Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music
(b Pauline Matthews, 6 March '47, Bradford) UK pop singer. Sang with dance bands, changed name, cut '64 single "Early Night' prod. by Mitch Murray; I'm Kiki Dee '68 debut LP on Fontana, but made headlines as first British girl to sign with Tamla/ Motown. Great Expectations '70 proved hard title to live up to; she lacked the distinctiveness of a Dusty Springfield, though there was power in reserve. Signed by admirer Elton John to his Rocket label '73 for Loving And Free; cover of Veronique Sanson's "Amoureuse' made no 13. Formed Kiki Dee Band with Roger Pope, drums; Phil Curtis, bass; Bias Boshell, keyboards; Jo Partridge, guitar; put muscle in music: title track of I've Got The Music In Me was Maggie Bell-style belter, no. 19 UK/12 USA '74. Live work followed but band broke up '75, ironically when Pope joined John's backing group. Reverted to type on Rocket records through '70s; greatest success in duet with John: "Don't Go Breaking My Heart' was No. 1 both USA/UK '76, revived for Live Aid '85. Top 30 hits '75-7: "(You Don't Know) How Glad I Am', "Amoureuse' (reissue with "Loving And Free'), "Chicago', "First Thing In The Morning'. Left Rocket after two more albums; back in spotlight with no. 31 "Star' on Ariola, album Perfect Timing. Did London show Pump Boys And Dinettes '84-5. Sessioned with Yvonne Elliman, Elton John; singles prod. by Eurythmics' Dave Stewart: "Another Day Comes (Another Day Goes)' '86, "I Fall In Love Too Easily' '87 (album Angel Eyes on Columbia CD).