Banks is a mononym of at least two artists:
(1) Jillian Banks from USA
(2) Alex Banks from UK
(1) Jillian Rose Banks (born June 16, 1988 in Orange County, California, US) is an American singer-songwriter and musician based in Los Angeles, CA, USA. She releases music under Harvest Records, Good Year Recordings, and Iamsound Records. She toured internationally with The Weeknd and was also nominated for the Sound of 2014 award by the BBC and an MTV Brand New Nominee in 2014. On May 3rd, 2014, Banks was labeled as an 'Artist To Watch' by Fox Weekly.
Banks started writing songs at the age of 15. She taught herself piano when she received a keyboard from a friend to help her through her parents' divorce. She says she "felt very alone and helpless. I didn't know how to express what I was feeling or who to talk to." Drawing from inspirations like Fiona Apple and Lauryn Hill, Banks focuses on the duality of soulful earthly emotion and ethereal atmospheric sounds. After reaching a large number of listeners on her Soundcloud page, she began working with the label Good Years. Her first official single, called Before I Ever Met You was released in February 2013.
(2) Alex Banks a Brighton, UK, based multi-instrumentalist, composer and producer, who recently signed to Ninja Tune.
Growing up in the quiet Buckinghamshire countryside, he began playing Guitar, Drums and Piano aged 10 and quickly realised he would be devoting the rest of life to making music. Having developed prodigious guitar technique by the age of 17 and a keen ear for production, he moved to South-West London to study a music diploma at Brunel University. Immersing himself in the London music scene, he developed his diverse musicality playing guitar in jazz quartets, drums in rock bands, and exploring production techniques influenced by the likes of Chemical Brothers, The Prodigy and Orbital, all of which had made a huge impact on him at various Glastonbury’s he attended.
After then studying music production BA Hons at the University of Westminster, he left the hustle and bustle of London city life to head back to the sleepy village he grew up in where he lived nocturnally, honing his production skills. There he worked on furthering his production techniques, taking influence from the free parties, outdoors raves and club nights he escaped to on weekends in and around London.
After 3 years of relative isolation, he headed for the South Coast in 2007, inspired by the thriving music scene and artistic creativity revolving around Brighton. Whilst knocking out occasional advert compositions for the likes of Sony, Adidas and Xbox as well as major music publishing houses to pay the bills, he began work on developing his own unique sound fusing lush soulful strings and ethereal vocals with epic soundscapes, filthy driving beats and ground shaking bass, creating a fresh approach to production that sounded both cutting edge and timeless.
In 2010 he enlisted a live band to take his compositions out of the studio and on to the stage, playing at several festival across the UK before eventually attracting the attention of London based label Ninja Tune. Impressed by his recent work, he was given the opportunity to remix one of his biggest influences ‘Bonobo’ for the forthcoming ‘Black Sands Remixed’ album. Choosing ‘The Keeper’ to work with, Banks set about imprinting his signature sound on to the remix, turning the chilled soulful ballad into an epic bass driven journey. Having loved working with Anrdreya Triana’s vocals, by a fortuitous twist of fate resulting from a clerical error he found himself in possession of the parts to Triana’s ‘Lost Where I Belong’ with which he created his second remix for Ninja Tune. This time twisting the laid back vocals into a head nodding, futuristic hip-hop/dub-step floor filler, he demonstrated the next step in his musical evolution and an indication of things to come.
By the end of 2011 he had also delivered remixes for Husky Rescue and long time influences Lamb and is currently working on a new album due for release on Ninja Tune in 2013.