Kiss from a Rose
“My songs are like kids, I love them all. I encourage them to grow, to reach their full potential, and then send them out into the world.” Seal
Three time Grammy Award winning British soul/R&B singer/songwriter and musician Seal rose to fame in 1990 with Adamsk's No. 1 hit U.K. single “Killer.” He later rerecorded the song for his debut album in 1991 and won a 1992 Brit Award for the video. “Seal” (1991) became a chart topper in the U.K., where the album went double platinum and platinum in the U.S. Seal's career in the U.S. gained momentum in 1998 with the second album “Seal II,” which sold over four million copies there. It is noted for spawning one of his signature songs, “Kiss from a Rose,” his first and only No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 to date. The song brought Seal three Grammy Awards. Seal followed it up with the U.S. gold albums “Human Being” (1998) and “Seal IV” (2003), the German gold record “System” (2007) and the U.K. platinum “Soul” (2008). He also released the greatest hits albums “Best 1991-2004” (2004) and “Hits” (2009) and the live albums “Live in Paris” (2005) and “One Night to Remember” (2006) and has contributed songs to a series of movie soundtracks, including “Space Jam,” “The Family Man” and “The Pursuit of Happyness.”
Seal has been married to his model wife, Heidi Klum, since 2005. They have three children together. He also has an adoptive daughter, Leni, from Klum's past relationship. He stated, “Heidi is the female version of Seal. I have truly found my soul mate and have formed a bond that will last forever. We will continue to grow as a couple as well as a family. Both are equally important to nurture.”
Prior to the marriage, Seal was involved with model Tatjana Patitz and actress/model Tyra Banks.
Childhood and Family:
Seal Henry Olusegun Olumide Adelo Samuel was born on February 19, 1963, in Paddington, London, England, to Adebisi Samuel, a Nigerian immigrant, and Frances Samuel, a Brazilian immigrant. Due to financial reasons, he was raised by a foster family for the first four years of his life. When he was younger, he suffered from discoid lupus erythematosis, which left him permanently facially impaired and with hair loss. Seal has a two year diploma degree in architecture. Prior to entering the music industry, he took on various jobs in London.
Meeting in 2003, Seal and German model Heidi Klum (born on June 1, 1973) married on May 10, 2005, on a beach in Mexico. Their first child, Henry Günther Ademola Dashtu Samuel, was born on September 12, 2005, in Los Angeles and their second son, Johan Riley Fyodor Taiwo Samuel, was born on November 22, 2006. On October 9, 2009, the couple welcomed their third child, a daughter named Lou Sulola Samuel. Seal also has an older stepdaughter, Helene 'Leni' Klum (born on May 5, 2004), from Klum's previous relationship to Flavio Briatore.
After working diverse jobs in London, including electrical engineering and posting ads for local prostitutes, Seal tried to build a music career by singing in London bars and clubs. Shortly thereafter, he joined the British funk band Push, a stint notable as it sent him to Japan on a tour. While in Asia, he briefly hooked up with a Thailand blues band before traveling to India, where he found spiritual guidance. When he returned to England, Steal stayed with his friend, then-model Julian Bunster. Thanks to Bunster's support, Seal scored his first break in music when he met British dance music producer Adamski. The two toured many clubs together and collaborated on the song “Killer.”
A single by Adamski featuring Seal, “Killer,” which was co-written by the two, became a major hit in the U.K. in 1990. The song rose to No. 1 on the U.K. Singles Chart and remained there for four weeks. It eventually went gold. It also charted outside the U.K., and in America, where it peaked at No. 23 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play.
Seal signed with ZTT Records and launched a self titled debut album in May 1991. The album was well received by critics and debuted at No. 1 on the U.K. Albums chart and was certified double platinum. “Seal” was released in the United States on June 11, 1991, under Sire Records. It peaked at No. 24 on the Billboard 200 and sold over one million copies there, bringing Seal his first U.S. platinum release.
The lead single “Crazy,” which was released on November 26, 1990, and Seal co-wrote with Guy Sigsworth, peaked at No. 2 in the U.K. and No. 7 in the U.S., where in addition to hitting the Billboard Hot 100, it also charted at No. 5 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks and the ARC Weekly Top 40 and No. 17 on the Billboard Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles Sales. The song also made the top 10 in several European countries. The follow up, “Future Love Paradise,” which was released in April 1991, rose to the Top 20 (#12) in the U.K., but enjoyed greater success in Norway, Switzerland and Ireland, where it rose to the Top 10. The third single, “The Beginning,” released in October 1991, charted on the U.S. Hot Dance Club Songs at No. 6. Seal re-released “Killer” for the album, with Trevor Horn serving as producer. Released as the fourth single in November 1991, Seal's version peaked at No. 8 in U.K. and No. 100 in the Billboard Hot 100. It also rose to No. 9 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Music/Club Play and No. 14 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles Sales chart. “Killer,” with the video produced and directed by Don Searll, won Best British Video at the 1992 Brit Awards.
The second album, “Seal II,” was released on May 23, 1994, and became his next No. 1 in the U.K. Like its predecessor, it also achieved double platinum certification. In the U.S., the album marked Seal's breakthrough commercial success. It went to No. 15 on the Billboard 200 and was certified 4X platinum by RIAA. “Seal II” contained 11 tracks, including the lead single “Prayer for the Dying” (#14 UK, #21 US Hot 100, #3 US Modern Rock Track), for which he nabbed a Grammy nomination for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, the triple Grammy Award winning “Kiss from a Rose,” “Newborn Friend” (#45 UK) and “Don't Cry” (#51 UK, #33 US Hot 100).
Released in July 1994, “Kiss from a Rose” was originally a modest success where it peaked at No. 20 in the U.K. The song gained a major boost when it was used as the soundtrack of the motion picture “Batman Forever” (1995). The Seal/Horn written song scorched through the Billboard Hot 100 charts and landed at No. 1. It also became a chart topper at the Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks, the Billboard Hot Adult Top 40 Tracks, the Billboard Top 40 Mainstream and the U.S. ARC Weekly Top 40. “Kiss from a Rose” brought Seal Grammys in 1996 for Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.
In 1997, Seal did a cover of Steve Miller's “Fly Like an Eagle” for the motion picture “Space Jam.” Seal version's rose to No. 10 in the U.S. and No. 13 in the U.K. The following year, on November 16, 1998, he released the album “Human Being” as a tribute to murdered rappers Biggie Smalls and Tupac Shakur. The album received mixed reviews from critics and was considered a commercial failure when it was compared to the multi platinum selling “Seal II.” It went silver in U.K. (#44) and gold in the U.S (#22). “Human Being” produced three singles with the songs “Human Being,” “Latest Craze” and “Lost My Faith.” It was Seal's first album with Warner Bros. Records after he parted ways with ZTT Records.
In 2001, Seal was scheduled to launch the album “Togetherland.” The album failed to see daylight but did produce the single “This Could Be Heaven,” which was featured on the soundtrack of the film “The Family Man” (2000). Also in 2001, he recorded a duet with French singer Mylène Farmer called “Les Mots,” which was released as the first single of Farmer's first compilation album of the same name in November 2002. He then collaborated with British DJ and house music producer Dave Lee, also known under the pseudonym Jakatta, on the Top 10 U.K. hit single “My Vision” (2002), which Seal performed and co-wrote.
On September 9, 2003, Seal resurfaced with the album “Seal IV,” his second with Warner Bros. The album peaked at No. 3 in the U.S. and received gold certification. The album topped the chart in Switzerland, went double platinum in Germany and hit the Top 10 in the U.K. (#4), Sweden (#2) and France (#5). The lead single “Love's Divine” peaked at No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Play and was nominated for a 2005 Grammy for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.
Seal released the compilation album “Best 1991–2004” on November 8, 2004. It went platinum in Germany and was certified gold by Britain's BPI. Apart from well known singles such as “Crazy,” “Kiss from a Rose” and “Killer,” the album also included a cover of the Bacharach/David classic “Walk on By,” in which Seal was nominated for a 2006 Grammy for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, and a cover of Echo & the Bunnymen's song “Lips Like Sugar.” On July 6, 2005, Seal released a live album called “Live in Paris,” which was recorded during a show at the Olympia Theatre in Paris, France, in July 2004. The second live album, “One Night to Remember,” followed on March 27, 2006. Also in 2006, Seal contributed the song “A Father's Way” to the “The Pursuit of Happyness” soundtrack. The song earned a 2007 Golden Globe nomination for Best Original Song - Motion Picture.
Seal launched “System,” the follow up to “Seal IV,” on November 12, 2007, in the U.K. and November 13, 2007, in the U.S. Produced by Stuart Price, who previously worked on Madonna's “Confessions on a Dance Floor” (2005), the album peaked at No. 37 in the U.K. and No. 35 in the U.S. “System” earned gold certification in Switzerland and Germany and consisted of 11 tracks, including “Wedding Day,” a duet he sang with his wife Heidi Klum, “Amazing,” which rose to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play, and “The Right Life” (#19 US Hot Dance Club Play). The song “Amazing” earned Seal a 2008 Grammy nomination for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.
The sixth studio album “Soul” hit the music stores on November 10, 2008, for producer David Foster. It was comprised of cover versions of 11 soul music classics. “Soul” sold over one million pieces in France and earned diamond certification there. It went double platinum in Belgium, platinum in the U.K., Switzerland, and Canada, and gold in Australia, Sweden and Italy. In America, the album rose to No. 13 on the Billboard 200 and No. 4 in Top R&B/Hip-Hop Album chart and sold nearly 400,000 pieces. The lead single, a cover of Sam Cooke's “A Change Is Gonna Come,” was a moderate hit in the U.S., where it peaked at No. 79 on the U.S. Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs. The second single was from the James Brown hit “It's a Man's Man's Man's World.” The last three singles released from the album were The Impressions/Curtis Mayfield's “It's Alright,” Ann Peebles' “I Can't Stand the Rain” and “If You Don't Know Me by Now,” which was first recorded by the Philadelphia soul musical group Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes in 1972. Released in the U.S. in March 2009, “If You Don't Know Me by Now” brought Seal a 2010 Grammy nomination for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.
The second compilation album “Hits” was released on November 30, 2009. The album rose to No. 1 in Belgium and charted at No. 37 in the U.K.
Grammy: Record of the Year, “Kiss from a Rose,” 1996
Grammy: Song of the Year, “Kiss from a Rose,” 1996
Grammy: Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, “Kiss from a Rose,” 1996
BMI Film & TV: Most Performed Song from a Film, “Batman Forever,” for the song “Kiss From a Rose,” 1996
Brit Award: Best British Video, “Killer,” 1992