Young New Zealand singer top in US

A 16-year old singer, Lorde, is number one on the US Billboard Top 100 with her song ‘Royals’. She is the youngest singer to get to number one since 1987. She is also the first New Zealand solo artist to reach number one.

Her first album, “Pure Heroine” was on sale at the end of September. She writes her own lyrics and music. Her song “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” is on the soundtrack for the movie “Hunger Games: Catching Fire.”

Her real name is Ella Yelich-O’Connor but her stage name is Lorde. She is in Year 12 in a school on the North Shore in Auckland but is travelling in the US and Canada for a few weeks. She said her head is so full of music at the moment that she can’t think about school. She will be 17 in November.

When she was only 12 years old she sang in a school talent show. Someone sent a video of her performance to Universal Music company in Auckland. The company took an interest in her and helped her develop her talent. At 13 she was writing her own songs and Universal signed a contract with her.

Her songs have strong messages. ‘Royals’ is about not wanting to be a royal or rich person but being happy with what she’s got.

My friends and I we’ve cracked the code
We count our dollars on the train to the party
And everyone who knows us knows
That we’re fine with this, we didn’t come from money


    heroine – female hero
    lyrics – words
    talent – ability


  1. On 15th October, she won the NZ Silver Scroll award for songwriting, along with her co-writer Joel Little.

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