Natasha Anne Bedingfield (born 26 November 1981) is a British pop singer and songwriter.
Based in Book St., London, Bedingfield debuted in the 1990s as a member of the Christian dance/electronic group The DNA Algorithm with her siblings Daniel Bedingfield and Nikola Rachelle. Throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, Bedingfield recorded rock and gospel songs for the Hillsong London Church, while Daniel went on to enjoy success with hits ?Gotta Get Thru This? and ?If You're Not The One?.
Bedingfield recorded her first album Unwritten in 2004. The album contained primarily uptempo pop songs and was influenced by R&B music; it enjoyed international success with over 2.5 million sold worldwide. In 2007, she received a Grammy Award nomination for "Best Female Pop Vocal Performance" for the song "Unwritten". Bedingfield's second album N.B. (2007) yielded the singles "I Wanna Have Your Babies", "Soulmate" and "Say It Again". Bedingfield has achieved five top ten singles in the United Kingdom and, as of April 2008, she has sold over 10 million singles and albums worldwide.
With her mother Molly Bedingfield.
Bedingfield was born in Surrey (later moving to the Lewisham district of London) to New Zealand-born Molly and John Bedingfield who are both charity workers. She has three siblings; brothers Daniel and Joshua, and younger sister Nikola. Her interest in music was encouraged by her parents and she took guitar and piano lessons when she was younger. When Bedingfield was a teenager, she and her siblings, Daniel and Nikola, formed the dance/electronic group, The DNA Algorithm. The group provided Bedingfield with the opportunity to explore different musical genres and expand her songwriting abilities. She provided vocals for the group which primarily performed dance-pop music about religion, independence and empowerment, themes that would later be found in her own solo compositions. The DNA Algorithm performed at several Christian music festivals before disbanding.
Bedingfield attended a year at the University of Greenwich, where she studied psychology, then left to concentrate on singing and songwriting. At first she recorded demos in the garages of friends who had recording studios, which she presented to record companies. Throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, Bedingfield composed and recorded songs for the Hillsong London Church. In 2004, her recordings appeared on the church's live album Shout God's Fame and the children's album Jesus Is My Superhero by Hillsong Music Australia.
Bedingfield signed a recording contract with BMG UK & Ireland in 2003. Her first album Unwritten was released in September 2004 and features collaborations with Steve Kipner, Danielle Brisebois, Wayne Rodrigues, Nick Lachey,James Reilly, Andrew Frampton, Wayne Wilkins, Kara DioGuardi, Guy Chambers, Patrick Leonard and the rapper Bizarre. The album contained uptempo pop rock songs and influences from R&B music. Bedingfield's lyrics focused on independence, opportunism and female empowerment. Reviews of the album were generally positive and it was described as a "well-made pop album for the new millennium" by Allmusic. The album debuted on the UK Albums Chart at number one and reached the top thirty in the United States. It sold well, reaching multi-platinum status in the United Kingdom and Gold status in the U.S. The first single released from the album was "Single", which reached number three on the UK Singles Chart. The song's lyrics, and its accompanying music video, depict Bedingfield's single lifestyle. "These Words" was released as the album's second single. The song became Bedingfield's first UK number one and U.S. top twenty single. "Unwritten" was released as the album's third single in 2004, the song reached number six on the UK Singles Chart and it also became the most played song on U.S. radio in 2006. "I Bruise Easily" was released as the album's fourth single, it did not perform as well as its predecessors but was still a moderate success, reaching number twelve on the UK Singles Chart.
In 2004, Bedingfield also appeared on the Girls Of FHM single, Da Ya Think I'm Sexy?, alongside Tina Barrett (formerly of S Club 7) and Liz McClarnon (formerly of Atomic Kitten). The single peaked at number ten in the UK Top 40 charts.
At the 2005 Brit Awards, Bedingfield was nominated for four awards, though did not win any of her nominated categories. She was also nominated for an award at the 2006 Brit Awards, and in 2007 she was nominated for "Best Female Pop Vocal Performance" at the 2007 Grammy Awards, though was again unsuccessful in winning in any of her nominated categories.
In November 2006, Bedingfield released the DVD Live in New York City, which contained a live concert performance as well as music videos and a documentary. That month she recorded the Diane Warren-penned song "Still Here" for the film Rocky Balboa. The song, however, did not appear on the soundtrack although it was included on her second album.
2007?2008: N.B. and Pocketful of Sunshine
Bedingfield in Toronto, Canada on 3 October 2007
Bedingfield's second album N.B. was released in Europe in April 2007. In North America (the U.S. and Canada), the album was released under the title "Pocketful of Sunshine" in January 2008. Bedingfield again collaborated with Kipner along with Eve, Wayne Wilkins, and Maroon 5 singer Adam Levine. The album takes influence from a variety of music styles such as R&B, reggae and electronica. Bedingfield commented that it differed from Unwritten because it represented her shifting priorities from being a single young woman to "dating, searching for a partner" and "looking for Mr Right". The album received mixed reviews by critics and peaked at number nine in the UK.
"I Wanna Have Your Babies", the album's lead single, was about finding the right man to father her children and was criticized by fans and critics alike. The song was moderately successful, reaching number seven in the UK, number eight in Ireland and the top fifty in various other markets. "Soulmate" was released as the album's second single on 2 July 2007 and also peaked at number seven in the UK. "Say It Again" was confirmed as the third single to be released from N.B. on 8 October 2007, but this failed to chart.
In July 2007, Bedingfield appeared in an online YouTube music video of Esm?e Denters singing "Unwritten". Bedingfield sang backing vocals off-screen for most of the video, but joined Denters in front of the camera at the end of the song. In September 2007, it was announced that the lead single "I Wanna Have Your Babies" would in fact not be the lead single in North America. A new track titled "Love Like This" would serve as the lead American single. The track, which features Jamaican reggae act Sean Kingston did not appear on the original pressings of N.B. The song was also released in the UK where it peaked at number 20 in March 2008.
To promote N.B., Bedingfield embarked on the FutureSex/LoveShow tour in May 2007, supporting Justin Timberlake and on 1 July 2007, Bedingfield performed "Unwritten" at the Concert for Diana at Wembley Stadium in London.
Bedingfield's live session at Abbey Road Studios was recorded for Live from Abbey Road and the performance was screened on an episode shared with Iron Maiden and Gipsy Kings. The show was screened on Channel 4 in the UK and the Sundance Channel in the United States.
On 3 October 2007, Bedingfield won an award for "Best Pop Artist" at the 2007 BT Digital Music Awards held at The Roundhouse in Camden, North London. She also performed her latest single "Say It Again" at the ceremony.
The North American version of her second album featured six songs from N.B. along with seven new ones. The album was released on 22 January 2008, after the lead single, "Love like This", was released in September 2007 and charted at #11 on the Billboard hot 100, #9 on the Pop 100 and #1 on the US dance chart.
The title track was released as the second single in February 2008 and was played on the season finale of MTV's The Hills. The single peaked at #5 on the Billboard hot 100, #5 on the Pop 100 and #1 on the US dance chart.
On 18 January 2008, Bedingfield's UK tour was cancelled for the second time, one month before it was supposed to start, so she could spend more time promoting her album in the U.S. She recently signed on to become the opening act on the recently reunited New Kids On The Block Fall Tour of 2008 in the US.
In February 2008, Bedingfield was invited by EA Games to re-record the single Pocketful of Sunshine in Simlish, with a music video released as part of a viral advertising campaign for the release of The Sims 2: FreeTime.
The third single taken from the album was "Angel", which peaked at number #63 on the Billboard Hot 100, #35 on the Pop 100 and #1 on the US dance chart. On 18 September 2008, Bedingfield performed the song on America's Got Talent.
A fourth single, "Soulmate", was released in December 2008 but debuted 2 months before its release at #103 on the Billboard Hot 100, #74 on the Pop 100 and #1 on the US Dance Chart (becoming her fifth #1 dance single).
2009: New album
Bedingfield has stated on her blog that she will start work on her new album in early 2009. She has confirmed to be writing for the new album while on holiday in New Zealand, she says "I'm here for a couple of weeks to do a bit of writing. It is such an inspiring place to write music. I love coming here as often as I can, usually once a year to fuel up on ideas for my next album". She has also confirmed she is working with Brian Kennedy who produced Rihanna's hit single "Disturbia" and has been writing songs with him while on tour with a view to having the album released by the end of 2009. Bedingfield has also stated that Wyclef Jean, Sam Sparro and Mike Elizondo will also be working on the record, alongside producers Printz Board and Ryan Tedder. Bedingfield has confirmed that the album will be ready for 2010.
Bedingfield at the Frosted Pink With a Twist women's cancer charity event in San Diego, 2008
Bedingfield in the 2006 Red Dress collection for The Heart Truth campaign
Bedingfield is a philanthropist who has donated time and money to organizations such as the Global Angels, an international children's charity founded by her mother, Molly Bedingfield. She became associated with the organization in 2006 because of her celebrity status, which she could use to help "people around the world, particularly children, who live in conditions that would horrify us".
Bedingfield is now an ambassador for Global Angels and in November 2006 she visited India for three weeks in support of the charity. She visited an orphanage in Calcutta and a refugee camp for former child prostitutes in Mumbai to learn more about the situation and the conditions in these areas. Bedingfield later expressed her shock at what she had witnessed. Video diaries filmed during her trip were posted on her official website in early 2007. She is also an advocate for Stop the Traffik, a global coalition which works to end human trafficking and a member of the (RED) campaign. In a 2008 rockumentary, Call+Response, headed by Justin Dillon, Bedingfield performed acoustic versions of "Unwritten" and "Soulmate" in support of the film's cause: a movement against current slavery and human trafficking.
In 2004, Bedingfield showed interest in acting and made her debut in the James Bond video game From Russia with Love in November 2005. She lent her voice to the character Elizabeth Stark, the British Prime Minister's daughter who is kidnapped in the opening sequence. Bedingfield commented that she would like to do more acting, but only if the film "was good enough, and it was a role that fit me." Bedingfield is not set to appear in any forthcoming films in the near future.
She has made an appearance in the seventh season finale of the hit Canadian television series Degrassi: The Next Generation. Bedingfield also guest starred on Nickelodeon's mockumentary series The Naked Brothers Band's Christmas Special, alongside Whoopi Goldberg and Leon Thomas III. She has made guest appearances on the NBC series Lipstick Jungle.
In 2006, the media incorrectly reported that Bedingfield was dating Nick Lachey and Maroon 5 lead singer, Adam Levine. Referring to the media reports, Bedingfield commented that "Adam is lovely but I didn't date him or Nick. As soon as you talk to a famous guy, you're immediately linked with him." Bedingfield is married to Matt Robinson, a businessman and documentary filmmaker from California. The couple wed in Malibu on 21 March 2009.
She lists Audrey Hepburn, Debbie Harry and Brigitte Bardot as her "celebrity style icons".