||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (January 2009)|
|Birth name||Marion Elise Ravn|
25 May 1984 |
|Genres||Pop, Rock, Pop-Rock, Alternative Rock, Hard Rock, Post Grunge, Adult Alternative, Acoustic, Folk Rock|
|Occupations||Singer, songwriter, Musician, Presenter, Voice Actress.|
|Labels||Current: Playroom Music,
Previous: Eleven Seven, Atlantic Records
|Associated acts||M2M, Meat Loaf, Thom Hell, Lisa Miskovsky|
|Vocals, Electric Guitar, Piano, Acoustic Guitar, Drums, Percussion, Keyboards|
Marion Elise Ravn (born 25 May 1984), known as Marion Raven, is a Norwegian singer-songwriter, and former child actress. She was one-half of the now defunct pop duo M2M, along with Marit Larsen. Raven was later marketed as a pop rock artist by Atlantic Records with the release of her solo debut album, Here I Am. In 2006, Raven was signed to the indie record label, Eleven Seven, and released the Heads Will Roll EP, as well as her European/U.S debut and second album overall, Set Me Free, in 2007. In August 2009 she recorded an album called Nevermore that, after spawning 2 singles, was scrapped due to label and licensing issues. In 2011, Raven began production for a new third album titled Songs from a Blackbird, which was finally released in her hometown of Norway on April 8, 2013.
In 2013 on her 29th birthday, Raven married long time boyfriend, professional snowboarder Andreas Wiig.
- 1 Early life
- 2 M2M and international success
- 3 Solo career
- 4 Hver gang vi møtes
- 5 Other Projects
- 6 Awards and nominations
- 7 Tours
- 8 Charity appearances
- 9 Discography
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Raven was born in Lørenskog, Norway; her father, Hallgeir Johan Ravn is a teacher. She has an older brother and two younger sisters. Her surname is of Norse origin, with Ravn meaning Raven, which she adopted as her stage name Marion Raven as well as her trademark raven logo. Raven enjoyed singing from a young age, sometimes writing lyrics for the songs she sang. Raven joined the gospel choir in a local church at the age of 5. At age 7, she went on to be part of the St. Laurentius choir, which has many historical links in Lørenskog, and was started in 1965 by, and is still being run by her vocal coach for several years, Kjell Walther Christensen. By the time she was 8, Raven began playing the piano and took piano lessons from Sif Anna Lisa Ødegård, married to Kjell walther Christensen. She also attended ballet lessons, as well as performing ballet on stage. In 1993, she acted in the musical "Sound Of Music", produced by Norwegian Broadway. She recorded a children's musical titled, "Vettene Vinner" (Vettene Wins), with the musical group, "Vettene", meaning "small trolls that protect nature", and was part of the group's record "Vettene på gamlespor" (Vettene On Old Tracks). At age 10, Raven acted in stage productions of Bugsy Malone and The Wizard of Oz
M2M and international success
In 1995, Raven's father arranged for her to make a demo in a studio in Oslo, together with her childhood friend, Marit Larsen. The duo got a record deal with EMI Norway and formed M2M. A year later, they produced children album titled, "Marit og Marion synger kjente barnesanger" which means "Marit and Marion Sing Well-Known Children Songs". M2M was nominated for the Norwegian Grammy, Spellemannprisen, the following year.
In 1998, M2M started recording pop demos in English and struck a record deal with Atlantic Records after auditioning with Raven on the keyboard and Larsen, the guitar. The two collaborated with many songwriters from around the world and produced their multi-platinum debut album, Shades of Purple, that was released in 2000, with the lead single, "Don't Say You Love Me" featuring on the soundtrack of the first Pokémon movie. The song was co-produced by Jimmy Bralower and Peter Zizzo (Celine Dion), and mixed by Tom Lord-Alge. It debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 at No. 72, selling 39,000 units in a week, according to SoundScan. Their second album, The Big Room, which was recorded in a studio in Bearsville in Woodstock, New York, was released in 2002. After world tours to promote The Big Room ended, M2M joined Jewel on her world tour as an opening act but barely a month into the tour, concerts involving them were abruptly cancelled. Rumours circulated that there were plans for Raven's solo career. M2M later disbanded in September 2002 due to the lack of sales of the The Big Room in the U.S. (Hence, the line in their song The Day You Went Away where the exact time was mentioned: September 22, (2002) 9:25 AM)
Raven was offered a million dollar recording contract with Atlantic Records and has lost contact with Larsen since she carried on with her solo career. Raven wrote and recorded, "We Are W.I.T.C.H.", the theme song of the television series W.I.T.C.H (an adaptation of the comic book series of the same name). She co-wrote "Pointless Relationship" that was the lead single of Australian singer, Tammin Sursok's debut album, 'Whatever Will Be'. She also collaborated on the track "That Day", a song released by Norwegian pop singer, Maria Arredondo, from Arredondo's 2004 follow-up album Not Going Under.
2005: Here I Am, Break You & International Success
Upon signing her deal with Atlantic Records, Marion Raven set about recording her debut album, and worked with Swedish songwriters/producers Max Martin and Rami, as well as Canadian singer-songwriter Chantal Kreviazuk and her husband Raine Maida from 2003 to 2005. Initially, the record company was not confident of Raven's switch to a more rock image and a darker, more personal style of songwriting. Raven had to fight to record her kind of music, rock music with a pop element. The resulting 14-track list, including 2 bonus tracks, cultivated a more manufactured rock/pop sound and was titled Here I Am. The album saw Raven's transformation from the candy-pop music of M2M to a more angsty, rock-oriented singer, and was released in Scandinavia, Japan, Latin America and Southeast Asia.
Here I Am spawned three huge singles, End of Me, Break You and Here I Am. Break You holds the record as Raven's top-selling single internationally. All three singles were hugely successful in the Asian region where she further promoted the album with a tour.
Internal debate at Atlantic Records and news that the record company was being bought over by Warner Music led to delays for the various international releases of Here I Am, which were part of her million dollar contract. The album was finally released in Raven's home country, Norway, on 10 August 2005 debuting at #6, alongside Sweden. It was well received in Asia, with over 135,000 copies sold in 3 months upon release.  Raven met with huge commercial success in the Asian region. Here I Am was promoted with a tour in Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and among others.
2006-07: Heads Will Roll EP, Meat Loaf collaboration & Set Me Free
In early 2006, it was announced that Raven quit her contract with Atlantic Records due to "artistic differences". Raven later confirmed that she was now signed to indie label Eleven Seven Music, which was created by her management 10th Street Entertainment, and that she was ready to record her U.S debut album and second studio album overall.
Raven later performed a duet with rock musician Meat Loaf on a cover of the song "It's All Coming Back to Me Now", released as the lead single from Loaf's tenth studio album Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose in October 2006. The track peaked at #1 in Norway and reached the top ten in Germany and the United Kingdom. Raven later joined Loaf on an extensive tour through Canada and the United States in February 2007.
Raven later confirmed that her new album would contain new and old tracks from her Norwegian debut as well as re-recorded tracks such as "Heads Will Roll", which received the help of American musician Nikki Sixx and was released as an EP in October 2006. Prior to the release of Raven's second studio album Set Me Free in March 2007, she toured around The Netherlands, Germany and the United Kingdom to help promote it. Raven later embarked on another promotional tour across the UK and performed in British schools. Later between later July and August, she became a supporting act on American singer-songwriter Pink's I'm Not Dead Tour in Germany. The album was later released in June 2007 and sprawled two singles; "Falling Away" and a re-release of her previous single "Break You" from her Norwegian debut album.
2008-2010: Found Someone, Flesh & Bone and X Factor judgings
In 2008, Raven made a cameo appearance in the music video for the song "Saints of Los Angeles" by American heavy metal band Mötley Crüe, and later began writing material for her third studio album, later titled Nevermore, before recording in 2009. Raven stated that the album would lean more towards the genre of piano rock, before releasing the lead single "Flesh & Bone" in September 2010, which was received poorly by Norwegian music critics, although most of her fans loved the upbeat tempo and the deep lyrics of the song. However, the second single "Found Someone" received more positive reviews and peaked at #4 on the Norwegian iTunes chart. She also recorded a track called "Heartless", which was rumoured to be on a Twilight movie soundtrack.
In the same year, Raven became a panelist judge on the Norwegian version of the talent show The X Factor, which was attributed to the delay of the release of Nevermore. She performed "Found Someone" live on The X Factor Norway finale.
2011-present: Music transition, Colors Turn to Grey, Songs of a Blackbird
In 2011, Raven became a judge on Norwegian Idol. This is her second time being a judge, the first was in X Factor. Late 2011, Raven stated that she couldn't work well with fellow songwriters and producers of Nevermore, nor did she agree with its sound. In the end, Nevermore was scrapped after having two singles released.
This lead her to release a stand-alone single called "Colors Turn to Grey" in March 2012 and stated in October 2012 that she is working on material for a new album. The album was planned for a 2013 release. "Colors Turn to Grey" received mixed reviews especially by fans, with some condemning her dramatic transition from a hard-rock genre towards a pop-folk genre and comparing her to Marit Larsen, while some praised her for trying a genre that would boost her album sales in Norway.
In March 2013, Raven released the single "The Minute" from her third album Songs from a Blackbird, which was released on April 5, 2013 in Norway. Being her first album in eight years, Songs from a Blackbird managed to peak at #3 in Norway. The third single released was "Driving", in August 2013. The album is further promoted with a Norwegian Tour in 2013.
In October 2013, Raven uploaded a few photos of her in the studio to her Instagram account. This suggests that Raven might be recording new materials for a new album or for the international release of Songs From A Blackbird.
Hver gang vi møtes
Raven also starred the second season of Norwegian reality TV show Hver gang vi møtes, alongside other Norwegian music artists Morten Abel, Ole Paus, Anita Skorgan, Magnus Grønneberg, Kurt Nilsen and Lene Marlin.
Marion Raven performances from other guest artists during the series were:
- "Casanova" (Originally recorded by Anita Skorgan)
- "Bullet Me" (Originally recorded by Morten Abel)
- "Unforgivable Sinner" (Originally recorded by Lene Marlin)
- "Never Easy" (Originally recorded by Kurt Nilsen)
- "Når Du Sover" (Originally recorded by Magnus Gronneberg)
- "Nerven I Min Sang" (Originally recorded by Ole Paus)
Fellow artists who sang Raven / M2m songs on Hver gang vi møtes - Marion Raven's Day were:
- "Found Someone" Covered by: Lene Marlin
- "For You I'll Die" Covered by: Anita Skorgan
- "Here I Am" Covered by: Magnus Gronneberg
- "Don't Say you Love Me" was originally recorded by M2M and Covered by: Ole Paus
- "Girl In your Dreams" was originally recorded by M2M and Covered by: Morten Abel
- "Everything" was originally recorded by M2M and Covered by: Kurt Nilsen
Raven has written several songs for other artists including:
- (2004) "Completely In Love" for Norwegian pop-rock singer Tommy Michaelsen's album Completely In Love
- (2004) "Disconnected" for American actress and singer Lindsay Lohan for her album Speak (Lindsay Lohan album).
- (2004) "That Day" for Norwegian pop singer Maria Arredondo's album, Not Going Under.
- (2004) "Pointless Relationship" for Australian singer Tammin Sursok's album, Whatever Will Be.
- (2005) "We Are W.I.T.C.H" for the animated TV Series W.I.T.C.H.
- (2007) "Jack" for British singer Pixie Lott's debut album, Turn It Up.
- (2009) "Forgot His Name" recorded by Tanita Kolsås for the X-Factor Norway Series.
- (2009) "It's Not Over" the demo song was co-writtenn and later recorded by May Kronfeld, and will be recorded by an unknown artist.
Awards and nominations
- In 2005 Raven was nominated for the Nordic Music Award with her album 'Here I Am' held in Norway.
|Mid-late 2005||Here I Am Promo Tour||Japan, Norway, Southeast Asia||Headlining|
|Early-mid-2007||Meat Loaf Seize The Night Tour||Canada, U.S., Europe||As supporting act|
|Early July 2007||School-based Acoustic UK. Tour||UK||Headlining|
|July–August 2007||Pink I'm Not Dead Tour||Germany||As supporting act|
|November–December 2011||Kurt Nilsen Christmas Tour||Norway||Supporting act/Special guest|
|October 2013||Marion Ravn Norwegian Tour||Norway||Headlining|
- Raven performed in the President Star Charity Concert in Singapore while on tour in mid-late 2005.
- Raven performed at the Norwegian Salvation Army, Lillestrøm Charity Concert and the Pink ribbon Show in Oslo, Norway in late 2005.
- Raven performed in Mainz-Kastel, Reduit for the UNICEF benefit show to raise funds to support Africa in September 2007.
- Raven performed alongside 2006 winner of Idol Norway, Aleksander Denstad With, at the Norwegian "Idol Gives Back" show in December 2007.
|2005||Here I Am||6|
|2006||Heads Will Roll EP||–|
|2007||Set Me Free||–|
|2013||Songs from a Blackbird||3|
|2005||"End of Me"||–||–||Here I Am|
|"Here I Am"||20||–|
|"Little by Little"||–||–|
|2006||"Heads Will Roll"||–||–|
|2007||"Falling Away"||–||–||Set Me Free|
|"Break You" (Re-release)||–||–|
|2010||"Flesh and Bone"||–||–|
|2012||"Colors Turn to Grey"||–||–||Songs from a Blackbird|
- Featured in
|2006||"It's All Coming Back to Me Now"
(Meat Loaf featuring Marion Raven)
|1||17||15||–||21||From Meat Loaf album
Bat out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose
- "Profile for Marion Raven". Bebocom. 23 October 2007. Retrieved 2013-03-29.
- Norway Portal (2003). "M2M 2 The Top". Norway. Retrieved 7 April 2007.[dead link]
- VG.No (2005). "News of Marion Ravn's Million-dollar Contract". vg.no. Retrieved 15 October 2006.
- Suzilasari Salleh (2005). "Marion Raven - A Solo Comeback". Theurbanwire.com. Retrieved 18 April 2007.
- last.fm (2005). ""Here I Am" sold 135,000 copies in 3 months". 3am Music. Retrieved 25 April 2007.
- Norway-Culture (2007). "It's All Coming Back To Me Now chart listing". Culture. Retrieved 10 December 2006.
- Sperounes, Sandra (2007). "Big portions of Meat served-Meat Loaf 2007 Canada tour". The Edmonton Journal. Retrieved 5 March 2007.
- Anne Carlini (2007). "The Call of The Raven Is Upon Us". Exclusive Magazine. Retrieved 26 June 2007.
- Marion Raven (2007). "Tour dates". marion-raven.com. Retrieved 30 June 2007.
- "Twitter / Marion Ravn: @JezzLi I dont have a date". Twitter.com. 2010-04-21. Retrieved 2012-04-10.
- Gibson X-Press (2005). "Ravin' on Raven". Gibson.com. Retrieved 7 April 2007.
- "NorwegianCharts.com Marion Raven discography page". Norwegiancharts.com. Retrieved 2012-09-02.
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