Adele Emily Sandé grew up in Scotland where her parents encouraged her passion for singing and playing the piano. Although wanting to pursue a music career she was equally determined to gain an education and graduated from the University of Glasgow with a degree in medicine. After receiving early exposure on BBC Radio 1 and BBC 1Xtra she met musician and producer Naughty Boy (Shahid Khan) and the pair began collaborating and writing songs. Several of the tracks she composed with him and subsequently with other writers were successfully recorded by numerous artists including Rihanna ('Half Of Me'), Professor Green ('Kids That Love To Dance', 'Astronaut' and 'Astronaut'), Alicia Keys ('101', 'Brand New Me' and 'Not Even The King'), Katy Perry ('It Takes Two'), Leona Lewis ('Sugar', 'I To You', 'Mountains' and 'Trouble'), Susan Boyle ('This Will Be The Year'), Tinchy Stryder ('Til The End' and 'Let It Rain'), Cheryl Cole ('Boys'), Tinie Tempah ('Let Go'), Devlin ('Brainwashed') and Wretch 32 ('Underdog Law'). Sandé's first taste of chart success came when she was a featured artist on Chipmunk's UK No 6 single 'Diamond Rings' in 2009 and on the Naughty Boy Presents Wiley, featuring the Emile Sandé No 8 hit 'Never Be Your Woman' the following year.
Having previously secured a publishing deal with EMI Music she signed a recording contract with Virgin Records who released her debut solo single 'Heaven' which debuted at No 2 on the UK charts in August 2011. This was followed by another featured appearance (and co-writing credit) on Professor Green's hugely popular and chart topping 'Read All About It'. Subsequent solo releases, 'Daddy' (featuring Naughty Boy) and 'Next To Me', which debuted at No 21 and No 2 respectively, preceded her first album Our Version Of Events in February 2012. Sandé co-wrote all fourteen tracks on the record with several songwriters including Alicia Keys (who co-wrote 'Hope') while nine were written with Shahid Khan and others. Becoming the best selling album of the year, the record debuted at the top of the UK charts where it went on to sell in excess of two million copies and it later peaked at No 28 in the USA. The record contained a new vocal version of 'Read All About It' and as it no longer featured Professor Green's rap, she re-titled it 'Read All About It, Part III'. Later released as a single in its own right it peaked at No 3 in the UK while her live performance of the song at the closing ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics won both her and the song many new fans. Sandé released several more singles from her debut, the last and most successful being 'Clown' which reached No 4 in September 2012. The following month she was in the charts again with another co-writing credit and a featured appearance on Labrinth's UK No 1 'Beneath Your Beautiful' while 2013 found her co-writing both 'Wonder' and ''Lifted' by Naughty Boy featuring Emeli Sandé (UK No 10 & No 8 respectively) as well as 'Free' by Rudimental featuring Emeli Sandé & Nas which peaked at No 26. Although it is known that she married her long standing partner, Montenegrin marine biologist Adam Gouraguine in 2012, they maintain a private life out of the public eye.
In the space of a few short years Sandé established herself as a prolific and successful writer of songs for both herself and other artists while her debut album revealed her to be a hugely talented singer and musician. She has already received dozens of nominations and won numerous honours including three BRIT Awards (Best British Female Artist, Best British Album Of The Year and the Critics Choice Award), two Ivor Novello Awards for 'Next To Me' (Best Song Musically And Lyrically and the Most Performed Work) and three MOBO Awards (Best UK Female, Best R&B/Soul Act and Best Album). She has collaborated with many artists including Alicia Keys who is one of her biggest musical influences. Although her medical studies were primarily concerned with the brain, her songwriting demonstrates she is equally acquainted with the human heart, her lyrics speaking eloquently of life, love and loss, as evidenced in the song 'Lifetime' - Dreaming only lasts until you wake up and you find you're not asleep, Silence only sticks around till someone in the room decides to speak, And luck runs out and hearts go cold, We're only young until we're old, And summer leaves us wondering were it went, The friends you have can disappear, The whole world can change within a year, And money only lasts until it's spent.
There's little doubt that Emeli Sandé is one of the UK's most talented artists to emerge in the last decade and should she be able to maintain the quality of her work so far she can look forward to being one of the twenty-first century's most significant singer/songwriters.
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