Katie Melua - Biography
"Katie" Melua (Georgian:
(born September 16 1984) is a British singer and musician,
born in Georgia and raised in Northern Ireland and England
from the age of 9.
album, Call Off the Search, was released in November
2003 and reached the top of the United Kingdom album charts.
Her second album, Piece by Piece, was released in
September 2005 to commercial success.
Melua was born in Kutaisi, Georgia in 1984 and spent most of
her childhood in the town of
Ajaria where her father worked as a heart specialist. In
1993, the family moved to Belfast, Northern Ireland, as her
father had won a position at the prestigious
Victoria Hospital, where she attended St. Catherine's
Primary School and Dominican College, Fortwilliam.
family moved again to Redhill, Surrey, in 1998. At the age
of fifteen, Melua won a talent competition on British
television channel ITV by singing Badfinger's Without You.
In her final years of schooling, she attended the Brit
School for the Performing Arts undertaking a BTEC with an
A-level in music. She started writing songs in 2001 while
studying at the school. During this time, she was the
girlfriend of Luke Pritchard from the band The Kooks, which
is currently having success in 2006.
2001, aged 16, Katie did a Work Experience placement at the
BBC Research and Development
Department in Kingswood Warren, Surrey. At BBC R&D,
the eminent, perhaps somewhat eccentric engineers and
professors, noting Katie's sharpness, encouraged her to aim
to go to University, but an ambitious Melua replied that she
had already decided to be a singer, and begun her
diverse backgrounds has given her other talents apart from
her singing voice. Katie can also speak English in not only
home-counties RP, but also various Irish accents, and has
been known to impersonate characters such as the Rev. Ian
Paisley, as she demonstrated during her work-experience at
the BBC R&D.
was performing at a Brit School showcase when she caught the
eye of Mike Batt, an English songwriter and producer who was
looking for an artist capable of singing "jazz and blues in
an interesting way". He signed her to his Dramatico
recording and management company and sent her into the
studio. However, Katie admitted in a recent interview that
she had no idea Mike was behind the chart success of cult TV
show favourites The Wombles until she saw a cuddly replica
of one in his recording studio.
Off the Search
was released in the UK on November 3, 2003 and featured
songs by John Mayall, Randy Newman ("I Think it's Going to
Rain Today") and James Shelton
("Lilac Wine") as well as songs by Melua and Batt. It became
an immediate hit reaching number-one on the UK album chart
in January 2004 and the top twenty of the Australian album
charts in June 2004. Lead single "The Closest Thing to
Crazy" reached the top five in Ireland, top ten in the UK,
top twenty in Norway, top thirty in a composite European
chart and top fifty in Australia. In the UK, the album sold
1.2 million copies making it four times platinum, and spent
six weeks at the top of the charts. It sold 3 million copies
worldwide. In the UK, the second single and title track went
Top 20, and the third, Crawling Up A Hill, only got to #41,
but this was partially because the majority of people had
brought the album by then.
duetted with Jamie Cullum in a performance of "Love Cats" at
the Brit Awards in February 2004. Melua lent her talents to
Band Aid 20 in November 2004 in which she joined a chorus of
British pop stars to create a rendition of "Do They Know
It's Christmas?" to raise money for famine relief in Africa.
This was in celebration of the twentieth anniversary of the
original Band Aid.
March 19, 2005, she realised one of her childhood dreams by
performing the song "Too Much Love Will Kill You" with
at the 46664 concert in George, South Africa. In early
August 2005, Melua became a British citizen after pledging
allegiance to the Queen at a ceremony creating new British
citizens. Later that month, she played at a Dutch Royal
second album, Piece by Piece, was released on
September 26, 2005. It includes the single "Nine Million
Bicycles", which was released on September 19 of the same
year. The first
airplay for the single was on the Terry Wogan show August 1.
The album contains four more songs written by Melua herself,
four more by Batt, one cooperation between the both and
three more songs are new versions of "great songs". The band
lineup is the same as on the first album. The album debuted
at the number-one spot of the UK Albums Chart on the week of
October 3, 2005.
September 2005, Melua came under criticism in The
Guardian from writer and scientist Simon Singh for the
lyrical content of the track "Nine Million Bicycles".
Melua's lyrics "We are 12 billion light-years from the edge.
That's a guess — no-one can ever say it's true" were
interpreted by Singh as an assault on the accuracy of the
work of cosmologists, and sparked a series of letters from
other Guardian readers, agreeing or disagreeing. On
15th October, Melua and Singh both appeared on the BBC's
Today programme, and Melua unveiled a re-recording of the
song which included Singh's tongue-in-cheek amendments to
the lyrics, "We are 13.7 billion light-years from the edge
of the observable universe; that's a good estimate with
well-defined error bars/and with the available information,
I predict that I will always be with you". Both sides
amicably agreed that the new lyrics were less likely to
achieve commercial success, amidst a discussion about
scientific accuracy versus artistic licence. Melua revealed
that she 'should have known better' as she used to be a
member of the Astronomy club at school.
double A-side of the self-penned "I Cried For You" and a
cover of The Cure's "Just Like Heaven" (1988), which is the
theme song to the film Just Like Heaven, was released
in the UK on December 5 and peaked at UK #35. A third
single, "Spider's Web" was released on 17th April 2006 and
peaked at UK #52. Melua embarked on a concert tour in
support of Piece by Piece, the UK leg of which
started in Aberdeen, Scotland on January 20, 2006.
third album is due out sometime in 2007 and the first single
from the album, It's Only Pain, is due out on
September 11, 2006.
Melua Official Website
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