Bergen’s pop chanteuse numero uno, Annie, has recently signed a major deal with Universal subsidiary Island Records. “We’ve just signed the deal” said Island Records’ A&R exec Karen Lynch to Norwegian daily Dagbladet on Thursday this week.

Annie’s Norwegian manager Kathrine Synnes (of Bpop management) confirms the deal: “I’m not prepared to discuss details of the contract but we can confirm that it is a very good deal and that we’re more than happy with the end result” says Synnes to Dagbladet.no. Synnes confirms that the deal in question is an artist contract signing and not merely a distribution deal. Annie’s follow up to 2005’s debut ‘Anniemal’ is expected to be released by autumn 2007.

It was also revealed this week that Brian Higgins has been requited as executive producer. “He’s just fantastic – his production credits include such major acts as Girls Aloud and Sugababes” says Bpop’s Synnes. Brian Higgins is a member of production team Xenomania whose resume includes writing and producing Sugababes hits Round Round and Hole in the Head, virtually all of Girls Aloud tracks, Cher’s Believe as well as several of sisters Kylie and Danii Minogue’s hits.

Since parting ways with UK indie 679 Records, which released Annie’s debut album Anniemal, the Bergen pop icon has been without a recording contract. After failing to reach major sales figures with her critically acclaimed debut album, Annie is now poised for a possible second career peak, this time on a considerably bigger record label and with possibly more generous recording budgets. Says Kathrine Synnes: “Choosing Island was a question of wanting to be a part of a bigger team, a team that has many individuals working just for Annie - not just a lone A&R exec. Everyone on our new Island team are very, very enthusiastic” says Synnes to Dagbladet.no.

Annie first rose to media attention five years ago when she delivered trademark airy vocals to the Madonna-sampling underground floor filler, the aptly titled “The Greatest Hit”. The track was produced with her boyfriend at the time, the widely acclaimed DJ Erot who tragically passed away in 2001 due to an inborn organic heart disease. The death of her boyfriend caused a four-year hiatus from the scene, which she gradually returned to by DJing (she’s a highly respected vinyl spinner) and songwriting. Annie returned to the centre stage with such infectious singles as Chewing Gum and My Heartbeat which caused quite a stir at home and abroad. 2005 saw the release of her debut album ‘Anniemal’ (679 Recordings) which received rave reviews in the domestic as well as international press. In the wake of ‘Anniemal’s relase, Annie has spent much time on the road both as a DJ and as a proper live act with her trusted Finnish backing band. sd
 
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