Adele: Chasing 'Pavements' And Pop Stardom

Just The Music

A week after she spoke with Liane Hansen, Adele visited NPR's New York bureau for an exclusive studio performance of three songs. Two were captured on video, above.

To call British singer-songwriter Adele an overnight sensation would be an understatement.

Last year, she was singing to sparse audiences in pubs. This year, she released her debut album, 19 — the title comes from her age at the time she worked on it. The record topped the U.K. charts and became a best-seller. She even received a Critics' Choice Award at the 2008 Brit Awards before the album came out.

"I think it's quite ridiculous, to be honest," Adele says. "I still can't really get over it ... I'm not really bothered by awards. My Brit Award is my toilet roll holder in my bathroom."

Adele Adkins was born in London and attended the BRIT School for Performing Arts and Technology there. (Amy Winehouse also attended the school.) But Adele's education and talent were not the only reasons she was offered a recording contract. She had already amassed many fans on the social networking site MySpace. One of them was Kanye West, who posted the video of her hit single "Chasing Pavements" on his blog.

"I didn't even know what MySpace was — my friend made my MySpace for me," Adele says. "And then I didn't look after it for, like, a year. And it was only when Lily Allen got big on MySpace that I found out what MySpace was."

Now 20, Adele spoke with host Liane Hansen about her new-found stardom. Adele says she always dreamt of being a singer.

"Yea, but I never really thought it would happen, so I never really kind of chased it or pursued it that much, you know," she says. "I just kind of sang for fun, really. But yeah, I always wanted to be a pop star — I'm like the ultimate Spice Girls fan."

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19

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19
Artist
Adele
Label
Sony
Released
2008

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