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Post People: Barking and Dagenham singer’s lost song makes Metropolis album

PUBLISHED: 11:00 05 April 2017

Tony Johnson, from Dagenham, was picked by record label Metropolis for its Lost Songs UK Volume 2 album, now available on iTunes Picture: Tony Johnson

Tony Johnson, from Dagenham, was picked by record label Metropolis for its Lost Songs UK Volume 2 album, now available on iTunes Picture: Tony Johnson

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Cleaner Tony Johnson, 42, tells Sebastian Murphy-Bates how he swapped from scrubbing to strumming when Metropolis invited him to record on their Lost Songs UK Volume Two album

Tony Johnson wrote Top of the World in his Barking flat in 2000 Picture: Tony JohnsonTony Johnson wrote Top of the World in his Barking flat in 2000 Picture: Tony Johnson

“A month after sending my song Top of the World to the record label Metropolis I got an email saying they wanted it for the album, which was released on Friday.

“I was excited but it was strange too because it’s a song I wrote back in 2000 in about half an hour.

“I just woke up in my flat in Cowbridge Lane, Barking, and the sun was shining and I just felt in a good mood so I picked up my acoustic guitar.

“I learned to sing at Erkenwald Comprehensive School in Marlborough Road, Barking, and music’s always been a big part of my life but going to the record studio in Chiswick to meet with people who wanted to feature the song was really surreal.

“My dad used to play in a band when I was a kid and I’d help set up his drum kit before gigs. And he was always playing Pink Floyd, Eric Clapton and Crosby, Stills and Nash when I was growing up in Campden Crescent, Dagenham.

“I used to be in a band called The Kubes with my dad on the drums, my uncles on bass and another guy sang my lyrics while I played guitar.

“But then I had a family and the music took a back seat but I’d still tinkle around on my acoustic and write songs with my friends.

“I chose to send in Top of the World because I’d always known it was a commercial track. I always thought it had potential and people could sing along to it and a song about feeling on top of the world makes people feel good.

“It’s brilliant to be featured on the album, which is made up of songs unknown artists have written and since been forgotten about.

“Mine was just sat in a drawer for years but it’s fantastic to have it on iTunes and Spotify, it really makes me proud.

“I’m no Jimi Hendrix, but I don’t think you have to be if you can just write a few songs and get a few mates to help you out.”

You can buy the album on iTunes for £8.99 here

You can listen to Tony’s other music on soundcloud.com here

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