Robbie Williams
Overview
Robert Peter "Robbie" Williams (born 13 February 1974) is an English
English people
The English are a nation and ethnic group native to England, who speak English. The English identity is of early mediaeval origin, when they were known in Old English as the Anglecynn. England is now a country of the United Kingdom, and the majority of English people in England are British Citizens...

 singer-songwriter, vocal coach and occasional actor. He is a member of the pop group Take That
Take That
Take That are a British five-piece vocal pop group comprising Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams. Barlow acts as the lead singer and primary songwriter...

. Williams rose to fame in the band's first run in the early- to mid-1990s. After many disagreements with the management and certain group members, Williams left the group in 1995 to launch his solo career. On 15 July 2010, it was announced he had rejoined Take That and that the group intended to release a new album in November 2010 which became the second fastest-selling album of all-time in UK chart history and the fastest-selling record of the century.

Williams has sold over 70 million records worldwide, which ranks him among the best-selling music artist worldwide.
Quotations

I met Courtney Love|Courtney Love and she said she'd like to sleep with me, but she couldn't cos of my "pop-star thing"... so I said to her I couldn't sleep with her either - cos of her 'ugly thing'...

Interview with Chris Moyles, Radio One (2005)

The world could change in a second,so I find the sunshine beckons me,to open up the gate and dream.

Lazy Days|Lazy Days

I look above, and I knowI'll always be blessed with love.

Angels (song)|Angels

Well tonight I'm gonna live for today, so come along for the ride,I hope I'm old before I die.

Old Before I Die|Old Before I Die

There'll be the same old faces,in the same old places,where my youth was well misspent,but I toe the line and move in time,to a town called no regrets.

South of the Border (1997 song)|South of the Border

Hell is gone and heaven's here,there’s nothing left for you to fear.

Let Me Entertain You (Robbie Williams song)|Let Me Entertain You

I sit and talk to God, and he just laughs at my plans.

Feel (Robbie Williams song)|Feel

I'm not scared of dying, I just don't want to.If I stop lying, I'll just disappoint you.

Come Undone (Robbie Williams song|Come Undone

I'm contemplating thinking about thinking…but....it's overrated - just get another drink in!

Come Undone

All your friends think you're satisfied, but they can't see your soul, no, no, no...

Something Beautiful|Something Beautiful

Encyclopedia
Robert Peter "Robbie" Williams (born 13 February 1974) is an English
English people
The English are a nation and ethnic group native to England, who speak English. The English identity is of early mediaeval origin, when they were known in Old English as the Anglecynn. England is now a country of the United Kingdom, and the majority of English people in England are British Citizens...

 singer-songwriter, vocal coach and occasional actor. He is a member of the pop group Take That
Take That
Take That are a British five-piece vocal pop group comprising Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams. Barlow acts as the lead singer and primary songwriter...

. Williams rose to fame in the band's first run in the early- to mid-1990s. After many disagreements with the management and certain group members, Williams left the group in 1995 to launch his solo career. On 15 July 2010, it was announced he had rejoined Take That and that the group intended to release a new album in November 2010 which became the second fastest-selling album of all-time in UK chart history and the fastest-selling record of the century.

Williams has sold over 70 million records worldwide, which ranks him among the best-selling music artist worldwide. He is the best-selling British solo artist in the United Kingdom and the best selling non-Latino artist in Latin America. Six of his albums are among the top 100 biggest-selling albums in the United Kingdom. He has also been honoured with seventeen BRIT Awards
Brit Awards
The Brit Awards are the British Phonographic Industry's annual pop music awards. The name was originally a shortened form of "British", "Britain" or "Britannia", but subsequently became a backronym for British Record Industry Trust...

—more than any other artist—and seven ECHO Awards. In 2004, he was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame
UK Music Hall of Fame
The UK Music Hall of Fame was an awards ceremony to honour musicians, of any nationality, for their lifetime contributions to music in the United Kingdom. The Hall of Fame started in 2004 with the induction of five founder members and five more members selected by a public televote, two from each...

 after being voted as the "Greatest Artist of the 1990s."

1974–89: early life

Williams was born to Peter and Janet Williams in Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent , also called The Potteries is a city in Staffordshire, England, which forms a linear conurbation almost 12 miles long, with an area of . Together with the Borough of Newcastle-under-Lyme Stoke forms The Potteries Urban Area...

 on 13 February 1974. His parents ran a pub
Public house
A public house, informally known as a pub, is a drinking establishment fundamental to the culture of Britain, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. There are approximately 53,500 public houses in the United Kingdom. This number has been declining every year, so that nearly half of the smaller...

 called the Red Lion in the town of Burslem
Burslem
The town of Burslem, known as the Mother Town, is one of the six towns that amalgamated to form the current city of Stoke-on-Trent, in the ceremonial county of Staffordshire, in the Midlands of England.-Topography:...

, before his father became the licensee at the Port Vale F.C.
Port Vale F.C.
Port Vale Football Club is an English football club currently playing in Football League Two. They are based in Burslem, Staffordshire — one of six towns that make up the city of Stoke-on-Trent. The club's traditional rivals in the city are Stoke City, and games between the two clubs are known as...

 Social Club - this led to Williams' lifelong affinity for the team. Williams attended Mill Hill Primary School at Stoke-on-Trent then St Margaret Ward
Margaret Ward
Saint Margaret Ward was an English Catholic martyr who was executed during the reign of Elizabeth I for helping a priest to escape from prison. Her date of birth is unknown, but she was born in Congleton, Cheshire....

 Roman Catholic School in Tunstall
Tunstall, Staffordshire
Tunstall is an area in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England. It was one of the original six towns that federated to form the city. Tunstall is the most northern town of the city of Stoke-on-Trent....

, and also attended dance school UKDDF in Tunstall. He participated in several school plays, and his biggest role was that of the Artful Dodger in a production of Oliver!.

1990–95: Take That

In 1990, the sixteen year old Williams was the youngest member to join Take That. According to the documentary Take That: For the Record
Take That: For the Record
Take That: For The Record is a television documentary about the British boyband Take That. It was originally screened in 2005, a decade after the group had originally split up.- Release Information :...

, his mother read an advertisement seeking members for a new boy band and suggested that he try out for the group. He met fellow member Mark Owen
Mark Owen
Mark Anthony Patrick Owen , is an English singer-songwriter. He is a member of pop band Take That. The band were hugely successful during the 1990s and have enjoyed even more success since their reunion in 2005...

 on the day of his audition/interview with Nigel Martin-Smith
Nigel Martin-Smith
Nigel Martin-Smith is a Manchester-based musical band manager who formed 1990s British boy band Take That.-Biography:Martin-Smith entered the entertainment industry in the early 1980s working as a casting agent from offices in Manchester's Royal Exchange...

. During the heights of the band's popularity, Williams was known as the extrovert and practical joker of the band. Although the majority of the band's material was written and performed by Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow is an English singer-songwriter, pianist and record producer. He is frontman and lead vocalist of pop group Take That and is currently the head judge on the eighth series of The X Factor. Barlow is one of Britain's most successful songwriters...

, Williams did perform lead vocals on their first Top Ten hit "Could It Be Magic
Could It Be Magic
"Could It Be Magic" is a song by Adrienne Anderson and Barry Manilow. It was included on Manilow's 1973 debut album, Barry Manilow.Due to its popularity, it was released as a single in 1975, two years after it had originally been recorded, where it reached #6 in the United States.Manilow's...

", "I Found Heaven
I Found Heaven
"I Found Heaven" is the fifth single taken from Take That's debut album "Take That & Party"- Song information :Written and produced by Billy Griffin and Ian Levine, it was released on August 10, 1992 as the fifth single from the band's debut album Take That & Party . It became the group's second...

", and "Everything Changes
Everything Changes (Take That song)
"Everything Changes" is a song by British boy band Take That. The song was the fifth single from the band's second studio album Everything Changes. It was written by Gary Barlow, Michael Ward, Eliot Kennedy and Cary Bayliss, and it was produced by Ward...

". However, he had conflicts with Martin-Smith over the restrictive rules for Take That members, and he began drinking more alcohol and dabbling in cocaine.

In July 1995, Williams's drug abuse had escalated to the point of his having a near drug overdose the night before the group was scheduled to perform at the MTV Europe Music Awards
MTV Europe Music Awards
The MTV Europe Music Awards were established in 1994 by MTV Networks Europe to celebrate the most popular music videos in Europe. Originally beginning as an alternative to the American MTV Video Music Awards, the MTV Europe Music Awards is today a popular celebration of what MTV viewers consider...

. According to the documentary For the Record, he stated that he was unhappy with his musical ideas not being taken seriously by lead singer Barlow and Nigel Martin-Smith, because his desire to explore hip hop
Hip hop
Hip hop is a form of musical expression and artistic culture that originated in African-American and Latino communities during the 1970s in New York City, specifically the Bronx. DJ Afrika Bambaataa outlined the four pillars of hip hop culture: MCing, DJing, breaking and graffiti writing...

 and rap conflicted with the band's usual ballads. Barlow explained in interviews that Williams had given up trying to offer creative input and merely did as he was told. As well as Williams's friction with the management of the band, Jason Orange
Jason Orange
Jason Thomas Orange is an English musician and dancer. He is a member of the pop band Take That who gained popularity in the 1990s and are currently enjoying further success since their reunion in 2005.-Early fame and Take That:...

 had problems with his increasingly belligerent behaviour, his lack of interest in performing, and his frequent habit of missing the band's rehearsals.

Both Orange and Barlow confronted Martin-Smith about the internal conflict, because they did not want him dropping out while touring and before any possible future touring of America, which never took place. During one of the last rehearsals before the tour commenced, the group confronted Williams about his attitude and stated they wanted to do the tour without him. He agreed to quit the band and left; it would be the last time for twelve years that they were all together. Despite the departure of Williams, Take That completed their Nobody Else Tour
Nobody Else Tour
The Nobody Else Tour was a concert tour by British boyband Take That. Lasting from April to October 1995, the tour consisted of 31 dates across the UK, Australia, Thailand, Singapore, and Japan. It was the first tour the band did after the departure of Robbie Williams. Robbie left after European...

 as a four-piece band. They later disbanded on 13 February 1996, Williams's twenty-second birthday.

Shortly afterwards, Williams was photographed by the press partying with the members of Oasis
Oasis (band)
Oasis were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1991. Originally known as The Rain, the group was formed by Liam Gallagher , Paul "Bonehead" Arthurs , Paul "Guigsy" McGuigan and Tony McCarroll , who were soon joined by Liam's older brother Noel Gallagher...

 at Glastonbury Festival
Glastonbury Festival
The Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts, commonly abbreviated to Glastonbury or even Glasto, is a performing arts festival that takes place near Pilton, Somerset, England, best known for its contemporary music, but also for dance, comedy, theatre, circus, cabaret and other arts.The...

. Following his departure, he became the subject of talk shows and newspapers as he acknowledged his plans to become a solo singer, and he was spotted partying with George Michael
George Michael
George Michael is a British musician, singer, songwriter and record producer who rose to fame in the 1980s when he formed the pop duo Wham! with his school friend, Andrew Ridgeley...

 in France. However, a clause in his Take That contract prohibited him from releasing any material until after the group was officially dissolved, and he was later sued by Martin-Smith and forced to pay $200,000 in commission. After various legal battles over his right to a solo career, Williams was victorious in getting released from his contract with BMG
BMG
Bertelsmann Music Group, , was a division of Bertelsmann before its completion of sale of the majority of its assets to Japan's Sony Corporation of America on October 1, 2008. It was established in 1987 to combine the music label activities of Bertelsmann...

. On 27 June 1996, Williams formally announced that he had signed with Chrysalis Records
Chrysalis Records
Chrysalis Records was a British record label that was created in 1969. The name was both a reference to the pupal stage of a butterfly and a combination of its founders names, Chris Wright and Terry Ellis...

.

1996–98: Life Thru a Lens and I've Been Expecting You

After leaving Take That
Take That
Take That are a British five-piece vocal pop group comprising Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams. Barlow acts as the lead singer and primary songwriter...

, Williams launched his solo career starting things off in 1996 by covering George Michael
George Michael
George Michael is a British musician, singer, songwriter and record producer who rose to fame in the 1980s when he formed the pop duo Wham! with his school friend, Andrew Ridgeley...

's "Freedom", the single reached number two in the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

, twenty-six places higher than George Michael's original.

Recordings for Williams's first album began at London's Maison Rouge studios in March of that year. Shortly after his introduction to Guy Chambers
Guy Chambers
Guy Chambers is an English songwriter and record producer, perhaps best known for his long partnership with Robbie Williams.- Biography :...

, Williams released "Old Before I Die
Old Before I Die
"Old Before I Die" is a 1997 song by Robbie Williams, and the first single to be taken from his debut album, Life Thru A Lens. It became a number two hit in the United Kingdom when it was released in April that year. The video has Williams performing for the camera with ageing rock stars as his...

" which would be the first single taken from his début album. Co-written by Williams with Eric Bazilian
Eric Bazilian
Eric M. Bazilian , is an American singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, arranger and producer, best known for being a founding member of the rock band The Hooters.-Early life:...

 and Desmond Child
Desmond Child
Desmond Child is an American musician, songwriter, and producer. He is a member of the Songwriters Hall of Fame.-Career:...

, the single was released in April 1997, hitting number two on the UK Charts; however, it was largely ignored on international charts. The second single, "Lazy Days
Lazy Days
"Lazy Days" is a July 1997 single released by Robbie Williams, the second single released from his 1997 album Life thru a Lens. The song became a top ten hit in the United Kingdom, but success was limited elsewhere....

", was released in mid-1997. Although Williams was going through drug rehabilitation on the advice of his friend Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John, CBE, Hon DMus is an English rock singer-songwriter, composer, pianist and occasional actor...

, he was allowed to check out to shoot the video for the song, but promotion for the single was virtually non-existent, so whilst the single charted at number eight in the United Kingdom, it struggled to reach the top forty of any European chart.

His debut album, Life Thru a Lens
Life thru a Lens
Life Thru a Lens is the debut studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams. It was Williams' first solo album following his departure from Take That.-Background:...

, was released in September 1997. The album launched with his first live solo gig at the Élysée Montmartre
Elysée Montmartre
Open in 1807, the Élysée Montmartre is a music venue, at 72 Boulevard de Rochechouart, in Paris, France. It has a capacity of 1,200 patrons. The nearest métro station is Anvers.In 1900, the venue was damaged by fire, and was re-decorated...

 theatre in Paris, France. At first, the album was slow to take off, debuting at number eleven of the UK Album Charts. The third single of the album, "South of the Border", failed to make a significant impact on the UK Charts. When it was released in September 1997, it reached number fourteen.

After Williams met the record company's concerns about his future, he released what would be the fourth single taken from his album, not knowing it would become his biggest single in the United Kingdom so far, and one of his best-known and most successful songs to date. "Angels" became Williams' best-seller in the United Kingdom, being certified 2x Platinum by the BPI
British Phonographic Industry
The British Phonographic Industry is the British record industry's trade association.-Structure:Its membership comprises hundreds of music companies including all four "major" record companies , associate members such as manufacturers and distributors, and hundreds of independent music companies...

. The song, apart from becoming a hit around Europe and Latin America, caused sales of his album to skyrocket. The album remained inside the British top ten for forty weeks and spent 218 weeks there altogether, making it the 58th best selling album in UK History with sales of over 2.4 million. The album eventually managed to sell over three million copies in Europe alone.

Williams and Chambers started writing the second album in Jamaica
Jamaica
Jamaica is an island nation of the Greater Antilles, in length, up to in width and 10,990 square kilometres in area. It is situated in the Caribbean Sea, about south of Cuba, and west of Hispaniola, the island harbouring the nation-states Haiti and the Dominican Republic...

 in early 1998. The first single, "Millennium", was inspired by John Barry's
John Barry (composer)
John Barry Prendergast, OBE was an English conductor and composer of film music. He is best known for composing the soundtracks for 12 of the James Bond films between 1962 and 1987...

, theme song for You Only Live Twice
You Only Live Twice (song)
"You Only Live Twice" was the title song from the film of the same name and was sung by Nancy Sinatra, with music by John Barry and lyrics by Leslie Bricusse. The song is widely recognised for its striking opening bars, featuring a simple 2-bar theme in the high octaves of the violins and lush...

, the James Bond
James Bond (film series)
The James Bond film series is a British series of motion pictures based on the fictional character of MI6 agent James Bond , who originally appeared in a series of books by Ian Fleming. Earlier films were based on Fleming's novels and short stories, followed later by films with original storylines...

 movie. The song became Williams' first solo number one single in the United Kingdom when it was released in September of that year. The song went on to ship over 400,000 copies in the UK alone being certified Gold by the BPI in November 1998. It also became a top twenty hit in many European countries, as well becoming a hit in Latin America and Australia.

When the album I've Been Expecting You
I've Been Expecting You
I've Been Expecting You is the second studio album by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.-Success:Williams and Chambers started the writing process of the album in Jamaica in the spring of 1998. I've Been Expecting You was released in October 1998. It debuted at #1 on the UK Albums Chart,...

was released in late October 1998, it débuted at number one in the UK Albums Chart. The album received more attention outside the United Kingdom, leaving its mark in the European and Latin American markets with hits such as "No Regrets", a collaboration with The Pet Shop Boys
Pet Shop Boys
Pet Shop Boys are an English electronic dance music duo, consisting of Neil Tennant, who provides main vocals, keyboards and occasional guitar, and Chris Lowe on keyboards....

' singer Neil Tennant
Neil Tennant
Neil Francis Tennant is an English musician, singer and songwriter, who, with bandmate Chris Lowe, makes up the successful electronic dance music duo Pet Shop Boys.-Childhood:...

 and The Divine Comedy
The Divine Comedy
The Divine Comedy is an epic poem written by Dante Alighieri between 1308 and his death in 1321. It is widely considered the preeminent work of Italian literature, and is seen as one of the greatest works of world literature...

's Neil Hannon
Neil Hannon
Neil Hannon is a Northern Irish singer and songwriter, best known as the creator and frontman of the chamber pop group The Divine Comedy. The band's official website even goes so far as to say, "The Divine Comedy is Neil Hannon," and Hannon is quoted in an interview as saying, "The Divine Comedy...

. The single "No Regrets" was released in November 1998, reaching number four in the UK Singles Chart, backed with the cover of Adam and the Ants
Adam and the Ants
Adam and the Ants were a British rock band active during the late 1970s and early 1980s. The original group, which existed from 1977 to 1980, became notable as a cult band marking the transition from the late-1970s punk rock era to the post-punk and New Wave era...

, "Antmusic". The single eventually sold over 200,000 copies in the United Kingdom being certified Silver in October 2004, almost six years after its original release.

The third single "Strong
Strong (song)
"Strong" is a song by Robbie Williams, released as the third single from his 1998 album, I've Been Expecting You in early 1999. The song managed to break into the top five in the United Kingdom. The b-side is the live version of Let Me Entertain You recorded at the 1999 BRIT Awards, the performance...

" from the album debuted at number four in the United Kingdom and number nine in New Zealand, however peaked moderately at only number 68 in Germany, number 99 in France and number 55 in the Netherlands. The fourth single, "She's the One", a cover of a track from World Party
World Party
World Party is a British pop/alternative rock band, which is essentially the solo project of its sole member, Karl Wallinger. He started the band in 1986 in London after leaving The Waterboys.-Career:...

's album, Egyptology, became his second number one hit in the United Kingdom. The single was released as a double a-side with "It's Only Us", the official theme for FIFA 2000. The single became a massive success shipping over 400,000 copies in the UK alone being certified Gold by the BPI in early 2000. Williams finished the year with an extensive European Tour late in 1999.

The album I've Been Expecting You
I've Been Expecting You
I've Been Expecting You is the second studio album by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.-Success:Williams and Chambers started the writing process of the album in Jamaica in the spring of 1998. I've Been Expecting You was released in October 1998. It debuted at #1 on the UK Albums Chart,...

was a smash hit, selling almost 3 million copies in the United Kingdom alone: certified 10x Platinum by the BPI. In Europe alone, the album sold over 4 million copies.

1999–2001: Sing When You're Winning and Swing When You're Winning

In 1999, Williams was signed to Capitol Records
Capitol Records
Capitol Records is a major United States based record label, formerly located in Los Angeles, but operating in New York City as part of Capitol Music Group. Its former headquarters building, the Capitol Tower, is a major landmark near the corner of Hollywood and Vine...

 in the United States, which is a part of EMI
EMI
The EMI Group, also known as EMI Music or simply EMI, is a multinational music company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the fourth-largest business group and family of record labels in the recording industry and one of the "big four" record companies. EMI Group also has a major...

. Williams embarked on a US promotional tour and when his first U.S. and Canadian single, "Millennium" was released, it hit number 72 on the Billboard Hot 100
Billboard Hot 100
The Billboard Hot 100 is the United States music industry standard singles popularity chart issued weekly by Billboard magazine. Chart rankings are based on radio play and sales; the tracking-week for sales begins on Monday and ends on Sunday, while the radio play tracking-week runs from Wednesday...

, the album The Ego Has Landed
The Ego Has Landed
The Ego Has Landed is a compilation album by English pop singer Robbie Williams. After the success of Williams around the world , Williams was signed to Capitol Records in the United States, which is a part of EMI, the album was released in May 1999 in the United States and Canada, and later issued...

was released in July 1999 in the United States and Canada, not having the success that he enjoyed in Europe - the album peaked at number 63 in the U.S. Billboard Albums Chart and number 17 on the Canadian SoundScan album chart. Despite this, Williams enjoyed good video airplay and received a nomination for the MTV Video Music Awards
MTV Video Music Awards
An MTV Video Music Award , is an award presented by the cable channel MTV to honor the best in music videos...

 for "Best Male Video" he did not win, but the exposure helped sales of the album.

Capitol Records, trying to make Williams a bigger star, released a second single from the album, the ballad "Angels". Williams shot a new video for it, and when it was released in fall of that year, the song became a somewhat bigger hit than "Millennium", peaking at number 53, but this was not enough for Williams, so he concentrated on the rest of the world where he was already an established act. The album went on to ship 500,000 copies in the United States, certified Gold by the RIAA in November of that year. The compilation was released worldwide (as a limited edition in Europe); the album was a success in New Zealand reaching number one on the official album charts.

In the middle of promotion and the tours in 1999, becoming an established worldwide pop star, Williams found time to start work on what would be his third studio album. This time he had finally found his inner confidence.

The first single taken from the album was "Rock DJ
Rock DJ (song)
"Rock DJ" is a song by English pop singer Robbie Williams from his fourth album, Sing When You're Winning released in the summer of 2000. The song heavily musically samples Barry White's 1977 song "It's Ecstasy When You Lay Down Next to Me" and also contains a sample of "Can I Kick It?" by A Tribe...

", a song inspired by Williams's UNICEF mentor, the late Ian Dury
Ian Dury
Ian Robins Dury was an English rock and roll singer, lyricist, bandleader and actor who initially rose to fame during the late 1970s, during the punk and New Wave era of rock music...

. The video showed Williams in an attempt to get noticed by a group of females, first stripping and then tearing chunks of skin and muscle from his body, and caused controversy in the United Kingdom and many other countries. The video was edited by Top of the Pops
Top of the Pops
Top of the Pops, also known as TOTP, is a British music chart television programme, made by the BBC and originally broadcast weekly from 1 January 1964 to 30 July 2006. After 25 December 2006 it became a radio program, now hosted by Tony Blackburn...

 for its graphic content and many other channels followed suit. The song became an instant hit, making number one in the United Kingdom and becoming his third number one single as a solo artist exactly a year after his sell-out concert at the Slane Castle
Slane Castle
Slane Castle is located in the town of Slane, within the Boyne Valley of County Meath, Ireland. The castle has been the family home of the Conyngham Marquessate since the 18th century....

. The song also reached number one in New Zealand and hit the Top 10 placings in many countries including Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Norway, Italy and Australia. Despite this success, the song failed to break into the United States charts, but it did get some TV Airplay on channels such as MTV and VH1
VH1
VH1 or Vh1 is an American cable television network based in New York City. Launched on January 1, 1985 in the old space of Turner Broadcasting's short-lived Cable Music Channel, the original purpose of the channel was to build on the success of MTV by playing music videos, but targeting a slightly...

. The song went on to win several awards; among them, "Best Song of 2000" at the MTV Europe Music Awards
MTV Europe Music Awards
The MTV Europe Music Awards were established in 1994 by MTV Networks Europe to celebrate the most popular music videos in Europe. Originally beginning as an alternative to the American MTV Video Music Awards, the MTV Europe Music Awards is today a popular celebration of what MTV viewers consider...

, "Best Single of the Year" at the BRIT Awards and an MTV Video Music Award for Best Special Effects
MTV Video Music Award for Best Special Effects
The following is a list of MTV Video Music Awards winners for Best Special Effects in a Video....

. It sold over 600,000 copies in the UK alone, being certified Platinum by the BPI.

When the album, Sing When You're Winning
Sing When You're Winning
Sing When You're Winning is the third studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.-Background:Following the release of his last album, I've Been Expecting You in 1998, and in the middle of promotion and touring in 1999, Robbie found time to start the work on what would be his third...

was released in August 2000, it topped the charts in many different countries all over the world including Germany, New Zealand and The Netherlands and secured top ten placings in Italy, Austria, Australia, Finland and Sweden, among many others. As for the UK, the album débuted at number one being certified 2x Platinum on its first week of release.

The album's second single, a collaboration with Australian singer Kylie Minogue
Kylie Minogue
Kylie Ann Minogue, OBE - often known simply as Kylie - is an Australian singer, recording artist, songwriter, and actress. After beginning her career as a child actress on Australian television, she achieved recognition through her role in the television soap opera Neighbours, before commencing...

, titled "Kids", was written when Minogue approached Williams to write material for what would be her first album under Parlophone
Parlophone
Parlophone is a record label that was founded in Germany in 1896 by the Carl Lindström Company as Parlophon. The British branch was formed in 1923 as "Parlophone" which developed a reputation in the 1920s as a leading jazz label. It was acquired in 1927 by the Columbia Graphophone Company which...

 – Light Years. Williams decided to include the track on his album and release it as a single. It was an instant hit when it was released in October of that year, hitting number two in the United Kingdom and reaching top twenty placings in countries like Australia and New Zealand. Kids became one of the biggest hits of that year selling over 200,000 copies in the UK alone and was certified Silver
Silver
Silver is a metallic chemical element with the chemical symbol Ag and atomic number 47. A soft, white, lustrous transition metal, it has the highest electrical conductivity of any element and the highest thermal conductivity of any metal...

.

Further singles, such as "Supreme
Supreme (song)
"Supreme" is a song by Robbie Williams released in 2000 as the third single from his album Sing When You're Winning, and contains an interpolation of Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive" because, according to Williams, he was in a trip in Switzerland and when it was approaching the new millennium, the...

" (which Williams also recorded in French), and "Better Man
Better Man (Robbie Williams song)
"Better Man" is a song by British pop singer Robbie Williams, it became the last single from his album Sing When You're Winning in late 2001...

" became big hits reaching the top 10 in numerous countries around the world.

"Eternity
Eternity/The Road to Mandalay
"Eternity / The Road To Mandalay" is the fifth single from Robbie Williams' 2000 Sing When You're Winning album, released in July 2001. "Eternity" does not appear in the album but it was later included on Williams' Greatest Hits album...

", a track that was not featured on the album, was released in mid 2001 backed with "The Road to Mandalay
Eternity/The Road to Mandalay
"Eternity / The Road To Mandalay" is the fifth single from Robbie Williams' 2000 Sing When You're Winning album, released in July 2001. "Eternity" does not appear in the album but it was later included on Williams' Greatest Hits album...

" - the former was written by Williams. It became his fourth number one single in the United Kingdom, selling over 70,000 copies in its first week in the UK alone, and also hit the top 10 in many countries including Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Italy among others.

The album spent 91 weeks inside the UK Charts, going on to sell 2.4 million copies in the UK alone and was certified 8x Platinum by the BPI. It became the 51st Best Selling album in UK Music History and went on to sell over 4 million copies in Europe alone.

After the success of his third album, Williams wanted to take another musical direction. He took two weeks off from his tour to record what would be his fourth studio album, the big band album he had always dreamed of making. Born from his life-long love for Frank Sinatra
Frank Sinatra
Francis Albert "Frank" Sinatra was an American singer and actor.Beginning his musical career in the swing era with Harry James and Tommy Dorsey, Sinatra became an unprecedentedly successful solo artist in the early to mid-1940s, after being signed to Columbia Records in 1943. Being the idol of the...

combined with the success of the track "Have You Met Miss Jones?
Have You Met Miss Jones?
"Have You Met Miss Jones?" is a popular song that was written for the musical comedy, I'd Rather Be Right. The music was written by Richard Rodgers and the lyrics by Lorenz Hart. The song was published in 1937....

" that he recorded for the film Bridget Jones' Diary
Bridget Jones's Diary (film)
Bridget Jones's Diary is a 2001 British romantic comedy film based on Helen Fielding's novel of the same name. The adaptation stars Renée Zellweger as Bridget, Hugh Grant as the caddish Daniel Cleaver, and Colin Firth as Bridget's "true love", Mark Darcy...

in early 2001 the album was recorded at the Capitol Studios
Capitol Studios
The Capitol Studios complex opened in the Capitol Records Building, a futuristic new building in the heart of Hollywood, in 1956. It has since hosted some of the most treasured recordings in music history, from Frank Sinatra to the Beastie Boys. It is owned by Capitol Records whose parent company...

 in Los Angeles, California.

Williams took the chance to duet with his long-time friend Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes is an English television presenter, actor and musician. Jonny Wilkes is currently performing as Billy Flynn in Chicago at The Cambridge Theatre, London. He is also the best friend of singer Robbie Williams...

, Little Voice star Jane Horrocks
Jane Horrocks
Barbara Jane Horrocks is an English voice, stage, screen and television actress, voice artist, musician, and singer. She is best known for her role as "Bubble" in the TV series Absolutely Fabulous as well as her distinctive voice....

, Saturday Night Live star Jon Lovitz
Jon Lovitz
Jonathan "Jon" Lovitz is an American comedian, actor, and singer. He is best known as a cast member of the NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live from 1985 to 1990.-Early life:...

, Rupert Everett
Rupert Everett
Rupert James Hector Everett is an English actor. He first came to public attention in 1981, when he was cast in Julian Mitchell's play and subsequent film Another Country as an openly gay student at an English public school, set in the 1930s...

 and the Academy Award winning actress Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman
Nicole Mary Kidman, AC is an American-born Australian actress, singer, film producer, spokesmodel, and humanitarian. After starring in a number of small Australian films and TV shows, Kidman's breakthrough was in the 1989 thriller Dead Calm...

. The first single released from the album was a duet with Kidman, on "Somethin' Stupid
Somethin' Stupid
"Somethin' Stupid" is a song written by C. Carson Parks and originally recorded in 1966 by Parks and his wife Gaile Foote, as "Carson and Gaile". It is best known in the hit version by Frank Sinatra and his daughter, Nancy Sinatra....

". Originally a hit for Frank
Frank Sinatra
Francis Albert "Frank" Sinatra was an American singer and actor.Beginning his musical career in the swing era with Harry James and Tommy Dorsey, Sinatra became an unprecedentedly successful solo artist in the early to mid-1940s, after being signed to Columbia Records in 1943. Being the idol of the...

 and Nancy Sinatra
Nancy Sinatra
Nancy Sandra Sinatra is an American singer and actress. She is the daughter of singer/actor Frank Sinatra, and remains best known for her 1966 signature hit "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'"....

, the song became Williams' fifth number one hit in the United Kingdom, selling almost 100,000 copies in its first week of release, as well as hitting the top 5 in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, The Netherlands, Belgium and New Zealand. It eventually went on to become one of the biggest hits of 2001, selling over 200,000 copies in the UK alone. After spending three weeks at the top of the charts in 2001, it was certified Silver in January 2002.

When the album Swing When You're Winning
Swing When You're Winning
Swing When You're Winning is a swing cover album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.-Background:After the success of his third studio album, Sing When You're Winning, Williams wanted to take another musical direction...

(in reference to his 2000 studio album Sing When You're Winning) was released in late 2001, it became an instant hit in the United Kingdom (spending six consecutive weeks at number one), Ireland, New Zealand, Austria, Germany and Switzerland and it reached the top ten in the rest of the world, going on to sell over 2 million copies by the end of 2001 and over 7 million altogether. A second single was released from the album, a double a-side "Mr. Bojangles/I Will Talk and Hollywood Will Listen
Mr. Bojangles/I Will Talk And Hollywood Will Listen
"Mr. Bojangles / I Will Talk And Hollywood Will Listen" are songs by British pop singer Robbie Williams released as a double A-side exclusively in Central and Eastern Europe in early 2002. The single did not manage to break into the top forty in any country, but the songs, especially "Mr....

". It was, however, released only in Central and Eastern Europe. "Mack the Knife
Mack the Knife
"Mack the Knife" or "The Ballad of Mack the Knife", originally "Die Moritat von Mackie Messer", is a song composed by Kurt Weill with lyrics by Bertolt Brecht for their music drama Die Dreigroschenoper, or, as it is known in English, The Threepenny Opera. It premiered in Berlin in 1928 at the...

" was released as a radio single in Mexico.

The album spent 85 weeks inside the UK Charts, selling more than 2.1 million copies. It was certified 7x Platinum in the United Kingdom and ultimately became the 49th Best Selling Album in UK Music History. "Beyond the Sea" was put in the credits of the film Finding Nemo
Finding Nemo
Finding Nemo is a 2003 American comi-drama animated film written by Andrew Stanton, directed by Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich and produced by Pixar. It tells the story of the overly protective clownfish Marlin who, along with a regal tang called Dory , searches for his abducted son Nemo...

in 2003 and was also released on the film's soundtrack CD.

A DVD called Robbie Williams Live at the Albert Hall was released in December of that year. So far, it has become one of the best selling music DVDs in Europe, being certified 6x Platinum in the United Kingdom and 2x Platinum in Germany.

2002–05: Escapology and Intensive Care

In 2002, Williams signed a record-breaking £80 million contract with EMI. The contract included a number of provisos, including the label ceding greater creative control to the artist and a commitment to breaking Williams into the US market. So far it is the biggest music deal in British history. The deal was brokered by Ingenious Media
Ingenious Media
Ingenious Media is a UK media investment and advisory group founded in 1998 by Patrick McKenna who is its Chief Executive Officer....

, a leading UK corporate finance advisory business.

Williams began working on what would be his fifth studio album, spending a year in the recording studio. The album heralded a new era for Williams. He had taken a more active role in the making of this album, giving an indication of his growing confidence in the studio. "One Fine Day", "Nan's Song", and "Come Undone" were the first songs that Williams wrote without the input of Guy Chambers. Most of the songs were recorded in Los Angeles.

The album's first single, "Feel
Feel (Robbie Williams song)
"Feel" is a song by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams. It was released on December 2, 2002 as the lead single from his fifth studio album, Escapology...

", written by Williams and Chambers, was recorded as a demo. When they started working on the album and were trying to re-record the vocals, Williams felt unsatisfied with it, so he decided to include the demo version and then release it as the first single. When the single was released in late 2002, it became Williams' biggest international hit, going number one in countries like The Netherlands and Italy, as well as reaching the top ten in almost every single European country.

When Williams' fifth studio album, Escapology
Escapology (album)
-Background:In 2002, Williams signed a record-breaking £80 million contract with EMI. The contract featured a number of provisos, including the label ceding greater creative control to the artist and a commitment to breaking Williams in the American market...

, was released in late 2002, it hit number one in at least 10 countries around the world including the United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark. Elsewhere, it made the top ten. In the United States, however, it failed to make such an impact, reaching only number forty-three on the Billboard Albums Chart.

The album's second single, "Come Undone" became a top ten hit around the world. Due to its controversial video, it was heavily censored by MTV Networks Europe for depicting a debauched (but fully clothed) Williams having three-way sex with two women. The video was about some young people having a party and it showed footage of fights, drug taking and alcohol abuse. It also showed unsettling images of insects and reptiles. The uncensored version of the video was released on DVD single in Europe and was also included on the Enhanced CD Single. BBC Radio 2 also banned the song for its explicit content. At that time, it was confirmed that Williams and Guy Chambers were to officially split up. The single version of "Come Undone" is not the same version as the one on the album, but instead is listed by producer Steve Power as being "from an original production by Guy Chambers/Steve Power".

The third single taken from the album was "Something Beautiful
Something Beautiful
"Something Beautiful" is a song by British pop singer Robbie Williams, it was released as the third single from his album Escapology in the summer of 2003.-Music video:...

". The song was written in Barbados. It was first offered to Tom Jones
Tom Jones (singer)
Sir Thomas John Woodward, OBE , known by his stage name Tom Jones, is a Welsh singer.Since the mid 1960s, Jones has sung many styles of popular music – pop, rock, R&B, show tunes, country, dance, techno, soul and gospel – and sold over 100 million records...

, who declined, after which it was reworked for its inclusion on Williams' album. The single was released in mid-2003. While it had minor success compared to Williams' previous songs, it did manage to enter the top ten in the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Denmark. However it failed to make much of an impact in the music charts in other countries. The video featured a number of people from all over Europe vying to win the chance to perform as Robbie Williams at the end of the same video. The three winners had the chance to meet Williams. Three different versions of the video were released in different parts of the world, featuring the different winners. Williams started his world tour in the mid-2003, and he was about to do three live concerts in Knebworth
Knebworth
Knebworth is a village and civil parish in the north of Hertfordshire, England immediately south of Stevenage. The civil parish covers an area between the villages of Datchworth, Woolmer Green, Codicote, Kimpton, Whitwell, St Paul's Walden and Langley, and encompasses the village of Knebworth, the...

. The Knebworth shows attracted a total of 375,000 fans.

Escapology ended up selling almost 2 million copies by the end of 2003 in the United Kingdom. It was certified 6x Platinum by the BPI, becoming the 60th best selling album in UK music history. The album went on to sell over 5 million copies in Europe alone.

In October 2003, Williams released his first live album, Live at Knebworth
Live at Knebworth
Live at Knebworth, also known as Live Summer 2003 with different cover text, is a live album by English pop singer Robbie Williams, recorded and released in 2003. The album is his first live album, and is a compilation of songs performed during three consecutive shows at Knebworth, England.The...

which peaked at number two in the UK. The album reached the top position in Germany and Austria and became a top ten album throughout the rest of Europe, Australasia and Latin America. The live record ended up selling a little over 600,000 copies in the United Kingdom and was certified 2x Platinum by the BPI. It sold a total of 2 million units in Europe alone.

In October 2004, Williams released a retrospective of his career, and also, to reveal the new tracks he had been working on with the then-new collaborator, Stephen Duffy
Stephen Duffy
Stephen Anthony James Duffy is an English singer/songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. He was a founding member and vocalist/bassist of Duran Duran. He went on to record as a solo performer under several different names, and is the singer and songwriter for The Lilac Time with his older brother...

. "Radio", the compilation's first single was released in October 2004, which debuted at number one of the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

 (becoming Williams' sixth number-one hit) selling 41,732 copies. The song was also a number one hit in Denmark, and it hit the top ten in The Netherlands, Italy, Austria and Norway.

When the compilation Greatest Hits
Greatest Hits (Robbie Williams album)
Greatest Hits is a hits compilation by Robbie Williams, released in 2004. It included two new songs, these being "Radio" and "Misunderstood", which were both released as singles.The album is his seventh released in the United Kingdom...

was released two weeks later, it went on to sell 320,000 copies in its first week in the United Kingdom debuting at number one. The album also hit the top spot in other countries like Switzerland, Italy, Portugal, Austria, The Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand.

The album's second single, the ballad "Misunderstood", which was also the soundtrack of the film Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason
Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason (film)
# Will Young - "Your Love Is King"# Jamelia - "Stop"# Kylie Minogue - "Can't Get You Out of My Head"# Joss Stone - "Super Duper Love Pt. 1"# Mary J...

hit the top ten in Italy and Denmark in December of that year, making the album the best selling album of the year in the United Kingdom and becoming the 61st Best Selling Album in UK Music History, with sales over 2 million copies, becoming certified 6x Platinum by the BPI. It also became the best selling album of the year in Europe, being certified 5x Platinum, with over 5 million copies sold.

Eight years after the release of "Angels", in February 2005 the British public voted it as the "Best Single of the
Past Twenty-Five Years" at the 2005 BRIT Awards.

After touring Latin America in late 2004 for the promotion of his Greatest Hits album, Williams started working on his sixth studio album. Recorded in his bedroom in the Hollywood Hills
Hollywood Hills
The Hollywood Hills is an affluent and exclusive neighborhood of Los Angeles, California, in the southeastern Santa Monica Mountains. It is bound by Laurel Canyon Boulevard to the west, Vermont Avenue to the east, Mulholland Drive to the north, and Sunset Boulevard to the south.-Hollywood Hills...

, the album was co-written by Stephen Duffy
Stephen Duffy
Stephen Anthony James Duffy is an English singer/songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. He was a founding member and vocalist/bassist of Duran Duran. He went on to record as a solo performer under several different names, and is the singer and songwriter for The Lilac Time with his older brother...

 over the course of 24 months.

The track "Ghosts" was inspired by the Human League
The Human League
The Human League are an English electronic New Wave band formed in Sheffield in 1977. They achieved popularity after a key change in line-up in the early 1980s and have continued recording and performing with moderate commercial success throughout the 1980s up to the present day.The only constant...

's "Louise", about a man who breaks off a relationship with his partner and realises he still has strong feelings for her.

The album's first single "Tripping
Tripping (song)
"Tripping" is a song by British pop singer Robbie Williams, it was the first single from his 2005 album Intensive Care. The single was backed with the track "Make Me Pure", also from the same album, it was sent to radio stations around the world. Williams himself calls the song "something like a...

", was released on 3 October 2005, it became an international success topping the charts in Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Italy, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway and Spain.

The album Intensive Care
Intensive Care (album)
Intensive Care is sixth studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams, released on 24 October 2005 in the United Kingdom.-Background:...

was launched in Berlin, Germany on 9 October. It became a smash hit around the world, hitting number one in the United Kingdom, as well as topping the charts in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Australia, Sweden, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Finland and many other countries.

In November 2005, Williams took home the MTV Europe Music Award
MTV Europe Music Awards
The MTV Europe Music Awards were established in 1994 by MTV Networks Europe to celebrate the most popular music videos in Europe. Originally beginning as an alternative to the American MTV Video Music Awards, the MTV Europe Music Awards is today a popular celebration of what MTV viewers consider...

 for 'Best Male', but also, entered in The Guinness Book of World Records when he announced his World Tour for 2006, selling 1.6 million tickets in one single day. But after the success, Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow is an English singer-songwriter, pianist and record producer. He is frontman and lead vocalist of pop group Take That and is currently the head judge on the eighth series of The X Factor. Barlow is one of Britain's most successful songwriters...

, Mark Owen
Mark Owen
Mark Anthony Patrick Owen , is an English singer-songwriter. He is a member of pop band Take That. The band were hugely successful during the 1990s and have enjoyed even more success since their reunion in 2005...

, Jason Orange
Jason Orange
Jason Thomas Orange is an English musician and dancer. He is a member of the pop band Take That who gained popularity in the 1990s and are currently enjoying further success since their reunion in 2005.-Early fame and Take That:...

, and Howard Donald
Howard Donald
Howard Paul Donald , is an English singer-songwriter, drummer, pianist, dancer, DJ and house producer. He is a member of English pop band Take That. As well as working with Jason Orange as band choreographers, he sang lead vocals on one of the band's many number one singles first time round, "Never...

 had agreed to reunite in Notting Hill
Notting Hill
Notting Hill is an area in London, England, close to the north-western corner of Kensington Gardens, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea...

, west London, for a preview screening of a documentary about Take That
Take That
Take That are a British five-piece vocal pop group comprising Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams. Barlow acts as the lead singer and primary songwriter...

. The documentary screened on ITV1
ITV1
ITV1 is a generic brand that is used by twelve franchises of the British ITV Network in the English regions, Wales, southern Scotland , the Isle of Man and the Bailiwicks of Jersey and Guernsey. The ITV1 brand was introduced by Carlton and Granada in 2001, alongside the regional identities of their...

 on 16 November 2005. Unfortunately, according to a source quoted by The Sunday Mirror, "Robbie announced he wasn't coming. The rest of the band were gutted but felt the show had to go on."

By December, the second single from the album was released. The ballad "Advertising Space
Advertising Space
"Advertising Space" is a song by British pop singer Robbie Williams, it was released as the third single from his album Intensive Care in December 2005, and reached number 8 on the UK Singles Chart. "Advertising Space" draws from Tony Scott’s movie True Romance, where Christian Slater’s character...

" reached the top ten in some European countries including the UK, Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Italy.

Williams kicked off his Close Encounters World Tour
Close Encounters Tour
The Close Encounters Tour is Robbie Williams' 2006 worldwide concert tour. It kicked off in Durban's ABSA Stadium on 10 April, and ended in Melbourne on 18 December. The tour was a great success financially, with every date selling out the morning the tickets went on sale...

in South Africa in April 2006, when he finished his European leg of the tour. 2.5 million had seen the show, and after touring Latin America
Latin America
Latin America is a region of the Americas where Romance languages  – particularly Spanish and Portuguese, and variably French – are primarily spoken. Latin America has an area of approximately 21,069,500 km² , almost 3.9% of the Earth's surface or 14.1% of its land surface area...

 and Australia the numbers went up to 3 million.

After a long gap between singles, the third cut from the album was released in the mid-2006. "Sin Sin Sin
Sin Sin Sin
"Sin Sin Sin" is a song by British pop singer Robbie Williams, it was released as the fourth and last single from his album Intensive Care in the summer of 2006. It was remixed for single release, being at a quicker tempo than the original...

" was the first song Williams and Duffy wrote together, the video of which was shot in Cape Town
Cape Town
Cape Town is the second-most populous city in South Africa, and the provincial capital and primate city of the Western Cape. As the seat of the National Parliament, it is also the legislative capital of the country. It forms part of the City of Cape Town metropolitan municipality...

, South Africa right before the start of his tour. The track became Williams' first single not to make the UK Top 20, charting at only number 22, but managed to enter the top 20 in some countries including Germany, Switzerland, Austria, The Netherlands, Denmark and Italy.

By the end of the promotion of the album, it was announced that it had sold over five million copies in Europe alone, and was certified 5x Platinum by the IFPI
IFPI
The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry is the organisation that represents the interests of the recording industry worldwide. It is a not-for-profit members' organisation registered in Switzerland...

. It was also certified 5x Platinum in the United Kingdom becoming, at the time, his lowest selling studio album in the country.

2006–09: Rudebox and Reality Killed the Video Star

Williams's seventh studio album was announced in early 2006. It was to be a dance
Dance music
Dance music is music composed specifically to facilitate or accompany dancing. It can be either a whole musical piece or part of a larger musical arrangement...

/electro album with collaborations with the Pet Shop Boys
Pet Shop Boys
Pet Shop Boys are an English electronic dance music duo, consisting of Neil Tennant, who provides main vocals, keyboards and occasional guitar, and Chris Lowe on keyboards....

, William Orbit
William Orbit
William Orbit is an English musician, composer and record producer, perhaps best known to most for his work on Madonna's album Ray of Light. He has also co-produced several unreleased Madonna songs originally recorded for other albums...

, Soul Mekanik, Joey Negro
Joey Negro
Dave Lee is a British DJ and house music producer, also known by the stage name Joey Negro. Lee was born on the Isle of Wight. He has released music under a variety of pseudonyms, including the name Jakatta...

, Mark Ronson
Mark Ronson
Mark Daniel Ronson is an English DJ, guitarist, music producer, artist and co-founder of Allido Records. He currently works with his band under the music alias of Mark Ronson & The Business Intl....

, Chris Grierson, The Orr Boys and more.

The first single, "Rudebox
Rudebox
Rudebox is the seventh studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams, released on 23 October 2006 in the United Kingdom.-Background:...

", was premièred on radio by Scott Mills
Scott Mills
Scott Robert Mills is a British radio DJ, television presenter and occasional actor, best known for presenting The Scott Mills Show on BBC Radio 1...

 on his show on BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1 is a British national radio station operated by the British Broadcasting Corporation which also broadcasts internationally, specialising in current popular music and chart hits throughout the day. Radio 1 provides alternative genres after 7:00pm including electronic dance, hip hop, rock...

. The event caused some controversy, as the record label's embargo date was broken, although the artist himself later backed the presenter for doing so. More controversy followed due to the first single's radical change of direction when compared to his older releases. British newspaper The Sun
The Sun (newspaper)
The Sun is a daily national tabloid newspaper published in the United Kingdom and owned by News Corporation. Sister editions are published in Glasgow and Dublin...

named the song "The Worst Song Ever". However, Victoria Newton
Victoria Newton
Victoria Newton is an English journalist and showbiz correspondent. She is best known for being the former editor of the Bizarre showbiz column of Rupert Murdoch's The Sun newspaper.-Early life:...

 stated that there were sure-fire hits on the album. The song was released in September that year reaching number four in the UK Singles Chart
UK Singles Chart
The UK Singles Chart is compiled by The Official Charts Company on behalf of the British record-industry. The full chart contains the top selling 200 singles in the United Kingdom based upon combined record sales and download numbers, though some media outlets only list the Top 40 or the Top 75 ...

. It hit the number one spot in Germany, Switzerland and Italy.

Williams released his much anticipated dance/electro album, Rudebox, on 23 October 2006. It received mixed reviews: Allmusic gave it a four star rating, the NME
NME
The New Musical Express is a popular music publication in the United Kingdom, published weekly since March 1952. It started as a music newspaper, and gradually moved toward a magazine format during the 1980s, changing from newsprint in 1998. It was the first British paper to include a singles...

8 out of 10, and Music Week and MOJO were equally positive, but it received much weaker reviews from some of the British press. Despite reaching the number one spot, sales were far below what was expected by his label, and overall sales in the UK were overtaken by his former band, Take That
Take That
Take That are a British five-piece vocal pop group comprising Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams. Barlow acts as the lead singer and primary songwriter...

's Beautiful World. The album has sold a little under 500,000 copies in the United Kingdom, becoming his lowest-selling album in the country, being certified 2x Platinum by the BPI. The album was received with a warmer reception by the public in other parts of the world where it hit number one including Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Finland and Italy.

The album sold 2x Platinum in Europe with sales of over 2 million making it the fastest platinum-selling album of 2006. The album finished at number eighteen in the list of 2006's best selling albums worldwide. Neil Tennant claimed the album had sold 4.5 million copies by early 2007.

The second single, "Lovelight
Lovelight
"Lovelight" is a pop song written and originally performed by Lewis Taylor for his 2003 album Stoned, Part I. In 2006, the song was covered by British singer Robbie Williams...

", came out right before the release of the album, and was commercially released on 13 November. The single reached the top ten in the United Kingdom, The Netherlands, Finland, Denmark and Italy, but failed to reach the success of Williams' previous releases when the track showed no longevity in the charts.

The third single, "She's Madonna
She's Madonna
"She's Madonna" is the third and final international single released from Robbie Williams's seventh studio album Rudebox. A collaboration with the Pet Shop Boys, it is a love song to pop star Madonna and was released on 5 March 2007. A promotional copy was released to European radio in late January...

" included remixes from Kris Menace
Kris Menace
Kris Menace is an electronic musician.-History:Christophe Hoeffel began to work as a producer and writer in the mid 1990s for different projects and started using the pseudonym "Kris Menace" in 2005....

 and Chris Lake and was released on European radio in late January to precede the commercial release which was scheduled for 5 March 2007. The track reached only number sixteen on the Singles Chart in the United Kingdom, but fared better in Continental Europe hitting the top ten in most countries. It rose to number one on the European Airplay Chart after spending four weeks at number two, a feat his former band, Take That, failed to achieve.
It was confirmed that this single was not going to be released in Latin America
Latin America
Latin America is a region of the Americas where Romance languages  – particularly Spanish and Portuguese, and variably French – are primarily spoken. Latin America has an area of approximately 21,069,500 km² , almost 3.9% of the Earth's surface or 14.1% of its land surface area...

 or Australia, but did receive heavy airplay in the latter country. Despite this, the single was released as Digital Download
Music download
A music download is the transferral of music from an Internet-facing computer or website to a user's local computer. This term encompasses both legal downloads and downloads of copyright material without permission or payment...

 in Mexico in four different formats. In August 2007, the single reached number 12 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Play
Hot Dance Club Play
The Hot Dance Club Songs chart is a weekly national survey of the songs that are most popular in U.S. dance clubs...

 Chart.

"Bongo Bong and Je Ne T'Aime Plus
Bongo Bong and Je Ne T'Aime Plus
"Bongo Bong" and "Je Ne T'aime Plus" are two pop songs originally written and performed by Manu Chao. In 2006, the songs were combined into one track and covered by British singer Robbie Williams. The track was produced by Mark Ronson, and was released as the fourth and final single from Williams'...

", a collaboration with British singer Lily Allen
Lily Allen
Lily Rose Beatrice Cooper , better known as Lily Allen, is an English recording artist and fashion designer. She is the daughter of actor and musician Keith Allen and film producer Alison Owen. In her teenage years, her musical tastes evolved from glam rock to alternative...

, was released as the third single in Latin America
Latin America
Latin America is a region of the Americas where Romance languages  – particularly Spanish and Portuguese, and variably French – are primarily spoken. Latin America has an area of approximately 21,069,500 km² , almost 3.9% of the Earth's surface or 14.1% of its land surface area...

 and other European countries, hitting radio in January 2007, and as a Digital Download in February. To promote his album, Williams commissioned a series of short films. Goodbye to the Normals was directed by Jim Field Smith
Jim Field Smith
Jim Field Smith is a British film director, comedy writer, and actor.-Background:Field Smith attended Wellington College, Berkshire, England from 1992 to 1997, and then went on to the University of Birmingham, from where he graduated in 2001...

 and features "Burslem Normals" by Robbie Williams.

On 4 October 2007, Williams made a return to the live stage after almost ten months, when he made a guest appearance at Mark Ronson's concert in Los Angeles. He performed The Charlatans' song "The Only One I Know
The Only One I Know
"The Only One I Know" was a single from The Charlatans. It was their first top-ten hit, reaching #9 on the UK Singles Chart. It was the highest-charting single from the Some Friendly album. Its best showing in the US was on the Modern Rock chart, where it reached #5 in September 1990. The song was...

", which features on Ronson's album Version
Version (album)
-iTunes digital edition:-Japanese CD edition:-Chart performance:-Release history:-External links:* at MetaCritic...

.

Rumours of a new studio album co-written with Guy Chambers had surfaced in early 2007, along with known commitments required by Williams to his EMI contract. British singer-songwriter Laura Critchley
Laura Critchley
Laura Critchley is a British singer-songwriter.-Biography:With a voice described as that from a love child of Rod Stewart and Stevie Nicks, Critchley started singing when she was 7 years old. She wrote her first song, "Change", at the age of 16. It received radio play on BBC Radio Merseyside on...

 commented that she had sung vocals for three songs, and said that it would not be released until 2009.

On 16 January 2008 UK tabloid The Sun
The Sun (newspaper)
The Sun is a daily national tabloid newspaper published in the United Kingdom and owned by News Corporation. Sister editions are published in Glasgow and Dublin...

announced that Williams had been working on some songs with The Blockheads member Chaz Jankel. The article went on to state that the reunion with Chambers hadn't worked out and that the material that Williams is working on with Jankel will form the basis of his next studio album. However, although it had been confirmed on the Blockheads' official site that Jankel was writing with Williams, the rumour that Chambers was no longer working with him was not official. In late August 2008, Williams' friend Callum Blue
Callum Blue
Daniel James Callum Blue , better known as Callum Blue, is an English film and television actor, best known for his roles on the Showtime series The Tudors and Dead Like Me as well as for his role as Zod in the American television series Smallville and British...

 commented that he was still working on the album.

In February 2009, it was confirmed that Williams had written material with Guy Chambers and Mark Ronson. A spokesman said that Williams was planning to begin the recording sessions in March and that the new album would be released in late 2009. This will probably be the last Williams album released by EMI. On his official website, Williams confirmed that he is working with producer Trevor Horn
Trevor Horn
Trevor Charles Horn CBE is an English pop music record producer, songwriter, musician and singer. He was born in Houghton-le-Spring in north-east England....

 on his new album; he described himself as "buzzing" and that the new album sounds "big. Very, very big". The new album will be titled Reality Killed the Video Star
Reality Killed the Video Star
Reality Killed the Video Star is the eighth solo studio album by the British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams, released in November 2009. The album was produced by Trevor Horn and recorded between September 2008 and August 2009 in London and Los Angeles. It debuted in the top ten of 22 national...

, a reference to the song "Video Killed the Radio Star
Video Killed the Radio Star
"Video Killed the Radio Star" is a song by the British synthpop/New Wave group The Buggles, released as their debut single on 7 September 1979, on Island Records from their debut album The Age of Plastic. It celebrates the golden days of radio, describing a singer whose career is cut short by...

" by Horn's former band The Buggles
The Buggles
The Buggles were an English New Wave band consisting of Trevor Horn and Geoff Downes . They are remembered chiefly for their 1979 debut single "Video Killed the Radio Star" that was #1 on the singles chart in 16 countries. Its music video was the first to be shown on MTV in the U.S...

. The album was released on 9 November 2009 in the United Kingdom. The new song "Bodies
Bodies (Robbie Williams song)
"Bodies" is the lead single from British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams's eighth studio album Reality Killed the Video Star and was released on 12 October 2009 by EMI. It received its premiere on The Chris Moyles Show on BBC Radio 1 after an interview with Williams on Friday 4 September 2009 at...

" saw its first play on 4 September 2009 during the Chris Moyles Show on BBC Radio 1, where Moyles described it as "a grower", with Williams later agreeing that it may take a few listens for people to like it.

On 11 October 2009 Williams published a 12-track compilation album, titled Songbook
Songbook (Robbie Williams album)
Songbook is a compilation album by English pop singer Robbie Williams. The limited edition album was given away for free inside the newspaper, The Mail on Sunday, on October 11, 2009. The one-off album includes some of his biggest hits, several rare live performances, plus images and exclusive...

, as a free CD for the newspaper The Mail on Sunday
The Mail on Sunday
The Mail on Sunday is a British conservative newspaper, currently published in a tabloid format. First published in 1982 by Lord Rothermere, it became Britain's biggest-selling Sunday newspaper following the closing of The News of the World in July 2011...

. The CD is a one-off album of some of his biggest hits - including several rare live performances and images from his new album. The CD also included the 'completemyartist' software which gave access to more exclusive content and playlists online. That same evening, Williams made his "comeback" on The X Factor
The X Factor (UK)
The X Factor is a British television music competition to find new singing talent. Created by Simon Cowell, it began in September 2004 and is contested by aspiring singers drawn from public auditions. It is the originator of the international X Factor franchise. The seven series of the show to date...

results show, performing his new single "Bodies" for the first time live. The appearance proved to be somewhat controversial as press and viewers alike questioned Williams' well-being following a bizarre and erratic performance. A spokesperson for Williams later issued a public statement declaring that Williams had not been taking drugs. On 12 December 2009 Williams appeared again on the show to duet with finalist Olly Murs. There were claims that Robbie missed his cue, and he was unaware of the long instrumental and therefore began too early. However, after laughing it off and picking up his place again from Olly Murs, he managed to complete the performance without any other negative incidents.

On 20 October 2009 Williams opened the BBC Electric Proms at the London RoundHouse. It was his first live concert for 3 years and was beamed across 200 cinemas around the world. Accompanied by a string section, horn section, full band and producer Trevor Horn, Williams performed several new tracks from Reality Killed the Video Star and several of his greatest hits. Among the musicians, the harpist in the band Lucinda Belle was spotted in this live show by BBC DJ Fearne Cotton
Fearne Cotton
Fearne Cotton is an English television and radio presenter who is known for presenting a number of popular TV programmes such as Top of the Pops and the Red Nose Day telethon. In 2007, she became the first regular female presenter of BBC Radio 1's Chart Show...

, which directly led to her being signed by Universal Records
Universal Records
Universal Records was a record label owned by Universal Music Group, and it is now owned by Manny Patino and Michael Jackson, and operated as part of the Universal Motown Republic Group.-History:...

 with a five-record deal worth 1.25 million pounds.

Reality Killed the Video Star was exclusively previewed in the UK on the Spotify
Spotify
Spotify is a Swedish-founded, UK-headquartered DRM-based music streaming service offering streaming of selected music from a range of major and independent record labels, including Sony, EMI, Warner Music Group, and Universal. Launched in October 2008 by Swedish startup Spotify AB, the service had...

 music streaming service on 6 November 2009, three days before its official release on 9 November. In a high profile chart battle, Williams' album was pitted against X Factor
The X Factor (UK)
The X Factor is a British television music competition to find new singing talent. Created by Simon Cowell, it began in September 2004 and is contested by aspiring singers drawn from public auditions. It is the originator of the international X Factor franchise. The seven series of the show to date...

 2008 runners-up JLS
JLS
- Music :* JLS, an English boyband** JLS , debut album by JLS* JLS a Spanish Rock band based in Zaragoza , Spain formed in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic by lead Leo Susana.- Organizations :...

 who released their debut album
JLS (album)
JLS is the debut album from English boy band JLS. The album was released in the UK on 9 November 2009 by Epic Records. It was preceded by the lead single, "Beat Again" on 13 July 2009. The album debuted at number-one in the UK and Ireland. It has been certified four times platinum in the UK, where...

 the same day. JLS beat Williams to the number one spot by 1500 sales - both were the two biggest-selling albums of the year so far in the UK - making Reality... Williams' first studio album not to reach no.1 in the UK. However it reached number 1 globally that week.

The album was also released in the United States (Williams' first album to be released there since 2002's Escapology). However, the album peaked at #160 on the Billboard 200 album chart, and dropped out of the chart after only one week.

In late November 2009, Williams traveled to Australia to perform at the ARIA Music Awards of 2009
ARIA Music Awards of 2009
The 23rd Annual Australian Recording Industry Association Music Awards took place on 26 November 2009 at the Acer Arena at the Sydney Olympic Park complex. The ceremony was telecast on the Nine Network at 8:30pm that night...

.

2010–2011: In and Out of Consciousness and reunion with Take That

In June 2010, it was officially announced that Williams was ready to release his second greatest hits album, In and Out of Consciousness: The Greatest Hits 1990–2010, to celebrate his 20 years as a performing artist. Williams new single, also included on the album, will be "Shame
Shame (Robbie Williams song)
"Shame" is a song by Robbie Williams and Gary Barlow, taken from Williams' second greatest hits compilation album, In and Out of Consciousness: Greatest Hits 1990–2010. It was released as the lead single from the album on 4 October 2010 by Virgin Records in the United Kingdom...

", which is written and sung by Williams and Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow is an English singer-songwriter, pianist and record producer. He is frontman and lead vocalist of pop group Take That and is currently the head judge on the eighth series of The X Factor. Barlow is one of Britain's most successful songwriters...

, his Take That
Take That
Take That are a British five-piece vocal pop group comprising Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams. Barlow acts as the lead singer and primary songwriter...

 bandmate. The single was set to released on 4 October 2010, while the album was set for release on 11 October 2010 in both CD and DVD formats.

On 15 July 2010, Robbie Williams announced he was returning to Take That. A joint statement between Williams and the group said "The rumours are true... Take That: the original lineup, have written and recorded a new album, to be called, Progress
Progress (Take That album)
Progress is the sixth studio album by British band Take That. It is the band's first album to feature Robbie Williams since 1995. The album was released in the United Kingdom on 15 November 2010. The album received positive reviews, with most critics commending the influence of electronic music and...

 for release later this year," read the band's statement. "Following months of speculation Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams confirmed they have been recording a new studio album as a five-piece, which they will release in November."

On 26 August 2010, it was announced Williams would become a guest vocal coach on the ninth series of German reality television show Popstars: Girls forever
Popstars: Girls forever
Popstars: Girls forever is the ninth season of Popstars , in which young aspiring female singers/dancers competed in order to claim their spots to make it into the next girl group...

to teach candidates for a girl group. On 20 September 2010, Williams released his second book called "You Know Me" in collaboration with Chris Heath. The book features a collection of photographs of Williams from the past 20 years of his career and discussion of them by Williams as transcribed by Heath.

In October, Media Control named Robbie Williams the most successful album-artist of the millennium due to the fact that he had spent No. 1 on the German Albums Chart for 38 weeks since 2000. He also reached that chart's Top Ten 135 times.

On 15 and 16 July 2011, Take That
Take That
Take That are a British five-piece vocal pop group comprising Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams. Barlow acts as the lead singer and primary songwriter...

 were scheduled to perform two sold-out concerts in Copenhagen
Copenhagen
Copenhagen is the capital and largest city of Denmark, with an urban population of 1,199,224 and a metropolitan population of 1,930,260 . With the completion of the transnational Øresund Bridge in 2000, Copenhagen has become the centre of the increasingly integrating Øresund Region...

, Denmark
Denmark
Denmark is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe. The countries of Denmark and Greenland, as well as the Faroe Islands, constitute the Kingdom of Denmark . It is the southernmost of the Nordic countries, southwest of Sweden and south of Norway, and bordered to the south by Germany. Denmark...

 as part of their Progress Tour. Unfortunately, the day after the first concert, Robbie announced that he had acquired a stomach infection and (despite treatment attempts) was unable to take part in the concert. Due to this, the entire event was cancelled, leaving thousands of fans in frustration. This was the first time Take That ever cancelled a concert. It was not rescheduled.

2011-present: Move to Universal and ninth studio album

In June 2011 Robbie Williams revealed that he has been working with Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow is an English singer-songwriter, pianist and record producer. He is frontman and lead vocalist of pop group Take That and is currently the head judge on the eighth series of The X Factor. Barlow is one of Britain's most successful songwriters...

 on a new solo album which will be released late 2011. It was also announced that the album will be produced by Barlow. Robbie confirmed on his official site that he will be doing a new duet. Rumors so far have included artists such as Adele
Adele (singer)
Adele Laurie Blue Adkins , known professionally as Adele, is an English singer-songwriter. She was the first recipient of the Brit Awards Critics' Choice and was named the number-one predicted breakthrough act of 2008 in an annual BBC poll of music critics, Sound of 2008...

 and Adam Lambert
Adam Lambert
Adam Mitchel Lambert is an American singer, songwriter, and actor from San Diego, California. In May 2009, he finished as the runner-up on the eighth season of American Idol...

 

Williams launched a radio show titled Radio Rudebox on 6 October 2011 where he played music and interviewed Gary Barlow.

On 21 October 2011 Robbie Williams announced that he had signed with Universal Music
Universal Music Group
Universal Music Group is an American music group, the largest of the "big four" record companies by its commanding market share and its multitude of global operations...

, following his departure from his previous record label EMI
EMI
The EMI Group, also known as EMI Music or simply EMI, is a multinational music company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the fourth-largest business group and family of record labels in the recording industry and one of the "big four" record companies. EMI Group also has a major...

 in 2010. He said in a statement, "I'm really thrilled to be joining the Universal family at what I think is the most exciting time in my career." The singer's forthcoming ninth studio album is set to be released during the autumn of 2012.

Reunion of Take That

Williams announced in December 2008 that he was planning to relocate to the UK prior to releasing his eighth studio album in late-2009, and a possible reunion with Take That. Photos also showed Williams with his new tattoo of the Take That logo on his right arm, in tribute to his former bandmates. Williams bought a £7 million home in the village of Compton Bassett
Compton Bassett
Compton Bassett is a village in Wiltshire between Calne and Cherhill with a population of approximately 250. It is a largely rural village with several farms, a church, a pub and a shop.-Midge Mather Incident:...

, Wiltshire.

On 27 March 2009, Williams stated he felt ready to re-join Take That. He said: "I'm in regular contact with them, even Gaz, and it's looking more likely by the week. The lads all seem up for it and some people think it's a done deal. I think it would be fun." Williams was eager to re-join the band on their The Circus Live tour, but these plans never materialised. In September 2009, Williams was reported to be working in New York with Take That, however these rumours were never confirmed.

While it was rumoured that Williams would reunite with Take That on 12 November 2009 for a Children In Need
Children in Need
Children in Need is an annual British charity appeal organised by the BBC. Since 1980 it has raised over £500 million. The highlight of the Children in Need appeal is an annual telethon, held in November. A teddy bear named "Pudsey Bear" fronts the campaign, while Terry Wogan is a long...

 charity concert at The Royal Albert Hall, they merely greeted each other warmly on stage between performances. However, both did join with the other acts in the final song of the evening, with Robbie putting his arm around Gary Barlow and singing "Hey Jude
Hey Jude
"Hey Jude" is a song by the English rock band The Beatles, written by Paul McCartney and credited to Lennon–McCartney. The ballad evolved from "Hey Jules", a song widely accepted as being written to comfort John Lennon's son, Julian, during his parents' divorce—although this explanation is not...

" happily together. Williams subsequently implied in an interview that a proper reunion was still a distinct possibility. On 15 February 2010, tabloid newspaper The Sun printed an interview with Robbie, stating that he and Take That had been sighted going to an Los Angeles studio together.

It was announced on 15 July that Robbie Williams had rejoined Take That. In November 2010 the Take That
Take That
Take That are a British five-piece vocal pop group comprising Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange, Mark Owen and Robbie Williams. Barlow acts as the lead singer and primary songwriter...

 album Progress
Progress (Take That album)
Progress is the sixth studio album by British band Take That. It is the band's first album to feature Robbie Williams since 1995. The album was released in the United Kingdom on 15 November 2010. The album received positive reviews, with most critics commending the influence of electronic music and...

was released, becoming the fastest selling album since 2000 and the second fastest selling album in UK history. Williams explained that the long-standing friction between himself and Gary has been resolved, and how close they now were.

The band also announced the Progress Live
Progress Live
Progress Live was the eighth concert tour by British male vocal group Take That. The tour, sponsored by Samsung, supported their sixth studio album, Progress as they visited the biggest cities in the UK and Europe. It was the first tour wherein all five original members will perform since 1995...

 tour which would travel across the UK in the summer and finish with a record breaking 8 nights at Wembley Stadium
Wembley Stadium
The original Wembley Stadium, officially known as the Empire Stadium, was a football stadium in Wembley, a suburb of north-west London, standing on the site now occupied by the new Wembley Stadium that opened in 2007...

 in London. The tour also visited some of the biggest venues across Europe after the tour of the UK.
The tour was the fastest selling tour in UK history with ticket hotlines and websites crashing under the demand.

Reception in North America

Williams's first United States single, "Millennium
Millennium (song)
"Millennium" is a song by Robbie Williams, released as the first single from his second album, I've Been Expecting You. The song was released in 1998....

", made it to #72 on the Billboard Hot 100
Billboard Hot 100
The Billboard Hot 100 is the United States music industry standard singles popularity chart issued weekly by Billboard magazine. Chart rankings are based on radio play and sales; the tracking-week for sales begins on Monday and ends on Sunday, while the radio play tracking-week runs from Wednesday...

 chart. Its highest position on American charts was #20 in Top 40 Mainstream. His second single, "Angels", was a success on the Hot Adult Contemporary
Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks
The Adult Contemporary chart is a weekly chart published in Billboard magazine that lists the most popular songs on adult contemporary and "lite-pop" radio stations in the United States...

 Chart where it peaked at #10. It also hit #41 in the Hot 100, becoming his highest peaking track on the main American chart and the most commonly known Robbie Williams song in the United States (later covers by Jessica Simpson
Jessica Simpson
Jessica Ann Simpson is an American recording artist, actress, television personality, and fashion designer whose rise to fame began in 1999. Since that time, Simpson has achieved many recording milestones, starred in several television shows, movies, and commercials, launched a line of hair and...

 and David Archuleta
David Archuleta
David Archuleta, is a former United States Air Force Airman of Okinawan stationary troops and is currently an American male kickboxer.-Biography:...

 would be released as singles). In 1999, Williams released a special, US only, compilation of his first two albums, titled The Ego Has Landed
The Ego Has Landed
The Ego Has Landed is a compilation album by English pop singer Robbie Williams. After the success of Williams around the world , Williams was signed to Capitol Records in the United States, which is a part of EMI, the album was released in May 1999 in the United States and Canada, and later issued...

. The album peaked at #63 and went Gold shipping over 500,000 copies in the US.

Later in 2000, "Rock DJ
Rock DJ (song)
"Rock DJ" is a song by English pop singer Robbie Williams from his fourth album, Sing When You're Winning released in the summer of 2000. The song heavily musically samples Barry White's 1977 song "It's Ecstasy When You Lay Down Next to Me" and also contains a sample of "Can I Kick It?" by A Tribe...

", a single taken from Williams's second US album Sing When You're Winning
Sing When You're Winning
Sing When You're Winning is the third studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.-Background:Following the release of his last album, I've Been Expecting You in 1998, and in the middle of promotion and touring in 1999, Robbie found time to start the work on what would be his third...

, was released; it reached #24 in the Hot Dance Club Play
Hot Dance Club Play
The Hot Dance Club Songs chart is a weekly national survey of the songs that are most popular in U.S. dance clubs...

 Chart, but failed to chart on the Hot 100. The album peaked at #110 on the Billboard 200 and only stayed on the charts for four weeks.

Together with a promotional tour, EMI hoped that the release of Escapology
Escapology (album)
-Background:In 2002, Williams signed a record-breaking £80 million contract with EMI. The contract featured a number of provisos, including the label ceding greater creative control to the artist and a commitment to breaking Williams in the American market...

would be the album to successfully break the American market. Williams performed the lead song "Feel
Feel (Robbie Williams song)
"Feel" is a song by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams. It was released on December 2, 2002 as the lead single from his fifth studio album, Escapology...

" on such shows as Good Morning America
Good Morning America
Good Morning America is an American morning news and talk show that is broadcast on the ABC television network; it debuted on November 3, 1975. The weekday program airs for two hours; a third hour aired between 2007 and 2008 exclusively on ABC News Now...

and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. However, this single did not reach Hot 100
Billboard Hot 100
The Billboard Hot 100 is the United States music industry standard singles popularity chart issued weekly by Billboard magazine. Chart rankings are based on radio play and sales; the tracking-week for sales begins on Monday and ends on Sunday, while the radio play tracking-week runs from Wednesday...

 but peaked at #28 on the Adult Top 40
Hot Adult Top 40 Tracks
Adult Top 40 is a variation on the United States Billboard charts...

. The album Escapology also failed to catch fire in America and peaked at #43 on the US Album Billboard Charts. Intensive Care
Intensive Care (album)
Intensive Care is sixth studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams, released on 24 October 2005 in the United Kingdom.-Background:...

and Rudebox were not released on an American label, but they were made available on iTunes. Williams's 2009 album, Reality Killed The Video Star
Reality Killed the Video Star
Reality Killed the Video Star is the eighth solo studio album by the British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams, released in November 2009. The album was produced by Trevor Horn and recorded between September 2008 and August 2009 in London and Los Angeles. It debuted in the top ten of 22 national...

, was released in the US, but was also a commercial failure, peaking at #160 and remained on the chart for only one week.

Williams's single "Lovelight
Lovelight
"Lovelight" is a pop song written and originally performed by Lewis Taylor for his 2003 album Stoned, Part I. In 2006, the song was covered by British singer Robbie Williams...

" was released in the United States by Virgin Records
Virgin Records
Virgin Records is a British record label founded by English entrepreneur Richard Branson, Simon Draper, and Nik Powell in 1972. The company grew to be a worldwide music phenomenon, with platinum performers such as Roy Orbison, Devo, Genesis, Keith Richards, Janet Jackson, Culture Club, Lenny...

, debuting at #23 in the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play
Hot Dance Club Play
The Hot Dance Club Songs chart is a weekly national survey of the songs that are most popular in U.S. dance clubs...

 Chart on March 2008 and eventually peaking at #8 by May 2008. It was the third single from the British singer to hit the American dance chart. It was also his sixth single to reach American charts and his second highest-charting single in an American chart to date. Other singles from Rudebox were released in the United States: She's Madonna, We're the Pet Shop Boys and We're the Pet Shop Boys (Close My Eyes). These songs peaked at #12, #5 and #7 respectively in the Hot Dance Club Play chart.

In Canada, Williams has enjoyed more success, with "Feel
Feel (Robbie Williams song)
"Feel" is a song by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams. It was released on December 2, 2002 as the lead single from his fifth studio album, Escapology...

" reaching the top ten there. A few of his other songs have gained popularity there, notably "Angels", "Millennium", "Rock DJ", "Tripping" and "She's Madonna". Williams has received a Platinum certification for his The Ego Has Landed
The Ego Has Landed
The Ego Has Landed is a compilation album by English pop singer Robbie Williams. After the success of Williams around the world , Williams was signed to Capitol Records in the United States, which is a part of EMI, the album was released in May 1999 in the United States and Canada, and later issued...

for sales of over 100,000 and Gold for Swing When You're Winning
Swing When You're Winning
Swing When You're Winning is a swing cover album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.-Background:After the success of his third studio album, Sing When You're Winning, Williams wanted to take another musical direction...

as well as for Escapology
Escapology (album)
-Background:In 2002, Williams signed a record-breaking £80 million contract with EMI. The contract featured a number of provisos, including the label ceding greater creative control to the artist and a commitment to breaking Williams in the American market...

 selling over 50,000 units of each.

Collaborations

One of his most famous collaborations was on the song "Kids", a duet with Australian pop star Kylie Minogue
Kylie Minogue
Kylie Ann Minogue, OBE - often known simply as Kylie - is an Australian singer, recording artist, songwriter, and actress. After beginning her career as a child actress on Australian television, she achieved recognition through her role in the television soap opera Neighbours, before commencing...

. The single peaked at number 2 on the UK singles charts in 2000. Williams also collaborated with Australian film star Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman
Nicole Mary Kidman, AC is an American-born Australian actress, singer, film producer, spokesmodel, and humanitarian. After starring in a number of small Australian films and TV shows, Kidman's breakthrough was in the 1989 thriller Dead Calm...

 on a cover of Frank
Frank Sinatra
Francis Albert "Frank" Sinatra was an American singer and actor.Beginning his musical career in the swing era with Harry James and Tommy Dorsey, Sinatra became an unprecedentedly successful solo artist in the early to mid-1940s, after being signed to Columbia Records in 1943. Being the idol of the...

 and Nancy Sinatra
Nancy Sinatra
Nancy Sandra Sinatra is an American singer and actress. She is the daughter of singer/actor Frank Sinatra, and remains best known for her 1966 signature hit "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'"....

's "Somethin' Stupid
Somethin' Stupid
"Somethin' Stupid" is a song written by C. Carson Parks and originally recorded in 1966 by Parks and his wife Gaile Foote, as "Carson and Gaile". It is best known in the hit version by Frank Sinatra and his daughter, Nancy Sinatra....

". The single reached number 1 on the UK singles chart in 2001. His single "No Regrets" featured Neil Tennant, and Neil Hannon on backing vocals.

In 2002, Williams appeared on the track "My Culture
My Culture
"My Culture" is a song by British trip-hop duo 1 Giant Leap released as the first single from their debut album, 1 Giant Leap in the spring of 2002. The track features vocals from Maxi Jazz and Robbie Williams. The song became a top ten hit in the United Kingdom and it managed to chart inside the...

" on the 1 Giant Leap
1 Giant Leap
1 Giant Leap is a concept band and media project consisting of the two principal artists, Jamie Catto and Duncan Bridgeman.-Information:...

album, alongside rapper Maxi Jazz
Maxi Jazz
Maxwell Alexander Fraser , better known as Maxi Jazz, is an English rapper. He is best known as the lead vocalist of British band Faithless.- Biography :...

 (which features lyrics from the hidden track "Hello Sir" from Life Thru a Lens
Life thru a Lens
Life Thru a Lens is the debut studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams. It was Williams' first solo album following his departure from Take That.-Background:...

). Williams also features on a double CD titled Concrete which was released on the same day as Rudebox. The CD features a concert recorded for the BBC featuring the Pet Shop Boys and Williams singing their classic hit "Jealousy". Their joint effort, "She's Madonna
She's Madonna
"She's Madonna" is the third and final international single released from Robbie Williams's seventh studio album Rudebox. A collaboration with the Pet Shop Boys, it is a love song to pop star Madonna and was released on 5 March 2007. A promotional copy was released to European radio in late January...

", was released as a single in March 2007. On 13 August 2007, a Dean Martin
Dean Martin
Dean Martin was an American singer, film actor, television star and comedian. Martin's hit singles included "Memories Are Made of This", "That's Amore", "Everybody Loves Somebody", "You're Nobody till Somebody Loves You", "Sway", "Volare" and "Ain't That a Kick in the Head?"...

 duets album was released, on which Williams sings "Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone
Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone
"Please Don't Talk About Me When I'm Gone" was written by Sam H. Stept with lyrics by Sidney Clare. Original publication also credited singer Bee Palmer as co-composer. The song was published in 1930...

". Most recently it was announced that Williams has recorded what is going to be Mexican singer Thalía
Thalía
Ariadna Thalía Sodi Miranda , known simply by the mononym Thalía , is a Mexican singer and actress. She has sold over 40 million albums worldwide...

's first single from her upcoming English-language album.

In 2010 he announced that he was to release "Shame
Shame (Robbie Williams song)
"Shame" is a song by Robbie Williams and Gary Barlow, taken from Williams' second greatest hits compilation album, In and Out of Consciousness: Greatest Hits 1990–2010. It was released as the lead single from the album on 4 October 2010 by Virgin Records in the United Kingdom...

", a duet with Take That lead singer songwriter Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow is an English singer-songwriter, pianist and record producer. He is frontman and lead vocalist of pop group Take That and is currently the head judge on the eighth series of The X Factor. Barlow is one of Britain's most successful songwriters...

 as the first single from his greatest hits collection In and Out of Consciousness: The Greatest Hits 1990–2010 which was certified silver in the UK and charted in 19 countries worldwide.

Video game

Williams features in his own karaoke video game, We Sing Robbie Williams
We Sing Robbie Williams
We Sing Robbie Williams is the third game in the We Sing series for the Wii following on from We Sing Encore. Developed by Le Cortex, produced by Wired Productions and published by Nordic Games, it is the latest singing game in the series to support 4 players simultaneously each with their own...

which was released on 12 November 2010 by Nordic Games
Nordic Games
The Nordic Games was the first international multi-sport event that focused primarily on winter sports, and was held at varying intervals between 1901 and 1926. It was organized by Sweden’s Central Association for the Promotion of Sports, and more specifically by Viktor Balck, a member of that...

.

Achievements

It has been claimed that Williams has sold more albums in the UK than any other British solo artist in history and has won more BRIT Awards than any other artist to date. His album sales stands at over 57 million worldwide. Williams was entered in The Guinness Book of World Records when, after he announced his World Tour for 2006, 1.6 million tickets were sold in one single day.

He has been presented many awards, including seventeen BRIT
Brit Awards
The Brit Awards are the British Phonographic Industry's annual pop music awards. The name was originally a shortened form of "British", "Britain" or "Britannia", but subsequently became a backronym for British Record Industry Trust...

 and seven ECHO awards. In 2004, he was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame
UK Music Hall of Fame
The UK Music Hall of Fame was an awards ceremony to honour musicians, of any nationality, for their lifetime contributions to music in the United Kingdom. The Hall of Fame started in 2004 with the induction of five founder members and five more members selected by a public televote, two from each...

, after being voted as the Greatest artist of the 1990s.

He appears in the list of the all-time Top 100 biggest selling albums in the United Kingdom six times.

On 23 October 2009 it was announced that he would receive the Outstanding Contribution To British Music
Brit Awards
The Brit Awards are the British Phonographic Industry's annual pop music awards. The name was originally a shortened form of "British", "Britain" or "Britannia", but subsequently became a backronym for British Record Industry Trust...

 award at the 2010 BRIT Awards
Brit Awards
The Brit Awards are the British Phonographic Industry's annual pop music awards. The name was originally a shortened form of "British", "Britain" or "Britannia", but subsequently became a backronym for British Record Industry Trust...

. Williams received his award on 16 February 2010 at the end of the ceremony and performed a live medley of his greatest hits including Let Me Entertain You, No Regrets, and Angels.

On Friday 3 September 2010, on a show that included "The Wanted
The Wanted
The Wanted are a British-Irish boy band based in London, England. The band consists of Max George, Siva Kaneswaran, Jay McGuiness, Tom Parker and Nathan Sykes. Their debut single, "All Time Low", was released in July 2010 and reached number one in the United Kingdom for one week...

" and Alesha Dixon
Alesha Dixon
Alesha Anjanette Dixon is an English singer-songwriter, dancer, model and television personality. She first found fame in the all-female R&B trio Mis-Teeq, however, the trio separated in 2005 and Dixon continued pursuing her music career as a solo artist, signing to Polydor Records...

, he switched on the world famous Blackpool illuminations
Blackpool Illuminations
Blackpool Illuminations is an annual Lights Festival, founded in 1879 and first switched on 18 September that year, held each autumn in the English seaside resort of Blackpool on the Fylde Coast in Lancashire....

, stating that it was one of the greatest honours he'd ever achieved.

Personal life

Since 2006, Williams has spent most of his time in Los Angeles
Los Ángeles
Los Ángeles is the capital of the province of Biobío, in the commune of the same name, in Region VIII , in the center-south of Chile. It is located between the Laja and Biobío rivers. The population is 123,445 inhabitants...

, California. Williams moved back to the UK in 2009 when he bought an £
Pound sterling
The pound sterling , commonly called the pound, is the official currency of the United Kingdom, its Crown Dependencies and the British Overseas Territories of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, British Antarctic Territory and Tristan da Cunha. It is subdivided into 100 pence...

8.5 million mansion in Compton Bassett
Compton Bassett
Compton Bassett is a village in Wiltshire between Calne and Cherhill with a population of approximately 250. It is a largely rural village with several farms, a church, a pub and a shop.-Midge Mather Incident:...

, Wiltshire
Wiltshire
Wiltshire is a ceremonial county in South West England. It is landlocked and borders the counties of Dorset, Somerset, Hampshire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire. It contains the unitary authority of Swindon and covers...

, nearby to close friend Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes is an English television presenter, actor and musician. Jonny Wilkes is currently performing as Billy Flynn in Chicago at The Cambridge Theatre, London. He is also the best friend of singer Robbie Williams...

 who lives in Swindon
Swindon
Swindon is a large town within the borough of Swindon and ceremonial county of Wiltshire, in South West England. It is midway between Bristol, west and Reading, east. London is east...

. Williams sold the mansion a year later to move back to Los Angeles.

Williams has reportedly battled mental illness, obesity
Obesity
Obesity is a medical condition in which excess body fat has accumulated to the extent that it may have an adverse effect on health, leading to reduced life expectancy and/or increased health problems...

, self-esteem
Self-esteem
Self-esteem is a term in psychology to reflect a person's overall evaluation or appraisal of his or her own worth. Self-esteem encompasses beliefs and emotions such as triumph, despair, pride and shame: some would distinguish how 'the self-concept is what we think about the self; self-esteem, the...

 issues, alcoholism
Alcoholism
Alcoholism is a broad term for problems with alcohol, and is generally used to mean compulsive and uncontrolled consumption of alcoholic beverages, usually to the detriment of the drinker's health, personal relationships, and social standing...

, and substance abuse
Substance abuse
A substance-related disorder is an umbrella term used to describe several different conditions associated with several different substances .A substance related disorder is a condition in which an individual uses or abuses a...

 throughout his life. He once discussed how his friend Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John, CBE, Hon DMus is an English rock singer-songwriter, composer, pianist and occasional actor...

 booked him into a clinic to cope with his drug use that emerged from the depression he was experiencing while still in Take That. He entered a rehabilitation
Drug rehabilitation
Drug rehabilitation is a term for the processes of medical or psychotherapeutic treatment, for dependency on psychoactive substances such as alcohol, prescription drugs, and so-called street drugs such as cocaine, heroin or amphetamines...

 centre in Tucson for his addiction to the prescription pills Xanax, Seroxat, Vicodin
Vicodin
Hydrocodone/paracetamol is a combination of two analgesic products hydrocodone and paracetamol used to relieve moderate to severe pain...

, and the energy drink Lucozade
Lucozade
Lucozade is an umbrella name for a 6 series of energy and sports drinks, produced by GlaxoSmithKline in Gloucestershire. The former company became part of Beecham and, after the mergers of SmithKline and Beecham in 2000, GlaxoSmithKline....

 in February 2007 Williams used to smoke
Tobacco smoking
Tobacco smoking is the practice where tobacco is burned and the resulting smoke is inhaled. The practice may have begun as early as 5000–3000 BCE. Tobacco was introduced to Eurasia in the late 16th century where it followed common trade routes...

 up to 60 cigarettes a day; he gave up in 2009 for his girlfriend Ayda Field
Ayda Field
Ayda Field is an American television actress. Field was born in Los Angeles, California, to a Turkish father and American mother.-Early life:...

.

Williams has a strong interest in UFOs and related paranormal
Paranormal
Paranormal is a general term that designates experiences that lie outside "the range of normal experience or scientific explanation" or that indicates phenomena understood to be outside of science's current ability to explain or measure...

 phenomena, and has pursued this interest during his 2007–08 sabbatical. His interest in the subject led to him taking part in a documentary for BBC Radio 4
BBC Radio 4
BBC Radio 4 is a British domestic radio station, operated and owned by the BBC, that broadcasts a wide variety of spoken-word programmes, including news, drama, comedy, science and history. It replaced the BBC Home Service in 1967. The station controller is currently Gwyneth Williams, and the...

 with Jon Ronson
Jon Ronson
Jon Ronson is a Welsh journalist, documentary filmmaker, radio presenter and nonfiction author, whose works include The Men Who Stare At Goats. His journalism and columns have appeared in British publications including The Guardian newspaper, City Life and Time Out magazine...

. The documentary followed them to a UFO convention in Nevada
Nevada
Nevada is a state in the western, mountain west, and southwestern regions of the United States. With an area of and a population of about 2.7 million, it is the 7th-largest and 35th-most populous state. Over two-thirds of Nevada's people live in the Las Vegas metropolitan area, which contains its...

. During an interview with Joss Stone
Joss Stone
Jocelyn Eve Stoker , better known by her stage name Joss Stone, is an English soul singer-songwriter and actress. Stone rose to fame in late 2003 with her multi-platinum debut album, The Soul Sessions, which made the 2004 Mercury Prize shortlist...

 on The Jeremy Kyle Show
The Jeremy Kyle Show
The Jeremy Kyle Show is an award-winning British daytime television tabloid talk show presented by Jeremy Kyle that has been broadcast on ITV since 4 July 2005. The show is recorded and produced by Granada Television at the Granada Studios on Quay Street in Manchester city centre and broadcast each...

in 2008, Williams revealed that while out of his head on dispirin
Aspirin
Aspirin , also known as acetylsalicylic acid , is a salicylate drug, often used as an analgesic to relieve minor aches and pains, as an antipyretic to reduce fever, and as an anti-inflammatory medication. It was discovered by Arthur Eichengrun, a chemist with the German company Bayer...

 he has seen UFOs three times. Williams said his first UFO sighting was when he was a child in Britain while he spotted his second in Beverly Hills, and added that the third sighting was just after he had written a song about alien contact.

On 30 November 2009, Williams' hairdresser Aaron Vickers was found dead in woodland near to Williams' then home in Wiltshire. Vickers first met Williams in Los Angeles after being introduced by their mutual friend Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes is an English television presenter, actor and musician. Jonny Wilkes is currently performing as Billy Flynn in Chicago at The Cambridge Theatre, London. He is also the best friend of singer Robbie Williams...

. When Williams bought the £8.5 million mansion in early 2009, Vickers lived at the estate for some months but had recently moved back in with his mother who lives nearby. Vickers was last seen by his boyfriend at 1am on 30 November, and his body was found hanged in the woods the following morning.

Relationships

Since May 2006, Williams has been in a relationship with the Turkish American
Turkish American
Turkish Americans are people who have Turkish ancestry and are citizens of the United States.-History:Early Turkish immigrants to the United States were predominantly from Turkey's rural community. They settled in large, industrial cities and found employment as unskilled laborers...

 actress Ayda Field. They have reportedly been together for almost five years. Despite several break up stories in the press Williams and Field have been spotted together many times this year. On 29 January 2008 they were pictured on vacation together at Mammoth Ski Resort in California, accompanied by Max Beesley
Max Beesley
Maxton Gig Beesley Jr. , known simply as Max Beesley, is an English actor and musician.Beesley rose to fame for his role of Andy Simpson in Every Woman, Every Man from 1993 to 1998, and has since appeared in a variety of television shows including Bodies, Hotel Babylon, London Ink, Survivors and...

. She was featured in a UFO documentary that Williams did for BBC Radio 4 in April and took part in a field investigation he did in Trout Lake, Washington
Trout Lake, Washington
Trout Lake is a census-designated place in Klickitat County, Washington, United States. The population was 848 at the 2011 census. The town is notable for dairy farms, herb farms, as an access point to the Gifford Pinchot National Forest.-Geography:...

 in August 2008.

On 8 November 2008, Williams was spotted with Field at football match at the Emirates Stadium
Emirates Stadium
Ashburton Grove, currently known as the Emirates Stadium, is a UEFA elite football stadium which is home to Arsenal FC, where they moved from Highbury in 2006. It has an current capacity of 60,361, and there have been rumours of an expansion...

 home of Arsenal, where he was also seen with Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow
Gary Barlow is an English singer-songwriter, pianist and record producer. He is frontman and lead vocalist of pop group Take That and is currently the head judge on the eighth series of The X Factor. Barlow is one of Britain's most successful songwriters...

 accompanied by his two oldest children, and Williams's longtime friend Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes is an English television presenter, actor and musician. Jonny Wilkes is currently performing as Billy Flynn in Chicago at The Cambridge Theatre, London. He is also the best friend of singer Robbie Williams...

. The couple has been living together in a mansion in Wiltshire since the beginning of 2009 according to The Sun. In October 2009, Field appeared in the video of Williams comeback single Bodies. Williams has been referring to Field as his "wife" in recent interviews.

In November 2009, Williams announced to Jonathan Ross
Jonathan Ross
Jonathan Ross may refer to:* Jonathan Ross , English television and radio personality* Jonathan Ross , United States Senator, Justice of the Vermont Supreme Court* Jonathon Ross , former Australian rules footballer...

 that he was 'in love' with Field. On 26 November 2009, Williams proposed to Ayda Field live on the Australian radio channel 2dayfm in an interview on the Kyle and Jackie O Show. However, it was later revealed by Williams' manager that it was "done as a joke following suggestions it was a stunt which was set up prior to the radio show." His spokesman confirmed: 'He did say it, but he did it in a jocular manner. They are not engaged.' A few days later Williams himself denied the engagement
Engagement
An engagement or betrothal is a promise to marry, and also the period of time between proposal and marriage which may be lengthy or trivial. During this period, a couple is said to be betrothed, affianced, engaged to be married, or simply engaged...

, using his official blog
Blog
A blog is a type of website or part of a website supposed to be updated with new content from time to time. Blogs are usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. Entries are commonly displayed in...

 to say "Hey all. We are not engaged. Rob.". On 7 August 2010, Williams and Field married at his home in Los Angeles.

Sexuality

Williams won a libel case against MGN and Northern & Shell in December 2005 relating to articles which had reported he was a closet
Closeted
Closeted and in the closet are metaphors used to describe lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning and intersex people who have not disclosed their sexual orientation or gender identity and aspects thereof, including sexual identity and sexual behavior.-Background:In late 20th...

 homosexual. In the libel action that resulted from this, Williams accepted substantial damages, and the publishers accepted that the stories were untrue. His counsel, Tom Shields QC, told the court, "Mr Williams is not, and has never been, homosexual." Gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell
Peter Tatchell
Peter Gary Tatchell is an Australian-born British political campaigner best known for his work with LGBT social movements...

 called for any damages paid out from the libel case to be donated to gay
Gay
Gay is a word that refers to a homosexual person, especially a homosexual male. For homosexual women the specific term is "lesbian"....

 charities, claiming Williams' legal actions had created the impression that it is "bad to be gay." Williams responded that he was not bothered about being labelled as a gay man, and he would have taken the same action had it been regarding a heterosexual relationship. In 2008, Williams's friend, actor Max Beesley
Max Beesley
Maxton Gig Beesley Jr. , known simply as Max Beesley, is an English actor and musician.Beesley rose to fame for his role of Andy Simpson in Every Woman, Every Man from 1993 to 1998, and has since appeared in a variety of television shows including Bodies, Hotel Babylon, London Ink, Survivors and...

, rejected claims that Williams was gay. Beesley said, "Some of the stuff written about him is enough to make me mad, the rumours about him being gay, for example. Not true. I've never met anybody less gay in my life!"

Wealth

In 2009, the Sunday Times Rich List
Sunday Times Rich List
The Sunday Times Rich List is a list of the 1,000 wealthiest people or families in the United Kingdom, updated annually in April and published as a magazine supplement by British national Sunday newspaper The Sunday Times since 1989...

 claimed he was worth over £130 million. In 2011 his wealth was estimated at £90 million.

Williams is a lifelong supporter of Port Vale
Port Vale F.C.
Port Vale Football Club is an English football club currently playing in Football League Two. They are based in Burslem, Staffordshire — one of six towns that make up the city of Stoke-on-Trent. The club's traditional rivals in the city are Stoke City, and games between the two clubs are known as...

, based in his home town of Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent , also called The Potteries is a city in Staffordshire, England, which forms a linear conurbation almost 12 miles long, with an area of . Together with the Borough of Newcastle-under-Lyme Stoke forms The Potteries Urban Area...

. In February 2006 he bought £240,000 worth of shares in the club, making him the majority shareholder
Shareholder
A shareholder or stockholder is an individual or institution that legally owns one or more shares of stock in a public or private corporation. Shareholders own the stock, but not the corporation itself ....

. He also has a restaurant at Vale Park
Vale Park
Vale Park is a football stadium in Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent, England. It is the home ground of Port Vale F.C., who have played at the ground since 1950....

 named in his honour.

Health

He revealed in 2011 he had been battling a lethargy caused by a type of Hormone imbalance
Hormone imbalance
Hormones are the chemical messengers in the body that travel the bloodstream to the organs and tissues. They slowly work and affect many of the body's processes over time. Endocrine glands, which are special groups of cells, make hormones....

 called a Andropause
Andropause
Andropause or male menopause, sometimes colloquially called "man-opause" is a name that has been given to a menopause-like condition in aging men...

 for a number of years and thought at first it was a return of his depression.

Charity

Williams has set up a charity in his home town entitled Give It Sum, with its goal being to "improve local conditions and strengthen community life by giving money to those who are disadvantaged." Williams, with the help of friend Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes
Jonathan Wilkes is an English television presenter, actor and musician. Jonny Wilkes is currently performing as Billy Flynn in Chicago at The Cambridge Theatre, London. He is also the best friend of singer Robbie Williams...

, organised a charity football match Soccer Aid
Soccer Aid
-Event schedule:*22 May 2006 – Start of the television coverage, presented by Ant and Dec. Rest of the World defeats England in a penalty shoot-out*23 May 2006 – Practice match: England 1–0 England Legends...

 to raise money for UNICEF UK. This match was played in May 2006 at Old Trafford, Manchester. The participants were a mixture of celebrities and professional football players. It was continued in September 2008 and again in June 2010. Williams has been the Patron of the children's charity the Donna Louise Trust based in his home town of Stoke-on-Trent, for the last 8 years. The charity offers respite and palliative care to terminally ill
Terminal illness
Terminal illness is a medical term popularized in the 20th century to describe a disease that cannot be cured or adequately treated and that is reasonably expected to result in the death of the patient within a short period of time. This term is more commonly used for progressive diseases such as...

 and life-limited children who are not expected to live past the age of 16.

Awards

Williams has won a large number of awards over the years, including more BRIT Awards than any other artist in music history (17), as well as seven Echo Awards in six consecutive years from 2001 until 2007 and 1 other Echo Award in 2010.

Discography

Studio albums
  • Life thru a Lens
    Life thru a Lens
    Life Thru a Lens is the debut studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams. It was Williams' first solo album following his departure from Take That.-Background:...

    (1997)
  • I've Been Expecting You
    I've Been Expecting You
    I've Been Expecting You is the second studio album by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.-Success:Williams and Chambers started the writing process of the album in Jamaica in the spring of 1998. I've Been Expecting You was released in October 1998. It debuted at #1 on the UK Albums Chart,...

    (1998)
  • Sing When You're Winning
    Sing When You're Winning
    Sing When You're Winning is the third studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.-Background:Following the release of his last album, I've Been Expecting You in 1998, and in the middle of promotion and touring in 1999, Robbie found time to start the work on what would be his third...

    (2000)
  • Swing When You're Winning
    Swing When You're Winning
    Swing When You're Winning is a swing cover album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.-Background:After the success of his third studio album, Sing When You're Winning, Williams wanted to take another musical direction...

    (2001)
  • Escapology
    Escapology (album)
    -Background:In 2002, Williams signed a record-breaking £80 million contract with EMI. The contract featured a number of provisos, including the label ceding greater creative control to the artist and a commitment to breaking Williams in the American market...

    (2002)
  • Intensive Care
    Intensive Care (album)
    Intensive Care is sixth studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams, released on 24 October 2005 in the United Kingdom.-Background:...

    (2005)
  • Rudebox
    Rudebox
    Rudebox is the seventh studio album by English singer-songwriter Robbie Williams, released on 23 October 2006 in the United Kingdom.-Background:...

    (2006)
  • Reality Killed the Video Star
    Reality Killed the Video Star
    Reality Killed the Video Star is the eighth solo studio album by the British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams, released in November 2009. The album was produced by Trevor Horn and recorded between September 2008 and August 2009 in London and Los Angeles. It debuted in the top ten of 22 national...

    (2009)
  • TBA (2012)

Compilation albums
  • The Ego Has Landed
    The Ego Has Landed
    The Ego Has Landed is a compilation album by English pop singer Robbie Williams. After the success of Williams around the world , Williams was signed to Capitol Records in the United States, which is a part of EMI, the album was released in May 1999 in the United States and Canada, and later issued...

    (1999)
  • Greatest Hits
    Greatest Hits (Robbie Williams album)
    Greatest Hits is a hits compilation by Robbie Williams, released in 2004. It included two new songs, these being "Radio" and "Misunderstood", which were both released as singles.The album is his seventh released in the United Kingdom...

    (2004)
  • The Best So Far
    The Best So Far (Robbie Williams album)
    The Best So Far is an album released by the singer Robbie Williams, just in Brazil, to celebrate his tour.-Track list:#"Sin Sin Sin" - 4:10#"Advertising Space" - 4:38#"Feel" - 4:22#"Angels" - 4:26#"Sexed Up" - 4:22#"Millennium" - 4:08...

    (2006) (released only in Brazil
    Brazil
    Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

    )
  • Songbook
    Songbook (Robbie Williams album)
    Songbook is a compilation album by English pop singer Robbie Williams. The limited edition album was given away for free inside the newspaper, The Mail on Sunday, on October 11, 2009. The one-off album includes some of his biggest hits, several rare live performances, plus images and exclusive...

    (2009) (released only in the UK with The Mail on Sunday
    The Mail on Sunday
    The Mail on Sunday is a British conservative newspaper, currently published in a tabloid format. First published in 1982 by Lord Rothermere, it became Britain's biggest-selling Sunday newspaper following the closing of The News of the World in July 2011...

    )
  • In and Out of Consciousness: Greatest Hits 1990–2010 (2010)


Live albums
  • Live at Knebworth
    Live at Knebworth
    Live at Knebworth, also known as Live Summer 2003 with different cover text, is a live album by English pop singer Robbie Williams, recorded and released in 2003. The album is his first live album, and is a compilation of songs performed during three consecutive shows at Knebworth, England.The...

    (2003)


Tours

  • The Show Off Must Go On (October–November 1997)
  • The Ego Has Landed (May–June 1998)
  • One More for the Rogue Tour
    One More for the Rogue Tour
    The One More for the Rogue Tour is a European concert tour by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.In September 1999, after returning from North America, Williams added extra concerts in Europe naming the tour For a Few Dollars More.......

     / For a Few Dollars More... Tour
    One More for the Rogue Tour
    The One More for the Rogue Tour is a European concert tour by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.In September 1999, after returning from North America, Williams added extra concerts in Europe naming the tour For a Few Dollars More.......

     (1998–99)
  • Robbie Williams North American Tours
    Robbie Williams North American Tours
    In 1999 British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams toured North America for the first time. The first leg of the tour was called Man, the Myth, the Tax Bill and the second one Get Your Coat Baby, You've Pulled!....

     (1999)
  • The Sermon on the Mount Tour
    The Sermon on the Mount Tour
    The Sermon on the Mount Tour is a European concert tour by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.- Setlist :# "Let Me Entertain You"# "Lazy Days"# "Let Love Be Your Energy"# "Knutsford City Limits"# "Strong"# "If It's Hurting You"...

     (2000–01)
  • Weddings, Barmitzvahs & Stadiums Tour
    Weddings, Barmitzvahs & Stadiums Tour
    The Weddings, Barmitzvahs & Stadiums Tour was a concert tour by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.The second leg of the tour was renamed to Sing When You're Pacific Rimming Tour and Williams visited Australasia and Asia for the first time....

     / Sing When You're Pacific Rimming Tour
    Weddings, Barmitzvahs & Stadiums Tour
    The Weddings, Barmitzvahs & Stadiums Tour was a concert tour by British singer-songwriter Robbie Williams.The second leg of the tour was renamed to Sing When You're Pacific Rimming Tour and Williams visited Australasia and Asia for the first time....

     (2001)
  • Weekends of Mass Distraction Tour
    Weekends Of Mass Distraction Tour
    The Weekends of Mass Distraction Tour was a tour performed by Robbie Williams during 2003-Weekends of Mass Distraction Tour:This part of the tour took place in Summer 2003. Williams performed in front of 1.2 million people at 21 shows in Europe...

     / Cock of Justice/Aussie Typo Tour (2003)
  • Close Encounters Tour
    Close Encounters Tour
    The Close Encounters Tour is Robbie Williams' 2006 worldwide concert tour. It kicked off in Durban's ABSA Stadium on 10 April, and ended in Melbourne on 18 December. The tour was a great success financially, with every date selling out the morning the tickets went on sale...

     (2006)

External links

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