Friday, February 24, 2012

James Blunt

James Hillier Blount (born 22 February 1974), better known by his stage name James Blunt, is an English singer-songwriter and musician, and former army officer, whose debut album, Back to Bedlam and single releases, including "You're Beautiful" and "Goodbye My Lover", brought him to fame in 2005. His repertoire can be best described as a mix of acoustic-tinged pop, rock and folk. After recording on the independent American label Custard Records, Blunt won two Brit Awards, two MTV Video Music Awards, two Ivor Novello Awards, and by 2006 was nominated for five Grammy Awards. The following year, he released his second album All the Lost Souls (2007). Blunt's third studio album, Some Kind of Trouble, was released in November 2010. Worldwide, Blunt has sold over 18 million albums, and his debut album, Back to Bedlam, is the best-selling album of the 2000s in the UK.

Blunt was an officer in the Life Guards, a cavalry regiment of the British Army, and served under NATO in Kosovo during the conflict there in 1999. While posted to Kosovo, Blunt was introduced to the work of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF or "Doctors Without Borders"). Since then, Blunt has supported MSF by holding meet-and-greet auctions at many of his concerts. As of 4 October 2009 Blunt's primary residence is on the Spanish island of Ibiza.

Early Life
James Blunt was born at an army hospital in Tidworth, Wiltshire, England; the first child born to Jane A.F. (née Amos) and Charles Blount. James spent his early childhood living in England, Cyprus, and Germany, where his father, a Colonel in the British Army Air Corps, and military helicopter pilot, was posted at various times.

James Blunt has two younger siblings. The Blount family has a long history of military service, dating from the 10th century. His father inculcated in him a love of flying, and he earned his pilot's licence at age 16. He has a keen interest in motorcycles after learning to ride when he was 16.

Personal Life
Blunt says that he has become closer to his family since his musical success. His father manages his finances and his mother arranged the purchase of his principal residence in Ibiza, where Blunt has holidayed since he was a teenager. Blunt also owns a châlet in the Swiss town of Verbier, which he purchased in February 2007, and he was named "godfather" of one of the town's new ski lifts.

Blunt was instrumental in introducing his sister to her eventual husband after offering her for "sale" on eBay. She was having difficulty obtaining transport to a funeral in Ireland, and Blunt listed her as a "damsel in distress". A person responded saying his friend had a helicopter his sister could charter, but it turned out he was in Sweden and she did not attend the funeral. However, the respondent suggested she still meet up with the helicopter owner, Guy Harrison, and they began a relationship and eventually married.

The musician's social life has been the subject of significant commentary, particularly in the tabloid press. Blunt himself has found the degree of interest in his personal life to be bizarre, stating that "fame and celebrity is something that other people have constructed that I'm not really party to".

On 8 February 2012, Hugh Tomlinson QC, representing a number of victims of the News International phone hacking affair, informed the High Court that Blunt was one of six alleged victims who had filed for damages in new civil cases.

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