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||Helen Folasade Adu
||16 January 1959
Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria
||Soul, jazz, R&B, quiet storm, soft rock, adult contemporary
||Singer-songwriter, composer, arranger, record producer
Helen Folasade Adu, OBE, (born 16 January 1959), better known as Sade (pronounced /ʃɑːˈdeɪ/ shah-DAY), is a Nigerian-British singer-songwriter, composer, and record producer. She first achieved success in the 1980s as the frontwoman and lead vocalist of the popular Brit and Grammy Award winning English group, Sade.
Sade was born in Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria. Her middle name, Folasade, means honour confers your crown. Her parents, Bisi Adu, a Nigerian lecturer in economics of Yoruba background, and Anne Hayes, an English district nurse, met in London, married in 1955 and moved to Nigeria. Later, when the marriage ran into difficulties, Anne Hayes returned to England, taking four-year-old  Sade and her older brother Banji to live with her parents. When Sade was 11, she moved to near Clacton-on-Sea with her mother, and after completing school, she moved to London and studied at the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design.
While at college, she joined a soul band, Pride, in which she sang backing vocals. Her solo performances of the song Smooth Operator attracted the attention of record companies and in 1983, she signed a solo deal with Epic Records taking three members of the band, Stuart Matthewman, Andrew Hale and Paul Denman, with her. Sade and her band produced the first of a string of hit albums, the debut album Diamond Life, in 1984, and have subsequently sold over 50 million albums. She is the most successful solo female artist in British history.
A marriage to Spanish film director Carlos Pliego ended in 1995 after six years. She gave birth to a daughter, Ila Adu, in 1996 after a relationship with a Jamaican musician. She was made a member of the Order of the British Empire in 2002. She lives in Stroud, Gloucestershire. Sade is, as the Daily Mail described it, "famously reclusive" and prior to the release of Soldier of Love in 2010, Sade's last public appearance was in 2002, when she collected her OBE at Buckingham Palace.
- For more details on this topic, see Discography of Sade