Adele Adkins, known simply by her first name, is a Londoner through and through and hails from the North London borough of Tottenham. Adamant she was born into an unmusical family, Adele found her way into music by impersonating the SpiceGirls as a child, and later drew her influence from discovering Etta James and the likes of R&B queens, Destiny’s Child and Aaliyah. After attending the BRIT school for performing arts, a free college that has nurtured the talent of Amy Winehouse, Jessie J and Kate Nash to name a few, Adele began to record her own music. Her debut track, Hometown Glory was released through Pacemaker Recordings in 2006. The ballad, Daydreamer, released shortly thereafter was the go-to track for those who caught her performance on the BBC2 television show, Later...with Jools Holland.
Her Later... appearance brought attention from XL Recordings who signed the soon-to-be starlet and facilitated the release of Adele’s debut album, 19 in early 2008; titled after her own age at the time. Every bit revealing and heartfelt as her earlier efforts, 19 is “about being between 18 and 19; about love,” she says. The ensuing popularity of the record secured two Grammy Awards for Best New Artist and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance in 2009 and saw Adele skyrocket into the limelight. In February 2011 she released her sophomore effort, 21 to a similarly enraptured reception. The haunting blues-y, gospel single, Rolling in the Deep, has been covered by everyone from Linkin Park to Patti Smith, and has been re-mixed by a host of producers including Jamie XX. With a voice that is instantly recognisable and powerful enough to rival the greatest of yesteryear’s soul singers, Adele has caught and held the attention of a worldwide listener.