REAL NAME: Diana King
BIRTH DATE: November 8, 1970
BIRTH PLACE: Spanish Town, Jamaica
Global hitmaker DIANA KING with her trademark blend of reggae, pop and R&B, the Jamaican-born singer/songwriter is truly expressing herself with songs that not only showcase her vocal artistry but highlight her skills as a lyrical storyteller. “I spent a lot of my life trying to figure out my style,” says the upbeat singer, who had made her home in South Florida since 1996. “I started out as a singer but reggae rapping is a part of my history. I battled with it for a long time because I was afraid of being categorized as either a pop and soul singer or a reggae artist”
One of fifteen children, DIANA was born in Spanish Town, in St. Catherine’s Parish, not far from Kingston. While she grew up singing traditional hymns in church, it was the music of soulful divas like Aretha Franklin, Patti LaBelle and Chaka Khan that influenced DIANA: “In Jamaica, we don’t sing gospel like in the U.S. When I got the chance to sing a solo in church, I wanted to do Aretha and it was like, ‘you can’t do that here…’” Undeterred, DIANA began expressing her passion for music by singing at weekends at Mingles a local Kingston club. Parental objections led to DIANA’s early departure from home: “I didn’t even know where I was going. I took a bus and ended up in Ocho Rios… I saw somebody I knew there and he told me about a band that was looking for a female singer…that night I was onstage and started my career on Jamaica’s north coast circuit.”
Singing everything from R&B to pop and dance hits, DIANA found herself performing at different hotels in Jamaica before she became the featured singer with the reggae-oriented City Heat band. It was only a matter of time before DIANA’s vocal talents came to the attention of industry professionals and in the early ‘90s, she recorded her first single with producer Handel Tucker, “Change of Heart.” “Going there after the release of my first album really helped establish me in those countries,” says DIANA, who has performed in Japan twice a year since 1995 and has consistently toured throughout Europe as a result of the popularity she enjoyed with her debut album. In 1997, Columbia Records released Think Like A Girl, DIANA’s much-acclaimed sophomore set which included remakes of Dionne Warwick’s “I Say A Little Prayer” and Culture Club’s “Do You Really Want To Hurt Me?” Before she started working on a new record of her own, DIANA enjoyed some further success–as a songwriter. “Treat Her Like A Lady”–co-written by DIANA and producers Andy Marvel and Billy Mann–was recorded by superstar Celine Dion on 1997’s multi-platinum Let’s Talk About Love album.
DIANA KING has much to look forward to as she embarks on the next phase of her career. Notes DIANA, “After the second album came out, I continued touring internationally but I laid low for a few years because of record company changes. It took a minute to figure out what was going on…” Looking for a new recording home, DIANA began working on tunes with producer Marvel towards the end of 2001 and it was a chance meeting with an executive then working at Maverick Records which led to DIANA’s eventual signing with the label in the spring of 2002.
DIANA KING has the IT that separates talent from superstars…a combination of unparalled vocal power and passion, diverse style, edgy songwriting skills, exotic beauty, sharp mind, sex appeal, and charm to spare, this artiste has the potential to penetrate the international market in a way only previously achieved by global stars such as Bob Marley. Breaking barriers with a voice that cuts straight through the heart, crooning, rapping and belting her passionate message in the universal language of love to a global market, DIANA KING aka KINGSINGA, is THE voice for the 21st century and the Jamaican artiste who will ultimately take it to the next level.
Diana started producing herself and launched her own record label Think Like A Girl a couple of years ago.