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Robbie Williams at a concert in Hamburg, Germany (2006)
Background information Birth name Born Robert Peter Williams 13 February 1974 (1974-02-13) Stoke-on-Trent, England, United Kingdom Pop rock Adult contemporary Swing Soft rock Singer-songwriter, musician, Record producer Vocals, Guitar, Bass guitar, Synthesizer, Drums, Marimba 1990–Present Chrysalis, EMI,Helicon Records Take That Kylie Minogue Nicole Kidman Pet Shop Boys Neil Hannon robbiewilliams.com
is a Grammy Award-nominated and multi BRIT Award-winning English singer-songwriter. His career started as a dancer and singer of the pop band Take That in 1990, which he left in 1995 to launch his solo career. Robbie Williams as a solo artist has sold more albums in the U.K than any other British solo artist in history and has won more BRIT Awards than any other artist to date. His album sales stands at over 55 million worldwide. Williams entered in The Guinness Book of World Records when he announced his World Tour for 2006, selling 1.6 million tickets in one single day. He has been the recipient of many awards, including ten BRIT and six ECHO awards. In 2004, he was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame, after being voted as the Greatest artist of the 1990s. He appears in the list of the all-time Top 100 biggest selling albums in the United Kingdom six times. It is also estimated he is currently the best selling non-Latino artist in Latin America at the moment with over 3 million sold.
Solo career (1996–present)
After leaving Take That, Williams launched his solo career starting things off in 1996 by covering George Michael’s "Freedom", the single reached number-two in the UK Singles Chart, twenty-six places higher than George Michael’s original.
Occupation(s) Instrument(s) Years active Label(s) Associated acts
Life Thru a Lens (1996–1998)
After trying to find his own sound during a harrowing period for him, recordings for the album began at London’s Maison Rouge studios in March of that year. Shortly after his introduction to Guy Chambers, Williams released what would be the first single taken from his début album, Old Before I Die. Cowritten by Williams with Eric Bazilian and Desmond Child, the single was released in April 1997, hitting number-two on the UK
Robbie Williams (born Robert Peter Williams on 13 February 1974 in Stoke-on-Trent)
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Charts; however, it was largely ignored on international charts. The second single, "Lazy Days", was released in mid-1997, amidst William’s battle with paranoia. He was allowed to check out of rehab to shoot the video for the song, but promotion for the single was non-existent, so whilst the single charted at number eight in the United Kingdom, it struggled to reach the top forty of any European chart. His début album, Life Thru A Lens, was released in September 1997. The album launched with his first live solo gig at the Elysée Monmatre theatre in Paris, France. At first, the album was slow to take off, debuting at number eleven of the UK Album Charts. The third single of the album, "South Of The Border", failed to make a significant impact on the UK Charts. When it was released in September 1997, it only reached number fourteen. After Williams met the record company’s concerns about his future, he released what would be the fourth single taken from his album, not knowing it would become his biggest single in the United Kingdom so far, and one of his most well-known songs and successful. "Angels" became Williams’ best seller in the United Kingdom, being certified 2x Platinum by the BPI. The song, apart from becoming a hit around Europe and Latin America, caused sales of his album to skyrocket. The album remained forty weeks inside the British top ten and 218 weeks altogether, making it the 58th best selling album in UK History with sales over the 2.4 Million. The album eventually managed to sell over three million copies in Europe alone.
European countries, as well becoming a hit in Latin America and Australia. When the album I’ve Been Expecting You was released in late October 1998, it débuted at number one in the UK Albums Chart. The album received more attention outside the United Kingdom, leaving its mark in the European and Latin American markets with hits such as "No Regrets", a collaboration with The Pet Shop Boys’ singer Neil Tennant and The Divine Comedy’s Neil Hannon. The single "No Regrets" was released in November 1998, reaching number four in the UK Singles Chart, backed with the cover of Adam & The Ants, "Antmusic". The single eventually sold over 200,000 copies in the United Kingdom being certified Silver in October 2004, almost six years after its original release. The third single "Strong" from the album debuted at number four in the United Kingdom and number nine in New Zealand, however, peaking moderately at only number 68 in Germany, number 99 in France and number 55 in the Netherlands. The fourth single, "She’s the One", a cover of a track from World Party’s album Egyptology became his second number one hit in the United Kingdom. The single was released as a double a-side with "It’s Only Us", the official theme for Sony’s Playstation FIFA 2000. The single became a massive success selling over 400,000 copies in the UK alone being certified Gold by the BPI in early 2000. Williams finished the year with an extensive European Tour in the late-1999. The album I’ve Been Expecting You was a smash hit, selling almost 3 million copies in the United Kingdom alone: certified 10x Platinum by the BPI. In Europe alone, the album sold over 4 million copies.
I’ve Been Expecting You: European success in 1998
Williams and Chambers started the writing process of the second album in Jamaica in early 1998. The first single, "Millennium", was inspired by John Barry’s James Bond music. The song became Williams’ first solo number one single in the United Kingdom when it was released in September of that year. The song went on to sell over 400,000 copies in the UK alone being certified Gold by the BPI in November 1998. It also became a top twenty hit in many
The Ego Has Landed: Aiming for the North American market in 1999
After his worldwide success (especially in Europe), Williams was signed to Capitol Records in the United States, which is a part of EMI. Williams embarked on a US Promotional Tour and when his first U.S. and Canadian single, "Millennium" was released, it hit number 72 on the Billboard Hot 100, the album The Ego Has Landed was released in July 1999 in the United States and Canada, not having the success that he enjoyed in
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Europe, the album peaked at number 63 in the U.S. Billboard Albums Chart and number 17 on the Canadian SoundScan album chart. Despite this, Williams enjoyed good video airplay and received a nomination for the MTV Video Music Awards for "Best Male Video" – he did not win, but the exposure helped the sales of the album. Capitol Records, trying to make Williams a bigger star, released a second single from the album, the ballad "Angels", Williams shot a new video for it, and when it was released in fall of that year, the song became a somewhat bigger hit than "Millennium", charting at number forty-one, but this was not enough for Williams, so he concentrated on the rest of the world where he was already an established act. The album went on to sell 596,000 copies in the United States being certified Gold by the RIAA in November of that year. The compilation was released worldwide (as a limited edition in Europe), the album was a success in New Zealand reaching number-one on the official album charts.
States charts, but it did get some TV Airplay in channels such as MTV and VH1. The song went on to win several awards, among them, "Best Song of 2000" at the MTV Europe Music Awards, "Best Single of the Year" at the BRIT Awards and an MTV Video Music Award for Best Special Effects, the single went on to sell over 600,000 copies in the UK alone, being certified Platinum by the BPI. When the album, Sing When You’re Winning was released in August 2000, it topped the charts all over the world including Germany, New Zealand, The Netherlands and secured top ten placings in Italy, Austria, Australia, Finland, Sweden among many others. As for the UK, the album débuted at number-one being certified 2x Platinum on its first week of release. The second single, a collaboration with Australian pop icon Kylie Minogue titled "Kids", was written when Minogue approached Williams to write material for what would be her first album Light Years under Parlophone; it was then, when Williams felt the chemistry and decided to include the track on his album and release it as a single. It was an instant hit when it was released in October of that year, hitting number-two in the United Kingdom and reached top-20 placings in countries like Australia, New Zealand. Kids became one of the biggest hits of that year selling over 200,000 copies in the UK alone being certified Silver. Further singles, such as "Supreme" (which Williams recorded also in French), and "Better Man" became big hits reaching the top-10 in numerous countries around the world. "Eternity", a track that was not featured on the album, was released in the mid-2001 backed with "The Road to Mandalay", the former was written by Williams. It became his fourth number-one single in the United Kingdom, selling over 70,000 copies in its first week in the UK alone, and also hit the top-10 in many countries including Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Italy among others. Williams toured around the United Kingdom and the rest of Europe in mid-2001. The album had spent 91 weeks inside the UK Charts, going on to sell 2.4 Million copies in the UK alone being certified 8x Platinum by the BPI, the album became the 51st Best Selling album in UK Music History.
Sing When You’re Winning: International success (1999–2001)
In the middle of promotion and the tours in 1999, becoming an established worldwide pop star, Williams found time to start the work on what would be his third studio album, this time he had finally found his confidence, not only to be more brash, but also vulnerable. The first single taken from the album was "Rock DJ", a song inspired by Williams’ UNICEF mentor, the late Ian Dury. The video was censored by Top Of The Pops for its gore content, many other channels followed the suit and it caused a controversy in the United Kingdom and many other countries. The video showed Williams tearing chunks of skin and muscle from his body while performing a strip show in an attempt to get noticed by the female DJ, the track became an instant hit hitting number-one in the United Kingdom, becoming his third number-one single as a solo artist and exactly a year after his sell-out concert at the Slane Castle. The song also reached number-one in New Zealand and hit the Top-10 placings in many countries including Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Norway, Italy and Australia. Despite this success, the song failed to break in the United
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The album went on to sell over 4 million copies in Europe alone.
Sea" was put in the credits of the film Finding Nemo in 2003 and was also released on the film’s Academy Award nominated soundtrack. A DVD called Robbie Williams Live at the Albert Hall was released in December of that year. So far, it has become one of the best selling music DVDs in Europe, being certified 6x Platinum in the United Kingdom and 2x Platinum in Germany.
Swing When You’re Winning (2001)
After the success of his third album, Williams wanted to take another musical direction. He took two weeks off from his tour to record what would be his fourth studio album, the big band album he had always dreamed of making. Born from his life-long love for Frank Sinatra – combined with the success of the track "Have You Met Miss Jones?" that he recorded for the film Bridget Jones’s Diary in early 2001 – the album was recorded at the Capitol Studios in Los Angeles, California. Williams took the chance to duet with his long-time friend Jonathan Wilkes, Little Voice star Jane Horrocks, Saturday Night Live star Jon Lovitz, Rupert Everett and the Academy Award winning actress Nicole Kidman. The first single released from the album was a duet with Kidman, on "Somethin’ Stupid". Originally a hit for Frank and Nancy Sinatra, the song became Williams’ fifth number-one hit in the United Kingdom, selling almost 100,000 copies in its first week of release, as well as hitting the top-5 in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, The Netherlands, Belgium, New Zealand eventually becoming one of the biggest hits of 2001 selling over 200,000 copies in the UK alone after spending three weeks at the top of the charts being certified Silver in January 2002. When the album, Swing When You’re Winning (in reference to his 2000 studio album Sing When You’re Winning) was released in late 2001, it became an instant number-one hit in the United Kingdom (spending six consecutive weeks at number-one), Ireland, New Zealand, Austria, Germany, and Switzerland and it reached the top ten in the rest of the world going on to sell over 2 million copies by the end of 2001 and over 7 million altogether. A second single was released from the album, a double a-side "Mr. Bojangles/I Will Talk And Hollywood Will Listen", however it was released in Central and Eastern Europe only. "Mack The Knife" was released as a radio single in Mexico. The album spent 57 weeks inside the UK Charts selling over 2.1 million copies being certified 7x Platinum in the United Kingdom and becoming the 49th Best Selling Album in UK Music History. "Beyond the
In 2002, Williams signed a record-breaking £80 million contract with EMI. The contract featured a number of provisos, including the label ceding greater creative control to the artist and a commitment to breaking Williams in the US market. So far it has become the biggest music deal in British history. The deal was brokered by Ingenious Media, a leading UK corporate finance advisory business. Williams began working on what would be his fifth studio album, after a year out recording, the album heralded a new era for Williams; he had taken a more active role in the making of this album giving an indication of his growing confidence in the studio, and "One Fine Day". "Nan’s Song" and "Come Undone" were the first songs that Williams wrote without the Guy Chambers input. Most of the songs were recorded in Los Angeles. The album’s first single, "Feel", written by Williams and Chambers, was recorded as a demo; when they started working on the album and trying to re-record the vocals, Williams felt unsatisfied with it, so he decided to include the demo version and then release it as the first single. When the single was released in late 2002, it became Williams’ biggest international hit going number one in countries like The Netherlands and Italy as well as reaching the top ten in almost every single European country. When Williams’ fifth studio album, Escapology, was released in late 2002, it hit number-one in at least 10 countries around the world including the United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Sweden, Finland, Denmark among others; elsewhere, it made the top ten, however in the United States failed to make as big of an impact, reaching only number forty-three on the Billboard Albums Chart.
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Album’s second single, "Come Undone" became a top ten hit around the world; due to its controversial video, it was heavily censored by MTV Networks Europe for depicting a debauched (but fully-clothed) Williams having three-way sex with two women. The video was all about some young people having a party and it showed footage of fights, drug taking, and unwise alcohol use. It also showed unsettling images of insects and reptiles, however, the uncensored version of the video was released on DVD Single in Europe and was also included on the Enhanced CD Single. BBC Radio 2 also banned the song for its explicit content. During such furores at this time, it was confirmed that Williams and Guy Chambers were to officially split up. The single version of "Come Undone" is not the same version as the one on the album, but instead produced by Steve Power "from an original production by Guy Chambers/Steve Power", perhaps to deny Guy Chambers part of the revenue for the single. The third single taken from the album was "Something Beautiful", the song was written in Barbados, the song was first offered to Tom Jones, but it was then reworked and for its inclusion on Williams’ album. The single was released in the mid-2003, the success of which was minor compared to William’s previous songs but managed to enter the top-10 in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Denmark, it failed to make an impact in the world charts. The video featured a casting in which people from all over Europe contested to win the chance to perform as Robbie Williams at the end of the same video, the three winners had the chance to meet Williams, three different versions of the video were released to different parts of the world featuring different winners. Williams started his world tour in the mid-2003, and he was about to do three live concerts in Knebworth. The Knebworth shows attracted a total of 375,000 fans. Escapology ended up selling almost 2 million copies by the end of 2003 in the United Kingdom being certified 6x Platinum by the BPI, becoming the 60th best selling album in UK music history. The album went on to sell over 5 million copies in Europe alone. In October 2003, Williams released his first live album, Live at Knebworth which peaked at number-two in UK; however,
the album reached the top position in Germany and Austria and became a top ten album throughout Europe, Australasia and Latin America. The live record ended up selling a little over 600,000 copies in the United Kingdom being certified 2x Platinum by the BPI and an excess of 2 million units in Europe alone.
Greatest Hits (2004)
A year after the release of his live album, in October 2004, Williams decided that it was time to make a retrospective of his career, and also, to reveal the new tracks he had been working on with the then, new collaborator, Stephen Duffy. "Radio", the compilation’s first single was released in October 2004, which debuted at number-one of the UK Singles Chart (becoming Williams’ sixth number-one hit) selling 41,732 copies, the song was also a number-one hit in Denmark, and it hit the top ten in The Netherlands, Italy, Austria and Norway. When the compilation Greatest Hits was released two weeks later, it went on to sell 320,000 copies in its first week in the United Kingdom debuting at number-one, the album, also hit the top spot in other countries like Switzerland, Italy, Portugal, Austria, The Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand. The album’s second single, the ballad, "Misunderstood", being the soundtrack of the film, Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason hit the top ten in Italy and Denmark in December of that year, making the album the best selling album of the year in the United Kingdom, becoming the 61st Best Selling Album in UK Music History, with sales over the 2 million copies being certified 6x Platinum by the BPI. The album, also became the best selling album of the year in Europe being certified 5x Platinum for over 5 million copies sold. Eight years after the release of "Angels", in February 2005 British public voted it as the "Best Single of the past Twenty Five Years" at the 2005 BRIT Awards.
Intensive Care (2004–2005)
After touring Latin America in late 2004 for the promotion of his Greatest Hits album, Williams started working on what would become his sixth studio album. Recorded in Robbie Williams’ bedroom high in the
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Hollywood Hills, the album was co-written Stephen Duffy over the course of 24 months. Inspired by the Human League’s single "Louise", about a man who breaks off a relationship and realized he still has strong feelings for her. The album’s first single "Tripping", was released on 3 October 2005, it became an international success topping the charts in Germany, Austria, The Netherlands, Italy, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway and Spain. The album Intensive Care was launched in Berlin, Germany on October 9. it became smash hit around the world, hitting numberone in the United Kingdom, selling 373,000 copies in its first week as well as topping the charts in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Australia, Sweden, New Zealand, The Netherlands, Finland and many other countries. In November 2005, Williams took home the MTV Europe Music Award for ’Best Male’, but also, entered in the The Guinness Book of World Records when he announced his World Tour for 2006, selling 1.6 million tickets in one single day. But after the success, Gary Barlow, Mark Owen, Jason Orange, and Howard Donald had agreed to reunite in Notting Hill, West London, for a preview screening of a documentary about the group, Take That. The documentary screened on ITV1 on 16 November 2005. Unfortunately, according to a source quoted by Sunday Mirror, "Robbie announced he wasn’t coming. The rest of the band were gutted but felt the show had to go on." By December, the second single from the album was released, the ballad "Advertising Space" reached the top-10 in some European countries including UK, Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Italy. Williams’ kicked off his Close Encounters World Tour in South Africa in April 2006, when he finished his European leg of the tour, 2.5 million had seen the show, and after Latin America and Australia the numbers when up to 3 million. After a long gap between singles, the third cut from the album was released in the mid-2006. "Sin Sin Sin" was the first song Williams and Duffy wrote together, the video of which was shot in Cape Town, South Africa right before the start of his tour. The track became Williams’ first single to miss the UK Top 20, charting at only number 22,
but managed to enter the top-20 in some countries including Germany, Switzerland, Austria, The Netherlands, Denmark and Italy. By the end of the promotion of the album, it was announced that it had sold over 5 million copies in Europe alone being certified 5x Platinum by the IFPI, it was also certified 5x Platinum in the United Kingdom becoming, at the time, his lowest selling studio album in the country.
Rudebox: Mixed reviews (2006–2007)
Robbie Williams at a concert in Hamburg, Germany (2006) Williams’ seventh studio album was announced in early 2006. It is a dance/electro album with collaborations with the Pet Shop Boys, William Orbit, Soul Mekanik, Joey Negro, Mark Ronson and more. The first single, "Rudebox", was premièred on radio by Scott Mills on his show on BBC Radio 1. The event caused some controversy, as the record label’s embargo date was broken, although the artist himself later backed the presenter for doing so. Right after the single was unleashed, it caused controversy due to Williams’ radical change in the single in direction from his other releases. British Newspaper The Sun named the song "The Worst Song Ever". However, Victoria Newton stated that there were sure-fire hits on the album. The song was released in September that year reaching number four in the UK Singles Chart; however, it hit the number one spot in Germany, Switzerland, Italy.
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Promotion for the album was almost nonexistent due to Williams’ Close Encounters Tour around Latin America and Australia. The second single, "Lovelight", came out right before the release of the album, and was commercially released on 13 November. The single reached the top ten in the United Kingdom, The Netherlands, Finland, Denmark and Italy, but failed to reach the success of Williams’ previous releases when the track showed no longevity in the charts. Williams finished 2006 as the 16th most played artist in Latin America and the third most played international artist. During this time, Williams entered the The Guinness Book of World Records when he announced his World Tour for 2006, selling 1.6 million tickets in one single day. The third single, "She’s Madonna" incl. Remixes from Kris Menace and Chris Lake, was released to European radio in late January to precede the commercial release which was scheduled to 5 March 2007. The track failed to be a massive success in the United Kingdom, reaching number sixteen on the Singles Chart, but it did far better in Continental Europe hitting the top ten in most countries and rose to number one on the European Airplay Chart after spending four weeks at number two, a feat his former band, Take That, failed to achieve. It was confirmed that this single was not going to be released in Latin America or Australia, but did receive heavy airplay in the later of the two. Despite this, the single was released as Digital Download in Mexico in four different formats. In August 2007, the single reached number 12 in the U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Play Chart. "Bongo Bong and Je Ne T’Aime Plus", a collaboration with British singer Lily Allen, was released as the third single in Latin America and other European countries, hitting radio in January 2007, and as a Digital Download in February. To promote his album, Williams commissioned a series of short films. Goodbye to the Normals was directed by Jim Field Smith and features "Burslem Normals" by Robbie Williams.
Robbie Williams at a concert in Vienna, Austria (2006) Williams released his much anticipated dance/electro album, Rudebox, on 23 October 2006. It received mixed reviews: Allmusic gave it a four star rating, the NME 8 out of 10, and Music Week and MOJO were equally positive, but it received much weaker reviews from some of the British press. Despite reaching the number one spot, sales were far below what was expected by his label, and overall sales in the UK were overtaken by his former band, Take That,’s Beautiful World. The album has sold a little under 500,000 copies in the United Kingdom, becoming his lowest-selling album in the country, being certified 2x Platinum by the BPI. The album was received with a warmer reception by the public in other parts of the world where it hit number one including Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Australia, Finland, Italy and Denmark. On 8 November 2006, IFPI certified the album 2x Platinum in Europe with sales of over 2 million making it the fastest platinum selling album of 2006. The album finished at number eighteen in the list of 2006’s best selling albums worldwide, Neil Tennant from the the Pet Shop Boys commented the album had sold 4.5 million copies by early 2007.
Next studio album (2007–2009)
On 4 October 2007, Williams made a return to the live stage after almost ten months, when he made a guest appearance at Mark
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Ronson’s concert in Los Angeles. He performed The Charlatans song "The Only One I Know", which features on Ronson’s album Version. Rumours of a new studio album co-written with Guy Chambers had surfaced in early 2007, along with known commitments required by Williams to his EMI contract. British singer-songwriter Laura Critchley commented that she had sung vocals for three songs, and said that it would not be released until 2009. On 16 January 2008 it was announced that Williams had been working on some songs with former Ian Dury and the Blockheads star Chaz Jankel. In the same article it said that the reunion with Guy Chambers hadn’t worked out and that the material that Williams is working on with Chaz Jankel will form the basis of his next studio album. However, although it had been confirmed on the Blockheads official site that Chaz was writing with Williams, the rumour that Guy Chambers was no longer working with him was not official. In late August 2008, Williams’s friend Callum Blue commented that he was still working on the album. In February, it was confirmed that Williams has written his songs with Guy Chambers and Mark Ronson. The singer’s spokesman, Tim Clark, said that the artist is planning to begin the recording sessions in March and that the new album will be released in late-2009. This will be probably the last Williams album released by EMI. On his official website, Williams confirmed he is working with producer Trevor Horn on his new album, he described himself as "buzzing, it sounds big. Very, very big" “
The thing that struck me the most was how much fun they’re having. It’s more rewarding when you’re a gang. Ever since I left Take That I’ve wanted to be in a band. We got together a lot over the summer. It was amazing. We’ve all matured a lot since we parted. I’m very pleased to say the differences we’ve had have just melted away. I celebrated by getting a Take That symbol tattooed on my right arm. I’m proud to know the boys and I’m proud to be in the band. ”
On the 27 March 2009, Williams stated he felt ready to re-join Take That. He said: "I’m in regular contact with them, even Gary, and it’s looking more likely by the week. The lads all seem up for it and some people think it’s a done deal. I think it would be fun."  However, recently Gary Barlow has said "People constantly ask if Robbie will rejoin us but nothing has changed. We’re a happy band right now. Robbie won’t be joining." This was said during the recording of Chris Moyles’ Quiz Night.
Reception in North America
Despite Williams’ immense popularity worldwide, he has still yet to become a major chart or concert success in the United States. His first United States single, "Millennium", made it to only number seventy-two on the Billboard 100 charts. Its highest position on American charts was number twenty in Top 40 Mainstream. His second single, "Angels", was a success on the Hot Adult Contemporary Chart where it peaked at #10. It also hit number forty-one in the Hot 100, becoming his highest peaking track on the main American chart and the more commonly known Robbie Williams song in the United States (later covers by Jessica Simpson and David Archuleta would be released as singles). In 1999, Williams released in that country a special compilation of his first two albums, titled The Ego Has Landed. The album peaked at number sixtythree and went Gold selling over 500,000 copies in the US. Later in 2000 "Rock DJ", a single taken from Williams’ second U.S. album Sing When You’re Winning, was released; it reached
Take That Reunion
Williams, who has amassed a fortune estimated at more than £90 million since he left Take That, announced in December 2008 he is planning to relocate to the UK prior to releasing his eighth studio album in mid-2009 and a possible reunion with Take That. Photos also showed Williams with his new tattoo of the Take That logo on his right arm, in tribute to his former bandmates. The British pop singer, who has bought a £7 million home in the village of Compton Bassett, near Calne, Wiltshire, as he’s planning to move home from the US, said:
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number twenty-four in the Hot Dance Club Play Chart, but failed to chart in the Hot 100. The album peaked at number onehundred-and-ten on the Billboard 200 and only stayed on the charts for four weeks. Together with a promotional tour, EMI hoped that the release of Escapology would be the album to successfully break the American market. Williams performed the lead song "Feel" on such shows as Good Morning America and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. However, this single did not reach Hot 100 but peaked number twenty-eight in the Adult Top 40. The album Escapology also failed to catch fire in America, selling only 200,000 copies, though it reached number forty-three on the U.S. Billboard Charts. Intensive Care and Rudebox were not released on an American label, but they were made available on iTunes. Williams’ single "Lovelight" was released in the United States by Virgin Records and reached #23 in the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play Chart on March 2008 and climbed up to number 8 in May 2008. It was the third single from the British singer to hit the American dance chart. It was also his sixth single to reach American charts and his second highest-charting single in an American chart to date. Other singles from Rudebox were released in the United States: She’s Madonna, We’re the Pet Shop Boys and We’re the Pet Shop Boys (Close My Eyes). These songs peaked at #12, #5 and #7 respectively in the Hot Dance Club Play chart. In Canada, however, Williams has enjoyed a warmer reception, with "Feel" spending fifty-four weeks in the Canadian singles chart and reaching the top ten there. A few of his other songs have gained popularity there, notably "Angels", "Millennium", "Rock DJ", "Tripping" and "She’s Madonna". Williams has received a Platinum certification for his The Ego Has Landed for sales of over 100,000 and Gold for Swing When You’re Winning as well as for Escapology selling over 50,000 units of each.
and Nancy Sinatra’s "Somethin’ Stupid". The single made Number 1 on the UK singles chart. His single No Regrets featured Neil Tennant from the Pet Shop Boys and The Divine Comedy’s Neil Hannon on backing vocals. In 2002, Williams appeared on the track "My Culture" on the 1 Giant Leap album, alongside rapper Maxi Jazz (which features lyrics from the hidden track "Hello Sir" from Life Thru A Lens (and The Ego Has Landed)), on the 1 Giant Leap album, alongside Maxi Jazz. Williams also features on a double CD titled "Concrete" which was released on the same day as "Rudebox". The CD features a concert recorded for the BBC featuring the Pet Shop Boys and Williams singing their classic hit "Jealousy". Their joint effort, "She’s Madonna", was released as a single in March 2007. On 13 August 2007, a Dean Martin duets album was released, on which Williams sings "Please Don’t Talk About Me When I’m Gone". Most recently it was announced that he already recorded what is going to be Mexican Superstar Thalía’s first single from her upcoming English album.
Until early 2009 Williams spent most of his time in Los Angeles, California. He had commented many times on how he enjoyed the freedom and privacy there that he couldn’t find in the UK. Despite this, many rumours surfaced over the years suggesting he wanted to return to the UK. The rumours turned out to be true when he bought a £7 million mansion in Compton Bassett, Wiltshire and returned to the UK in January 2009. Since then he has been spotted in Wotton Bassett, Devizes and Swindon. Williams has battled with mental illness, obesity, self esteem issues, alcoholism, and substance abuse throughout his life. He once discussed how his friend Elton John booked him into a clinic to cope with his drug use, that emerged from the depression he was experiencing while still in Take That. He entered a rehabilitation centre in Tucson, Arizona, US on 13 February 2007 for addiction to the anti-depressant Seroxat. He left the centre on 7 March according to his official website. Williams has a strong interest in UFOs and related paranormal phenomena, and has pursued this interest during his 2007–08
One of his most famous collaborations was on "Kids", a duet with Australian pop superstar Kylie Minogue. The single peaked at number 2 on the UK singles charts. Another collaboration in 2001 with Kylie’s fellow Australian, film star Nicole Kidman, was a cover of Frank
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sabbatical. His interest in the subject led to him taking part in a documentary for BBC Radio 4 with Jon Ronson. The documentary followed them to a UFO convention in Nevada. During an interview with Joss Stone on The Jeremy Kyle Show in 2008, Williams revealed that he has seen UFOs three times. Williams said his first UFO sighting was when he was a child in Britain while he spotted his second in Beverly Hills, and added that the third sighting was just after he had written a song about alien contact.
bits. I’m not discounting it, but it hasn’t appealed enough for me to do it — yet." Williams won a libel case against MGN and Northern & Shell in December 2005 relating to articles which had reported he was a closet homosexual. In the libel action that resulted from this, Williams accepted substantial damages, and the publishers accepted that the stories were untrue. His counsel, Tom Shields QC, told the court: "Mr Williams is not, and has never been, homosexual." Gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell called for any damages paid out from the libel case to be donated to gay charities, claiming Williams’ legal actions had created the impression that it is "bad to be gay". Williams retorted that he was not bothered about being labelled as a gay man, and he would have taken the same action had it been regarding a heterosexual relationship. The court case has led some to draw comparisons between Williams and Australian actor/ pop star Jason Donovan, who also once made a successful libel claim against a publication concerning his sexuality. Donovan won the case, but the act of his litigation alienated many of his gay fans. In 2008, Williams’ long-time friend Max Beesley rejected claims that Williams was gay. Beesley was quoted as saying: "Some of the stuff written about him is enough to make me mad, the rumours about him being gay, for example. Not true. I’ve never met anybody less gay in my life!"
In 2006 the Sunday Times Rich List claimed he was worth over £90 million. Williams is a lifelong supporter of Port Vale, based in his home town of Stoke-onTrent. In February 2006 he bought £240,000 worth of shares in the club, making him the majority shareholder.
Robbie Williams created a charity with the aid of Comic Relief that is set up in his home town entitled Give It Sum, with its goal being to "improve local conditions and strengthen community life by giving money to those who are disadvantaged." Williams, with the help of friend Jonathan Wilkes, organized a charity football match in an attempt to raise funds in Africa. This match was played in May 2006 at Old Trafford, Manchester. The participants were a mixture of celebrities and professional football players. Robbie Williams has also been the Patron of the children’s charity the Donna Louise Trust based in his home town of Stoke-on-Trent, for the last 8 years. The charity offers respite and palliative care to terminally ill and life limited children who are not expected to live past the age of 16.
Williams has had romantic relationships with several well-known female celebrities, including Rachel Hunter. Feel, written by Williams’ friend and Daily Mail writer Chris Heath, details Williams’ many sexual conquests during his European tour in 2003.
Williams appears to question his own sexuality in some well-known songs, such as "Old Before I Die", where he sings: "Am I straight or gay?" In his documentary film Nobody Someday, he said: "As it happens, I’ve never slept with a man. I’ve never done anything with a man. The thought has passed my mind, but it always stops at his
An article in the Sunday Mirror suggested that American musician Lisa Leveridge broke up with writer Neil Strauss in February 2006 to date Williams. A more recent article in Ireland Online seems to indicate that she has broken up with Williams as well.
As of January 2007, Williams is dating American television actress Ayda Field. This is his
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longest relationships to date, and they have been reported to have been together for two years. Despite several break up stories in the press Williams and Field have been spotted together many times this year. On 29 January 2008 they were pictured on vacation together at Mammoth Ski Resort in California, accompanied by Max Beesley. She was featured in a UFO documentary that Williams did for BBC Radio 4 in April and took part in a field investigation he did in Trout Lake, Washington in August. On 8 November 2008, Williams was spotted with Field at an Arsenal versus Manchester United match at the Emirates Stadium, where he was also seen with Gary Barlow accompanied by his two oldest children, and Williams’ longtime friend Jonathan Wilkes. The couple has been living together in a mansion in Wiltshire, UK, since the beginning of 2009.  • 2004: Greatest Hits
• 2003: Live At Knebworth
• • • • • • • • • (October–November 1997) (May–June 1998) (January 1998 – March 1999) (May–June 1999) (October 1999) (October 2000) (February–March 2001, European Tour) (July–August 2001) (October–November 2001, Australasian Tour) • Weekends Of Mass Distraction Tour (June–August 2003) • Cock of Justice/Aussie Typo Tour (October–December 2003) • Close Encounters Tour (April–December 2006)
• Williams has won a large number of awards over the years, including more BRIT Awards than any other artist in music history (15), as well as six Echo Awards in six consecutive years from 2001 until 2007.
 "The One And Only...: The musical superstars". BBC. 2008-01-05. http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/ pressreleases/stories/2008/01_january/ 05/one_superstars.shtml.  Amanda Andrews and Adam Sherwin (2008-01-09). "Shake-up starts at EMI with departure of UK chief". Times Online. http://business.timesonline.co.uk/ tol/business/industry_sectors/media/ article3156308.ece.  Robbie Williams Enters The Guinness Book of World Records  "The BRIT Awards 2005". BRIT Awards. Archived from the original on 2007-07-02. http://web.archive.org/web/ 20070702072306/http://brits.co.uk/show/ 2005/.  ^ "Echo-Verleihung mit hohem Kreischfaktor" (in German). RheinZeitung Online. http://rhein-zeitung.de/ on/07/03/28/magazin/musik/t/ rzo323926.html.  "Robbie joins UK pop Hall of Fame". BBC NEWS. 12 November 2004. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/ 4005595.stm.
• 1997: Life Thru a Lens • 1998: I’ve Been Expecting You • 2000: Sing When You’re Winning • 2001: Swing When You’re Winning • 2002: Escapology • 2005: Intensive Care • 2006: Rudebox
Number One Singles in the UK
• 1998: "Millennium" • 1999: "She’s the One" / "It’s Only Us" • 2000: "Rock DJ • 2001: "Eternity/ The Road to Mandalay" • 2001: "Somethin’ Stupid" (with Nicole Kidman) • 2004: "Radio"
• 1999: The Ego Has Landed
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 "Somethin’ Stupid" first week sales in  "ROBBIE WILLIAMS-Something the United Kingdom Beautiful (Single)". GfK Dutch Charts.  "ROBBIE WILLIAMS & NICOLE http://www.dutchcharts.nl/ KIDMAN - Somthin’ Stupid (Single)". GfK showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Som Dutch Charts. http://www.dutchcharts.nl/  BBC (31 October 2003). Robbie Williams showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams+%26+Nicole+Kidman&titel=Somethin%27+Stupid&cat= at Abbey Road. Press release.  "Award Certification for "Something http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/ Stupid"". BPI. http://www.bpi.co.uk/ pressreleases/stories/2003/10_october/ platinum/ 31/robbie_abbey_road.shtml. platinumright.asp?rq=search_plat&r_id=29997. BPI Certification for "Escapology"  Retrieved on 2008-01-04.  ^ "IFPI Platinum Europe Awards - 2003".  "Robbie swings both ways". The Sun. 10 IFPI. 2003. http://www.ifpi.org/content/ September 2002. section_news/plat2003.html. http://www.thesun.co.uk/article/  "Robbie Williams- Live Summer / Live at 0,,4-2002420301,00.html. Knebworth (UK edition)".  "Mack The Knife" Mexican Promo Dutchcharts.com.  "Award Certification for "Swing When http://dutchcharts.nl//showitem.asp?interpret=Robbi You’re Winning"". BPI.  BPI Certification "Live at Knebworth" http://www.bpi.co.uk/platinum/  Discography>Albums>Greatest Hits platinumright.asp?rq=search_plat&r_id=30751. "Radio" first week sales in the United  Retrieved on 2008-01-04. Kingdom  "UK’s 100 best-selling albums". Times  "Robbie Williams "Radio"". Online. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/ DutchCharts.com. news/uk/ http://dutchcharts.nl//showitem.asp?interpret=Robbi article638531.ece?print=yes&randnum=1217442812968.  "Robbie Williams "Greatest Hits"". Retrieved on 2006-11-16. DutchCharts.com.  "76th Academy Awards Nominees and http://dutchcharts.nl//showitem.asp?interpret=Robbi Winners". Academy of Motion Picture  "Robbie Williams "Misunderstood"". Arts and Sciences. DutchCharts.com. http://www.oscars.org/ http://dutchcharts.nl//showitem.asp?interpret=Robbi 76academyawards/nomswins.html.  BPI Certification for "Greatest Hits" Retrieved on 2008-01-04.  "IFPI Platinum Europe Awards - 2006".  "Award Certification for "Live at the IFPI. 2006. http://www.ifpi.org/content/ Albert Hall"". BPI. http://www.bpi.co.uk/ section_news/plat2006.html. platinum/  "Brits25: Did your favourites get platinumright.asp?rq=search_plat&r_id=32440. awards?". BBC. 9 February 2005. Retrieved on 2008-01-04. http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio1/news/  IFPI Germany: Certification for "Live at brits2005/wdyt_2.shtml. the Albert Hall"  ^ Discography>Albums>Intensive Care  "Robbie signs ’£80m’ deal". BBC NEWS.  "Robiie Williams- Tripping (single)". GfK 2 October 2002. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/ Dutch Charts. http://www.dutchcharts.nl/ entertainment/2291605.stm. showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Tri  ^ Discography>Albums>Escapology  "ROBBIE WILLIAMS - Intensive Care  Discography>Singles>Feel (Album)". GfK Dutch Charts.  "ROBBIE WILLIAMS - Feel (Single)". GfK http://www.dutchcharts.nl/ Dutch Charts. http://www.dutchcharts.nl/ showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Int showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Feel&cat=s.  ^ "Robbie Williams Enters The Guinness  "ROBBIE WILLIAMS Book of World Records". Softpedia. 26 Escapology(Album)". GfK Dutch Charts. November 2005. http://www.dutchcharts.nl/ http://news.softpedia.com/news/Robbieshowitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Escapology&cat=a. Williams-Enters-The-Guinness-Book-of ^ Escapology World-Records-13394.shtml.  Discography>Singles>Come Undone  "Robbie Williams Misses Take That  Discography>Singles>Something Reunion". Softpedia. 14 November 2005. Beautiful http://news.softpedia.com/news/Robbie-
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Williams-Misses-Take-That "Robbie’s hit by rhythm stick". The Sun. Reunion-12303.shtml. 16 January 2008.  "ROBBIE WILLIAMS - Advertising Space http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/ (Single)". GfK Dutch Charts. showbiz/bizarre/article691870.ece. http://www.dutchcharts.nl/ TN - Robbie planning ’amazing’ new I showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Advertising+Space&cat=s. album  EMI Music Mexico  ttp://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2009/ h  Discography>Singles>Sin Sin Sin jan/28/robbie-williams-album-mark "ROBBIE WILLIAMS - Sin Sin Sin ronson (single)". GfK Dutch Charts.  obbie Williams: I want to rejoin Take R http://www.dutchcharts.nl/ That - Telegraph showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Sin+Sin+Sin&cat=s. Robbie Williams: I want to rejoin Take "  IFPI certification for "Intensive Care" That". 2008-12-12.  BPI Certification for "Intensive Care" http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/  The Sun, Williams’ Worst Song EVER newstopics/celebritynews/3705276/  The Sun, Robbie: After you, Justin Robbie-Williams-I-want-to-rejoin-Take "ROBBIE WILLIAMS - Rudebox (Single)". That.html. GfK Dutch Charts.  ttp://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/ h http://www.dutchcharts.nl/ newstopics/celebritynews/5058174/ showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Rudebox&cat=s. Robbie-Williams-ready-to-rejoin-Take NME Magazine on "Rudebox" That.html  BPI Certification for "Rudebox"  ot 100 from 26 June 1999, the last time H  "ROBBIE WILLIAMS - Rudebox (Album)". the single was on the charts GfK Dutch Charts.  illennium Top 40 Mainstream M http://www.dutchcharts.nl/  ngels Adult Contemporary A showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Rudebox&cat=a.  illboard 200 Charts from the week of 12 B  IFPI Certifications, November 2006 February 2000, the last week "Ego" was  Gavin Martin (2007-05-25). "The boys on the charts are back in town". Daily Mirror.  ock DJ Hot Dance Club Play R http://www.mirror.co.uk/showbiz/  illboard 200 Charts from the week of 11 B entertainment/music/ November 2000, the last time the album tm_method=full%26objectid=19176631%26siteid=89520-name_page.html. was on the charts  "ROBBIE WILLIAMS - Lovelight  eel Adult Top 40 F (Single)". GfK Dutch Charts.  illboard 200 from the week of 14 June B http://www.dutchcharts.nl/ 2003, the last time the album was on the showitem.asp?interpret=Robbie+Williams&titel=Lovelight&cat=s. charts  Most Played Artists List Gold/Platinum". The Canadian "  "She’s Madonna: #1 in European Airplay Recording Industry Association. Charts". Orange.fr. 2007-02-25. http://www.cria.ca/cert_db_search.php. http://charly1300.perso.orange.fr/  howbiz - News - Robbie may move back S nouveauclassement.htm. Retrieved on to UK - Digital Spy 2007-02-25.  Chris Heath (2004). Feel: Robbie ^  Billboard Euro hot 100 Williams. London: Ebury. ISBN  Discography>Singles>She’s 978-009189753-6. Madonna>Territory Info  "Robbie’s red-top revenge. Or how a ^  "She’s Madonna" Mexican Digital star got his own back on the paparazzi". Download The Independent.  "She’s Madonna" Mexican Digital http://www.independent.co.uk/news/ Download (Format 4) media/robbies-redtop-revenge-or-how-a ^ US Dance Chart star-got-his-own-back-on-the Goodbye to the hard sell paparazzi-558178.html. Retrieved on  Dominik Lemanski (23 September 2007). 2004-08-29. "Three WAGs on Rob’s bed". Daily Star.  ewton, Victoria (2007-02-14). "What N http://www.dailystar.co.uk/posts/view/ drove Robbie to rehab". The Sun. 16180/Three-WAGs-on-Rob-s-bed/. http://www.thesun.co.uk/article/
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0,,4-2007070393,00.html. Retrieved on 2007-02-14.  onson, Jon (2008-04-19). "I’m loving R aliens instead". The Guardian. http://music.guardian.co.uk/pop/story/ 0,,2274878,00.html. Retrieved on 2008-04-19.  ""Robbie Williams claims: I’ve seen ^ UFOs three times"". Mail Online. 2008-03-08. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/ tvshowbiz/article-528670/Ive-seen-UFOstimes-claims-Robbie-Williams.html. Sunday Times Rich List 2006". Sunday " Times. 2006. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/richlist/ person/0,,43668,00.html. BBC Stoke & Staffordshire - Robbie " buys into Vale". http://www.bbc.co.uk/ stoke/content/articles/2006/02/27/ robbie_williams_vale_stake_feature.shtml. Retrieved on 2006-12-17. Robbie’s Givin It Sum...". BBC. " http://www.bbc.co.uk/stoke/robbie/ giveitsum/index.shtml. Retrieved on 2007-05-26. Robbie Williams Kicks for Charity". " Novinite=Sofia News Agency. 2006-03-23. http://www.novinite.com/ view_news.php?id=60916.  onna Louise Trust D  obbie Williams, Nobody Someday, R subtitles, at 42.07 mins Williams wins ’gay’ libel damages". " BBC. 2005-12-06. http://news.bbc.co.uk/ 1/hi/entertainment/4502834.stm. Retrieved on 2006-12-17. Williams ’should donate damages’". " BBC. 2005-12-09. http://news.bbc.co.uk/ 1/hi/entertainment/4513430.stm. Retrieved on 2006-12-17.  ax Beesley: Robbie Williams is not gay! M | Celebrity News | Now Magazine 1] "Neil Strauss-Lisa-Leveridge-break[ up " Exclusive: She’s the 6ft One", " SundayMirror.co.uk, February 19, 2006  obbie Williams wraps up with American R actress Ayda Field | Mail Online  obbie Williams Love Life on the Rocks R  eople.Co.Uk - She’s The.. Gone For P Robbie Williams  obbie Williams Splits with Girlfriend R Digital Spy, 26 June 2008  obbie Williams has put on weight like R Elvis after retiring | Singer seen playing
golf with actress girlfriend Ayda Field | The Sun |Showbiz|Bizarre  obbie Williams Swears It’s This Big R TMZ.com  obbie Williams enjoys a day out with his R favourite person... and girlfriend Ayda comes too | Mail Online  ftonbladet: TV A  obbie Williams News: Robbie Williams R spotted in snowy California!  y Robbie Williams Journey: images M thanks to rwcm @purerobbie.com on Ronson heads deep into the Nevada J desert with UFO obsessed Robbie Williams | Music | The Guardian  boveTopSecret.com And Robbie A Williams Investigate UFOs at Gilliland Ranch, page 1  ack For Good? Robbie Williams and B Gary Barlow reunite, Daily Mail Online, 8 November 2008  ttp://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/ h showbiz/bizarre/article2355332.ece
• • • • • • • • Angels Official Website Official Los Angeles Vale Website Irish Take That website - Robbie early years pre solo career Robbie Williams Fan Forum Latest Robbie Williams News from the BBC Robbie Williams at the Internet Movie Database Robbie Williams Songs collection
Persondata NAME ALTERNATIVE NAMES SHORT DESCRIPTION DATE OF BIRTH PLACE OF BIRTH DATE OF DEATH PLACE OF DEATH Williams, Robbie Williams, Robert Peter English singer 13 February 1974 Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent, England
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