Born 4 October 1957 in Auckland, New Zealand, Zaine Griff is a singer-songwriter who was part of the English new wave scene of the 1980s. Although being educated and beginning as musician in New Zealand, he moved to England in the Seventies. There, he became vocalist and bassist of a band called Baby Face and began to study mime and movement, alongside Kate Bush, Adam Darius and Lindsay Kemp. At the time, he joined Kemp’s production of Flowers, a play written by Jean Genet, but quit to stay in London to continue with music, when the company went to tour in Australia.

After leaving the Kemp company, Griff joined Screemer, with whom he released two singles, ‘Interplanetary Twist’, in 1976, and ‘In The City’, in 1977. Griff also played bass guitar with The Kinks on their album, Misfits. In 1979 for his solo career, he used various musicians for his band, including future film music composer and musician Hans Zimmer and Ultravox drummer Warren Cann. He released two albums, Ashes and Diamonds (recorded in 1979, released in 1980) and Figvres (1982). On both albums, Hans Zimmer played keyboards and computers.

On the second album Figvres, Kate Bush sang backing vocals in the song Flowers, which was dedicated to their mime and dance teacher Lindsay Kemp. Also Yukihiro Takahashi of Japanese electronic band YMO joined the musicians.

In 1984, Griff returned to New Zealand, where he became the owner of a jazz club in Auckland. He has produced several artists and wrote new songs in more recent times. In January 2010, Griff started to record his third album Child Who Wants The Moon, which was released in August 2011. Zaine’s first two albums were re-released on CD and iTunes in June 2012.

Kate about Zaine Griff

Zaine had written a song for Lindsay Kemp called ‘Flowers’, and he asked me to sing B.V.s. It is a really lovely song. Zaine and I met years ago at Lindsay’s classes, and as Lindsay was such a powerful influence on us both – as he is on anyone who is captured by his strong magic – it was a real pleasure to be a part of something dedicated to him.

Kate Bush Club newsletter, 1984