|Dates connected with James:||1982 - 2001, 2007 to present|
Birthday : February 4, 1960
Band Nickname : Monty Moneybags – dates back to early years in the band and Tim’s middle-class background
First Gig : Cockney Rebel, Leeds Town Hall
Football Team : Leeds United
Tim Booth, Manchester University drama student and ex-pupil at Shrewsbury School where he gained 11 O Levels, joined Model Team International when he confronted Jim, Gavan and Paul stealing his drink at a Manchester University disco in March 1982. Impressed by his dancing and thinking he could write them some lyrics as he was a student, Tim was asked to dance with the band and sing backing vocals initially, making his debut at a Sheffield gig supporting Orange Juice soon after. When Danny Ram and Jennie Ingram were subsequently kicked out of the band, Tim was asked to take over lead vocals.
Tim had got into music whilst at school when he was informed that his father was critically ill and he listened to Patti Smith’s Horses that evening – she was to become one of his major inspirations artistically.
During James early career, Tim was plagued by a liver disease which dated back to his childhood and it was this that contributed to his pursuit of altenative forms of healing and stimulation, including membership of the Lifewave group in the 1980s and his interest in shamanic dancing which he still pursues actively today. The liver condition has lead Tim to abstain from the traditional rock n roll lifestyle of drink and drugs and his abstinence and beliefs have led James to be labelled as Buddhists, vegans and all sorts of other implied insults.
Tim’s interest in certain themes – religion (Tim went to the religious Shrewsbury School and was expelled for being a bad influence), suicide, victimhood, betrayal – run through James whole career. The embittered lyrics of Seven and Laid reflect the fallout from his relationship with the band’s ex-manager Martine, mother of Tim’s son Ben – the inspiration for Gold Mother whilst the lovestruck Just Like Fred Astaire and Shooting My Mouth Off reflect Tim’s contentment with his wife-to-be Kate.
Tim spoke openly to ITV’s Faith And Music documentary about his beliefs in June 1999 and narrated an ITV documentary commemorating the tenth anniversary of the Strangeways riots the same year.
In addition to his vocal duties with James, Tim maintained his interest in acting, taking the lead in Edward Bond’s production of Saved at Bolton Octagon in May 1998 before appearing in a cameo role in Batman Begins in 2005 and an independent production Poor Wee Me in 2010. He also played Judas in the televised recreation of the Easter story in Manchester in April 2006, singing The Smiths’ Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now and duetting with Darren Moffitt (Jesus) on Blue Monday. He also has taught Five Rhythms dance on a regular basis in Manchester, New York and California during quiet periods for James.
In October 2001, Tim announced his intention to leave James after the December 2001 tour to pursue other interests outside James. He had already released an album with Angelo Badalamenti and Bernard Butler in 1996 entitled Booth And The Bad Angel and then released his debut solo album Bone in 2004. He later released a second solo album Love Life in 2011 and still actively writes outside of the band although there are currently no plans for any future releases.
Tim now lives in Topanga Canyon on the outskirts of Los Angeles.