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Mika, Take That Lead Brit Award Nominations

January 15, 2008 6:02 PM ET

The Brit Awards (the U.K.'s version of the Grammys) announced their nominations this morning, with British boy-band revivalists Take That (a.k.a. Robbie Williams' old group) and piano-pop crooner Mika leading the way with four nominations each. For the non-Anglophiles out there, here is Rock Daily's handy guide to the nominated artists you might not know. The awards will be handed out on February 20th.

Leona Lewis: Also nominated for four awards, Lewis had several gigantic hit singles in England after winning the third season of the American Idol-esque show X-Factor. Her debut album Spirit will be released in the U.S. in March.

Richard Hawley: A former member of Nineties indie stalwarts the Longpigs and Britpop legends Pulp, Hawley's fifth solo album Lady's Bridge reached number six on the U.K. charts.

Newton Faulkner: If Prince was an English hippie who was obsessed with Bobby McFerrin-esque percussion and had long cinnamon dreadlocks, you'd have Faulkner. His album Hand Built By Robots peaked at Number One on the U.K. charts.

Bat For Lashes: Natasha Khan plays exquisite chamber pop that includes string quartets, zithers and lyrics about magical horses. Though her album had a minor breakout here, Fur and Gold was a minor phenomenon across the pond.

Jamie T: Equal parts rock, rap and bedroom folk, Jamie T’s debut album Panic Prevention is a jittery, eclectic concept album about his own panic attacks. Because of his high-strung nature, he has gained a reputation as a damaged genius in his home country.

Related Stories:
Rolling Stone's 10 Artists to Watch: Mika
Paul McCartney to Receive Special Brit Award
Breaking Artist: Bat for Lashes

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Song Stories

“Bleeding Love”

Leona Lewis | 2007

In 2008, The X Factor winner Leona Lewis backed up her U.K. singing competition victory with an R&B anthem for the ages: "Bleeding Love," an international hit that became the best-selling song of the year. The track was co-penned by OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder (whose radio dominance would continue with songs such as Beyonce's "Halo" and Adele's "Rumour Has It") and solo artist Jesse McCartney, who was inspired by a former girlfriend, Gossip Girl actress Katie Cassidy. Given the song's success, McCartney didn't regret handing over such a personal track: "No, no," he said. "I'm so happy for Leona. She deserves it. There are really no bad feelings."

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