Craig Ashley David (born 5 May 1981) is a British singer-songwriter who rose to fame in 1999 featuring on the single "Re-Rewind" by Artful Dodger. David's debut album, Born to Do It, was released in 2000, after which he has released a further five studio albums and worked with a variety of artists such as Tinchy Stryder, Kano, Jay Sean, Rita Ora and Sting.
David has been nominated for twelve Brit Awards: three times for Best British Male, and twice received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.
David was born in Southampton, Hampshire, the son of Tina (née Loftus), a retail assistant at Superdrug, and George David, a carpenter, and grew up in the Holyrood estate. David's father is Afro-Grenadian and David's mother is Anglo-Jewish and related to the founders of the Accurist watch-making company; David's maternal grandfather was an Orthodox Jew and his maternal grandmother a convert to Judaism. David's parents separated when he was eight and he was raised by his mother. He attended Bellemoor School and Southampton City College.
David's father played bass in a reggae band called Ebony Rockers. As a teen, David began accompanying his father to local dance clubs, where DJs let him take the microphone.
David's earliest exposure came when he worked on a B-side to British group Damage's cover of "Wonderful Tonight". He then started doing vocals for a few tracks with garage act Artful Dodger.
Wildstar Records first became aware of David when the artist's then manager Paul Widger met the label's co-owner Colin Lester and played some of his music. Lester later told HitQuarters that he was particularly impressed by the first song he heard, "Walking Away", saying "That was an absolute stand out ... It struck me that any seventeen year-old that could write a song like this had huge potential." The Wildstar boss was further won over when, on later visiting the artist's home in Southampton, he found that David's tiny bedroom stacked from floor to ceiling with 12" vinyl records, commenting: "That convinced me he was the real deal and not just some kid acting out the part." At that point Lester offered him a development deal with his label. When Lester later heard the song "7 Days", he said he immediately heard a number-one record and promoted the contract to an album deal the same day.
Personal life and activism
David considers himself Jewish, and keeps up with Jewish traditions and holidays.
On 24 March 2010 (World Tuberculosis Day), the World Health Organization appointed Craig David as a Goodwill Ambassador against tuberculosis. His first activity in this role was to travel to South Africa to learn more about tuberculosis, where he met people suffering from the disease or having recovered from it, and scientists who have dedicated their lives to fighting tuberculosis. Craig stated that his mission is to help overcome the social stigma of TB in order to beat the disease.
Awards and nominations
2002: Best R&B Male Artist (Nominated)
2002: Best New Artist (Nominated)
2006: Best British Urban Act (Nominated)
2003: Best British Urban Act (Nominated)
2003: Best British Male Solo Artist (Nominated)
2002: Best British Album: Born to Do It (Nominated)
2002: Best British Dance Act (Nominated)
2002: Best British Male Solo Artist (Nominated)
2001: Best British Album: Born to Do It (Nominated)
2001: Best British Dance Act (Nominated)
2001: Best British Male Solo Artist (Nominated)
2001: Best British Newcomer (Nominated)
2001: Best British Single: "7 Days" (Nominated)
2001: Best British Video: "7 Days" (Nominated)
2004: Pop International
2003: Best Male Pop Vocal Performance: "7 Days" (Nominated)
2002: Best Male Pop Vocal Performance: "Fill Me In" (Nominated)
Ivor Novello Awards
2001: Best Contemporary Song: "7 Days"
2001: Best Dance Single Award: "Woman Trouble", shared with Robbie Craig and Artful Dodger
2001: Songwriter Of The Year, shared with Mark Hill
2001: Best UK Act
2001: Best R&B Act (Nominated)
2001: Best Album: Born to Do It (Nominated)
2000: Best R&B Act
2000: Best UK Newcomer
2000: Best UK Single of the Year: "Fill Me In"
2000: Best Video: "7 Days" (Nominated)
2000: Best UK Single of the Year: "Woman Trouble" (Nominated), shared with Robbie Craig and Artful Dodger
MTV Europe Awards
2001: Best Male (Nominated)
2001: Best New Act (Nominated)
2001: Best R&B Act
2001: Best UK & Ireland Act
MTV Video Music Awards
2002: Best Male Video: "Walking Away" (Nominated)
2001: MTV2 Award: "Fill Me In" (Nominated)
MTV Video Music Awards Japan
2006: Best R&B Video: "All The Way" (Nominated)
2003: Best Male Video: "What's Your Flava?"
Radio Music Awards
2001: Most Requested Song: "Fill Me In" (Nominated)
Urban Music Awards
2010: Best Video: "One More Lie (Standing In The Shadows)" (Nominated)
Other awards and honors
Honorary Degree, Doctor of Music, Southampton Solent University, 7 November 2008
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