Little Mix

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Little Mix
Little Mix on stage in February 2013. From left to right: Perrie Edwards, Jade Thirlwall, Jesy Nelson and Leigh-Anne Pinnock.
Background information
Origin United Kingdom
Genres Pop, R&B, hip hop
Years active 2011–present
Labels Syco, Columbia
Associated acts The X Factor 2011 finalists, Missy Elliott, Demi Lovato, Fifth Harmony
Members Perrie Edwards
Jesy Nelson
Leigh-Anne Pinnock
Jade Thirlwall

Little Mix are a British four-piece girl group formed in 2011, consisting of members Perrie Edwards, Jesy Nelson, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Jade Thirlwall.[1] They were formed exclusively for the eighth series of The X Factor in 2011 and became the first group to win the competition. Following their victory, they signed with Simon Cowell's record label Syco Records and released a cover of Damien Rice's "Cannonball" as their winner's single.

Little Mix released their debut album DNA on 19 November 2012. It charted in the top 5 in eight countries, including number two in the UK and number four on the US Billboard 200. This made Little Mix the first girl group since The Pussycat Dolls to reach the U.S. top 5 with their debut album, as well as earning the highest debut U.S. chart position by a British girl group, breaking the record previously held by the Spice Girls, whose 1996 debut Spice charted at number five.[2] As of October 2013, Little Mix had sold over 5 million singles and over 2.5 million albums worldwide.[3]


2011: Formation and The X Factor

In 2011, Edwards, Thirlwall, Leigh-Pinnock and Nelson successfully auditioned as soloists for the eighth series of The X Factor,[4] but failed to make it past bootcamp's first challenge.[5] However, the judges decided to give them another chance in the Groups category.[5] They were put into separate ensembles by the judges during the group's bootcamp stage, with Edwards and Nelson in four-member group Faux Pas and Thirlwall and Pinnock in three-member group Orion.[6] However, both groups failed to make it through to the judges' houses. A later decision recalled two members from each group to form the four-piece group Rhythmix, sending them through to the judges' houses.[7]

Little Mix performing in 2012

They eventually reached the live shows and were mentored by Tulisa Contostavlos.[8] During the first live show on October 8, 2011, Rhythmix performed Super Bass by American recording artist Nicki Minaj. Their rendition was praised by the judges with Gary Barlow calling them the “best girl band that’s ever been on The X Factor.[9] On 26 October 2011, Rhythmix announced that they would change their name following a dispute with a Brighton-based children's music charity of the same name, after the programme tried to trademark "Rhythmix".[10][11] A spokesman for The X Factor said, "At the request of the charity Rhythmix, the members of the girl group Rhythmix have decided to change their name, a decision which has the support of Syco and TalkbackTHAMES."[12] It was reported that the group decided to make the change, with no legal requirement to do so, to avoid any difficulties for the charity.[12] On 28 October 2011, it was announced that the group's new name would be "Little Mix".[13] On 20 November 2011, Little Mix became the first girl group in the show's eight-year history to progress past the seventh live show. The previous longest-surviving girl groups were The Conway Sisters (series 2) and Hope (series 4), who had both lasted until week 7.[14] Through the remaining course of the competition the group generally received positive feedback. During the semi-final stage of the show, Little Mix performed The Supremes's You Keep Me Hangin' On as well as Beyoncé’s hit If I Were a Boy. Their performance of You Keep Me Hangin' On received mostly negative feedback from the judges with Louis Walsh stating that they “lost their mojo” and Kelly Rowland telling the girl group she seen them do “better vocal performances.” Their second performance of the night, If I Were A Boy, was generally acclaimed by the judges with Walsh telling them they have “amazing potential” and calling them the “next big girl band.” Rowland also told them they could be “incredibly dynamic” and “change the world” when they find the strength within each other. The group advanced through to the final live shows along with Marcus Collins and Amelia Lily following the public vote.

On 11 December, Little Mix were announced as the winners, the first-ever group to win.[15] Their winner's single was a cover of Damien Rice's song "Cannonball", which was released via digital download on 11 December 2011, and on CD on 14 December 2011.[16][17] The Xtra Factor: The Winner's Story was shown on ITV2 on 17 December 2011.[18] Their debut single topped the UK Singles Chart on 18 December 2011.[19] They made the Christmas number one spot on the Irish Singles Chart, beating novelty songs by The Saw Doctors and Ryan Sheridan.[20]

2012–13: DNA and international breakthrough

Little Mix performing in 2012

On 25 January 2012, Little Mix made an appearance at the National Television Awards and performed the En Vogue song "Don't Let Go (Love)". They also accompanied fellow judges Gary Barlow and Tulisa Contostavlos on stage to receive the Best Talent Show award that had been won by the The X Factor.[24] In May 2012, Little Mix reportedly signed a deal with Vivid and Bravado to release signature products including dolls, puzzles, accessories and games.[25]

Little Mix performed their debut single "Wings" for the first time at the T4 on the Beach concert on 1 July.[26] The single debuted at number one on the UK Singles Chart.[27] On 31 August 2012, the group's autobiography, titled Ready to Fly, was released by Harper Collins.[28][29][30][31]

Their debut album, DNA, was released in November 2012. Nicola Roberts co-penned a track called "Going Nowhere." on the DNA album[32] A second single, "DNA", was released in October,[33] and in January 2013 they signed a record deal with Columbia Records in North America.[34] "Wings" was released as their debut single in America on 5 February 2013.[35] On 3 February 2013, they released "Change Your Life" as the album's third single, which charted at number 12 on the UK Singles Chart.[36] On 4 March 2013, it was announced that "How Ya Doin'?" would be released as the fourth single from their debut album.[37]

In an interview with Digital Spy published on 14 March 2013, Little Mix stated that their second album would have a more R&B sound.[38] Nelson added: "I personally want to put a lot more dancey stuff in there. As in, one of the songs that comes on in a club that makes you want to dance. Not that David Guetta sound, but more R&B – a bit like Eve and Gwen Stefani's "Let Me Blow Ya Mind".[38] On 21 March, they announced that their next single, "How Ya Doin'?", would feature Grammy Award-winning musician, Missy Elliott.[39] On 4 April 2013, the group revealed that Schwarzkopf hair dye Live Colour XXL would be promoted through their music video for "How Ya Doin'?" in a new sponsorship deal.[40] "How Ya Doin'?" debuted at number 57 on the UK Singles Chart on 20 April 2013, before ascending to number 23 the week after.[41] In its third week, the song peaked at number 16,[42] marking Little Mix's fifth consecutive UK top 20 hit.[43] It charted for a total of seven weeks.[43] "How Ya Doin'?" sold 110,000 copies in the UK. The single debuted at number 55 on the Irish Singles Chart on 11 April 2013.[44] It then climbed the chart to peak at number 26. Consequently, "How Ya Doin'?" became Little Mix's first single to miss the top 20 in Ireland, but spent a total of seven weeks on the chart.[45] The single peaked at number 16 on the Scottish Singles Chart on 11 May 2013,[46] marking the group's fifth consecutive top 20 hit in Scotland.[47]

2013–present: Salute

On 23 September 2013, a single called "Move" premiered as the lead single from Little Mix's second studio album, appearing on iTunes on 3 November.[48] On 4 October 2013, the group uploaded a video to their official YouTube page, announcing that their second album would be called Salute.[49] The album was released on 11 November 2013 in the UK and was released on 4 February 2014 in the US. Little Mix performed "Move" on the fifth series of the Australian version of the The X Factor.[50] Following the performance, "Move" debuted on the ARIA Singles Chart at number 33 and eventually reached 26.[50]

The band released a cover version of Cameo's song "Word Up!" as the official single for Sport Relief 2014.[51][52]


Little Mix cite the Spice Girls, Beyoncé, Michael Jackson, Destiny’s Child, En Vogue, TLC, Nicki Minaj, Christina Aguilera and Rihanna as their musical influences.[53][54] Edwards cites Jackson and Steve Perry from the American rock band Journey as her musical influences.[53]

Other ventures

Products and endorsements

In May 2012, Little Mix launched the Union Jack pack of M&M’s.[55] The group also treated fans to an exclusive performance at the M&M’s World store. In 2012, Little Mix released their first book entitled ‘Ready to Fly’. The title of the book is most likely a reference to their debut single Wings. The book was published through HarperCollins and documents the group’s journey since auditioning for The X Factor.[56] The girl group signed a joint deal with toymaker Vivid and music merchandiser Bravado to release a range of products including dolls, puzzles, accessories and games in November. [57]

During 2012, Little Mix also unveiled a kid’s clothing range with clothing retailer Primark. The line is aimed to 7-13 year olds and comprises of accessories, t-shirts, leggings and nightwear. The products include the group’s individual trademark icons, Edwards has a flower, Pinnock has a baseball cap, Thirlwall a bow and Nelson’s icon is a boom box.

On 4 April 2013, the group revealed that Schwarzkopf hair dye Live Colour XXL would be promoted through their music video for "How Ya Doin'?".[40] In September, Little Mix announced that they were launching their own makeup line with Collection. Perrie shared, "We are so so excited to unveil our new range to all you makeup lovers out there. As you know we all love dressing up and experimenting with different looks, so creating our own makeup was a dream come true. We designed the collection ourselves and we've all chosen products that reflect our personalities."

The group teamed up with nail brand Elegant Touch to design their own individual nails, each girl designed their own nails and nail wraps to represent their personality for fashion. Elegant Touch and Little Mix signed up with New Look to officially launch the range. The nail line was released in April 2013. [58]

In September, Little Mix announced that they were launching their own makeup line with Collection. Perrie shared, "We are so so excited to unveil our new range to all you makeup lovers out there. As you know we all love dressing up and experimenting with different looks, so creating our own makeup was a dream come true. We designed the collection ourselves and we've all chosen products that reflect our personalities."


Perrie Edwards

Edwards was born (1993-07-10) 10 July 1993 (age 20),[59] and raised in South Shields, Tyne and Wear to parents Alexander Edwards and Deborah Duffy. Edwards has an older brother named Jonnie. Her first audition was "You Oughta Know" by Alanis Morissette.[60] She became engaged to One Direction member Zayn Malik in August 2013.[61]

Jesy Nelson

Nelson was born (1991-06-14) 14 June 1991 (age 22),[62] and raised in Romford, London to parents John Nelson and Janice White. She has an older sister Jade and two brothers, Joseph and Jonathan.[63][64] Her first audition was "Bust Your Windows" by Jazmine Sullivan.[65] Since joining Little Mix, she has faced cyber-bullying and struggled to cope during her time on The X Factor.[64][66] Prior to the show, Nelson worked as a barmaid.[67] She's in a relationship with Diversity's Jordan Banjo.

Leigh-Anne Pinnock

Pinnock was born (1991-10-04) 4 October 1991 (age 22),[68] and raised in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire along with her two sisters, Sarah and Sian-Louise.[69] Pinnock is of Barbadian and Jamaican ancestry.[70] Before joining Little Mix, she worked as a waitress in Pizza Hut.[69] Her first audition was "Only Girl (in the World)" by Rihanna.[65] She's in a relationship with Jordan Kiffin.

Jade Thirlwall

Thirlwall was born (1992-12-26) 26 December 1992 (age 21),[71] and raised in South Shields, Tyne and Wear.[72] She previously auditioned for The X Factor during series 5 (2008) and series 7 (2010). Her first audition (2011) was "I Want to Hold Your Hand" by The Beatles. Her musical influences are Diana Ross and Cheryl Cole. She's in a relationship with Diversity's Sam Craske.


Concert tours

Awards and nominations


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  11. ^ Glamour (21 November 2011). "Simon Cowell donates money to Rhythmix charity". CondéNetUK. 
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  14. ^ Sheridan, Emily (5 December 2011). "Little Mix make X Factor history as the first girl group to make the final". Daily Mail (London). Retrieved 21 December 2011. 
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  16. ^ "Cannonball". 2011. Retrieved 21 December 2011. 
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  22. ^ Anisiobi, J J (11 December 2011). "Frock horror! Tulisa struggles to sit down in her HUGE polka-dot meringue outfit on The X Factor final". Daily Mail (London). 
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  38. ^ a b Copsey, Robert (14 March 2013). "Exclusive: Little Mix talk next album: 'It will be more R&B'". Digital Spy. Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
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  41. ^ "2013-04-27 Top 40 Official UK Singles Archive". Official Charts Company. 27 April 2013. Archived from the original on 2 June 2013. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  42. ^ Alex Kyuss. "Chart Log UK – Chart Coverage and Record Sales 2006". Retrieved November 8, 2012. 
  43. ^ a b "UK Singles Chart runs" (in the "Artist" field, enter "Little Mix"; select "Submit"). Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  44. ^ "GFK Chart-Track". Irish Recorded Music Association. 11 April 2013. Archived from the original on 2 June 2013. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  45. ^ Peak positions in Ireland:
  46. ^ "Archive Chart". The Official Charts Company. Retrieved 24 March 2011. 
  47. ^ Peak positions for singles in Scotland:
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  50. ^ a b "ARIA Singles: It Is Still About Katy Perry". Noise11. Noise Network. 26 October 2013. Retrieved 26 October 2013. 
  51. ^ Runcie, Charlotte (17 January 2014). "Little Mix to cover Word Up as Sport Relief single". London: Telegraph. Retrieved 2014-01-21. 
  52. ^ "Newsbeat - Little Mix to record Cameo's Word Up as Sport Relief song". BBC. 2014-01-17. Retrieved 2014-01-21. 
  53. ^ a b "Little Mix’s Aspirations, Musical Influences & Collaboration Wish List". 27 March 2013. Retrieved 27 March 2013. 
  54. ^ Jason Lipshutz (22 June 2013). "Little Mix On Spice Girls Influence & U.S. Success: 'We Feel Like Justin Bieber'". Retrieved 27 March 2013. 
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  56. ^ "Little Mix: Ready to Fly (100% OFFICIAL)". 2012. Retrieved 2012. 
  57. ^ "Little Mix to release range of dolls for Christmas". 29 May 2012. Retrieved 29 May 2012. 
  58. ^ "Little Mix nails and nail wraps in new look". 2013. Retrieved 2013. 
  59. ^ "Happy Birthday Perrie Edwards! Here’s your best party looks…". Sugarscape. 30 November 2011. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  60. ^ Heat (2011). "Little Mix". Bauer London Lifestyle. Retrieved 22 December 2011. 
  61. ^ Nicole Eggenberger (21 August 2013). "Zayn Malik Engaged to Perrie Edwards: See Her Engagement Ring!". Us Weekly. Retrieved 21 August 2013. 
  62. ^ "Little Mix Glam Up As They Hit The Town For Jesy's 21st Birthday (PICS)". Huffington Post. 15 June 2012. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  63. ^ Ali, Safira (12 December 2011). "Romford’s Jesy Nelson has made history by winning X Factor with Little Mix". Romford Recorder. Retrieved 22 December 2011. 
  64. ^ a b "Jesy Nelson". Retrieved 22 December 2011. 
  65. ^ a b "The Xtra Factor: The Winner's Story". The X Factor. Series 8. 17 December 2011. ITV. ITV 2.
  66. ^ Llewellyn, Angharad (8 November 2011). "X Factor's Jesy Nelson hits back at net bullies". The Sun (London). Retrieved 7 July 2012. 
  67. ^ Littlejohn, Georgina (9 November 2011). "Little Mix's Jesy Nelson plans to rise above her haters after upsetting 'fat' jibes". Daily Mail (London). Retrieved 8 November 2011. 
  68. ^ Maloney, Alison (5 October 2012). "Little Mix party at Leigh-Anne Pinnock's birthday bash with Tulisa". The Sun (London). Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  69. ^ a b Carswell, Andy (11 December 2011). "X Factor Leigh-Anne: Win is "insane"". Retrieved 22 December 2011. 
  70. ^ [1][dead link]
  71. ^ "Little Mix's Jade Thirlwall celebrates her 21st birthday at charity swim in the icy cold sea - VIDEO". Sugarscape. 2011-09-15. Retrieved 2014-01-05. 
  72. ^ Ward, Verity (22 December 2011). "No place like home for Little Mix stars". Jarrow and Hebburn Gazette. Retrieved 22 December 2011. 

External links

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Matt Cardle
Winner of The X Factor
Succeeded by
James Arthur