I just heard “Grace Kelly” by Mika, a Lebanese-born, London-raised singer. I know I’m behind the curve here, as the song topped the charts in January in the UK. In light of my usual patten, that’s a real improvement for me in terms of keeping abreast of musical trends. I’m only the 4,152,974th person to watch the video on YouTube. Word up.
The song (you can hear it and watch the fun video on YouTube) is catchy and instantly likable. By the second verse I was struck by how much Mika sounded like Freddie Mercury. He’s got some similar vocal stylings, and (I think, though I’m a total layman in these matters) a similar range. Plus, they’re both skinny, fey, British dudes with a, uh, apparent flair for theatricality. Of course, the song’s lyrics include a reference to trying a “a little Freddie”.
Mika seems to be a legitimately talented musician, as he attended the LycÃƒÂ©e FranÃƒÂ§ais Charles de Gaulle, Westminster School and the Royal College of Music (he dropped out to record an album). I also watched a live, piano-only version of “Grace Kelly” on Jools Holland’s show, and, barring real-time, auto-magical pitch adjusters and the like, his skills seem to be all natural.