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Cerys Matthews

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Cerys Matthews is a singer and songwriter, best known as the lead singer of Welsh rock band Catatonia; although she has also released solo work.

Catatonia was formed in 1992, reputedly after songwriter Mark Roberts heard Cerys busking in Cardiff city centre; Cerys subsequently sang lead vocals on the band’s hits. Outside Catatonia she performed on The Ballad Of Tom Jones and collaborated with Tom Jones on Baby, It’s Cold Outside (originally by Frank Loesser) on Reload. In September 2001 Cerys announced her departure from Catatonia after bouts of exhaustion and anxiety.

In 2002, Matthews moved to Nashville in search of a new beginning. She had collected 76 traditional songs with the idea of making an album of folk covers. In America, Matthews met Bucky Baxter, who had played lap steel guitar for Bob Dylan and Ryan Adams. Her debut album, Cockahoop, was recorded in seven months and appeared on Blanco y Negro in the UK in May 2003. She toured the album around Britain but with minimal promotion as she was heavily pregnant at the time. Its stateside release followed in October 2004.

21 August 2006 saw the release of the album, Never Said Goodbye. The new album was preceded by the single Open Roads (released 7th August 2006).

Until July 2006 Cerys lived in Nashville with her husband Seth Riddle, whom she married in February 2003, and their two children, Glenys Pearl Y-Felin and Johnny Tupelo Jones. The family have now moved back to Pembrokeshire for the foreseeable future, Cerys saying that they chose to move to Wales as her daughter was developing a Southern twang in her accent, and Cerys wanted to show her children the traditions and ways of her home land.

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