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Kris Needs

Kris Needs (born 3 July 1954) is a British journalist and author, known for writings on music from the 1970s onwards. He became editor of ZigZag in August 1977 at 23 and has written biographies of stars including Primal Scream, Joe Strummer and Keith Richards.

Early life

In 1973, Needs was the secretary of the Mott The Hoople fan club, the Sea Divers, which he ran from his home in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire. His contact details at the time appear on the sleeve of the band's sixth studio album, Mott.[citation needed]

In the late 1970s, he fronted a band The Vice Creems, appearing in John Otway's Aylesbury Market Square free concert and also recorded a single with The Clash's Mick Jones and Topper Headon in the same studio that The Rolling Stones used to record their late 1960s peaks.[citation needed]


Needs started in journalism on the Thame Gazette, a weekly newspaper in Oxfordshire, went on to The Bucks Advertiser and then took over editing ZigZag, the UK's first monthly music mag, in 1977.

Needs and Wonder Schneider formed the band Secret Knowledge and recorded the 1992 club hit "Sugar Daddy" on Andrew Weatherall's Sabres of Paradise label. The track appeared on their 1996 electronic album So Hard on Deconstruction Records; Needs and Schneider wrote all the material, occasionally with artists such as Ashley Beedle, David Holmes and Jah Wobble. Needs and Schneider also recorded with Leftfield as Delta Lady.

Needs started DJing in 1976; during the 1990s he warmed up for Primal Scream and Prodigy while spinning at the world's clubs.[citation needed]

In 2014, he completed the biographical work on George Clinton: George Clinton: The Cosmic Odyssey of Dr Funkenstein. In 2015 he finished the authorized biography of Suicide; Dream Baby Dream: Suicide; A New York Story.

In 2016, he was writing for various UK music magazines, including MOJO, Record Collector, Classic Rock, Prog, Electronic Sound, Vive Le Rock and Shindig!. In May 2017, he launched No More Big Wheels with author Helen Donlon, an online outlet for cultural essays beyond the remits of the magazines.

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