Craig David by Jonathan Andel, 2009
|Birth name||Craig Ashley David|
|Born||5 May 1981
Southampton, Hampshire, England, United Kingdom
|Genres||R&B, UK garage, hip hop, dance|
|Occupations||Singer-songwriter, MC, Actor|
|Years active||1999 — present|
Warner / Atlantic (1999-2009)
Craig Ashley David (born 5 May 1981) is an English R&B singer-songwriter and actor. He has released four studio albums: Born To Do It, Slicker Than Your Average, The Story Goes..., Trust Me, a Greatest Hits album and the fifth studio offering Signed Sealed Delivered is due in March 2010. David has sold over 13 million albums worldwide.
Craig David was born in Southampton, the son of a half-Jewish white mother and a Grenadian father. His father George was a carpenter and also played bass in a reggae band called Ebony Rockers. As a teen, David began accompanying his father to local dance clubs, where DJs let him take the microphone.
David's earliest exposure came when he worked on a b-side to British group Damage's cover of "Wonderful Tonight". He then started doing vocals for a few tracks with garage act Artful Dodger. The song "Re-Rewind", from the Artful Dodger album It's All About the Stragglers, hit Number 2 on the UK charts in 1999; thus, paving the way for a solo career. David's first single, "Fill Me In", released on Colin Lester's and Ian McAndrew's Wildstar Records made him the youngest solo male artist ever to reach Number 1 in the UK (he was 19 years old at the time). This was the first of a string of four Top 10 singles from his debut album Born To Do It, which eventually sold more than seven million units worldwide, earning multi-platinum status in more than 20 countries. The song "Key To My Heart", taken from the US version of the album, was also featured on the award-winning Warner Brothers animated film Osmosis Jones.
The success of David's debut, which was written almost entirely by David and Mark Hill of Artful Dodger, led to the United States release of "Fill Me In" in May 2001. It reached Number 15 on the Billboard Hot 100. Born to Do It was released in the United States on 17 July 2001, peaking at Number 11 on the Billboard 200 and sold over one million copies. The single "7 Days" hit the Top 10 in the U.S.; although "Walking Away", which had reached Number 3 in the UK and Number 5 in Australia, missed the Top 40 in the U.S. and was the last of his singles to chart there.
The follow-up album, Slicker Than Your Average, was released in 2002 and fared considerably less well than David's debut. The albums' first four singles continued his streak of Top 10 hits in the UK, bringing a total of nine consecutive Top 10 hits until "World Filled with Love" peaked at Number 15 in 2003. None of the six singles released from the album charted in the U.S.. Although "What's Your Flava?" and "Rise & Fall" (duet with Sting) received airplay on the Urban contemporary and Soft AC formats, they did not make the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles Tracks chart or the Adult Contemporary chart. However, "What's Your Flava?" made the Rhythmic Top 40 (Number 32), Top 40 Mainstream (Number 24) and the Top 40 Tracks (Number 37). According to the RIAA Slicker Than Your Average reached Gold Status in the USA.
David later signed on with Warner Music and put together his third album, The Story Goes..., which was released worldwide in August 2005 (excluding the U.S. where it was never released). The first single, "All The Way", returned him to the Top 3. The second single, "Don't Love You No More (I'm Sorry)", tied with "7 Days" as his longest running single in the charts since "Re-Rewind", spending 15 weeks inside the UK Top 75. The album's third single, "Unbelievable", debuted at Number 18 in March 2006.
In 2007, David collaborated with UK rapper Kano on his upcoming album London Town, for the single "This is the Girl". The track was released on 27 August 2007 and debuted at Number 18 on the UK charts.
The first single "Hot Stuff" from his album Trust Me, was released on 5 November 2007 . The single was a top ten hit, whilst the album charted at Number 18 on the UK Albums Chart. "6 of 1 Thing", the second single to be taken from Trust Me, charted at number 39 on the UK Singles Chart, becoming his third-lowest charting single to date.
"Officially Yours" was released on 23 June 2008 and peaked at Number 158 on the UK Singles Chart, becoming his lowest-charting single to date and was the final single from Trust Me.
In July, a new track titled "Are You Up For This" started receiving airplay on various radio stations as part of a promo with Ice Cream Records, which also featured a remix with Witty Boy.
David took part in Soccer Aid 2008 at Wembley Stadium on 7 September 2008. He picked up the "Man of The Match" award on the night and played in the same England side as ex-internationals such as Alan Shearer, Teddy Sheringham and David Seaman, and played against the likes of Romário, Paolo Di Canio, Jaap Stam, and Luís Figo.
On 7 November, David was recognised for his contribution to the music industry by receiving an honorary degree of Doctor of Music, from Southampton Solent University at a graduation ceremony held at Southampton Guildhall.
On 29 December, a new mix of "Insomnia", titled "Up All Night Mix", was made available for digital download.
David released his first Greatest Hits album on 24 November 2008. In support of the release, David released two singles to promote the album. "Where's Your Love" featuring Tinchy Stryder and Rita Ora, a homage to his UK garage days, was digitally released on 10 November 2008. The second single, "Insomnia", produced by Jim Beanz from Timbaland productions, a dance track with hard bassline beats, was released the following week on 17 November 2008.
As part of the "Greatest Hits" compilation, David re-recorded "Walking Away" with four different artists across Europe, Monrose from Germany, Nek from Italy, Lynnsha from France and Alex Ubago from Spain.
The album debuted at Number 48 on the UK Albums Chart.
From February to April 2009, David toured Russia, the Far East and performed one show in Los Angeles as part of a Greatest Hits tour. He met fans at a meet and greet session at Singapore Changi Airport before his show.
Friday 18 September 2009 saw an exclusive demo posted on his official website, a thirty second snippet covering Stevie Wonder's "Signed, Sealed, Delivered, I'm Yours", said to be from Craig David's forthcoming album.
The first single from Craig's fifth studio album Signed Sealed Delivered is "One More Lie (Standing in the Shadows)". It will be released in the UK on 22 March 2010, with the album following one week later on 29 March 2010.
The Signed Sealed Delivered album finds Craig largely covering and sampling soul hits from the Motown era while giving them his own modern twist. Songs covered include Marvin Gaye's I Heard It Through The Grapevine; The Temptations' Papa Was A Rollin' Stone; and Stevie Wonder's For Once In My Life.