Born: 16th January 1959

Birth Place: Nigeria

Known for: Singer, songwriter and actress

Sade is credited as one of the most successful British female artists in history

Sade won a Grammy award for her music with her band in the 80s and 90s

Sade's service to music were also recognised with an award of the Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) chivalry honour in 2002

I just aspire to pick people up. That's my ambition.


Life story


Life Story

Sade’s real name is Helen Folasade Adu.  She is a Nigerian born British singer known for her blend of soul, funk and Afro-Cuban rhythms. Her father was a Nigerian economics professor and her mother an English Nurse. When her parents separated, she moved to Essex with her mother and began a fashion and design programme at age 17. She then graduated, modelled and worked as a menswear designer.

Music Career

She began her music career when she filled in temporarily as a lead singer for the funk band Arriva. She sang with another band Pride before breaking away with some members to form the band Sade. Her band blew with the songs “Your Love Is King” and “Smooth Operator” which earned her a Grammy Award for best new artist. 

Their second album Promise featured their hit song The Sweetest Taboo which stayed in the American charts for six months. They went on many world tours and released various hit albums. 


Her voice and talent brought her recognition from popular news such as The New Yorker and the BBC. Sade’s work influenced many singers and hip-hop artists including Beyoncé, Rick Ross and Kanye West. She was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 2002 for services to music and promoted to Commander of the same Order (CBE) in 2017.


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