Gaz Coombes (born Gareth Michael Coombes, 8 March 1976 in Oxford) is an English musician and singer-songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist and guitarist of the English alternative rock band, Supergrass. He first entered the music scene aged sixteen as the lead singer of the band The Jennifers which featured current Supergrass band mate Danny Goffey. He is currently involved in a side-project called The Hot Rats (band named after Frank Zappa's song) with his band mate Danny Goffey. Gaz was noticeable for his large sideburns during the 1990s.
Gaz Coombes is the son of Eileen and John Coombes. His father was a food scientist, who enjoyed playing Jazz piano, and his mother an English teacher. Both his parents were practising Catholics and would regularly take the young Gaz to Mass. Coombes himself however, no longer practises this religion, claiming; "I last prayed in 1990. It was the World Cup, England versus Germany, and I prayed we'd win. When we lost, I thought, 'If you can't even manage that…'" Although he was born in England, he lived with his family in San Francisco from around the age of five up until the age of nine, at which point in 1985 they returned to his birth place in Oxford.
Coombes played Classical piano at this age, but gradually moved on to an interest in playing guitar. He began to attend Wheatley Comprehensive, but found himself being picked on for being 'girly'. Gaz's elder brother Rob was friends with Nic Goffey at the time, and one day on the school's playing fields a thirteen year old Gaz met and befriended Nic's younger brother, fifteen year old Danny Goffey. Danny was two years older than Gaz and helped to "protect him" from being teased. Goffey recounts what happened; "I mean, you couldn't fucking miss him. He was gorgeous. He grew sideburns and they gave him loads of shit, but I was really into him. I think I fancied him a bit, y'know? He's really beautiful. He wasn't very mature at that age. He was like a kid. I just went up to him and asked him to form a band. I could. I was a drummer. The tallest drummer in the school."
Coombes originally lived in a Regency townhouse in Brighton with his partner Jools Poore and their daughter, Raya May (b. 2003) which he first purchased in 1999.Due to the death of his mother, Eileen, in 2005, he felt compelled to move back into her house in Oxford during 2006, where he had grown up.Coombes and his partner now have a second daughter, named Tiger (b. 2008). Gaz Coombes and his brother Rob Coombes also jointly own a converted barn in Northern France, which is where the Supergrass album Road To Rouen was recorded.
He has three other siblings who are all involved somewhat in music: the eldest is the keyboardist and fellow Supergrass member Rob, former 22-20s keyboardist Charly and Paris-based Ed (who also plays piano).
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