XENOMANIA artists:

Full name: Anne Lilia Berge Strand
Origin: Norway
Birth: 1977
Years active: 1993-present
With Xenomania:
Bad Times
Danny, Danny
Heaven & Hell
My Love Is Better
When The Night

Anne Lilia Berge Strand is a pop artist and DJ from Bergen, Norway.

Her solo singing career began in 1999 with the single "The Greatest Hit". The song, which samples Madonna's "Everybody", was written with Tore Andreas Kroknes (DJ Erot), with whom she was romantically involved. In 2001, she recorded "I Will Get On" with Tore and was planning on releasing an album. However, Tore, who suffered from an inborn organic heart disease, fell ill and died of complications from his heart condition at the age of 23.

In 2004, Annie released her debut album Anniemal, in which she worked with Richard X, Timo Kaukolampi and Royksopp. Annie toured America, Japan and Australia and then got down to writing for the second album. But by that point she didn't have a record label.

She kept writing and touring, and one day Bob Stanley (from St. Etienne, who toured with Annie) mentioned the producer Brian Higgins, who was a fan of Annie's "Heartbeat'". She got in touch, and was summoned to work in the Xenomania studios.

Higgins said of Annie: "[She] is a fascinating lady with the potential to be an international superstar. She shares my way of thinking - that you can be cool and commercial at the same time". "Brian's very direct and that's great because I'm clear about what I like and don't like, too", told Annie. In the summer of 2007 recording began, with Higgins working with Annie on the entire album's direction (as executive producer) and securing the singer a new deal with Island Records.

Her second album is titled Don't Stop. Brian Higgins said that the record will be "very melodic song-based electronica - cutting edge pop and great melodies with a view to getting people dancing. We won't let her down". Besides Xenomania, Annie has also worked with Richard X and Timo Kaukolampi and collaborated with Datarock and Franz Ferdinand's Alex Kapranos (who plays guitar on "My Love Is Better" and "Loco").

"My Love Is Better" was originally a duet with Girls Aloud. While she was working on the song Girls Aloud were in the studio recording "Can't Speak French". "[Girls Aloud] were in same studio at the time, working on their own tracks - it was literally a case of asking them if they were up for it and they were", Annie said. However, in May 2008 it was reported that Girls Aloud's management/record label demanded that their vocals were removed from the song. "The Girls seemed to have a good time. Then their record label got involved and got heavy on me. It's silly of them, a shame, but I have no hard feelings to the Girls at all", she explains.

A change in management at Island Records led Annie's album to be delayed several times, and Annie eventually left the label. Annie now plans to release her second album in September 2009


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x Annie on Wikipedia

x Annie/Xenomania news

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