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General information  

  • Real name : Sheena Shirley Orr
  • Place of birth : Scotland
  • Date of birth : 27/04/1959

Alias  

  • Easton Sheena
  • Sheena Shirley Orr

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Sheena Easton (1959)

Sheena Shirley Orr

Type :  

  Summary  

Sheena Easton is a Scottish recording artist. Easton became famous for being the focus of an episode in the British television programme The Big Time, which recorded her attempts to gain a record contract and her eventual signing with EMI Records.

Easton rose to fame in the early 1980s with the pop hits "9 to 5" — known as "Morning Train" in the United States — and "For Your Eyes Only", "Strut", "Sugar Walls", "U Got the Look" with Prince, and "The Lover in Me". She went on to become successful in the United States and Japan, working with prominent vocalists and producers, such as Prince, Christopher Neil, Kenny Rogers, Luis Miguel, L.A. Reid and Babyface, and Nile Rodgers.

  Biography  

 early life
Easton was born Sheena Shirley Orr in the Scottish town of Bellshill, the youngest of six children to a steel mill labourer, Alex Orr, and his wife Annie. She had two brothers, Robert and Alex, and three sisters, Marilyn, Annessa and Morag. Her earliest known public performance as a singer was at the age of five in 1964 when she sang "Early One Morning" for her uncle and aunt and various relatives at the couple's 25th wedding anniversary celebration.

Easton's father died in 1969 and her mother had to support the family. Easton's website states that despite her mother's heavy workload she was always available for her children: "Sheena always speaks very highly of her mum and the wonderful job she did in bringing up her and her siblings, including teaching each of them all to read at home before they were even enrolled in school."

Easton did not consider a singing career until viewing the movie The Way We Were, with Barbra Streisand. Streisand's singing over the opening credits "overtook" the young Scottish girl and convinced her that what she wanted most was to be a singer and to have the same effect on others. Her top grades in school earned her a scholarship to attend the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow, and she trained there from 1975 to 1979 as a speech and drama teacher by day, while singing with a band called Something Else by night at local clubs. She chose to study teaching rather than performing, because it was a course of study that would let her perfect her craft as a singer.

In 1979, she married Sandi Easton, the first of four husbands. They divorced after eight months, and Sheena decided to keep the surname Easton. That year, one of her Academy tutors coaxed her into auditioning for Esther Rantzen, producer of the BBC programme 'The Big Time. Rantzen was planning a documentary film to chronicle a relative unknown's rise to pop-music stardom. Easton was selected as the subject for the programme, where she met Lulu , who told her that she was unlikely to make the big time. Within a year of the programme airing, Sheena Easton proved Lulu wrong as EMI executives awarded her a contract, and Christopher Neil was assigned as her recording producer. Deke Arlon became her first manager, and Easton spent much of 1980 being followed by camera crews, who filmed her throughout the process of making her first EMI single, "Modern Girl".

 career
 1981–83: "9 to 5", James Bond, Take My Time
Her first single, the disco-tinged soft-synth-pop tune "Modern Girl", was released in the UK before the show aired and reached #56. At the end of the show, Easton was still unsure of her future as a singer. The question was soon resolved when, after the show aired, her second single, "9 to 5", reached #3 on the UK Singles Chart in 1980. "Modern Girl" re-entered the chart subsequently and climbed into the top 10, and Easton found herself with two songs in the top 10 simultaneously. Sheena was voted Best British Female Singer by the Daily Mirror Pop & Rock Awards in 1980, "Best Newcomer" 1980 by Capital Radio, and "Best Female Singer" 1980 by the TV Times Readers Awards.

"9 to 5" was Easton's first single release in the United States, although it was renamed "Morning Train " for its release in the US and Canada to avoid confusion with Dolly Parton's hit movie title song "9 to 5". "Morning Train" became Easton's first and only #1 hit in the US and topped both the Billboard Hot 100 and Adult Contemporary charts in Billboard magazine. "Modern Girl" was released as the follow-up and peaked at #18, and before 1981 was over Sheena had a top 10 hit in both the US and UK with the Academy Award-nominated James Bond movie theme For Your Eyes Only. The song was nominated for an Academy Award in 1981 in the category Best Music . Easton's US success culminated in her winning the Grammy Award for Best New Artist of 1981.

Easton's first three US albums, Sheena Easton , You Could Have Been With Me, and Madness, Money and Music, were all in the same Soft Rock/Adult Contemporary pop vein (although she made a grab for the new wave audience with "Machinery", from the latter album). The title track from You Could Have Been With Me went Top 15 US, however, by the end of 1982, she saw her sales slumping.

 1983–87: Best Kept Secret, A Private Heaven and No Sound but a Heart
In 1983, she released the album Best Kept Secret and its first single, the synthesized dance-pop tune "Telefone " became her fourth top 10 hit. The single "Telefone" was Grammy-nominated for "Best Female Pop/Rock Vocal Performance" 1983. That year, she also had a top-10 hit in the US with "We've Got Tonight", a duet with Kenny Rogers a cover of the Bob Seger song also earning a #1 single on the country chart . The follow-up to "Telefone", "Almost Over You", was a #4 AC chart hit and Top 30 pop hit, and later became a hit on the country charts for Lila McCann in 1998.

In 1983, Easton recorded a Spanish-language single, "Me Gustas Tal Como Eres" ("I Like You Just the Way You Are"), a duet with Mexican star Luis Miguel. The single earned her a second Grammy, this time for Best Mexican-American Performance. The track was taken from the album Todo Me Recuerda a Ti, which featured Spanish-language covers of seven previous Easton recordings and three new tracks. The disc went gold in many Spanish-speaking countries.

In 1984, she made a transformation into a sexy dance-pop siren. She was rewarded with the biggest-selling US album of her career, RIAA certified platinum A Private Heaven, and her fifth top 10 single, "Strut". Easton was again Grammy nominated for "Best Female Pop/Rock Vocal Performance" 1984. She was also one of the first artists to have a music video banned because of its lyrics rather than its imagery; some broadcasters refused to air the sexually risqué "Sugar Walls", which had been written for her by Prince . "Sugar Walls" was also named by Tipper Gore of the Parents' Music Resource Council as one of the Filthy Fifteen, a list of songs deemed indecent because of their lyrics, alongside Prince's own "Darling Nikki". The song eventually hit #3 on the R&B singles chart and #9 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Easton's follow-up to A Private Heaven, entitled Do You, was produced by Nile Rodgers and achieved gold status. In late 1985, Easton contributed "It's Christmas " to the holiday release Santa Claus The Movie. Release of a follow-up album, 1987's No Sound But a Heart, was hampered in the United States after an initial single release, Eternity, failed to reach the pop, R&B or adult contemporary charts. The album's release moved from February to June; then in August the release was further held up as Easton's attorneys asked that the album be delayed after EMI Records was absorbed into EMI/Manhattan. Songs from the album were covered by other artists: Crystal Gayle and Gary Morris featured "Wanna Give My Love" and "What If We Fall In Love" on a 1987 duet album named for the latter song; Celine Dion recorded "The Last to Know" on 1990's Unison while Mexican singer Yuri featured the tune on her album Espejos De Alma ; Patti LaBelle covered "Still In Love" on 1989's Be Yourself; and Pia Zadora recorded "Floating Hearts" on 1989's Pia Z. No Sound But a Heart eventually did get released in the United States in 1999, with four bonus tracks, including Easton's contributions to the soundtrack of the 1986 film About Last Night..., "Natural Love" and the Top 50 single "So Far, So Good".

 1987–90: "U got the look" and The Lover in Me

In 1987, she sang on Prince's #2 hit, "U Got the Look", and also appeared in the video. Prince and Sheena were Grammy nominated for "Best R&B Vocal, Duo or Group" in 1987. The two would later team again for "The Arms of Orion" written by Easton and featured on Prince's soundtrack to the movie Batman in 1989, reaching #36 in the US and #27 in the UK. They also co-wrote a song for Patti LaBelle's album that year titled "Love '89". In addition they co-wrote "La, La, La, He, He, Hee", which Prince recorded. Tabloid press linked the two romantically, which she has always denied.

In November 1987, Easton made her first dramatic acting appearance on the television program Miami Vice. She played a singer named Caitlin Davies whom Sonny Crockett was assigned to protect until her court appearance to render crucial testimony against certain corrupt music industry mavens. Sonny and Caitlin ended up married by the end of the episode, the first of five for Easton until her character was killed off. Easton garnered good reviews and the episodes she was featured on earned the show higher ratings. By the spring of 1988, the latest installment of the Miami Vice soundtrack was released and featured "Follow My Rainbow", which Easton had finished singing on her last appearance just moments before her character was eliminated.

The song also appeared on her next album The Lover in Me, a gold-selling disc debut released the following autumn on her new label MCA Records that put Easton back on the charts. This album features Urban R&B and Dance-pop, and a sexier image. The title song from "The Lover in Me" reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 (UK#15) and became her biggest pop hit since "Morning Train". It also became a (#5) hit on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles and Tracks chart. It was followed on the R&B chart by "Days Like This" (#35) (UK #43), which missed the Billboard Hot 100. A third single was released "101" (UK #54) and missed the Billboard top 100 but did make it to #2 on the Billboard Dance chart. The album received positive reviews and featured collaborations with LA and Babyface, Prince, Angela Winbush, and Jellybean Benitez.

In 1990, Easton revisited her home country of Scotland to perform at a festival in Glasgow. After announcing that it was "good to be back home" in an American accent, she had bottles thrown at her and, visibly shaken, she was forced to cut her set short. She vowed never to perform in Scotland again.

 1991–96: What Comes Naturally, No Strings, and My Cherie
In 1991, What Comes Naturally became the last of Easton's albums to chart in the United States, peaking at #90. The title song was also her last Top 40 single to date, reaching #19. It also became her first hit in Australia since the mid 1980s, peaking at number 4. Another two singles "You Can Swing It" and "To Anyone" followed but failed to chart. Eastons 10th studio album, released in 1991 on MCA Records. The album includes her final US Top 40 hit to date, "What Comes Naturally" (US #19, UK #83, Australia #4.) remained on the pop chart for 10 weeks. Other singles released were "You Can Swing It" and, "To Anyone" both which failed to chart. The album charted at US #90. Easton has songwriting credits on three tracks.

Easton followed this with the critically acclaimed, but non-charting No Strings, an album of Jazz standards and My Cherie her last album to date stateside.

 1996–98: Role in All Dogs Go to Heaven 2, Freedom, and Home
Easton was set to star as the voice of a female canine in All Dogs Go to Heaven 2 in 1996. She also contributed vocals to the soundtrack on "Count Me Out" and "I Will Always Be With You." Easton also contributed the theme song "Are There Angels" to the soundtrack for Shiloh in 1997; and provided the song "A Dream Worth Keeping" for the 1993 animated film Ferngully The last Rainforest.
In 1997, she played 'Melissa,' a recording star who is visited by time travelers from the future in an Outer Limits entitled 'Falling Star'.

In the late 1990s, Easton retained an album contract with MCA Japan and released 2 discs of new material. Freedom in 1997, a return to her trademark pop including a remake of her debut single "Modern Girl" and in 1999 Universal/Victor released the self-produced acoustic set, Home. Also around this time, a greatest hits collection featuring 12 MCA singles recorded from 1988-1995 charted in Japan at #98.

Easton adopted a boy and girl between 1995 and 1996. Motherhood led her to curtail her appearances and focus on casino gigs, corporate shows and theatrical work. "Because I adopted my children, I could plan my timing," she told The Arizona Republic. "I knew exactly when they were coming along, so I knew when I had to change my life so it would be a stable life."

Easton continued acting in America, starring in Broadway revivals of Man Of La Mancha opposite Raul Julia in his last stage role, and Grease . Between 1994 and 1996, she played several characters in Gargoyles the animated series, including Lady Finella, the Banshee, Molly and Robyn Canmore. In 1999, she voice-acted a part-demon character, Annah-of-the-Shadows, in the computer game Planescape: Torment. She lives in Las Vegas with her two children and often performs in various casinos' entertainment venues. She voiced the character of Fiona Canmore for a scripted but unfinished episode of the cancelled animated feature, Team Atlantis.

 1998–99: Colors of Christmas Tour

In December 1998, Easton toured with "The Colors of Christmas" with artists Roberta Flack, Melissa Manchester, Peabo Bryson, and Jeffrey Osborne. Windham Hill Records produced "The Colors of Christmas" disc by Robbie Buchanan of holiday music. Easton contributed two tracks, "The Place Where We Belong" , and "The Lord's Prayer".

 1999–02: Todo Me Recuerda a Ti and Fabulous

1999-2000 saw New York based One Way Records gain the rights to release all of Easton's EMI-America catalog. For the first time in the US, No Sound But a Heart was released. All Easton's EMI back catalogue was re-released with bonus tracks, incorporating b-sides and remixes. However, there was one notable exception to the re-release schedule, Easton's Spanish language album Todo Me Recuerda a Ti. In 2000, Easton co-starred with David Cassidy in At The Copa, a show in Las Vegas at The Rio Hotel for one year.

She also signed an album contract with Universal International UK and attempted a comeback of sorts with Fabulous, an album of classic disco covers produced by Ian Masterson of Trouser Enthusiasts fame and Terry Ronald. The first single, "Giving Up, Giving In", reached UK #54, and the album failed to chart in the UK and was not released in the US. A second single, a cover of Donna Summer's hit "Love is in Control", was withdrawn. In Japan, the first single was "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" and the album included a cover of Teena Marie's "I Need Your Lovin" as a bonus track. Remixes of the singles were produced by Joey Negro, Sleaze Sisters, Sharp Boys, Rob Searle, DJ Soma Grow and Almighty. This was to be Easton's last album release to date. Released in 2000, it was Easton's 16th studio album. The album was only released throughout Europe, Japan, Australia, and Argentina.

The album contains mostly cover versions of hit songs from the 1970s and 80s, and most of them disco classics. There are also two original compositions. The first single released from the album was a remake of "Giving Up Giving In", which had originally been a hit for The Three Degrees in 1978. Easton's version was less successful, peaking at #54 on the UK singles chart. A second single was released in 2001, a cover of Donna Summer's 1982 hit "Love Is In Control" with an accompanying video that was taken from footage of Easton's album launch concert at G-A-Y nightclub in London. However, this too was unsuccessful and shelved indefinitely.

In Japan, "Fabulous" was released in February 2001 and the first single was "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" which had originally been recorded by Frankie Valli in the 1960s, though a disco version had been a hit for The Boys Town Gang in the early 1980s. The album was packaged differently from the UK version and included two bonus tracks; "I Need Your Lovin'" and a remix of "Can't Take My Eyes Off You". In Australia, "Fabulous" was released 24 February 2001 and Easton was asked to perform songs from the album to close out 2001 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras ceremonies. The album was a commercial failure in the UK, though the album did enjoy mild success in dance clubs in London, Japan, and Australia. However, the album was not released in the United States.

Easton also went back to Australia in 2001 for the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras and closed the celebration with songs from Fabulous. She also performed in Centennial Park, Australia, on 24 February 2001. In 2001, Easton began a successful run headlining at the Las Vegas Hilton.

 2003 – present: Work in television, live performance, break from recording

In 2003, Easton contributed vocals to "If You're Happy", a cover for a Japanese disc called Cover Morning Musume-Hello Project. She also began to host Vegas Live, a talk show with Clint Holmes .

On 31 October 2004, she was inducted into the Casino Legends Hall of Fame at the Tropicana Resort & Casino along with fellow Las Vegas icons Debbie Reynolds, Ben Vereen, Patti Page, Jack Jones and Tempest Storm.

In January 2005, Easton appeared in the television series Young Blades.

In July 2005, she performed as the Narrator in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at North Carolina Theatre in Raleigh, NC. The show co-starred Ray Walker as Joseph, Merwin Foard as the Pharaoh, David F.M. Vaughn as Reuben, Demond Green as Judah, and Darryl Winslow as Simeon.

Easton worked with composer Nobuo Uematsu for two songs on the video game Lost Odyssey, released for the Xbox 360 video game system in February 2008.

In 2008 and 2009, Easton performed Perry the Teenage Girl and Happy Evil Love Song for the Disney Channel animated series Phineas and Ferb.

Easton appeared in a celebration with Kenny Rogers at the MGM Grand in Foxwood, Connecticut, on 10 April 2010. The show was in honor of his 50-year music career. This special is set debut on 8 March 2011 on Great American Country.

 personal life
Easton has been married four times. The first was when she was in Scotland to Sandi Easton at the age of 19. The marriage lasted eight months. Sandi Easton died in 1998, aged 48.

Her second marriage in 1984 to Rob Light, a talent agent, ended after 18 months. Easton was granted US citizenship in 1992 and adopted her first child, Jake Rion Cousins Easton, in 1994. Two years later, she adopted again, this time a baby girl named Skylar. In the summer of 1997, she met producer Tim Delarm while filming an episode of ESPN Canon Photo Safari in Yellowstone National Park and later married Delarm in Las Vegas in July 1997. The marriage lasted one year. On 9 November 2002 she married John Minoli, a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon. They divorced in 2003.

Easton is a single mother to her two children, and currently resides in Henderson, Nevada. She reportedly made shrewd investments in Florida property that led to her appearance on the Sunday Times Rich List, but she denies such claims.

Show more

  Albums 

  Tracks  

Name Duration Released
Something Good 00:00 1999
Moon 00:00 1999
St. Judy's Comet 00:00 1999
Our House 00:00 1999
My Treasure Is You 00:00 1999
Who Knows? 00:00 1999
Not While I'm Around 00:00 1999
Never Saw A Miracle 00:00 1999
Love Will Make You Wise 00:00 1997
Let Me Go Through This Alone 00:00 1997
One More Reason 00:00 1997
Misty Blue 00:00 1997
One Man 00:00 1997
Now That My Baby's Gone 00:00 1997
Love Me With Freedom 00:00 1997
When You Speak My Name 00:00 1997
Foolish Heart 00:00 1997
Flower In The Rain 00:00 1995
All I Ask of You 00:00 1995
Till Death Do Us Part 00:00 1995
My Cherie 00:00 1995
Dance Away The Blues 00:00 1995
Next To You 00:00 1995
Please Don't Be Scared 00:00 1995
Too Much In Love 00:00 1995
You've Learned To Live Without Me 00:00 1995
Manic Panic 04:40 1991
The Next Time 04:10 1991
Forever Friends 04:26 1991
The First Touch of Love 04:34 1991
You Can Swing It 04:08 1991
To Anyone 04:57 1991
If You Wanna Keep Me 04:34 1991
Half a Heart 04:05 1991
What Comes Naturally 04:32 1991
Time Bomb 04:16 1991
Somebody 04:38 1991
If It's Meant to Last 04:07 15/11/1988
Without You 05:37 15/11/1988
Follow My Rainbow 04:55 15/11/1988
The Lover in Me 05:02 15/11/1988
No Deposit, No Return 05:55 15/11/1988
No Sound But a Heart 00:00 1987
The Last to Know 00:00 1987
Wanna Give My Love 00:00 1987
Still In Love 00:00 1987
Still Willing to Try 00:00 1987
Eternity 00:00 1987
Floating Hearts 00:00 1987
No Ordinary Love 00:00 1987
What If We Fall in Love 00:00 1987
Magic of Love 05:05 1985
Don't Break My Heart 03:47 1985
Do It For Love 05:03 1985
Jimmy Mack 04:12 1985
Don't Turn Your Back 05:29 1985
Swear 03:43 10/1984
It's Hard to Say It's Over 04:24 10/1984
Hungry Eyes 03:42 10/1984
Sugar Walls 04:01 10/1984
Strut 04:05 10/1984
Don't Leave Me This Way 04:57 1983
Devil in a Fast Car 04:01 1983
Almost over You 03:41 1983
I Like the Fright 03:49 1983
Telefone 03:44 1983
Take My Time 00:00 18/01/1981
Cry 00:00 18/01/1981
Don't Send Flowers 00:00 18/01/1981
Morning Train 00:00 18/01/1981
Prisoner 00:00 18/01/1981
One Man Woman 00:00 18/01/1981
When He Shines 00:00 18/01/1981

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  Sources

Whole or part of the information contained in this card come from the Wikipedia article "Sheena Easton", licensed under CC-BY-SA full list of contributors here.