Leona Lewis, winner of the third season of the U.K.'s "X Factor," who turned into a global, multi-platinum superstar, has signed a worldwide recording deal with Island Records, segueing from former mentor Simon Cowell's Syco label, which was distributed through Sony.
"After seven incredible years at Sony, I feel honored to be given the opportunity to sign to perhaps the most iconic label of all," she said. "To me, Island has always been a place where artists can really flourish and are encouraged to express themselves. Island stands for quality music and signing with such a legendary label is really like a dream come true for me. I can't wait to start making music with my new team."
Leona Lewis' previous four studio albums sold more than 20 million internationally. Her hit singles include the chart-topping, "Bleeding Love," a song which was the best-selling single in the world in 2008, spending seven weeks at No. 1 on the British chart. She has been nominated for three Grammy awards, seven Brits and won a coveted Ivor Novello honor. She was recently named the most successful female British solo artist in UK chart history. Leona now has eight Top 5 hits, more than any other British female. She became the first British female to top the U.S. Billboard 200 album chart in more than 20 years, selling eight million worldwide. Billboard named her "Top New Artist" in 2008.
"We are absolutly delighted to welcome Leona to the Island family," said Island UK president Darcus Beese. "I've watched and admired her from afar, witnessed her grow into one of this country's most formidable female artists. Witnessed a girl from Hackney making and breaking records, topping the UK and U.S. charts, earning numerous Brit and Grammy nominations, while remaining true to herself and her principles. All the while maintaining a genuine, down-to-earth appeal. Soon as the ink dries, it's on to the most exciting part of all, getting into the studio and making the record we know Leona has in her."
Lewis has charted five entries on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, most notably with her debut SYCO/J single, "Bleeding Love," which spent four weeks at No. 1 in 2008. It's her only top 10 single, but it helped her finish the year as Billboard's Top New Artist, where she also claimed the No. 2 Hot 100 Song of the year with "Bleeding Love." The tune has sold 4.7 million downloads in the U.S. according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Her first album, "Spirit," debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, and has sold 1.7 million copies in the U.S. She returned to the chart the following year with her sophomore set "Echo," debuting and peaking at No. 9. Her third entry, the SYCO/RCA holiday effort "Christmas, With Love," spent one week on the list last year, at No. 113.
Lewis, 29, is managed by Bruce Eskowitz and Seb Webber at Red Light.