Conceived in April 2011, 'Driving Lolita' began as a challenge D-Code (Dee Dhanjal) set himself.
Known as a Drum & Bass producer, head remixer for the computer game DJ Hero and erstwhile presenter on Radio 1, Dee had a musical epiphany. He was bored.
Bored of the music he was making and bored of the way he was making music, Dee decided to change things up. Sitting in his apartment, he spent over a year with his pen firmly placed on the drawing board. The only rules were to create the opposite of what he'd always done and to take the project live. Tunes gave way to songs. Ableton triggers gave way to instruments.
As the project grew, so did the number of players. Dee contacted Abrar Hafiz who in Dee's mind, was a man born in the wrong era. Oozing pure 60's and 70's rock 'n' roll swagger, whether it be with a Bass or Guitar, Abrar was the man to provide the grit Dee was looking for.
Abrar had co-founded "Sona Fariq" in the late 90's and had toured the globe relentlessly as well as released records on Warner Music. The band were nominated for 'Best British Band' at the Kerrang Awards 2000.
With Abrar on board, Dee worked on a range of tracks and song ideas that needed a voice. The problem was the range of tracks. Some were Punk, others more soulful, others drew from the proto-Rock n Roll end of blues.
Dee stepped into the vocal booth alongside several other collaborators, including Tom Cameron (Arrows Down) who is a singer/songwriter with the Disturbing London camp (the guys behind Tine Tempah). They made the cut but something was still lacking.
After record searching high and low, hundreds of recording sessions and delving to the depths of despair, the answer was right in front of him: Graziella who Dee knew through the Foreign Beggars.
Raised on Soul and Blues, Graziella had been developing her vocal skills since the age of 14. Singing in school choirs to spitting cyphers in the playground, all led to Graziella realising she had a voice with many guises.
Dee loved her work with the Foreign Beggars, be it on their debut 'Stray Point Agenda' or their latest album 'United Colours of Beggatron'. She was also one third of Miss Frank on 2009's X-Factor and toured extensively with DJ Vadim.
Adding her range and different styles to compliment the tracks, Graziella added something special. Maybe it was because the project wasn't Hip-Hip, Soul or Pop or maybe because she always had it in her - either way the beast was unleashed.
2012 saw worldwide main stage festival appearances, televised performances from Radio One's Hackney Weekend and new radio exposure from BBC 6Music.
The band represents a love for good music. They have the renaissance bug embedded in their intent and have a determined vision. They are Driving Lolita.