Born in Bradford, Yorkshire, as Pauline Matthews, under her stage name of Kiki Dee, she began her incredible musical journey by singing with local dance bands, and after being spotted by a record company scout in 1963, Kiki was signed as a solo artist to Fontana Records.
In 1963 Kiki released her first single “Early Night”, and recorded her debut album “I’m Kiki Dee”, which included a series of Phil Spector style tracks and covers. During these early years Kiki gained a respectable reputation as a backing session singer, working with many artists such as Dusty Springfield and performing on two of Dusty’s early hits, “Little By Little” and the Carole King song “Some Of Your Loving”.
Continuing her solo career, Kiki appeared on iconic TV shows like the Morecambe and Wise show, The Two Ronnies and The Benny Hill show. After signing to Elton John’s Rocket Records label in the early 1970s, Kiki scored her first UK Top 20 hit in 1973 with her version of the Véronique Sanson song “Amoureuse”. During this period Kiki recorded two albums produced by Elton and started song writing for the first time.
Continuing her friendship with Elton, “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” topped the UK chart for six weeks in mid 1976. It also enjoyed a 4-week run at No.1 on the US charts as well as reaching No.1 in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and Italy. The song was intended as an affectionate pastiche of the Tamla Motown style, notably the various duets recorded by Marvin Gaye and singers such as Tammi Terrell and Kim Weston. In 1993 Kiki once again found herself in the charts with Elton John when their version of the Cole Porter song “True Love” reached No.2 on the UK chart.
In 1994 Kiki joined forces with songwriter, producer and guitarist Carmelo Luggeri, who had worked with Bill Wyman, Julian Lennon, Andy Williams, Paul Rodgers, Ray Cooper and Ralph McTell. Carmelo produced some bonus tracks for “The Very Best of Kiki Dee” album, and, having hit it off musically, they took on a new musical direction together, playing acoustic concerts, starting with an appearance at The Royal Albert Hall for World AIDS Day in December 1994.
Over the last 27 years, Kiki and Carmelo have successfully toured extensively with their unique acoustic-based show. Their first release in 1995 was the live album “Almost Naked”, which was recorded whilst on tour with violinist Vanessa-Mae.
Over the years Kiki and Carmelo have learned to be at home in every variation of venue from small village halls to The Albert Hall and everything in between ..with many highlights including playing Womad Festivals, The Old Grey Whistle Test TV reunion….Sharing an evening with two artists the pair love and respect, Robert Plant and his band Saving Grace and collaborating with one of their inspirations Jane Siberry ……
Join Kiki and Carmelo for an acoustic journey of stories and song which include unique covers of songs by artists such as Kate Bush and Frank Sinatra and, of course, Kiki’s hits “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart”, “I Got The Music In Me”, “Loving & Free” and the stunning “Amoureuse”.