Paul Harris (keyboards/production) has crammed a lot into his 27 years. Born in Blackheath, South London, he grew up a pop kid but got into dance music by tagging long to clubs with his older brother when he was just 15. He bought his first decks at 16 and was regularly playing The Ministry of Sound by the time he was 17. By his late teens Paul was one of the resident DJ's at legendary promoter Nicky Holloway's seminal London club The Milk Bar. He was in esteemed company, the Milk Bar DJ alumni reads like a who's who of dance music's most influential people: Pete Tong, Dave Dorrell, Danny Rampling, Darren Emerson, and Paul Oakenfold. Paul soon also had a residency at Venus in Nottingham and regularly played all over the country at Folden, Cream, Vague, Ministry of Sound, Billion Dolla Babes, etc.
By the late nineties he had semi-retired from DJing to concentrate on making and remixing records, although he continued to DJ at events around London organized by his friends Meg Matthews and Fran Cutler.
Steve Smith (vocals, guitar, and percussion), born 29 years ago in New Eltham in South London, got into music at a very early age through his older brother and sister. His brother always got ready for a night out by listening to Marvin Gaye, and Steve knew all of "Let's Get it On' by heart by the time he was 10. At secondary school Steve was desperate to learn to play the drums, but his school only had one drum-kit which was hogged by fellow pupil Alan White, now of Oasis. So Steve turned to plat the bongos. After finishing school Steve went to college but found that he was making so much money playing percussion in clubs that he gave up college to do it full time. The job took him all around the world, and he also had a lucrative sideline doing studio session work.
In the mid nineties Steve was percussionist in the band Higher Ground, but after founder member and singer Andy Nichols left Steve reluctantly took on vocal duties when no on else in the band would step in the breach. To his astonishment Steve discovered he had a great voice . Higher Ground started to become a formidable live force (the played at Paul Weller's 'Day at the Races' gig at Crystal Palace in '97) but their promise was never fully realized and in 1999 the band broke up. A rather disillusioned Steve took off to Ibiza to sort himself out.
Ben Harris (guitars, production), 28, from Bromlet, Kent, started playing guitar at 13 and was in a band at school. After leaving school he got a job as a tape op in a studio in Camden. His band Fluid were on the verge of being signed but by this time Ben had gotten heavily into the club culture and music. HE decided to give up the indie life and together with his brother Sam he opened a specialist dance record shop, Casa Records, in Bromley. Art re same time Ben and Sam were also were also producing successful house music as Bullit and after two years they decided they'd rather concentrate on making records rather then selling them and gave up the shop, using the money they had made to set up a studio of their own. Ben had known Paul Harris for years, they moved in the same social circles and Paul used to shop at Casa Records. They had always talked about working together but nothing ever came of it until early 2000. (PTO)
Around the same time Paul and Steve, who had also known each other for years thought eh club scene, were booked for the same gig in Switzerland, Paul as DJ and Steve as live percussionist. They had such a great night they vowed they'd do some music together soon. Steve was living back in London and a regular on the acoustic circuit, showcasing some amazing songs he'd written on his hiatus in Ibiza. Paul and Ben were finally working together under the moniker Hydrogen Rockers, and Paul took Ben to one of Steve's gigs at the Kashmir Klub. Paul had never heard Steve sing before and both he and Ben were sufficiently impressed to ask Steve to come to the studio to record with them. One of the songs Steve brought to the studio was 'Days Go By."
By marrying Steve's soulful voice and percussive skills the three hit upon a rich formula ad Dirty Vegas was born. There is chemistry at work here, chemistry that tweaked 'Days Go BY' into a huge anthem and turned it into one of the best songs of 2001. Chemistry resulting in a band that works on many levels. There aren't many dance artists that can strip their songs down to just a voice and an acoustic guitar and still sound fantastic. This is just one reason why Dirty Vegas are so special. Add their musical ability to their combined knowledge of the dance scene and you begin to get some ideas of their potential and understand why Dirty Vegas are worth getting so excited about.