Sharkey initially became well known as an MC at hardcore rave events in the UK in 1993, with a popular and charismatic style. In 1995, he moved into music production, teaming up with DJ Hixxy to release the track "Toytown", which proved one of the biggest signature tunes of the UK's happy hardcore scene in the 1990s. This led both Sharkey and Hixxy to being signed by the UK's leading dance music label, React Music, and the pair released "Bonkers", the first in a series of albums which as become the best-selling hardcore compilation series of all time. "Revolutions", a release on React, reached 53 in the UK charts, and Sharkey consequently released the album "Hard Life" in 1998.
Sharkey also produced mixes for the other 15 volumes of Bonkers, except 6 & 7. Volumes 3 and 4 achieved silver sales status in the UK.
He established a relationship with the up-and-coming DJ Kevin Energy in 1998, and the pair were, with several other DJs, instrumental in the creation of the freeform genre of hardcore (a term which was coined by Sharkey himself). This moved the sound away from cheesier sounds of happy hardcore to a faster, more layered, technically more complex sound. A major keystone of the freeform movement is The Nu Energy Collective, of which Sharkey and Kevin Energy are the best-known faces, and the freeform sound played a lead role in the renaissance of the hardcore sound in the early 2000s.
Sharkey continues to be much in demand as a DJ and MC, and has played at a number of hardcore events over the last ten years, including most major United Kingdom rave festivals as well as many events in the United States, Australia, Canada and Japan.
DJ Sharkey was invited to mix on BBC Radio 1 in 2003, performing John Peel's Essential Mix (Peel was a noted admirer of hardcore).
Sharkey's real name is Jonathan Kneath and he was borin in 1975 in Plymouth in the south of England. His formal training is as a chef.
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