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Naughty Boy

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Biography

English producer, DJ, and musician Shahid Khan, aka Naughty Boy, combines R&B and classic U.K. breakbeat to create a pop-friendly mainstream sound that has helped score him hits with Beyoncé and Sam Smith. Born in Watford, England to Pakistani parents, Khan pursued music seriously after he dropped out of university and worked a number of unsatisfying jobs. His first major work was his songwriting and production for Chipmunk's "Diamond Rings," a playful ska-rooted single that featured a pre-fame Emeli Sandé and reached the Top Ten in his native U.K. in 2009. The next year was bigger, highlighted by productions for Professor Green, Tinie Tempah, and Wiley (the Top Ten "Never Be Your Woman"), all of which involved Sandé. Khan then worked extensively on Sandé's breakthrough 2012 album, Our Version of Events. That October, he released the solo single "Wonder," with Sandé returning the favor as the song's lead vocalist and co-songwriter. Khan's mainstream breakthrough arrived in 2013 with "La La La" featuring Sam Smith. Upon release, the track topped the U.K. charts and eventually became a global hit, entering the Top Five in Australia and across Europe, while peaking within the Top 40 on the Billboard charts. This success set the stage for the August release of Hotel Cabana, Khan's guest-loaded debut album for Virgin. Featuring Sandé, Wiz Khalifa, Bastille, Ed Sheeran, Wiley, Tinie Tempah, and more, the set peaked at number two on the U.K. charts. An expanded edition for the U.S. arrived the following May. In 2015 he landed in the U.K. Top Ten with the single "Runnin' (Lose It All)," featuring Beyoncé and Arrow Benjamin. He followed with the Joe Jonas collaboration "One Chance to Dance," the first single from his 2018 effort, Bungee Jumping, which also featured Dua Lipa, Mike Posner, MNEK, and Julia Michaels. A single, "Undo" with Calum Scott and Shenseea, arrived in 2019. ~ Andy Kellman & Neil Z. Yeung
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