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Cleopatra

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Biography

Cross the Spice Girls with Hanson and you get Cleopatra, a teen trio from Manchester, England, comprised of three of the Higgins sisters - oldest sibling Zainam, third child Yonah, and second-oldest Cleopatra, who in addition to lending the group its name also assumed lead vocal duties on all of their songs, most of which the sisters co-wrote. The offspring of session singer Christine Higgins, the trio was inspired by everything from gospel to trip-hop to classic soul. After winning a local talent contest, they were signed to a management contract, then spent six years performing around the U.K. before being signed to the British division of Warner Bros. Records in early 1997. They released two top five singles, "Cleopatra's Theme" and "Life Ain't Easy," followed by their Top 20 debut album Comin' Atcha! in the spring of 1998. The album then spun off two more British chart singles, a Top Five cover of the Jackson 5's "I Want You Back" and the Top 40 "A Touch of Love." In the U.S., the group was picked up by Madonna's Maverick label. "Cleopatra's Theme" reached the pop Top 40 as well as the R&B charts, and "Life Ain't Easy" also made both charts, while Comin' Atcha! spent a few months in the lower half of the album charts. With their mother and their youngest sister Terry, the group launched its own comedy/variety show on British television, which was a ratings success. Their second album, Steppin' Out, was released in August 2000. ~ Jason Ankeny & William Ruhlmann
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