Platts, born in a military hospital in Kowloon, Hong Kong, had a nomadic childhood before winning a place at Liverpool's LIPA. He first started making industry waves by playing on Corinne Bailey Rae's debut album in 2006. That in turn helped land him his own publishing deal with Zomba Music. This led to collaborations with lettered artists such as Rod "Thriller" Temperton, John Oates, Jed Leiber, and former Gil Scott-Heron collaborator Brian Jackson.
Platts started the band in 2007 by conducting an internet search for talented musicians to execute his catchy compositions and arrangements. He found Horan in Western Australia, who, in addition to bass, was classically trained on the violin and piano. Lewis had studied music in Essex, going on to tour with Jools Holland as part of brother Christopher Holland's band. Meanwhile Pollitt had established his rep as a studio musician, notably on "Green Light" for Beyoncé's B-Day album, with producer Pharrell Williams. Platts found Oliver in Hertfordshire. The band released Route to Riches in 2009, an album owing much to the Motown sound that has seen a revival among 2000s U.K. artists. The album was co-produced by Julian Simmons (Guillemots), mixed by Grammy Award-winning producer/engineer Jack Joseph Puig (Black Eyed Peas, U2, the Rolling Stones), and mastered by Bob Ludwig. It achieved the number three sales slot on the Japanese Billboard charts, and number one on the airplay charts. A deluxe edition was released in 2010, with lead singles "Wishing" and "Finger on It." ~ Vincent Thomas, Rovi