Andonis Michaelides (Greek: Αντώνης Μιχαηλίδης; 24 July 1958 – 4 January 2011), better known as Mick Karn, was an English-Cypriot musician and songwriter who rose to fame as the bassist for the art rock / new wave band Japan. His distinctive fretless bass sound and melodic playing style were a trademark of the band's sound.
Mick Karn was a one-off and an all-round artist. He emigrated to the UK from Cyprus in the early 1960s and met the three other founding members of Japan at Catford Boys' School in London. Japan became one of the most celebrated bands of the 1980s, and their popularity is only increasing today, with huge interest in the original, subsequent and solo music of the various members and a new book, "Japan: A Foreign Place", by Anthony Reynolds (due in 2015). Japan split in 1982, bowing out after a hugely successful world tour and accompanying album, "Oil On Canvas".
Inside and outside Japan, Mick developed a distinctive and original bass sound instantly recognizable as his own. Mick was mainly a self-taught musician and many feel he changed the perception of how the bass is played and heard forever. His rubbery, unique playing led best friend and Polytown band mate David Torn to say of Mick, "It's as if Bootsy Collins... Read More|
... was from Morocco." He also played woodwind instruments, mainly clarinet and saxophone, and many others.
Mick was a celebrated sculptor as well as an author and chef; he later qualified in psychiatry. He spoke several languages and in 2009 published his autobiography, "Japan and Self Existence," available from www.lulu.com.
After Japan, Mick worked in many areas of music, experimenting in jazz, ambient and prog, and continued to create his own indefinable music as a solo artist and in collaboration with other great musicians, including ex-members of Japan.
His first solo album, "Titles", and the first Dalis Car collaboration, "The Waking Hour", give those new to his music a good place to begin to discover it.