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Pop / Rock 23/01/2007

Mika Rockets To Number One With Debut Single 'Grace Kelly'

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NEW YORK, NY. (Top40 Charts/ Universal Republic/ Casablanca) - Mika's first single 'Grace Kelly' has topped the UK music charts on digital sales alone, despite the fact that the physical single won't be available in stores until January 29th. 'Grace Kelly' ascended to the coveted No 1 spot after unseating Leona Lewis who had held the position for four weeks. With this honor Mika joins Gnarls Barkley as the only artists to reach the No 1 position before their singles were released in stores. In addition, 'Grace Kelly' has now secured the top spot as the most played video on MTV.

'Historic', 'sensational' and 'without-any-doubt original' are just some of the adjectives being thrown around by critics in praise of 23 year-old rising UK newcomer, Mika, who - on the strength of his debut album Life In Cartoon Motion (Casablanca/Universal Republic Records) has already been minted to most 2007 Artists to Watch Polls, and we're only a few weeks into the new year!

Most recently the talented singer/songwriter topped the prestigious BBC Sound of Music Poll for 2007, which has anointed previously-unknown superstars such as 50 Cent, Keane and Corinne Bailey Rae. His much anticipated album is due in-stores in the U.S. on March 27.

Universally praised for his chameleon-like pop apparitions that make up the 11 song debut disc, the Lebanese emigre (as nomadic as he is talented, now a Londoner via stopovers in Paris and other assorted cities) even has a go at describing himself on his delectable hand-scrawled MySpace site: 'Think Beck via Queen and Elton' he writes, throwing in Harry Nilsson, even though he frets his audience may not even know who the legendary singer/songwriter was. One thing is for certain, U.S. audiences are about to be properly introduced to Mika, thanks to the euphoric first single "Grace Kelly," already a smash hit in the UK, which has ignited a mailbag full of comparisons to Freddie Mercury and been ceremoniously added to the top tier of MTV Rotation here in the U.S.

Ever-vigilant UK critics have been falling over themselves to hail Mika, with the Independent calling him 'The pop sensation of 2007,' and The Times writing: 'With certain acts - it's obvious to anyone they've got he makings of something huge - Mika is one of those artists,' and The Guardian confirming that: 'Mika is 2007's surest bet.' While in the U.S. Vanity Fair describes Mika as "a little bit Freddie Mercury, a little bit George Michael."

Mika's song "Love Today" is also creating a buzz as part of Motorola's (RED) campaign. The spot containing his song in the background has SNL Alumnus Chris Kattan and Supermodel Alena featured in an impromptu comedy dance fest. (RED) was created by Bono and Bobby Shriver to raise awareness and money for the Global Fund to eliminate AIDS in Africa.

Posting cartoon thumbnails of eclectic icons such as Walt Disney, Prince, cult cartoonist R. Crumb and Mao era Chinese marchers on his website, it's not certain whether Mika aims to fuse or diffuse his diverse repertoire of influences. A self-admitted caricature junkie, he's also a startling melodist, still partial to leaving it up to searing musical gems such as "Grace Kelly," "Stuck In The Middle," and "Relax And Take It Easy," to supply the missing puzzle pieces of his amazing journey so far. 'I've always respected people who make great records to their own vision,' writes the quixotic Mika: 'Tell the truth in a song and people are less pissed off than if you were to say it to their faces.' That's good, because the affable star is about to square off face-to-face with fame and fortune in a big way in 2007.

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