Her musical style has been compared to that of Kate Nash, Lykke Li, Tracey Thorn and Björk.
BackgroundGoulding was born born 30 December 1986 and grew up in Hereford, England, the second of four children. She began playing the clarinet and writing songs at the age of nine, and at fourteen began learning guitar. She started songwriting at the age of fifteen and while in college she won a singing competition.
After commencing a drama course at the University of Kent, where she was exposed to electronic music, she developed her sound with the help of Frankmusik on the track "Wish I Stayed", and Starsmith, who went on to become her chief collaborator and primary producer of Lights. After two years at Kent, she was advised to take a gap year to pursue singing, and moved to West London.
She is a keen runner, running six miles every day, and has taken part in a number of marathons. In support of her second EP, Run Into the Light, she invited a small number of fans through her Facebook pages, to run with her in seven different cities on her UK tour, and has announced that she will be doing the same across Europe and the United States. A website, EllieRuns.com, was launched in support.
She is currently dating Radio 1 DJ Greg James
Early careerSigned to Polydor Records in September 2009, she made her debut single. "Under the Sheets", which was released digitally in the United Kingdom on 15 November 2009, peaking outside the top 40. In October 2009 she toured the UK supporting Little Boots, and appeared on Later... with Jools Holland, performing "Under The Sheets" and "Guns and Horses". "Wish I Stayed" was available as a free download as the UK iTunes Store's 'Single of the Week' from 22–28 December 2009.
Lights and Bright LightsBefore the release of her debut studio album, Goulding won the BBC Sound of 2010 poll, which showcases the critics, broadcasters and music industry insiders' top choices for rising stars and artists for the coming year. She also won the Critics' Choice Award at the 2010 BRIT Awards, which prize made her the second artist to win both in the same year.
Lights was released in March 2010, reaching number one on the UK Albums Chart and number twelve on the Irish Albums Chart. Its singles, "Starry Eyed", "Guns and Horses", and "The Writer" peaked at numbers 4, 26, and 19 respectively. In August 2010, Ellie released a second extended play, Run Into the Light, a remixed version of Lights. The album was supported by Nike and was released through Polydor as a running soundtrack in an effort to get Goulding's music taken up by the national running subculture.
In November 2010, Lights was re-released as Bright Lights, with six new tracks added. It was originally announced that the lead single from Bright Lights would be the new edit of the title track with a release scheduled for 1 November 2010. Yet this was scrapped to allow her cover of Elton John's "Your Song" to be released in conjunction with the John Lewis Christmas 2010 advertising campaign in the UK. The single became Goulding's highest-charting single to date, reaching number two on the UK Singles Chart. The song also charted in some European countries in early 2011.
Goulding toured in support of Lights and supported Passion Pit in March 2010 and John Mayer during his British tour in May 2010. During the summer she performed at a number of festivals. On 29 May she performed at the Dot to Dot Festival in Bristol. She performed a set on 25 June at the 40th annual Glastonbury Festival on the John Peel Stage. Her third EP was a live recording of part of her set at the iTunes Festival 2010. The whole set was later released as part of the iTunes version of Bright Lights. She made her T in the Park debut on 11 July. She played on the Nissan Juke Arena at the 2010 V Festival in late August. In September she was part of the line-up at Bestival 2010 on the Isle of Wright. In support of the album in Europe she performed on the first day of Pukkelpop in Belgium, at the Open'er Festival in Poland and at Benicàssim in Spain. A track from Lights, "Everytime You Go", was featured in the Vampire Diaries episode "Founder's Day", while "Your Biggest Mistake" appeared in an episode of The Inbetweeners. She began a tour of the United States and Canada in February 2011 to concide with the release of the American edition of Lights. She will also play at Coachella.
In January 2011 it was announced that the title track from Lights would serve as the second single from Bright Lights. In early 2011 she recorded an original song for the film Life in a Day. Goulding was featured as number five artist on Rolling Stone Magazine's hotlist in February 2011. In February 2011 she returned to the BRIT Awards where she was nominated for the Best British Female Solo Artist and the Best British Breakthrough Act. Previously she had performed at the BRITs launch party where the nominartions were announced. She performed "Wonderman", a collaboration with Tinie Tempah from his album. Goulding will headline the 2011 Wakestock Festival in Wales, performing on 8 July. In August she will again perform at the V Festival. Following the re-release of Lights and the American launch of the album, Goulding said she would soon begin work on a second studio album with an expected release in September 2011. Goulding made her American television debut on Jimmy Kimmel Live on 7 April 2011 performing "Starry Eyed". She was the musical guest on the 700th episode of the Saturday Night Live, broadcast 8 May 2011 and hosted by Tina Fey. Ellie is set to play at the Wedding of Prince William of Wales and Kate Middleton during the reception.
Work with other artistsGoulding co-wrote "Love Me 'Cause You Want To" for Gabriella Cilmi's second album, Ten, and three songs, "Remake Me + You", "Notice" and "Jumping Into Rivers," for Diana Vickers's debut album, Songs from the Tainted Cherry Tree. Her song "Not Following" was by used Lena Meyer-Landrut on her debut album My Cassette Player. Goulding also wrote lyrics for Tinie Tempah's album Disc-Overy and sang guest vocals on his song Wonderman. Goulding is also featured on American rap duo Chiddy Bang's song "Under the Sheets" on their mixtape Airswell.
- Studio albums
- Extended plays
Awards and nominations
|2010||BBC Sound of 2010||Ellie Goulding||Sound of 2010||Won|
|2010 BRIT Awards||Critics' Choice||Won|
|2010 Q Awards||Best Female Artist||Nominated|
|Best Breakthrough Artist||Nominated|
|2010 MTV Europe Music Awards||Best UK & Ireland Act||Nominated|
|2010 MP3 Music Awards||The BNC Award||Nominated|
|2010 BT Digital Music Awards||Best Female Artist||Nominated|
|2010 UK Festival Awards||Best Breakthrough Artist||Nominated|
|2010 Virgin Media Music Awards||Best Newcomer||Nominated|
|2011||2011 BRIT Awards||Ellie Goulding||British Female Solo Artist||Nominated|
|British Breakthrough Act||Nominated|