What were you doing when you were 17? For New Zealand singer Lorde, she was launching her first tour of North America. Her outing spanned 16 dates and encompassed most of the month of March. The young pop idol collected Lorde tickets in New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and Toronto.
The journey to her first musical journey of the New World began when she was 13. That’s when she was signed to Universal Music Group. Her first recording, The Love Club (EP), came out in March of 2013. Lorde was 16 at the time. Her first headlining solo tour may have been averted altogether had Lorde accepted an invitation from a fellow pop princess. Katy Perry offered Lorde the job of being one of her supporting acts during her 2014 world tour but the Kiwi songbird declined.
Lorde’s big single, and the song that rocketed her to stardom, is “Royals.” The tune spent nine weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100. In doing so it made Lorde the first solo act from New Zealand to ever reach number one on the main U.S. singles chart. It also made Lorde the youngest artist to summit the Billboard Hot 100 in a quarter of a century.
“Royals” picked up three nominations at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards. Meanwhile, her debut studio effort, Pure Heroine, earned a nomination for Best Pop Vocal Album. Also in 2013, Lorde won a MTV Europe Music Award and four New Zealand Music Awards.
Lorde was born Auckland, New Zealand on Nov. 7, 1996. Her mother was a poet and her father was a civil engineer. They actually named their future international pop star Ella Maria Lani Yelich-O'Connor. Fascinated with monarchs and the aristocracy, O’Connor adopted the stage name “Lorde.” She began singing when she was five and writing songs when she was 13.
Lorde’s big break came when her song “Royals” was covered by the all-girl group Gap 5 on the New Zealand version of The X Factor. The same song was also performed on X Factors originating in Australia and Israel. Lorde has performed the song on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
In November of 2013, Lorde inked a deal with Songs Music Publishing worth an alleged $2.5 million. Apparently there was a bidding war to sign the teenager composer. While her song writing ability has captured plenty of trophies (most notably New Zealand’s Scroll Award) it was a cover of Tears for Fears' "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" that was included on the soundtrack to the film The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.