Charlotte Emma Aitchison (born 2 August 1992), better known by her stage name Charli XCX, is an English singer and songwriter.
Charli XCX released her debut single independently in 2008 and initially performed at warehouse raves in London. She signed to Asylum Records in 2010 and released two mixtapes, Heartbreaks and Earthquakes and Super Ultra, in 2012. Charli XCX’s major label debut album, True Romance, was released in 2013, accompanied by singles including “You (Ha Ha Ha)” and “Nuclear Seasons”.
She rose to international fame during 2013 and 2014 when she was featured on two major hit singles, Icona Pop’s “I Love It” and Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy”. Her 2014 single “Boom Clap” from the soundtrack album of The Fault in Our Stars became a top ten hit in a number of countries. It also preceded the release of her second album, Sucker, which featured the singles “Break the Rules”, “Doing It” and “Famous”. A bonus track, titled “Red Balloon” was also featured on the soundtrack to Home.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Career
- 2.1 2008–12: Early performances and recordings
- 2.2 2012–13: True Romance
- 2.3 2013–15: International success and Sucker
- 2.4 2015–present: Upcoming third studio album and Vroom Vroom Recordings
- 3 Style and influences
- 4 Discography
- 5 Tours
- 5.1 Headlining
- 5.2 Supporting
- 6 Filmography
- 7 Awards and nominations
- 7.1 As lead artist
- 7.2 As featured artist
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Charlotte Emma Aitchison was born on 2 August 1992, in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England, to a Scottish father and an Indian mother from Uganda. She grew up in Bishop’s Stortford, Hertfordshire, and attended Bishop’s Stortford College, though she left the school in 2010. Aitchison also studied at the Slade School of Fine Art in London, but left during the second year of her degree course.
2008–12: Early performances and recordings
Aitchison started writing songs when she was 14 years old and began recording an album on a loan granted by her parents. In early 2008, she began posting songs from the album, as well as numerous other demos, on her official MySpace page. This caught the attention of a promoter running numerous illegal warehouse raves and parties in east London, who invited her to perform. Aitchison was billed on flyers under the stage name Charli XCX, her MSN Messenger screen name when she was younger. Despite the illicit nature of the gigs, her parents were supportive of her career and attended several raves with her. She released two singles, “!Franchesckaar!” and double A-side “Emelline”/”Art Bitch”, in late 2008 under Orgy Music. The album she recorded at this time, 14 (which features the former single), was never commercially released, although several promotional copies were issued and copies were given away at her earliest gigs. After being signed to Asylum Records in 2010, she took a break from music in what she describes as a “lost” period.
In May 2011, she released the single, “Stay Away”, followed by “Nuclear Seasons” in November. Both tracks were produced by Ariel Rechtshaid and released exclusively in the United Kingdom. These singles gained attention from music website Pitchfork Media, where she earned the Best New Track accolades for both tracks, with the former being ranked on their Best Tracks of 2011 list. In May 2012, Charli XCX released her first mixtape, Heartbreaks and Earthquakes, a one-track file consisting of eight songs. She supported Santigold and Coldplay on tour during that year. Her second original mixtape, Super Ultra, was released exclusively through her website in November 2012.