of Supergrass, the alternative rock band in the UK. He started off his career in the world of music at the age of sixteen.
John Coombes, Gaz’s father, was a food scientist, but he enjoyed playing the Jazz piano. His mother was an English teacher. The family moved to San Francisco when he was 5 years old and returned back to Oxford in 1985. During this time, Coombes who played the Classical piano developed an interest in guitar.
Gaz Coombes who went to Wheatley Park School was often bullied for being ‘girly’. Gaz befriended Nic Goffey’s younger brother Danny Goffey who was two years older to him. He protected Coombes from the bullies. Gaz has three siblings – Rob, Charly and Eddie.
Coombes entered the music scene as the lead singer of the music band The Jennifers. At the time when the band entered into a recording contract for the first time with Nude Records, Coombes was not even 18 years old. Therefore, his mother signed the contract on his behalf. In 1992, “Just Got Back Today” was released by The Jennifers on Nude Records. However, The Jennifers was disbanded after the recording.
Coombes who lived with his parents took up a job in a local restaurant by name Harvester. He played old Jennifers demos over the PA system of the restaurant before it opened. During this time he became friends with Mick Quinn, a co-worker, who shared his musical tastes. Subsequently, Gaz, Mick and Danny Goffey started practicing music at Quinn’s house. This led to the formation of the band Supergrass.
Coombes, Goffey and Quinn formed the Supergrass in 1993. Coombes’ brother Rob Coombes, keyboardist, joined the band officially in 2002 after completing his astrophysics degree at Cardiff University. Supergrass released six albums in 17 years with each one of them figuring in the UK top 20. These are I Should Coco in 1995, In It for the Money in 1997, Supergrass in 1999, Life on Other Planets in 2002, Road to Rouen in 2005 and Diamond Hoo Ha in 2008. Commemorating the first 10 years of the existence of the band, they released a singles compilation called Supergrass is 10 in 2004. On April 12, 2010 Supergrass was disbanded and prior to that they played four farewell concerts.
In 2009, Gaz Coombes along with Danny Goffey formed The Hotrats, a band named after the album Hot Rats of Frank Zappa, as a side-project. The duo recorded the Album Turn Ons with producer Nigel Godrich. They not only went a short tour of the UK, but also participated in the Reading and Leeds Festivals. They also recorded “Under My Thumb” for the movie Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World. However, this album remains unreleased.
Coombes started working on his first solo album, produced by Sam Williams, and released it in 2011. Later on, he starred in the Toyota Yaris advertisement. He performed his first solo show in December 2011 at The Rotunda in Oxford. Coombes released “Hot Fruit” in March 2012 and “Come the Bombs” a little later. In May 2014, Coombes recorded the cover version of “This Time Tomorrow”, The Kink’s song as a television advertisement for John Lewis, a UK department store. The second solo album of Coombes was released on January 26, 2015.