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Play

(l-r): Anais Lameche, Sanne Karlsson, Faye Hamlin
Background information
Origin Stockholm, Sweden
Genres Pop, teen pop, dance, bubblegum pop, Europop
Years active 2001–2005, 2009-present
Labels Sony BMG, Columbia, Bonnier Music, (Music World)
Associated acts Amanda Lameche
Members
Faye Hamlin (2001-2003) (2009-present)
Anaïs Lameche (2001-2005) (2009-present)
Sanne Karlsson (2009-present)
Former members

Play is a Swedish pop girl group that made its debut on the music scene in 2001. Six young women in total have been Play members - Faye Hamlin, Anna Sundstrand, Anaïs Lameche, and Rosie Munter formed Play's original line-up from the band's formation until late 2003, and Janet Leon joined Play after Faye Hamlin's departure. This group has released a total of five albums and toured the United States several times, gaining a large fanbase among a pre-teen and teenaged audience in the United States and, to a lesser extent, the European Union.

Play was the opening act for Destiny's Child, promoting their debut album whilst on tour. Play went on to sell over a million albums in the USA, as stated by Laila Bagge.

Though Play performed as a group for the last time in December 2004 and rumors of the group's break-up abounded throughout 2005, official word was released by the members of Play on September 29, 2005, that the group was indeed on an indefinite break. In November 2009, It was announced that Play would return as a trio, as Faye Hamlin and Anais Lameche decided to record a new album, with new member Sanne Karlsson. PLAY was relaunched via the TV-series Made in Sweden and actively blog on www.madeinsweden.se .[1]

Contents

History

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It's "Us Against the World"

Play was formed as a result of a nation-wide talent search led by Laila Bagge, a recording artist and dance studio owner. Her original line-up for Play consisted of two girls discovered at her dance studio - 12-year-old Anna Sundstrand, a relative of the legendary Greta Garbo, and 13-year-old Anaïs Lameche, younger sister of recording artist Amanda Lameche - and two girls found in the audition process, 13-year-old Fanny, or Faye Hamlin, who had done modeling work, and 13-year-old Rosanna, or Rosie Munter, who had starred in a popular Swedish film called Eva and Adam. Unbeknownst to Laila, Faye and Rosie had also been best friends before being selected to be in Play.

Play's career was launched both in Sweden and in the United States in 2001-2002. Play's first single and video, "Us Against the World," was released in September 2001 in the United States and featured an EPK of the girls. In Sweden, Play's first full-length English-language album "Us Against the World," was released, while in the United States, a self-titled Play mini-album consisting of 7 of the 11 "Us Against the World" tracks was released on June 25, 2002. Play toured in the United States in the subsequent months, often partnering with girls' clothing chain Limited Too. Play's music was also featured in the 2002 big-screen flick The Master of Disguise, for which they filmed a video with numerous well-known co-stars including Lil' Fizz who rapped on the track, J-Boog and Solange Knowles. The girls of Play concluded 2002 with an appearance on the nationally-televised Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, in which they, standing atop the Build-a-Bear float, performed a rendition of "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me," which they had originally recorded with Chris Trousdale of Dream Street. The album peaked at number #74 on the Billboard 200 and eventually went gold.

Play returned to the studio to begin recording their second album, Replay. Before their second album was released, a concert DVD called Playin' Around hit stores, featuring several Play music videos, special "Making of" segments, footage from a live concert, and clips of the girls of Play recording and preparing for their second album. Replay, a more mature and R&B-influenced effort, was released on June 10, 2003, and on that day Play made several appearances to perform, including a guest spot on popular daytime talk show Live with Regis and Kelly. In this new stage of Play's career, Faye Hamlin emerged as the group's lead singer mezzo-soprano. Rosie Munter was most notably the quartet's soprano, Anna Sundstrand the soprano, and Anaïs Lameche the powerhouse-vocals contralto. During this time period, a cover of British girl group Atomic Kitten's "Whole Again" and a coming-of-age song called "I Must Not Chase the Boys" were recorded, and released as singles in the US. The video made for "I Must Not Chase the Boys" was aired on MTV's TRL and made the top 10 requested videos countdown, and it also managed to be featured on Carson Daly's radio show as one of his picks of the week. The album debuted at number 67 and managed to stay in the top 200 albums for a couple of months.

Play continued to tour in 2003 while still affiliated with Limited Too and promoting Clickits, a new decorative girls' product. The girls of Play also appeared on several Nickelodeon television specials as featured guests and performers.

Don't Stop the Music: a new beginning for Play

In October 2003, Play's lead singer Faye Hamlin, then 16 years old, decided to leave Play to pursue a college education. Faye continued to make appearances with Play until December 2003, even appearing in Play's video "It's A Hard Knock Life," featured on a DVD re-release of the hit musical Annie. On December 15, a formal press release on the group's official site informed fans of the line-up change and introduced new member Janet Leon, a 13-year-old who would step up to become Play's new lead singer along with Lameche.

Play's third US album, Don't Stop the Music, was released on March 9, 2004, accompanied by numerous appearances and performances by Janet, Anais, Rosie, and Anna in Limited Too stores across the country and in the Spring Thing Tour, along with J-Me, Stevie Brock, and Jump5. This album was decidedly more aimed at a younger crowd and received a mixed reception by Play fans, especially older fans. However, Play proved to be as strong as ever, returning to the US in May 2004 to headline a school tour sponsored by anti-drug organization MADD About Music, for which Play is the official teen group. Play also became affiliated with Kohl's new clothing brand for girls called everGirl, recording a song as well as a video to promote this new clothing line. The title track from the album, Don't Stop the Music, was originally recorded and written by Swedish singer Robyn in 2002 for her album, also entitled Don't Stop the Music. Music fans have criticised Play for covering Robyn's song and album title, which could have hindered the singer's possible comeback in the United States. However, as a co-writer on the track, it would be wise to assume that Robyn could have asserted discretion over Play's re-recording and so such claims of 'foul play' are disputable. The album had disappointing record sales.

Play Around the Christmas Tree

In November 2004, Play released their fourth US album, a Christmas collection entitled Play Around the Christmas Tree. A brief trip to the US followed as the four girls of Play made what would be their final appearances in Limited Too stores and Build-a-Bear stores in the Northeastern United States. Other than this short set of appearances and performances, this Play album was, up to that point, their least promoted release.

2005- Play's Greatest Hits

After the late 2004 release of Play Around the Christmas Tree, little news of Play (collectively) was heard. In April 2005, a fifth US album by Play entitled Girl's Mind was released. This compilation, which seems to be best described as a "Greatest Hits" album, features ten of the best-known Play songs all recorded when former member Faye Hamlin was a member of the group. None of the girls of Play came to the US to promote this album, and it was not widely released in stores across the country on its supposed release date. Finally, in September 2005, an official statement from the members of Play confirmed that they are on an indefinite break as a group.

2005-2009

Janet Leon recorded a song exclusively released by Build-a-Bear in 2005 and a new song for everGirl. Janet has continued to record songs in a studio and her solo cd was released earlier this year. Anna Sundstrand, Rosie Munter, and former member Faye Hamlin have all signed with modeling agencies and begun working in the modeling industry. Rosie has released her solo album named Amazing which has released two singles Oh and Tick Tock, she is set to start the Amazing World Tour in March. Faye recorded a duet with Swedish singer Adam Appel that appeared on the soundtrack to a 2004 Swedish film. Anna, in addition to releasing a 2006 calendar in the United States featuring her modeling photos, is also said to be working on her own solo album, and she has performed several times with Chris TrousdaleCitation needed|date=February 2007}}.

2009-present

On Friday November 26, 2009, Fanny "Faye" and Anais appeared on the Swedish radio stations NRJ and RIXFM, along with another singer named Sanne. They then announced that, as a trio, they would return as "Play" in order to partake in the filming of a reality show similar to Janet's "Made in Sweden". With new member Sanne, Fanny and Anais will record a full album in only four weeks' time and will attempt to make an impact on the Swedish and American music markets. On November 27, 2009, Play (Fanny, Sanne, and Anais) made their first public appearance, alongside their longtime producer Andreas Carlsson, in over 4 years since disbanding in 2005. The first single will be called Famous.

On Thursday February 11, 2010, Play ended their partaking in "Made In Sweden" after just four full episodes. Play's hit song "Famous" was covered by Big Time Rush.

Play's next studio album, entitled, "Under My Skin" will be released on April 21, 2010.

Discography

Studio Albums

Year Album Peak chart positions
US FRA[2]
2002 Play
  • Released: June 25, 2002
74 108
2003 Replay
  • Released: June 10, 2003
67
2004 Don't Stop the Music
  • Released: March 9, 2004
2004 Play Around the Christmas Tree
  • Released: November 23, 2004
2010 Under My Skin
  • Released: April 21, 2010
"—" denotes releases that failed to chart or not released in that country.

Singles

Year Single Peak chart positions Album
US SWE[3] FRA[4] GER
2002 "Us Against the World" 14 41 67[5] Play
"I'm Gonna Make You Love Me"
"Cinderella"
"M.A.S.T.E.R part 2"
2003 "I Must Not Chase the Boys" 12 Replay
"Whole Again" 115
2004 "everGirl" 100 78 Don't Stop The Music
2010 "Famous" 1 Under My Skin
"—" denotes releases that failed to chart or not released in that country.

Other Albums

References

External links


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