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Dua Lipa

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Dua Lipa
200126 Dua Lipa on the 2020 Grammys Red Carpet.jpg
Lipa at the 2020 Grammy Awards
Born (1995-08-22) 22 August 1995 (age 24)
Occupation
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • model
  • fashion designer
Years active2015–present
Net worth£16 million (2020 estimate)[1]
AwardsFull list
Musical career
Genres
InstrumentsVocals
Labels
Websitedualipa.com

Dua Lipa (/ˈdə ˈlpə/; Albanian pronunciation: [ˈdua ˈlipa]; born 22 August 1995)[2] is an English singer and songwriter. After working as a model, she signed with Warner Music Group in 2015 and released her self-titled debut album in 2017. The album peaked at number three on the UK Albums Chart, and yielded nine singles, including "Be the One" and "IDGAF", and the UK number-one single "New Rules", which also peaked at number six in the US. In 2018, Lipa won the Brit Awards for British Female Solo Artist and British Breakthrough Act.

Released in April 2018, the single "One Kiss", with Calvin Harris, peaked at number one in the UK, and became the longest-running number-one single for a female artist in 2018. It won her the 2019 Brit Award for Song of the Year. In 2019, she was also awarded the Grammy Award for Best New Artist, and "Electricity", a collaboration with Silk City, won her the Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording. The success of the singles helped her self-titled album become one of the most-streamed albums on Spotify and achieve platinum certifications. Her second studio album, Future Nostalgia, was released in March 2020 to critical acclaim. It is her first UK number-one album; its lead single "Don't Start Now" peaked at number two on both the UK Singles Chart and the US Billboard Hot 100.

Lipa has received various accolades, including two Grammy Awards, three Brit Awards and two MTV Europe Music Awards. She has also been nominated for three Billboard Music Awards, an American Music Award, and four MTV Video Music Awards.

Early life

Lipa was born on 22 August 1995 in Westminster, London, to Albanian parents who had left Pristina (in present-day Kosovo)[a] in 1992.[3] The singer's first name means "love" in Albanian; Lipa elaborated: "Now I'm proud of it. [...] But when I was growing up, all I wanted was to be called Hannah, Sarah, Ella... anything normal. Because with Dua you had to explain: I'm from Kosovo."[4] Her father—Dukagjin Lipa—is a marketing manager and the lead vocalist in the Kosovan rock band Oda, while her mother—Anesa Lipa (née Rexha)—works in tourism.[3][5] Lipa further has a younger sister and a younger brother.[6] She attended Sylvia Young Theatre School part-time[7] before moving to Kosovo with her family in 2006 when her father had accepted a job offer there.[8] In Kosovo, Lipa attended the Mileniumi i Tretë (Third Millenium) school in Pristina,[9] and became a fan of hip hop artists which would eventually influence her music style.[10]

At the age of 14, Lipa began posting YouTube covers of her favourite songs by artists such as Pink and Nelly Furtado.[11][12][13] She has stated that she was influenced by the similar discovery of Justin Bieber on YouTube which inspired her to achieve the same.[14][15] One year later, she moved back to London with aspirations of becoming a singer,[16] living with a friend and studying at Parliament Hill School during the week and at the Sylvia Young Theatre School on Saturdays.[17][18] In order to earn money for music sessions, Lipa had different jobs, such as hostessing restaurants and nightclubs.[19] She began working as a model for the online catalogue ASOS Marketplace when she was 16,[18] with the goal of meeting people who could help her pursue a music career,[11] but she left after a manager told her to lose weight.[11] In 2013, Lipa starred in a television advertisement for The X Factor.[20]

Career

2015–2018: Career beginnings and Dua Lipa

In 2013, Lipa signed a contract with Tap Management, directed by Ben Mawson and Ed Millett, while working as a waitress in a cocktail bar. Subsequently, they offered her a monthly salary to leave her job and focus on recording music.[21] During one of the sessions, Lipa co-wrote the song "Hotter than Hell",[21] which would eventually lead to her signing a record deal with Warner Music Group in the summer of 2015.[11][18][22] Millett retrospectively elaborated: "Dua was really smart – she signed to Warner Bros. partly because they didn't have a big female pop artist and they needed one. They really wanted her, so she had the focus of the team from day one."[21] In August 2015, Lipa released her first single "New Love",[23] produced by Emile Haynie and Andrew Wyatt.[11] Her second single, "Be the One", was issued to European success in October 2015,[5][24] reaching number one in Belgium,[25] Poland and Slovakia, as well as charting within the top ten in over eleven European territories. In Australia and New Zealand, the song became an airplay success, reaching numbers 6 and 20 respectively.[26] In November 2015, she was revealed as one of the acts on the BBC Sound of... 2016 long list.[12] Her first tour in the UK and Europe began in January 2016,[8] and concluded in November 2016.[27]

Lipa in 2016

On 18 February 2016, Lipa released her third single "Last Dance", followed by "Hotter than Hell" on 6 May. The latter became a worldwide hit, especially in the UK, where it peaked at number 15.[28] On 26 August, her fifth overall single "Blow Your Mind (Mwah)" was released, peaking at number 30 in the UK.[28] It became the singer's first entry on the US Billboard Hot 100, debuting at number 72.[29] The song also topped the Billboard Dance Club Songs chart[30] and reached number 23 on the Billboard Mainstream Top 40 chart.[31] Lipa was featured on Sean Paul's single "No Lie", released in November 2016,[32] which reached number ten in the UK.[33] The following month, a documentary about Lipa named See in Blue was commissioned by The Fader magazine.[34] In January 2017, Lipa won the EBBA Public Choice Award,[35] and released the single "Scared to Be Lonely", a collaboration with Martin Garrix, reaching number 14 in the UK.[36] In May 2017, she performed at the anniversary of Indonesian television channel SCTV and was awarded as Young and Promising International Artist at the SCTV Music Awards.[37][38]

Lipa's self-titled debut studio album was released on 2 June 2017.[39] Its sixth single, "New Rules", released in the following month, became Lipa's first number one in the UK,[28] and the first by a female solo artist to reach the top in the UK since Adele's "Hello" in 2015.[40] Her best-selling single to date, the song also charted in the top ten of other territories, including number two in Australia, number six in the US, and number seven in Canada.[41] Lipa performed at the Glastonbury Festival in June.[42] The following month, Lipa performed at the We the Fest, an Indonesian music festival in Jakarta.[43] She performed on BBC's Later... with Jools Holland in October.[44] In December, Lipa was named the most streamed woman of 2017 in the UK by Spotify.[45] She had four singles reach the UK top 10 in 2017, with "Be the One", "New Rules", "No Lie", and "Bridge over Troubled Water", a charity single for the families of the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire in London.[46][47]

In January 2018, Lipa received nominations in five categories at the Brit Awards, more nominations than any other artist that year. She was nominated for MasterCard British Album of the Year for Dua Lipa, British Single of the Year and British Video of the Year for "New Rules", British Female Solo Artist, and British Breakthrough Act, winning the latter two.[48] This was the first time that a female artist had received five nominations.[49][50] She performed at the awards ceremony held on 21 February at the O2 Arena in London.[48]

Lipa at the Hollywood Palladium in February 2018

The singer collaborated with American DJ Whethan on the song "High" for the Fifty Shades Freed soundtrack, released in February 2018.[51] She started working on new material for her second album in March 2018.[52] On 6 April, Lipa and Calvin Harris released the single "One Kiss",[53] which topped the UK Singles Chart on 20 April, making it Lipa's second number one in the chart;[54] Lipa provided the vocals and is also credited as a writer. The single went on to become the biggest selling song in the UK of 2018 and topped the chart for eight consecutive weeks.[55] She performed in the opening ceremony of the 2018 UEFA Champions League Final in Kiev on 26 May.[56] It was reported that Lipa would be releasing collaborations with other artists coming out later in 2018, such as one with Mark Ronson and Diplo's newly-formed superduo Silk City.[57] Ronson later confirmed the song's title would be "Electricity".[58] The song was released on 9 September. Lipa was also featured in "If Only", a song from Italian singer Andrea Bocelli's sixteenth studio album .[59]

Lipa performed at F1 Singapore Grand Prix in September.[60] In the same month, Lipa was chosen as the face of British car brand Jaguar's new electric car, I-PACE. The brand made a special remix of Lipa's song "Want To", and fans around the world can create their own version of Dua Lipa x Jaguar's song on the Join the Pace website, based on their own driving behaviour or the music they listen to, and share it on social media. Shortly after announcing the collaboration, Jaguar and Lipa set the world record for the "most remixed song ever".[61] In October, the singer released Dua Lipa: The Complete Edition, an expanded version of her debut album that includes three new songs, including the aforementioned "Want To", and her previous collaborations with other artists.[62] This included a collaboration with South Korean girl group Blackpink called "Kiss and Make Up".[63]

2019–present: Future Nostalgia

In January 2019, Lipa released the single "Swan Song" as part of the soundtrack to the 2019 film Alita: Battle Angel.[64][65] That same month, Lipa stated that she had been spending the preceding year in the writing process for her second studio album.[66] While discussing the album's sound, Lipa commented that it would be a "nostalgic" pop record that "feels like a dancercise class".[67] In August 2019, Lipa partnered with brand Yves Saint Laurent to become the face of their fragrance Libre.[68]

Following the release of its lead single "Don't Start Now", Lipa's second album Future Nostalgia and its accompanying arena tour were announced in December, alongside the release of "Future Nostalgia", the first promotional single.[69][70][71] "Don't Start Now" peaked at number two in the UK and became Lipa's second top ten on the US Billboard Hot 100.[33][29][72] It also peaked at number one on the US Billboard Mainstream Top 40 chart.[73] Lipa's third single leading up to the release of the album, was "Physical".[74] It was released on 30 January 2020 and the song's music video was released a day later.[74] "Physical" debuted at number 60 on the US Billboard Hot 100.[75] A remix version of the song, featuring South Korean singer Hwasa was released on 17 March.[76] Future Nostalgia was released on 27 March to widespread critical acclaim,[77] following the release of the album's third single "Break My Heart" on 25 March.[78] Future Nostalgia peaked at number one on the Official UK Albums Chart in the second week of April 2020, while the album's three singles entered the top ten of the Official Singles Chart.[79]

Artistry

Lipa's music is primarily pop.[80] Lipa describes her musical style as "dark pop".[24][81] Her music has also been described as dance-pop,[82] synth-pop, R&B,[83] dream pop[8] and alternative pop.[84] She is also known for singing in a "distinct, husky, low register",[17] and her "sultry" tone.[85] During writing sessions, Lipa states she usually comes to the studio with a concept and starts developing the song with her co-writers.[10][13] She cites Pink, Nelly Furtado, Jamiroquai, Kendrick Lamar and Chance the Rapper among her musical influences.[86][87] "My idea of pop has been P!nk and Christina Aguilera and Destiny's Child and Nelly Furtado,..." said Lipa in a GQ interview in 2018.[88] Future Nostalgia was inspired by artists that she listened to during her adolescence, including Gwen Stefani, Madonna, Moloko, Blondie and Outkast.[89]

Fashion

Throughout her career, Lipa has had a notable presence in the fashion industry.[citation needed] In October 2015 she was the protagonist of the editorial of Rollacoaster magazine.[90]

On May 24 2018 Lipa announced that would be working with the fashion brand /Nyden as co-creator in a collection that will would drop in late 2018, collaborating with the seasonless H&M-owned brand on four capsule collections, which will would include a wide range of sizes.[91] She speak about the collection in an interview with British Vogue saying:

I look for clothes that reflect strength and fearlessness, but also match up to today’s fast pace. So I’m excited to be co-creating with /Nyden on my designs – it’s going to be a collection that’s completely suited to me, both onstage and off, and for my fans. It seemed like a very exciting opportunity to begin with and I didn't really know how much I would actually enjoy it, and how many ideas I'd have. But I love dressing up, I love experimenting with colors. It's really exciting to get to channel that into my own designs. So, I'm really enjoying this new role.[92]

— Dua Lipa

The Creative Director of /Nyden, Stina Force, spoke about Lipa's association with the fashion brand, stating:

Dua is one of the most renowned pop artists in the world today. Her strong and fierce attitude, not to mention distinctive style, make her a perfect fit for the /Nyden tribe and philosophy. Dua’s inspiring outlook and style is why we have chosen to work with her and co-create multiple collections.[92]

— Stina Force

In late February 2019 she starred in the image of a Pepe Jeans London campaign for the spring/summer 2019 collection.[93]

Months later she debuted as a fashion designer with the brand Pepe Jeans London, where the creation consisted of clothing with trends from the late 90s and early 2000s and chain mail dresses, casual denim outfits and denim.[94] On 2020, she modeled and released her second design collaboration with Pepe Jeans London for spring/summer 2020 collection inspired by late 1980s fashion and early 1990s fashion.[95]

Personal life

Philanthropy

Together with her father Dukagjin, she created the Sunny Hill Foundation in 2016 to raise funds to help people in financial difficulties in Pristina-based Kosovo.[96] In August 2018, she organized her own festival to raise money for the Sunny Hill Foundation, called the Sunny Hill Festival, where she also participated. Former Pristina Mayor Shpend Ahmeti awarded her the Pristina Key, the first time such an honor had been awarded.[97] She hosted the festival for the second year in a row in 2019, with Miley Cyrus as one of the participants.[98] Lipa has 15 tattoos, including one in honour of Sunny Hill.[99]

On April 13, 2019, she became a UNICEF supporter on a three-day visit to a camp for refugee children and youth in Beirut, Lebanon that is supported by the said humanitarian agency; including many uprooted by the conflict in Syria.[100] While in the Lebanese capital, she spoke to Lebanese and non-Lebanese children and youth who are vulnerable by the obstacles they face in their daily lives, by obtaining a formal education, and by find work and opportunities. As part of her visit, she visited projects implemented in the informal settlement of Terbol in the Beqaa Valley by the Lebanese Organization for Studies and Training, a youth organization of UNICEF. At the end of the visit, the artist expressed:

This is personal for me. My parents fled a war-torn region and built a life for themselves in a new place. And each one of the refugee children I met has parents just like my own, who have tried to make the best decisions they could for their families.[101]

— Dua Lipa

On 26 November 2019, an earthquake struck Albania and Lipa appealed to fans for support and donations to the relief effort.[102][103] In a project with Albanian designers, she launched a limited edition of T-shirts called Pray for Albania in collaboration with the clothing manufacturer Bond to raise funds, where one hundred percent of all proceeds went to families and victims affected by the seismicity.[104][105][106]

Activism

Throughout her career she has spoken out against sexism in the music industry and made use of social media on multiple occasions to raise awareness of women's problems and to defend gender equality.[107] Therefore, in July 2017, in an interview for Glamour the singer said:

The music industry as a whole just needs more women. There are a lot of men at the top of the ranks.[108]

— Dua Lipa

In January of the following year, the global group of experts from the Annenberg Inclusion Initiative indirectly ratified the soloist's opinion by publishing a report highlighting the gender inequality that continued to prevail in the music industry, claiming that of the 651 producers included in a study, only two percent of them were women.[109] In February 2018, while accepting the Brit Award for British Female Solo Artist at the thirty-eighth Brit Awards ceremony, the singer-songwriter delivered a speech dedicating her award to "women who take over the world", saying:

I also want to thank every single female that has been on the stage before me, that has given girls like me — not just girls in the music industry but girls in society — a place to be inspired by, to look up to, and have allowed us to dream this big. Thank you so, so much. Here's to more women on these stages, more women winning awards, and more women taking over the world.[110]

— Dua Lipa


In March 2018, the singer in an interview for GQ stated:

For a female artist, it takes a lot more to be taken seriously if you’re not sat down at a piano or with a guitar, you know? For a male artist, people instantly assume they write their own music, but for women, they assume it’s all manufactured.[111]

— Dua Lipa

According to a study carried out by Plan International UK, two thirds of young women in United Kingdom had suffered some type of sexual harassment in public,[112] however, the artist stated:

I’m lucky in that I haven’t really had any sexual harassment in any way. But I think #MeToo is so important. You know, even from school, growing up with kiss chase or whatever, it’s been ingrained in our heads that boys will be boys and its harmless fun and no big deal and to brush things off. Like catcalling. To some it might not seem a lot, but it affects your mood, people get embarrassed about the way they dress. For lots of females, be it actresses, singers, models, no matter what it is, it’s not being able to have the right to dress and wear how and what you want and be taken seriously.[111]

— Dua Lipa

In December 2018, the singer discussed her concept of feminism in an interview with British Vogue, explaining that contrary to some beliefs, feminism is not about women classifying men as inferior, but to urge society to ensure that they are treated equally and affirming:

Feminism to me is not man-hating, it’s just being like we deserve the same opportunities. You hear so much about all these strong important men who have changed the world, even in history and the story of mankind, somehow the fucking story starts with: "Well, the man did this".[113]

— Dua Lipa

In November 2019, she was announced as the host of the official party for the following year's Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras parade.[114] On February 29 2020, she was part of the parade in support of the LGBT movement with the participation of artists such as Kesha, Pabllo Vittar and Sam Smith; whose event had around two hundred groups and floats, and more than two hundred thousand spectators that lined the streets.[115] Next, she led the official parade party at the Hordern Pavilion, where she performed songs such as "New Rules", "IDGAF", "Physical" and "Don't Start Now".[116][117]

Political views

In November 2019, Lipa endorsed the Labour Party in the 2019 UK general election. She broke down the policies of both Labour and the Conservatives on various issues in an Instagram post and wrote that it was "the most important election in a generation", urging people to vote for Labour.[118] In March 2020, she endorsed Bernie Sanders for Democratic nominee for US President.[119]

Filmography

Television
Year Title Role Notes
2004 Familja Moderne Robert's friend Minor role[120]
2017 Sounds Like Friday Night Herself (co-host) Series 1, episode 6
2018 Saturday Night Live Musical guest Episode: "Natalie Portman/Dua Lipa"
2018 The Voice of Germany Herself / Advisor Season 8; Mark Forster's team

Discography

Tours

Headlining

Opening act

Awards and nominations

Notes

a.   ^ Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Kosovo and the Republic of Serbia. The Republic of Kosovo unilaterally declared independence on 17 February 2008, but Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. The two governments began to normalise relations in 2013, as part of the 2013 Brussels Agreement. Kosovo is currently recognized as an independent state by 97 out of the 193 United Nations member states. In total, 112 UN member states recognized Kosovo at some point, of which 15 later withdrew their recognition.

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External links

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Alessia Cara
Grammy Award for Best New Artist
2019
Succeeded by
Billie Eilish
Preceded by
Emeli Sandé
Brit Award for British Female Solo Artist
2018
Succeeded by
Jorja Smith
Preceded by
Rag'n'Bone Man
Brit Award for Best New Artist
2018
Succeeded by
Tom Walker