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Lily Allen

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London, United Kingdom (2002 – present)

Lily Rose Beatrice Cooper (née Allen; born 2 May 1985), known professionally as Lily Allen, is an English singer/songwriter, haling from London, United Kingdom and actress. She is the daughter of Keith Allen and film producer Alison Owen. Allen left school when she was 15 and concentrated on improving her performing and compositional skills. She started her musical career in 2002 by signing to London Records. In 2005, she made some of her recordings public on Myspace and the publicity resulted in airplay on BBC Radio 1 and a contract with Regal Recordings.

Her first mainstream single, “Smile”, reached number one on the UK Singles Chart in July 2006. Her debut record, Alright, Still, was well received, selling over 2.6 million copies worldwide and brought Allen a nomination at the Grammy Awards, BRIT Awards and MTV Video Music Awards. She began hosting her own talk-show, Lily Allen and Friends, on BBC Three.

Her second studio album, It’s Not Me, It’s You, saw a genre shift, having more of an electropop feel, rather than the ska and reggae influences of the first one. The album debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart and the Australian ARIA Charts and was well received by critics, noting the singer’s musical evolution and maturity. It spawned the hit singles “The Fear” and “Fuck You”, popular mostly in Europe. Allen and Amy Winehouse have been credited with starting a process that led to the media-proclaimed “year of the women” in 2009 that saw five female artists making music of “experimentalism and fearlessness” nominated for the Mercury Prize.

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