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Dido Lyrics

Dido - Biography

____Part 1____
"For me, it's about the little things, the detail. Always has been,
always will be. As in life, I concentrate on that, leaving the big
stuff to just take care of itself." Such is the secret to the
songwriting ethic which produced 1999's 'No Angel' a debut album
which so captivated the listening public that it went on to achieve
sales in excess of 12 million copies - and, in doing so, confirmed
Dido as one of only a handful of British artists capable of breaking
through to a global audience in the new millenium. Those songs of
life and love, delivered in a voice that is artlessly, unaffectedly
beautiful, proved conclusively that the small-scale and specific can
strike a universal chord. Everywhere and ever since, fans have been
hungry for more. And now, at last, a successor, 'Life For Rent' is

"The title, and the song from which it's taken, represents how I
feel about my life right now, and how I want to live it in the
future," she explains. "It's about not being afraid to take chances,
or to live life to the full. It's so easy to slip into complacency,
or to disengage from the world. This album works as a constant
reminder to myself not to do that." 

No-one expected the north London girl to be a multi-platinum,
world-conquering success, least of all Dido herself. For her, simply
getting an album recorded and released was a result. "Because it was
a struggle," she recalls. "I mean, why would anyone have expected me
to come up with the goods? I was just Rollo's little sister, hence
kind of the last place you'd look." It was, she sees now, a uniquely
free situation in which to make a first record. "There were no
limits or boundaries imposed on me, you see. No-one really cared
about what I was doing, not in a bad way, but because they were busy
with other stuff. And I loved that feeling of being the underdog. It
definitely worked to my advantage, having that artistic freedom 
even if it was born out of other people's disinterest. And this time
around, because the first album was so successful and everyone's
kind of superstitious about that, they didn't dare to interfere. It
was a case of, 'Off you go and do again whatever it was that you did
last time. Just let us know when you're finished.'"

____Part 2____
However relaxed her backers might be about the creative process, you
might think Dido herself would feel under new pressure as a result
of recent achievements. Not so. "OK, maybe I thought about that for
like a minute, but no more than that. And anyway, everywhere I
turned, I heard all this talk about the Difficult Second Album
Syndrome. So that was fine with me, straight back to being the
underdog again! It'll always be like that, I think, because no
matter how successful I am, I'm always going to be trying to be a
better singer or songwriter or producer or player or whatever. In my
own mind, I'm always going to be coming from behind, and that seems
to suit me."

Galling, though, for it to be suggested that 'No Angel's' success
can simply be put down to luck. Eminem's decision to sample the Dido
'Thankyou' on his own deeply malevolent and disturbing 'Stan' is
what fuelled that erroneous point of view. "It was bolt from the
blue when I got word of his interest," she admits. "It was the
spring of 2000 and I was in New York when this CD arrived with a
covering letter. When I played it, I was completely blown away, I
already loved his stuff, but this was something a bit different as
well. Yet naively, I just didn't predict the effect it would have on
my career. I simply told a few mates who also thought Eminem was
cool and, hence, who I knew would be impressed, and then carried on
promoting my own album. But, of course, the eventual effect would be

Yes, of course, she credits the collaboration with having brought
her to the attention of a far wider public, particularly in the UK,
where 'No Angel' had not yet been available. But Dido had already
been promoting the record for a whole year in the US (it was
released there in June 1999), selling over a million units along the
way. Hardly an unknown quantity, then. "and I'm blown away that so
many people decided to investigate or buy my record on the strength
of hearing 6 lines of it on 'Stan'. I think that's brilliant." There
was a further advantage to having broken America in advance of other
territories, too. "Had it all just gone off everywhere with the
first breath of the album, I think I would have freaked. As it was,

I was ready. By the time it went suddenly crazy everywhere else, I
had a great team around me, and a really experienced band that had
been playing together around America for 18 months. 
I was prepared."

____Part 3____
Dido continued to tour and promote 'No Angel' until May 2002, by
which point the whole music-conscious world had become aware of
Needing to find some time and space in which to collect her
thoughts, she then began to indulge a newly-available luxury  that
of spontaneous, 
unexplained travel. "For me, it's the ultimate treat, to be able to
get on a plane at a moment's notice and just take off. Writing songs
in un-familiar places, randomly meeting people, and then getting
back home again without most people even realising you've been away
 I love it. And even more, I love the fact that I've had success
without too much fame, so my ability to travel alone and at will
hasn't yet been com-promised." Seeking to begin work in earnest on
new material, Dido then rented a house in the middle of nowhere,
installed a home studio, and decamped.

Unfortunately, just days after settling in there, her father was
taken seriously ill (happily, he has since made a full recovery) and
she found herself rushing home again. Even so, it had been a
productive time, with several of the song ideas born there making it
on to the final album. A majority of the 11 new tracks were built up
on piano and guitar, either there or back home in London. Some were
collaborations with Rollo, others with Rick Nowels, who helped
produce 'No Angel'. And studio assistant from those sessions, Pnut,
has also had imput into 'Life For Rent'. "It turns out we had a hip
hop genius in our midst," says Dido proudly. "I'm often nervous when
people hand me backing tracks they've made, because I find it hard
to be any-thing other than painfully honest about what I hear. But
in this case it was, 'Wow! Unbelievable! I want to write lyrics to
this right away.'"

____Part 4____
The result is an album every bit as fresh and beguiling as its
predecessor, but one characterised by a new-found confidence and
musical maturity. "There's a little of everything I myself like to
listen to thrown in to the mix: folk, rock, pop, dance, hip hop,
whatever. And there's a bit of serendipity too. The photographer
clicking away while I was doing a vocal, or the person who leant on
the mixing desk at just the right moment We've left it all in. I'm
not saying that Rollo and I are a pair of hopeless, accident-prone
idiots who don't have a clue what they're doing! But neither of us
likes music that's polished to perfection and lacking in edge. We
wanted a multi-layered sound, so that a year from now you might
notice in the mix something you've never heard before. But we also
have a good sense of when to say, 'OK! Enough! Stop! This is great,
so let's just leave it."

Lyrically, fans will find Dido to have further refined her talent
for sketching vignettes of romantic and domestic life that, though
intimate, frequently have a twist or sting in their tail. From the
opening track and first single 'White Flag', through to the epic
closer 'See The Sun', she and Rollo have created a soundscape that
one can imagine instantly become a soundtrack to life in millions of
homes around the world. "There's nothing there to upset or alienate
existing fans. I mean, it's not as if I've suddenly gone nu-metal,
or something" she judges. "But I've pushed the boundaries and
incorporated more influences so that the music is diverse enough to
draw in new listeners, without ever sounding like it's by anyone
other than me." In short, an album that's as singular as 'No Angel'
but even stronger, and one that's wholly, uniquely and unmistakeably
Dido. Sounds perfect? Well, yes, in fact it does.

The single 'White Flag' is released September 1st on BMG. The album
'Life For Rent' is out September 29th.
All lyrics are property and copyright of their owners. All lyrics provided for educational purposes only.

Lyra v.1z 0.01753092/1 US

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