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La Roux ( in English, ) is an English electropop duo band made up of singer Eleanor Jackson (born 8 March 1988), and synth player, co-writer and co-producer Ben Langmaid. Jackson describes their respective roles as "very much a half and half sharing situation... not like a singer producer outfit", but also recognizing that it often can "look like a solo act".

Their music is influenced by 1980s synthpop including Yazoo, Depeche Mode, The Human League, Heaven 17, and Blancmange. The band's name originates from Jackson's red hair and French heritage; she has said

Band members

Elly Jackson

Elly Jackson's first interest in music revolved around folk music. She was particularly interested in Carole King and Nick Drake whom she discovered in her parents' record collection. (Her mother is Trudie Goodwin, who rose to fame playing June Ackland on long-running police series The Bill.) Jackson's early musical material consisted of folk ditties informed by Joni Mitchell. Her taste in music changed during her mid-teens when she became involved in the rave scene.

Jackson has been linked to a pop music trend that features androgynous twenty-something women with a strong individualistic attitude. She has cited musicians David Bowie, Madonna, Prince , The Knife as her influences. Jackson is unhappy with what she perceives as a "normality" fashion trend among a majority of today's musical acts. Her clothing and hair style which has been compared to the 1980s group Flock of Seagulls is being imitated by young women in London.

Jackson has been critical of other musicians. She feels that a culture of positivity has lowered standards. Reacting to the polarization her remarks have caused, Jackson noted that she makes a distinction between a person's work and how they are as a person.

Ben Langmaid

Ben Langmaid is the second half of La Roux, who partakes in no live performances with the band. Langmaid, a London-based producer and composer has been involved with various other music projects in the past. He has a close association with Rollo Armstrong of Faithless; the two musicians went to the same school and later collaborated as Huff & Puff in the mid 90s, releasing the house single 'Help Me Make It' in 1996. Langmaid also recorded as Atomic and was one half of Huff & Herb before contributing as a songwriter to indie band Kubb's debut album 'Mother', released in 2005. This project was again linked to Rollo Armstrong; Kubb's frontman Harry Collier was introduced to Langmaid after Collier sang Happy Birthday to Armstrong whilst working as a waiter in a North London organic cafe. Langmaid turned down the offer of a permanent position in Kubb.

Supporting band members

Michael Norris(Keyboards and Computers)"Mikey" is a London-based musician and is one of two keyboard players that support La Roux on their tours and live dates. A native of the Chester area in Cheshire, UK, Norris studied music at University, joining La Roux shortly after graduating from a music degree.

Mickey O'Brien(Keyboards and Backing Vocals)Mickey has been playing with La Roux for 18 months, touring Europe and North America. Although her voice is unheard on the album, Mickey performs backing vocals during song performances; namely Bulletproof, As If By Magic and Armour Love.She is also known as "Ladyburden" and owns a MySpace page with her own songs.Mickey is currently in a long-term relationship with British actor Jim Sturgess.

William Bowerman(Drums)Ex-drummer of "I Was a Cub Scout," an Indie alternative band from Lincolnshire/Nottinghamshire.

Career

La Roux at The Warehouse Project Manchester, November 2009
In 2006 Jackson and Langmaid were introduced by a mutual friend. Their first project was named "Automan" and they wrote largely acoustic music.

La Roux's first single, "Quicksand", was released by independent record label Kitsuné Music in December 2007. They then signed to Polydor Records in order to release their debut album.

La Roux's second single "In for the Kill" was released on 16 March, 2009, and prominent dubstep producer Skream has created a remix of the track as well as one being made by Lifelike. "In for the Kill" debuted at number 11 in the UK Singles Chart on 22 March 2009, peaking at number 2 to date. Bulletproof was released on the 22 June 2009 and debuted at # 1 in the UK Singles Chart.. The song was released on 11 August, 2009 in the United States and topped the Dance/Club Play chart the week of September 17. I'm Not Your Toy was released on September 29th On the 10th September, Elly confirmed in a magazine interview that As if By Magic would be the 5th track from the album to be released as a single.

In order to promote La Roux, the band were the supporting act on Lily Allen's UK tour of March 2009. La Roux headlined the Samsung NME Radar Tour 2009 and played alongside Magistrates, and Heartbreak. They were scheduled to perform at the Glastonburymarker, Reading, Oxegen and Leeds festivals as well as the Scalamarker, Southend Chinnerys and Coventry Kasbah venues. In July and August 2009 La Roux toured North America. The 8 city tour included performances at the Montreal Osheaga Festival, All Points West Festival, and the Lollapalooza event. On 23 July the group performed on the Jimmy Kimmel Live show. The group will return to North America for a 7 date tour in October. The group sold out their two Australian dates within minutes forcing an upgrade in venues. November will see the duo embark on an 11 date United Kingdom and Ireland tour. La Roux gained fifth position on the BBC's Sound of 2009 poll. The Guardian website featured La Roux on their new band of the day column. The Guardian also featured La Roux as one of the "Best New Acts of 2009" in the January of that year. The album has been nominated for a Mercury Prize.

La Roux plans to wait until they finish touring, which will be well into 2010 before doing major work on a second album. They do not want to rush things and do not plan on bringing in a big name producer.

On 7 December La Roux is scheduled to duet with the New Wave group Heaven 17 on the 6 Music Live Combos show. Heaven 17 keyboardist Martyn Ware remarked that "We really like their attitude towards pop writing, and we’re also fans of Elly’s voice."

Discography

Studio albums

Year Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
UK

US ARG

AUS

BEL

FRA

IRL

NORmarker

SWImarker

CAN

GER NZ

2009 La Roux 2 170 20 22 51 115 7 38 54 8 54 26
  • UK: Gold
  • Sales: 250.000+


Singles

Year Song Peak chart positions Certifications Album
UK

IRE

AUS

EU

GERmarker

BEL

NL

CAN

TUR

NZ

U.S.

HSS
2008 "Quicksand" 153 18 18 La Roux
2009 "In for the Kill" 2 13 36 9 92 43
  • UK: Platinum
  • AUS: Gold
"Bulletproof" 1 5 3 6 12 5 29 45 8 7 2
  • UK: Silver
  • AUS: Gold
"I'm Not Your Toy" 27 7
"Quicksand "
"—" denotes did not chart or was not released


Music videos

Year Music video Director
2009 "Quicksand" Kinga Burza
"In for the Kill"
"Bulletproof" The Holograms@UFO
"I'm Not Your Toy" AlexandLiane


The Gold Tour

Awards

Year Award Category Nominated work Result
2009 O2 Silver Clef Awards Best Newcomer La Roux Won
Studio8 International Music Awards Best Female Newcomer Elly Jackson Won
Mercury Prize La Roux Nominated
Studio8 International Music Awards Studio8 Song of July 2009 Bulletproof Won
MTV Europe Music Awards Best New Act La Roux Nominated
MTV Europe Music Awards Best Push Artist La Roux Nominated


References

  1. Breaking: La Roux Rolling Stone Magazine 4 November, 2009
  2. Et intervju med La Roux
  3. Music review: Stellar set by La Roux San Francisco Chronicle 25 July, 2009
  4. Where the Wild Girls Are New York Magazine Fall Preview '09
  5. La Roux: 'Of course Lady Gaga's not my thing' The Guardian 24 September, 2009
  6. N-Dubz hit out at 'bitter' La Roux BBC 1 October, 2009
  7. www.myspace.com/ladyburdenmusic
  8. Billboard Chart Listing La Roux
  9. La Roux announce new single details NME 13 August, 2009
  10. http://www.hall-musique.net/2009/09/la-roux-as-if-by-magic-nouveau-single.html
  11. La Roux to play London Scala NME 1 June, 2009
  12. La Roux, Marmaduke Duke, Big Pink for Reading And Leeds Festivals NME 9 June, 2009
  13. La Roux announce North American tour NME 19 June, 2009
  14. Thursday's Talk Shows Los Angeles Times 23 July, 2009
  15. La Roux plot North American tour NME 26 August, 2009
  16. LA ROUX shows sold out - venues upgraded to meet demand! Altsounds 26 August, 2009
  17. La Roux Announces Massive Autumn UK Tour Festivalwise 8 July, 2009
  18. 'No rush' for next La Roux album BBC 6 September, 2009
  19. Gary Numan and Heaven 17 team up with Little Boots and La Roux BBC6 12 November, 2009
  20. http://jam.canoe.ca/Music/Charts/ALBUMS.html
  21. http://charts.org.nz/showitem.asp?interpret=La+Roux&titel=La+Roux&cat=a
  22. http://www.billboard.com/#/artist/la-roux/chart-history/170748?f=349&g=Singles
  23. http://www.billboard.com/charts/canadian-hot-100#/charts/canadian-hot-100
  24. http://www.billboard.com.tr/pages/Turkiye_top20.aspx
  25. Take That, Madness Win Silver Clefs Billboard Business News 4 July, 2009
  26. Barclaycard Mercury Prize 2009: nominees announce NME 21 July, 2009


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