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Karmin 2015.jpg
Karmin in 2015
Background information
Origin Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
Years active 2010–2017
Website www.karminmusic.com

Karmin is an American pop duo consisting of Amy Renee Noonan and Nick Noonan.[1] The name of the band is a homophone made from the Latin word carmen meaning "song" (also a Spanish female name), and the word karma, making the name Karmin.[2]

The duo is known for their covers of popular songs such as "Look at Me Now", "Super Bass", and "Party Rock Anthem".[3] Following the success of their covers, they were signed in 2011 to Epic Records, which was relaunched under L.A. Reid. In May 2012, Karmin released their debut EP, Hello, which spawned the singles "Brokenhearted" and "Hello" and received mixed reviews. "Brokenhearted" reached the top 20 in the US Billboard Hot 100 charts, and the top 10 in New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom, while "Hello" reached number one on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs charts in the United States.[4] In March 2014, the duo released their debut album, Pulses. The album's lead single, "Acapella", charted in the top 10 in Australia and New Zealand, and went Gold in the United States. They left Epic Records in the middle of 2014 and have since released music independently. Their second album Leo Rising was released on September 9, 2016.[5]

Karmin is currently managed by Nils Gums,[6] who founded The Complex Group, Inc., an artist development and management firm.[7]

In 2017, the duo took a break on Karmin to focus on another project known as "Qveen Herby", Amy Noonan's new alter ego. The project moves away from pop in favor of more of an R&B and hip-hop/rap sounds.

Rolling Stone named Karmin's lead singer Amy as the winner of "Women Who Rock" contests.[8]

Life and career[edit]

Early life and career beginnings[edit]

Amy Heidemann and Nick Noonan met while attending Berklee College of Music in Boston, from which they graduated in 2008.[9] Heidemann is a graduate of Seward High School in Nebraska. Noonan graduated from Old Town High School in Maine, where he was a member of the concert band and jazz ensemble. The duo has also been a couple since September 2005.[10] In March 2016, the couple confirmed that they had married. That month, Amy changed her Twitter name from "Amy Heidemann" to "Amy Noonan".[11]

The duo's popularity grew from an appearance on the daytime talk show as well as exposure on YouTube, achieving more than 320 million views between two channels.[12] The duo gained popularity after being discussed on reddit,[13] and their video for "Look at Me Now" was posted on Ryan Seacrest's blog.[14] The group later thanked reddit by giving the reddit alien mascot a prominent place in their video for their cover of "6 Foot 7 Foot".[15]

2011–12: Hello and commercial breakthrough[edit]

After anticipation and speculation concerning Karmin signing with a record label,[16][17] the group announced on June 2, 2011 that they had been signed by a major record label.[18] Reports indicated, with confirmation from an industry insider, that the group had signed with Epic Records as part of L.A. Reid's return to the company.[19][20][21] On their official website they asked their fans about what they wanted to hear on their album, and about 50% said they would like to have rapping.[22]

In late June, 2012, the duo entered the studio to record their debut studio album and have collaborated with producers Warryn Campbell, Kane Beatz, Jon Jon Traxx, The Runners, Kwamé, D'Mile, Oak and Andrew "Pop" Wansel, Harvey Mason, Jr. of The Underdogs, Tricky Stewart, Rodney "Don Vito" Richard, The Exclusives, J. R. Rotem, Sham 'Sak Pase' Joseph, Christian Rich, Hit-Boy, The Fliptones, Kenneth "Soundz" Coby, The Composer, Stargate, with writing assistance from Claude Kelly, Elite, Redd Stylez, Kevin McCall, Audio Push, Corey Houston, Bonnie McKee, Kelly Sheehan, Heather Bright, Henry "Cirkut" Walter and Diane Warren.[23] Both Heidemann and Noonan worked to maintain original songs and ideas, while working toward mainstream and pop music. They cited L.A. Reid's understanding of their musical background to be helpful in this process.[24]

"Hello" was released on May 7, via digital download.[25]

2012–14: Pulses, and headlining tour.[edit]

On September 6, 2012, the duo confirmed via Twitter that they were in the process of making their first LP. It was first reported that the album would be released in November 2012, but the group stated on a Ustream chat that the album would not come out in November, they would be in the studio the whole month of November to record it. In December, 2012, the duo started to make appearances at live shows and concerts. On December 31, 2012 – January 1, 2013, Karmin performed as part of the ABC network's Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve '13 with Ryan Seacrest show; the duo played their hit "Hello". On January 1, 2013, Karmin performed on ABC network's Good Morning America; the duo played "Brokenhearted".

On February 26, 2013, the duo released a studio cover of Drake's song "Started from the Bottom" as a promotional single and first release of their, "Manic Mondays" releases. It was released digitally for free download.[26] One week later they also released a mash-up studio cover for "Karate Chop/Sweet Dreams" by Future also as a promotional single. They released the single digitally for free download.[27]

In late April 2013, Big Time Rush announced the track listing of their album, 24/Seven, which features a collaboration with Karmin, entitled "Song for You". It was released on June 11, 2013.

Then on May 30, Amy said at the BMI Pop Awards that the new single would feature her rapping.[28] It was later confirmed that the single's name would be "Acapella". On June 10, it was announced that they would be the opening act for Jonas Brothers on their upcoming 2013 tour and in the same day they also premiered their first single "Acapella" from their debut album on the Elvis Duran Show on Z100. On June 23, the duo said via Twitter that "Acapella" would be released digitally sometime in July, as part of the "Acapella Month" campaign which also featured live performances.[29] The song debuted at number 98 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and two weeks later peaked at number 72.[4]

On October of the same year the album became available for pre-order at Walmart's website, which listed a release date of December 31, 2013.[30]

On October 28, 2013 they announced their 2014 Pulses tour.[31] The first leg of the tour started in Baltimore on January 29, 2014[32] with 16 dates and ended in California on February 22, 2014.[33] Karmin toured with singer-songwriter Bryce Vine. Karmin's first full-length album Pulses was released March 25, 2014. Rolling Stone gave it 1–1/2 stars.[34] The second leg of the tour began April 6, 2014" [35]

Performing at the Leo Rising showcase.

2014–2016: Split from Epic Records and Leo Rising[edit]

In 2014, after the release of their debut album Pulses, and after finishing the tour, Karmin split from Epic Records to become independent artists. In an interview with Billboard, Heidemann said: "We were hungry to try a more musically honest approach. We wanted to be a little bit nerdier than we think they had hoped" as to the reasons they decided to leave.[36]

Six months after the release of their debut, Pulses, Karmin released a single with rapper George Watsky titled "No Flex Zone (Remix)". It was inspired by the song "No Flex Zone" by Rae Sremmurd. The music video was released on September 26, 2014 on their YouTube channel, and the KarminVevo YouTube channel.[37][38] The song features rapping from both Watsky and Amy. It was produced by Nick Noonan.

Later that year, Karmin began work on their second album, Leo Rising.[5] Two digital singles were released in 2014: "Sugar" on October 8, followed by "Yesterday" on October 24, 2014.

Another single "Along the Road" was released on March 25, 2015 and was slated to be the lead single off the project, was later relegated as a promotional release.

The names of some songs were confirmed through their official Twitter page, including "Everything," "Blame It On My Heart," "Save Me Now," "Young in Love" and several others. "Yesterday" and "Young in Love" were eventually removed from the final track listing as confirmed on the official Karmin website.

On May 6, 2015, Karmin released their self-titled app that they described as "totally free". On May 25, 2015, Karmin performed for NET 2.0. They performed a setlist of songs from their EP Hello and from their debut album Pulses, "Acapella", along with a cover of "Super Bass".

"Didn't Know You" was announced as the new lead single for the album and was released on June 2, 2015 for digital download, with an acoustic version being later released only onto the Karmin app. Karmin filmed the music video for "Didn't Know You" in early May 2015, and premiered in July. It impacted Pop radio during that month.

Karmin has been releasing remix-covers throughout 2015 of popular and older songs. These covers include Rihanna's "Bitch Better Have My Money",[39] Smash Mouth's "Walking On The Sun",[40] Frank Sinatra's "That Old Black Magic"[41] and The Weeknd's "Can't Feel My Face."[42] On October 8, 2015 Karmin released a cover of Justin Bieber's song "What Do You Mean?". The blues-rock production features Jeff "Gitty" Gitelman on the guitar.[43]

In 2016, Wild Culture released the Sugar EP in collaboration with Karmin. It features three remixes of "Sugar" and a remix of Riley Pearce's single "Brave".[44]

Leo Rising was released on September 9, 2016.[45]

2017–present: Qveen Herby[edit]

At the beginning of 2017, Amy Noonan revealed in a livestream that a Leo Rising tour would not be held in 2017, and if there was one it would be in 2018.[46] She also revealed that alongside the launch of a new website, new music was in the works.[47]

In spring of 2017, all of Karmin's social media was rebranded to Qveen Herby and a small preview stating "Karmin Is Dead, Long Live the Queen." was posted. Noonan soon formally announced her solo career and launched the new website "Qveenherby.com".[48] In a livestream on May 19, 2017 she reassured fans that it's "the same operation" with her singing and Nick producing and Nick shared that he has "always wanted to be a producer."[49] The music video for Qveen Herby's first single "Busta Rhymes" was released on June 1, 2017, followed by the release of EP 1[50] a day later. The EP received positive reviews from critics, who praised Herby's rebranding as an artist and the exploration of R&B and hip hop music.[51] The EP also experienced fair success, peaking at #37 on the US Billboard Independent Albums Chart and #13 on the US Heatseekers Albums Chart.[52]


Studio albums[edit]

Title Details Peak chart positions Sales
US Heat
US Indie
Karmin Covers, Vol. 1
  • Released: May 23, 2011
  • Label: Karmin Music / The Complex Music Group
  • Format: Digital download
  • Released: March 25, 2014
  • Label: Epic
  • Format: CD, digital download
32 46
Leo Rising
  • Released: September 9, 2016
  • Label: RED Associated Labels
  • Format: CD, digital download
"—" denotes a recording that failed to chart, was ineligible for the chart, or was not released.

Extended plays[edit]

Title Details Peak chart positions
Inside Out[58]
  • Released: May 10, 2010
  • Label: Karmin Music
  • Format: CD, digital download
The Winslow Sessions[59]
  • Released: February 16, 2011
  • Label: Karmin Music
  • Format: Digital download
  • Released: May 4, 2012
  • Label: Epic
  • Format: CD, digital download
"—" denotes a recording that failed to chart, was ineligible for the chart, or was not released.


Title Year Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales thresholds)
US Dance
US Pop
"Take It Away" 2011 The Winslow Sessions
"Crash Your Party" 36 N/A
"Brokenhearted" 2012 16 1 10 9 61 19 40 5 6 Hello
"Hello" 62 1 16 72 72 21
"Acapella" 2013 72 34 4 30 64 9 Pulses
"I Want It All" 2014 39
"Sugar" Leo Rising
"Yesterday" N/A
"Along the Road" 2015 Leo Rising
"Didn't Know You" 50
"Come with Me (Pure Imagination)" 2016
"Riverbend" N/A
"Blame It on My Heart" Leo Rising
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

As featured artist[edit]

Song Year Album
"Bang It Out"
(Breathe Carolina featuring Karmin)
2013 Savages
"Young in Love"
(Borgeous featuring Karmin)[72]
2016 13

Promotional singles[edit]

Title Year Album
"Pulses" 2014 Pulses
"No Flex Zone"
(with Watsky)

Other appearances[edit]

Title Year Other artist(s) Album
"Song for You" 2013 Big Time Rush 24/Seven
"Flex" 2016 Futuristic As Seen on the Internet

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Nominated work Award Nomination Result
2011 Karmin American Music Award New Media Honoree Won
2012 MTV O Music Awards Web Born Star Won[73]
Teen Choice Awards Breakout Group Won
Web Star Nominated
PopRepublic It List Awards Breakthrough Artist Won
Best Intl Group Nominated
"Brokenhearted" Best Single Won
Hello Best Album Nominated
2014 Karmin World Music Awards World's Best Group Nominated
World's Best Live Act
"Acapella" World's Best Song
World's Best Video
2016 Amy Heidemann She Rocks Awards 2016 Mad Skills Award Won


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External links[edit]