Ex-Verve Frontman Richard Ashcroft Fathers Son

Ex-Verve singer-songwriter Richard Ashcroft and his wife, former Spiritualized keyboardist Kate Radley, have given birth to the couple's first child, a baby boy named Sonny.

Sonny was born on Thursday, March 23 at an undisclosed location at approximately 10:30 a.m. (GMT), and a U.K. representative for Ashcroft says that the child weighed in at 9 pounds, 1 ounce.

The spokesman said that they had chosen not to release information about what hospital the child was born in order to respect the family's wishes for privacy, but indicated that "both mother and son are very well."

The birth of Sonny comes less than two weeks before the planned British release of Ashcroft's new single, "A Song For The Lovers," his first new material to be issued since disbanding The Verve in April 1999 (see "The Verve Calls It Quits").

The new single, due out in the U.K. on April 3, will also feature two other new tracks as b-sides,

"Precious Stone," and "(Could Be) A Country Thing, City Thing, Blues Thing." Ashcroft's as-yet-untitled solo album is tentatively set to be released in America on June 20.