For this week’s Popping Up, we turn our eyes to sultry U.K.-born/Los Angeles-based chanteuse Lolene, whose debut album is due out by the end of this summer. “I wrote these songs at a time when everyone was miserable because of the recession. I wanted to come up with something fun and colorful that made people feel good,” Lolene has said about the 15-track LP. Head below to check into her sexy Elecktrick Hotel and hear some cuts off the album.
FULL NAME: Lolene Everett
NICKNAME: Miss Foo Foo (“‘Miss Foo Foo’ is the name of my company as well as my naughty alter ego,” Lolene notes on her official site. “She lives in a world of heartbreak and handbags.”)
HOMETOWN: Bristol, England (just like previous Popping Up subject Florrie!)
WHERE YOU’VE HEARD HER BEFORE: At the club. Last year Lolene’s debut single “Sexy People” reached #5 on the Billboard Dance/Club Play chart.
ON GROWING UP IN BRISTOL: “Probably to compensate for my not having a father, my mum kept me occupied with dancing and singing lessons,” Lolene says. “We didn’t have a lot of money, but she worked really hard to give me opportunities, so I’m really thankful to her.”
WHY SHE DITCHED DANCING AND THEATER FOR MUSIC: “Performing is all I know. I was literally one of those annoying little stage kids, but it took my mind off of everything, so that was a good plan of my mother’s. Plus I was told my bum was too big for me to be a ballerina, so I thought, ‘Screw you, I’m off to be a pop star!’”
HER BIG BREAK: After moving to London, Lolene began singing backup for British vocalist Marina Topley-Bird, who, in addition to her own material, has appeared on albums by Tricky and Massive Attack. Lolene also crooned backup for Roni Size. “I went to London to be part of a girl group but then got into writing songs,” she told Bristol’s Evening Post last year.
HER BIGGER BREAK: Meeting producer J.R. Rotem (the man behind Jason Derulo’s “Whatcha Say,” JLS’ “Everybody In Love,” Iyaz’ “Replay” and all those other songs with the “J-J-J-J-J-J-J. R!” callout hook) once she moved to Los Angeles, who then signed her to Beluga Heights.
WHAT’S NEXT: Lolene’s debut album The Electrick Hotel—on which she worked with fellow singer Sam Sparro (who features on the song “Under The Bus”) and producers Nellee Hooper, Tom Meredith, The Messengers, Richard Vission and Josh Abraham—arrives via Capitol Records in August. “I call it The Electrick Hotel because when you put the album on, you’re my guest. I’m going to take care of you. You’re invited to come and stay a while in my world, which I see as like a hotel where each song is a room that captures a different part of my personality and expresses different emotions.”
Here’s current single “Rich (Fake It Til You Make It)” (look for the Justin Harder-directed video soon):
[wpaudio url="http://idolator.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/03-Rich-Fake-It-Til-You-Make-It.mp3" text="Lolene - Rich (Fake It Til You Make It)" dl="0"]
OUR VERDICT: Personally, ever since we checked into the Electrick Hotel ourselves, we can’t stop flipping on “Radio” (which is produced by Josh Abraham and Ogilee).
[wpaudio url="http://idolator.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/09-Radio.mp3" text="Lolene - Radio" dl="0"]
We’d like to book the room for an extra night, please.