Toni Watson Facts
Other Name:- Tones and I
Born On:- 2000-08-15
Her Age:- 21
Famous As:- Singer
Place of Birth:- Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, Australia
Born Country:- Australia
Toni Watson, more known by her stage name Tones and I, is an Australian singer and songwriter. A Victoria native, she started playing keyboards and drum pads while she was in secondary school. Soon enough, she began performing on the streets of Melbourne. In 2009, she set up a YouTube channel where she initially posted covers of popular tracks. She released her first single, ‘Johnny Run Away’, in March 2019. Two months later, she put out ‘Dance Monkey’, which became the number one track in more than 30 countries. Tones and I released the first extended play of her career, ‘The Kids Are Coming’, in August 2019.
Early Life & Family
Toni Watson was born in Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, Australia. Contradictory information is available on her birth year. Some sources say that she was born in 1995, while others state that it happened in 2000.
After one of her aunts pointed out that she could hold a note when she was seven years old, Toni decided to pursue music as a career. When she was in secondary school, she started playing keyboards and drum pads. Not long after this, she began busking in Melbourne while supporting herself by working at a clothing store.
Toni Watson AKA Tones and I’s Struggling years
In 2009, Toni set up a self-titled YouTube channel and shared a cappella cover versions there. She soon started booking local gigs and festivals, including the Let Go festival. In 2014, she was briefly part of a two-piece musical act before venturing out on her own. She remarked on her switch to a solo career, “I actually got made redundant from my retail job and with that money I bought an RC300 (loop station) and just started to try figure it all out.”
She started travelling and busking all over the Australian east coast with her synthesisers and loop pedal, gradually building up a loyal fan base and enthralling thousands with her genre-diverse style.
She became acquainted with Jackson Walkden-Brown in September 2017 during her busking trip to Byron Bay. Walkden-Brown started serving as one of her talent managers about a month later. Her success as a street performer made her believe that she should fully devote herself to music. In 2018, she was either living at her parents’ home in the Gold Coast hinterland or in her van in Byron Bay, composing music and being a full-time street performer. Later that year, she was awarded the top prize at the Battle of the Buskers at Buskers by the Creek.
Signing with Bad Batch Records/Sony Music Australia
In February 2019, Toni Watson landed a record deal with Bad Batch Records/Sony Music Australia. She also entered into a management deal with Artists Only and Lemon Tree Music. In March 2019, she released ‘Johnny Run Away’, her debut single. It became a massive hit in Australia, receiving 3xPlatinum certification from the Australian Recording Industry Association or ARIA.
On May 10, 2019, she put out her second single, ‘Dance Monkey’, which, according to her, was written while she was “alone in a dark closet in not much more than 30 minutes”. This track was even a bigger hit than ‘Johnny Run Away’, reaching the top spot in the music charts in countries like Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. In November, she created a new record by spending the most weeks (16) atop the ARIA Singles Chart among all musical artists. By January 2020, she had held the spot for 24 weeks.
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Her EP – The Kids Are Coming
In May 2019, she appeared on the stage of the Big Pineapple Music Festival. She also served as the opening act in the Splendour in the Grass 2019, performing as the Triple J Unearthed Splendour in the Grass competition winner, where she set a new record for the biggest crowd of an opening set. In July, her third single, ‘Never Seen the Rain’, was released. Later that month, she told the media about her upcoming EP, ‘The Kids Are Coming’, which came out August 30, 2019. It is comprised of six songs: the title track, ‘Dance Monkey’, ‘Johnny Run Away’, ‘Never Seen the Rain’, ‘Colourblind’, and ‘Jimmy’. Produced by Konstantin Kersting, it received the Gold certification from ARIA. ‘The Kids Are Coming’ was also awarded the ARIA Award for Best Independent Release at the ARIA Music Awards of 2019
On February 1, 2020, she embarked on ‘Kids Are Coming World Tour’. However, following the COVID 2019-20 outbreak, the dates of the tour in Australia have been postponed until September and October 2020.
In 2020, she has released two singles to date: ‘Bad Child’ and ‘Can’t Be Happy All the Time’.
In 2019, for ‘Dance Monkey’, she won the ARIA Music Awards for Best Female Artist, Breakthrough Artist, and Best Pop Release.