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Adele

Jude Rogers, Gentlewoman, The, Spring 2011

2011 saw a perfect start for Adele Adkins, a British singer with incredible international appeal. When her second album was released in January, it went straight to the top of the iTunes charts in 16 countries. Meanwhile, her debut album returned to the top 10.

Born in north London into a clan of strong women, Adele grafts hard over her songs, which are based on her own experiences — in the case of this particular album, a crushing break-up. The events behind her lyrics still sting, and you hear it as soon as she starts to sing. Adele is a legitimate heiress to the great tradition of amazing torch singers. She's also an adorable, down-to-earth girl.

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