McPherson was born in Hastings, the son of William Rutherford McPherson (1935–1975)and Edith Gower, who married in Paddington in 1960. As a child Suggs was brought up in Hastings by his mother - his father having left shortly before he was born. In a 2009 interview he was asked about what happened to his father:
:" I don't know, but what I've heard hasn't been good: heroin, injecting his eyeballs with paraffin, being sectioned. He must be dead now. I mean, he would have got in touch if he was alive, wouldn't he? Yeah, he must be dead, poor bugger."