The Seahorses' John Squire

Former Stones Roses guitarist/songwriter John Squire's new band, the Seahorses, released its debut LP, Do It Yourself, in 1997. Veteran producer Tony Visconti (David Bowie, T. Rex), who helmed the LP, said of the band's sound: "It's very advanced pop music, serious pop music. The music lies somewhere on the border of classic pop and alternative rock. It's got that hard edge and strangeness to it, yet once you hear these songs, you'll know them. You'll remember them."

Squire, who also composes many of the Seahorses' songs, was born in Manchester, England, in 1962. He formed the enormously popular Stone Roses with singer Ian Brown in 1985, after the two played together in a punk outfit called the Patrol.

Producer John Leckie played an important part in the sound of the Stone Roses, who signed with Silvertone Records in 1988. By 1990, the Stone Roses had a U.K. top-10 hit with "Elephant Stone." The band's eponymous debut LP came out in 1989 in the U.S. and the following year in the U.K. Between 1989-92, the Stone Roses had a string of British hits, including "What the World Is Waiting For/Fool's Gold," "She Bangs the Drums," "I Wanna Be Adored" (RealAudio excerpt) and "I Am the Resurrection."

On the other hand, the Stone Roses got into trouble in 1990, vandalizing the offices of their record company, which had released some of their early material against their will. The group also received a great deal of media attention when it fought, with eventual success, to be released from Silvertone to join Geffen Records.

As a result of their battles, their second LP, Second Coming, was delayed until 1994. The single, "Love Spreads," though a hit in England, barely received radio airplay in America. The album didn't fare much better, in the U.S or in Britain.

The Stone Roses planned a world tour in 1995 to support Second Coming, but it never happened. Drummer Reni quit, so the band decided to tour America briefly with a replacement drummer. Further tour plans were scotched when Squire broke his collarbone. The following period of inactivity badly slowed the band's momentum.

The Stone Roses toured the U.K. after Squire's recovery, but he soon decided to leave the band. The Stone Roses intended at first to carry on, but soon disbanded.

Squire then formed the Seahorses with bassist Stuart Fletcher. The band recorded its debut LP, Do It Yourself, which included the single, "Love Is The Law," with Visconti in North Hollywood, Calif., last year. Later in 1997, drummer Andy Watts left the Seahorses over "creative differences."

Other birthdays: Pete Best (the Beatles), 57; Lee Michaels, 53; Bev Bevan (the Move/ELO), 54; and Chad Taylor (Live), 28.