Katie Melua was born in Georgia (former USSR) in 1984, growing up under the communist regime in the capital, Tbilisi. The family left Georgia when Katie was eight and moved to Belfast where her father got a job as a heart surgeon. Katie didn't always want to be a singer or songwriter. Her ambition when she was thirteen was to be a politician or a historian "I honestly thought I'd be able to bring peace to the world
if I ruled it!" The family lived in Belfast for five years before moving to South East London. After her GCSEs, Katie joined the Brit School for Performing Arts where she undertook a BTEC and Music A-level.
Composer/producer Mike Batt paid a visit to the school. Katie signed to Batt's record label Dramatico, but stayed at the Brit School to complete her studies where she graduated with distinction in July 2003.
Unable to secure a contract with a Major record company, Katie and Mike decided to put her album "Call Off The Search" (containing the song "The Closest Thing To Crazy") out on Batt's own, small record label. After an initial struggle, followed by an appearance on The Royal Variety Show, 19 year old Katie shot to the top of the UK album charts and became the biggest selling female artist for the next two years. Her two albums, (the second of which contained the hit "Nine Million Bicycles") have sold nearly 9 million copies to date. She is currently Europe's biggest selling female solo artist. She and her family took British nationality in 2005.
The past years have been quite extraordinary for Katie. She has had a Dutch tulip named in her honour, toured America coast to coast, met and played for Nelson Mandela in South Africa visiting his Aids charity, has become a hard working Ambassador for Save The Children, raced at 160mph around Grand Prix circuit Silverstone, flown a plane, learned to dive and parachute freefall, descended 303 metres into the depths of the leg of a gas rig in North Sea (achieving a Guinness World Record), and picked up various prestigious awards within Europe, including a World Music Award, a Golden Camera Award, and two German Echo Awards. In December 2007, Katie had her first number one single with a duet with her idol, the late Eva Cassidy, entitled "What A Wonderful World", with proceeds from the single going to support the UK work of the British Red Cross.
October 2007 saw the internationally successful release of Katie's third album "Pictures" a record which has delighted her legions of fans, confirmed Katie's status as a unique and remarkable vocalist, and revealed the third chapter in what is destined to be a long musical career.
Katie's fourth album, "The Katie Melua Collection", is a musical summary of the 24 year old's journey so far and was released in October 2008.