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Charlene Soraia is a London-based singer-songwriter. She first rose to prominence with a cover of The Calling's "Wherever You Will Go", which peaked at number 3 in the UK Singles Chart. She released her debut studio album, Moonchild, in November 2011, which features "Wherever You Will Go" as a bonus track.
Born and raised in Sydenham, Lewisham in London, Charlene Soraia grew up with her parents. She first picked up her father's guitar at the age of 5, and played her first show at 8. She was inspired by artists such as David Bowie, The Beatles, Pink Floyd and King Crimson, and was very interested in the prog-rock genre.
While still at school, Soraia used to appear at open mic night at The Studio, Beckenham, Bromley in London around 2004, where her style and songwriting were still developing. She used the time before her performances to do her homework.
She was accepted into the BRIT School despite not having a GCSE in music, alongside future chart artists Adele and Kate Nash. While being there, she formed a rock band called Retrospect, with whom she released an EP entitled Long Hair, Short Memories. She also joined a psychedelic blues band, Electriq Mistress. At the same time she released a solo EP, "Lemonade", which was mainly created to get her bookings. She began performing as a solo artist in 2008, releasing further EPs Daffodils and Other Idylls (March 2008); Postcards from iO later in the year and third in the series, One of the Sun. The former reached the top of the UK Folk Chart on iTunes. An iTunes Live Sessions EP was also released after she performed at the festival in early 2008.
Soraia became noticed by a mainstream audience in 2011 when her cover of "Wherever You Will Go" by The Calling was featured in a Twinings commercial. The song was subsequently released as a digital download on iTunes and reached number 2 on the UK Download Chart and number 3 in the UK Singles Chart. The original version of the song also re-entered the top 40 as a result. Her debut album Moonchild, featuring the song as a bonus track, was released on 21 November 2011. On 10 January 2013, Soraia released the video for her new song "Ghost" to promote the release a new album, Love is the Law.
Soraia has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, specifically stating that she suffers from cyclothymia. which she describes as a less severe form of bipolar disorder. [..] I wrote [a song on the LP called] 'Bipolar' and it came out really upbeat and funny despite the fact I was actually in pieces. [...]
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Image from Discogs