Friday, September 7, 2007


Mica Penniman (born 18 August 1983), known as Mika, is a Lebanese-born, London-based singer who has a recording contract with Casablanca Records and Universal Music, and rose to fame around the end of 2006 and the start of 2007. Some sources note his birth name as Michael Holbrook Penniman.
Mika was born in Beirut, Lebanon, the third of five children born to a Lebanese mother and an American father. When he was one year old his family was forced to leave war-torn Lebanon and moved to Paris. After listening to Nirvana's "Heart Shaped Box" he wrote his first song, which he describes as an "awful" piano instrumental called "Angry". The family moved to London when he was nine years old. In London he then attended the Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle where he experienced more severe bullying at school and had problems with dyslexia, so he was home-schooled by his mother for six to eight months. He then attended St Philips School in Kensington. He then attended Westminster School and the Royal College of Music, which he later left to record his first album.
Musical career
He was trained by Alla Ardakov (Ablaberdyeva) a Russian opera professional and his public performances and jobs have varied from classical performances in the Royal Opera House, writing in-flight music for British Airways and creating an Orbit chewing gum jingle. His debut radio appearance was on Dermot O'Leary's BBC Radio 2 show in September 2006, Later with Jools Holland and on The Friday Night Project on 19 January 2007.[citation needed] While he is rumoured to have a vocal range of five octaves, he actually claims that it is closer to three and a half octaves.He slightly altered his given name, Mica, changing the "c" to a "k," because he was frustrated by how often people would mispronounce it.
In January 2007, he was at the top of
BBC News's Sound of 2007 poll.

Mika live in concert
His first single was a limited 7"/download release called "
Grace Kelly" (2006). It was play listed by BBC Radio 1 in the United Kingdom, and was also made Record of the Week by DJ Scott Mills. The Dodgy Holiday EP is also available for download. His song "Billy Brown" was available for free download for a week from the iTunes Store.
Universal Music released his single "Grace Kelly" by digital download on 8 January 2007, and it reached number one on the UK Singles Chart on 21 January 2007. The CD, 12", and limited-edition 7" versions were released on 29 January 2007. The release features remixes by Tom Neville, Bimbo Jones, Linus Loves, and Pull Tiger Tail.
Produced and mixed by
Greg Wells in Los Angeles, with two songs co-produced by Jodi Marr and John Merchant, Mika's début album Life in Cartoon Motion was released on 5 February 2007, and has brought comparison with artists such as Freddie Mercury. Scissor Sisters,Elton John, Robbie Williams and David Bowie.
He was the musical act for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, on 26 March 2007[and for Jimmy Kimmel Live on 27 March 2007.
His band consists of Martin Waugh (
guitars, backing vocals), Michael Choi (bass, backing vocals), Cherisse Ofosu-Osei (formerly of The Faders, drums), Vinnie Potestivo (mtv, backing vocals), and Luke Juby (keyboards, guitar, backing vocals).[citation needed]
It has been reported that he is involved in the new Madonna album to be released at the end of 2007
The video for his song
Big Girl (You Are Beautiful) is set around Central Croydon.

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