Tony Hawks

Tony Hawks is a British comedian and author.

Hawks first attemped to break into showbusiness as a serious singer-songwriter, but it was with a novelty record that he had his first brush with fame. As leader of the trio Morris Minor and the Majors, in 1988 he reached number 4 in the UK charts with the Beastie Boys pastiche, "Stutter Rap (No Sleep 'Til Bedtime)". It went on to sell 220,000 copies, and was number one in Australia. The follow-up, a pastiche of Stock Aitken Waterman called "This is the Chorus", fared less well.

A TV series followed from this, Morris Minor's Marvelous Motors, written by and starring Hawks. In it the fictional bandleader attempted to maintain his pop career while running a garage. It ran for one series in 1989.

Hawks performs stand-up comedy, and is a regular on TV and radio panel games in the UK, including I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue, Just A Minute, and Have I Got News For You. He has also appeared in Red Dwarf in a number of supporting roles (most often as a voice artist for intelligent machines), as well as performing a warm-up act for the live audience before taping began to get them laughing. His continuous presence during the early seasons of the series led to his being nicknamed "The Fifth Dwarfer."

Hawks has written three books. The first was an account of his quixotic attempt to hitchhike around Ireland with a fridge to win a bet. It was titled (naturally) Round Ireland With A Fridge (ISBN 0-091-86777-0).

His second book, also the result of a drunken bet (with the comedian Arthur Smith), was Playing The Moldovans At Tennis (ISBN 0-091-87456-4), this time involving an attempt to beat each member of the Moldovan football team at a game of tennis. Although starting with a silly premise, the poverty that Hawks finds in Moldova leads to a darker and possibly more touching book than was his adventure in Ireland.

His third book, One Hit Wonderland (ISBN 0-091-88210-9), describes his attempt, over 10 years after his first, to write a second hit, which culminates in him performing on Albanian television with Norman Wisdom in a bid to get around the thorny problem of having to make an actual record.

Tony Hawks is the co-founder and public face of the Tennis For Free campaign which aims to make Britain's existing municipal tennis facilities available to all.

Of the many people that Tony Hawks is not, possibly the most notable is skateboarder Tony Hawk. Hawks features on his website many emails from people who have failed to notice the difference.

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