Birth Name: Florian Cloud De Bounevialle Armstrong
Date of birth (location): 25 December 1971, London, England, UK
Born in London, England on Christmas Day 1971, Dido started off playing music just five years later. Singing, humming, and tooting away on her stolen recorder around the house, Dido showed the early potential to be a musical prodigy. At only ten, she could play both the violin and piano, and was accepted into the Guildhall School of Music in London, England. As a teen, Dido travelled around the United Kingdom performing with her classical ensemble.
Dido's first vocal gig came on an album for Faithless, a band her brother Rollo had formed. Interested in recording an album, but afraid to ask her brother for a break with his band, Dido spent much of her time loitering around the studio in hopes that she would be asked to contribute her vocals. Her persistance paid off. The release came out in 1995, and it received favorable reviews. Faithless toured the world for the next two years, selling an excellent five million copies of their album. Dido was loving the lifestyle - meeting all kinds of new people, and gaining excellent exposure.
Musically gifted from an early age, Dido (named after the Queen of Carthage) attended London's Guildhall School of Music and played recorder, piano and violin by the age of 10. Her teenage years were spent listening to her brother's record collection and touring with a classical ensemble. She began singing with various London-based bands before becoming involved in her brother's project, Faithless. After the million-selling success of Reverence, Dido toured with the band for 18 months and contributed to Faithless' second album, Sunday 8pm. At this stage, Dido was writing her own material and had assembled an album's worth of demo tapes. These demos led to a publishing deal in the UK with Cheeky Records and a deal with the US arm of Arista Records in 1999.
Dido's debut album, No Angel, was produced by Rollo and Youth and received its US release in June 1999. The track "Here With Me" was used as the theme for the hit US television series Roswell, and "Thank You" was used on the soundtrack of the Gwyneth Paltrow movie, Sliding Doors. Dido's media profile was raised enormously when rap star Eminem sampled "Thank You" for his single "Stan", which became a huge hit on both sides of the Atlantic. With the emphasis very much on quality song writing, No Angel combined electronic and acoustic elements to create a lush, down-tempo style. It was released in the UK in October 2000 in conjunction with live performances on the east coast of the USA. Phenomenal sales followed as the album became the preferred listening at a million middle-class dinner parties.
The singer's long-awaited new album was promoted by her highest-charting UK single to date. "White Flag" debuted at number 2 in September 2003, while Life For Rent took up residency at the top of the album charts throughout most of the Christmas period on the way to sales in excess of 2 million. The album and single also enjoyed great commercial success in the US market.
After being offered a solo recording contract, Dido readied her first album "No Angel", an album she hoped would be a departure from the work she had done with Faithless. With solid vocals and lyrics, Dido was prepared to make her mark within the industry. Always self-sufficient, Dido also made the decision to produce the album herself, along with the help and experience of her brother. This decision resulted in her having final control over the sound and scope of her recording. The album was released in 1999 to critical appreciation, but little attention. Dido continued to promote her work- performing in clubs, as well as contributing her song "Thank You" to the soundtrack of the film, "Sliding Doors." The song gathered the attention of one rather influential individual - rap star Eminem. Interested in sampling a portion of the song for one of his recordings, Eminem approached Dido about a collaboration, and she quickly agreed. The song - titled "Stan," was a runaway success, and it opened the door for Dido, providing her with instant exposure to a large audience.
Since her collaboration with Eminem, Dido has received a major promotional push from her record company, Arista Records. The result left her not only on critic's top ten lists, but also climbing Billboard's charts. "No Angel" has become a huge success, and has received much radio rotation. With Dido working on new album for release within the near future, this is a career that is only going up.