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Sophie Heawood

Sophie Heawood

Sophie Heawood grew up in York, where she went to the local schools while longing to attend Mallory Towers. She studied languages at Kings College London but dropped out and eventually got her degree at night school. She has lived in Barcelona, where she was a teenage au pair, Hong Kong, where she acted as an extra in low-budget Chinese soap operas, and Los Angeles, where she interviewed celebrities for British newspapers. Her journalism career began writing pop music reviews for the Guardian and she now writes for The Guardian, Observer, Sunday Times and Vogue. Sophie now lives in Hackney, East London with her daughter and their dog, Chips. Her bestselling memoir, The Hungover Games, was published by Cape in 2020 and has been optioned for TV.

60 articles

By Artist | By Date

List of articles in the library by date

Laura Cantrell: Jazz Cafe, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 3 June 2005

WHEN YOU BURST INTO TEARS ON STAGE, forget the words to several songs and introduce your double bass player as a guitarist, chances are you're ...

Roisin Murphy: Scala, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 22 July 2005

WHEN YOU GO SOLO after spending eight years in a duo, how do you fill that nagging gap beside you on the stage? Easy: take ...

Roll Deep: Cargo, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 12 October 2005

"BUT ANYWAY, back to the album ... " This will prove the leitmotif of tonight's show, as the Roll Deep collective find themselves yo-yoing between ...

The Go! Team: Astoria, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 14 October 2005

WHAT A DIFFERENCE a Mercury nomination makes, as frontwoman Ninja discovers when she bounces on to the stage to announce "We're The Go! Team," and ...

Animal Collective: Scala, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 29 October 2005

LIKE WATCHING SPEEDED-UP FOOTAGE of the dawn, you don't quite notice when one part of an Animal Collective set has ended and another has started. ...

The Fiery Furnaces: ICA, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 31 October 2005

GREAT GIGS, LIKE GREAT DRAMA, require an element of conflict, and The Fiery Furnaces have the advantage on that one: they are brother and sister. ...

Roots Manuva: Kentish Town Forum, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 28 November 2005

THERE HAS ALWAYS BEEN SOMETHING of the drunk-uncle-at-a-wedding about Roots Manuva, so it's as much of a surprise for him as for us to see ...

Beth Orton: Spitz, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 16 December 2005

BETH ORTON has always been accompanied by a narrative of loneliness. The death of her parents inspired many of her early songs, which told of ...

Kid Creole & The Coconuts: Kid Creole and the Coconuts: Jazz Café, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 25 January 2006

IN AN EXCHANGE which seems quite fair —we get the Scissor Sisters, the Americans get Gavin Rossdale — US acts often make it big here ...

The Concretes: Scala, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 27 February 2006

JD SALINGER CLAIMED he was a paranoid in reverse who suspected people of plotting to make him happy. The Concretes seem to be gripped by ...

Lou Rhodes: Scala, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 6 March 2006

WHERE DO OLD RAVERS GO when they retire? They get drunk and go to Lou Rhodes gigs. Tonight the Scala is a sea of dirty ...

Mark Morrison: ’I'm the most reallest black artist in England'

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 8 March 2006

After the court cases, the jail time and the unfounded rape allegation, Mark Morrison is keen to put his bad boy image behind him. He ...

Candi Staton: "I was so drunk I fell on to the stage"

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 24 March 2006

DISCO DIVA CANDI STATON lost everything to alcohol and abuse, but the song she recorded for a diet video saved her. Now, at 66, she's ...

Plan B: Islington Academy, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 1 April 2006

THERE ARE THINGS that get said only for the shock factor, and then there are things that are just shocking. Plan B's subject matter, with ...

Roachford: Spitz, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 6 April 2006

FOR A ONE-HIT WONDER, Roachford sure has a lot of tunes. Gone are the early gigs, as a diehard fan reminds him tonight, where he ...

Salsa Celtica: Islington Academy, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 12 April 2006

IT IS NOT OFTEN that a salsa concert takes a break for a bagpipe solo, but that juxtaposition is Salsa Celtica's unique selling point. As ...

The Knife: Scala, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 14 April 2006

IF ANYONE BOUGHT A TICKET for tonight's show because of an advertisement, in which hundreds of coloured balls tumble gaily down a San Francisco hill, ...

Placebo: Alexandra Palace, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 15 April 2006

WHEN PLACEBO FIRST HIT THE CHARTS in the mid-1990s, Brian Molko's thick black eyeliner and androgynous posturing caused a bit of a stir, as much ...

Panic! at the Disco: Astoria, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 29 April 2006

PANIC! AT THE DISCO'S DEBUT ALBUM may be called A Fever You Can't Sweat Out, but tonight their obsessive fans are trying to do just ...

Hard-Fi: Brixton Academy, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 16 May 2006

BILLY BRAGG MIGHT SEEM an unlikely guest to support a pop-rock band like Hard-Fi, but both acts are often referred to as "of the people". ...

The Rakes: Shepherd's Bush Empire, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 17 May 2006

IN THE CURRENT SURFEIT of guitar bands named after collective nouns, a group needs something singular if they are not to fall prey to NME ...

Girls Aloud: Nottingham Arena

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 24 May 2006

"I JUST CAN'T BELIEVE THAT, four years on, we're doing an arena tour!" announces Nadine Coyle with genuine astonishment. She's not the only one. While ...

Hot Chip: King's College, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 3 June 2006

HOT CHIP are five white Englishmen who stand in a straight line across the stage, as if waiting to be shot. They claim to love ...

Keane: Paint it Black

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 9 June 2006

In a bid to shake off their clean-cut image, Keane have been exploring murkier territory — and hanging around with Bret Easton Ellis and Irvine ...

The Automatic: Not Accepted Anywhere

Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 16 June 2006

BLAME THE AMERICAN EMO BANDS, or the palpable fury of those nu-metal teenagers who skulk around with stares that could kill kittens, but indie is ...

Busta Rhymes: Hammersmith Apollo, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 17 June 2006

LOOKING AS IF HE'S BEEN STYLED BY MR T, and garlanded in enough bling to sink a small island, Busta Rhymes bounces on to the ...

Mary J. Blige: Mary J Blige: Wembley Arena, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 19 June 2006

THAT MARY J BLIGE HAS BEEN THROUGH some troubles in her life is well known; it's what makes her an icon of strength and survival ...

Gnarls Barkley: Hammersmith Apollo, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 8 July 2006

"I WAS GONNA STRIP FOR ALL THE GIRLS tonight but they said I'd get locked up. You can have a little peep though," says Cee-Lo, ...

Erykah Badu: Somerset House, London

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 17 July 2006

IN HER BILLOWING WHITE ROBES, with hair piled into a gigantic afro mohican, Erykah Badu looks incandescent and remarkable against the night sky at this ...

Rishi Rich: The Project

Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 4 August 2006

THE NAMES ON THIS ALBUM might be unfamiliar to some, but their work is all-pervasive in the pop landscape. Whose Mary J Blige remix apparently ...

Amy Winehouse: She's Class with a Glass: Amy Winehouse

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 3 November 2006

Cockney chanteuse Amy Winehouse thinks rehab is for wimps. But will her battles with her addictive personality deprive her of her rightful place in musical ...

Faithless: To All New Arrivals

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 24 November 2006

FAITHLESS have abandoned big rave anthems, but they'll still bite your legs ...

Belinda Carlisle: In a Provence hideaway, Belinda goes native

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 9 February 2007

'80s pop star Belinda Carlisle loves France so much she's gone native, she tells Sophia Heawood. ...

Bloc Party: Party people turn political

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 10 February 2007

Their fiery mix of pop and passion is turning Bloc Party into a key band. Our writer met them. ...

Interpol go mammoth

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 27 July 2007

Frozen moments is how Interpol sees its intelligent, dark-edged brand of rock. Sophie Heawood met the quirky quartet. ...

Kate Nash: Made of Bricks

Review by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 4 August 2007

YOU WOULD THINK that Richey Edwards from the Manic Street Preachers carving "4 real" into his arm, in 1991, might have ended the British fascination ...

Adele ation starts here

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 28 December 2007

Universally tipped for stardom in the coming year, Adele has a mouth on her and she's not afraid to use it. ...

The Kooks: Kooks: "I am a hit machine ... I just roll 'em out!"

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 4 April 2008

Skinny jeans and catchy hooks have made the Kooks a "priority act" in the post-boyband world. Sophie Heawood follows them to Japan to find out ...

The Zutons open up with their third album You Can Do Anything

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 30 May 2008

The Zutons wrote 'Valerie' about a friend. Now their new album is based on other personal stories ...

Beth Rowley: from backing singer to Top Ten star

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 21 June 2008

At school she sang behind Ronan Keating; now the retro-chanteuse from Bristol is a solo smash hit. ...

Jesca Hoop's musical magic

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 29 November 2008

JESCA HOOP is gleefully pulling a wad of vintage lace out of her shopping bag. Layer after layer appears — is a grandmother somewhere being ...

Little Boots is the big sound for 2009

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 10 January 2009

She's Blackpool's answer to Kylie and a fan of unhinged escapism — Little Boots is a hot prospect ...

Grace Jones: Grace under pressure

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 23 January 2009

The rigours of the road do nothing to cool the unexpected warmth of Grace Jones, says Sophie Heawood ...

Thom Yorke and Flea: Orpheum Theatre, Los Angeles

Live Review by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 5 October 2009

THE NEWS THAT THOM YORKE had come to Los Angeles and formed a temporary supergroup with Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers was surprise ...

Snow Patrol: "We're not ready for greatest hits"

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 30 October 2009

Though their music may be ubiquitous, Snow Patrol are relatively anonymous pop stars — much to the modest band's relief. ...

Rihanna: Rated R

Review by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 21 November 2009

MAYBE YOU SHOULDN'T, but it's impossible to listen to Rihanna's new record without hunting for clues about her feelings towards Chris Brown, the former boyfriend ...

Snoop (Doggy) Dogg: The new mellow Snoop Dogg still has bite

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 4 December 2009

Snoop Dogg: "Now that I'm more concerned and caring and a father and a husband — it seems the less respect I get" ...

John Mayer: Is John Mayer a rock god — or just a celebrity boyfriend?

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 2 January 2010

He's deadly serious about his music career — just ask Jennifer, Jessica and Cameron. ...

Grizzly Bear: Follow The Bear

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 14 January 2010

Grizzly Bear, the vocal harmony group beloved of the hip-hop elite, talk about touring with Radiohead and the truth behind the Brooklyn scene. ...

Julian Casablancas on the Strokes and going solo

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Sunday Times, 18 January 2010

He's the privileged kid who with The Strokes shaped the future of, among others, Kings Of Leon and Arctic Monkeys. Now he's all alone ...

Joanna Newsom: The Conversation: Joanna Newsom

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 20 February 2010

She is a homebody who models for Armani, a harpist and possibly the best composer of her generation ...

Broken Bells: the surprise supergroup

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 25 June 2010

Danger Mouse and the bloke from the Shins are set to seduce Glastonbury with their wistful lyrics and uplifting choruses. ...

Roky Erickson: The Roky Erickson road to greatness

Profile and Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 7 July 2010

The pop musician has survived madness and drugs — if only just. His rocking tunes still make sense to the kids. ...

Katy Perry: What Katy Perry did next

Comment by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 27 August 2010

For a moment Lady Gaga looked to have outgunned her, but the singer is back on top. We look at what drives her ...

Scissor Sisters: "Being on stage is some sort of revenge"

Report and Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Times, 11 September 2010

Scissor Sisters talk supporting Lady Gaga, breaking the no clowns rule at Bestival and their filthy new live show Nobody watching Scissor Sisters play Boston tonight ...

Sade: Why Sade is bigger in the US than Adele

Profile by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 13 March 2012

BRITAIN MAY have all but forgotten her, but 80s popstar Sade is a huge star in the US since her 2010 comeback. So what's the ...

Keane: As Keane bow out in Berlin, I pray it's not for good

Essay by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 11 November 2013

Unbearable as it is to contemplate, the release of a greatest hits album by the band from Battle could mark their split. ...

Björk: "I couldn't just write a disco song"

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 12 March 2015

Björk's new album Vulnicura documents the mess and pain of a breakup, but she's not downhearted. She talks about the influence of British punk and ...

Florence and the Machine: "I funned myself out"

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Guardian, 25 June 2015

Big nights and big feelings left "a trail of absolute destruction" in Florence Welch’s wake. As she prepares for the biggest night of her life ...

Cat Power: "I didn't know I loved myself when I was younger"

Interview by Sophie Heawood, The Observer, 23 September 2018

ERRATIC STAGE SHOWS, psychotic breakdowns, rehab… Cat Power's chaotic life is in direct contrast to her soulful music. Now a new album and motherhood have ...

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