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Sarah Cracknell (born 12 April 1967; Chelmsford, Essex) is an English singer-songwriter, best known as the lead singer of the electronic music band Saint Etienne.
Cracknell's career started with the Windsor-based indie band The Worried Parachutes in 1982. Following the demise of the band she released a solo single Love Is All You need in 1987. She then formed a new band Prime Time with partner Mick Bund who released a handful of singles. She then appeared on the dance track Fingertips by Lovecut DB in 1990.
Saint Etienne was originally to be an indie dance act featuring various vocalists. After Moira Lambert sang on their initial 1990 single "Only Love Can Break Your Heart" and Donna Savage was heard on the follow-up single "Kiss and Make Up," Cracknell lent her vocals to "Nothing Can Stop Us" and ended up doing the rest of the singing on their debut album Foxbase Alpha. Cracknell has been Saint Etienne's permanent vocalist since then.
Preceded by the single "Anymore" in 1996, Cracknell released a solo album, Lipslide, in May 1997. Originally released in the UK only by Gut Records, the album featured dance, indie and pop tunes and received good reviews from critics, although it was not a big seller (Cracknell has in interviews placed some of the blame for this on lack of proper promotion by Gut). The UK version of the album is now deleted.
Lipslide finally surfaced in the U.S. three years later, when Instinct Records released it in February 2000. With completely different cover art, the original album's tracklisting was also modified: five tracks were removed and four new songs plus a remix were added. Months later, Instinct released the Kelly's Locker EP, which contained the five tracks originally removed from the UK version of Lipslide, along with two previously unreleased songs and a new remix.
Cracknell was Spiller's first choice for the vocals of his number-one hit "Groovejet (If This Ain't Love)" in 2000, but never got to record the song. She has recorded tracks with various artists such as David Holmes ("Anymore", "Gone"), Xploding Plastix ("Sunset Spirals"), Cheapglue ("You've Just Won Me Over") and Paul Van Dyk ("The Riddle (Tell Me Why)," although billed as a collaboration between Van Dyk and St. Etienne but with Cracknell on vocals).
She recorded a duet on Dusty Springfield's 1968 song "I Close My Eyes and Count to Ten" with Marc Almond for his album Stardom Road, released in June 2007.
In December 2007, BBC radio began playing "The Journey Continues" by Mark Brown featuring Sarah Cracknell. The song consists of extensive samples from a composition by Elena Kats-Chernin entitled Eliza's Aria, well known to UK TV viewers as the music from the computer-animated 'For the Journey' commercials for Lloyds TSB bank. The single was released in February 2008 on Positiva. The song peaked at #11 in the UK after being released.
Cracknell has collaborated with French pop star Etienne Daho on several occasions. She co-wrote and sang back-up vocals on "Les passagers" from his 1996 album Eden, and also co-wrote "Le premier jour" which was released as a single from his greatest hits compilation Singles. With Saint Etienne, they collaborated on the Reserection EP. Saint Etienne's single "He's on the Phone" (which featured both Cracknell and Daho) was actually an English-language adaptation of Daho's French language 1984 single "Weekend à Rome".
On 21 August 2014, Cherry Red Records announced that it had signed Cracknell to a worldwide deal under which she would release a new solo album. The album, entitled Red Kite, was recorded in December 2014 and released on 15 June 2015. A series of live shows by Cracknell in support the album were planned for the weeks following its release. Fanart Banner