Our solitary brother is coming to Dubai. tabloid! can exclusively confirm British singer Seal, the guy behind massive hits including ‘Killer’ and ‘Kiss From a Rose’, will perform at the after-race concert at the Dubai World Cup on March 30. Seal replaces American singer Anastacia, who was set to perform at the event but recently cancelled after being diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time.
With eight studio albums, Seal is best known for his breakthrough single ‘Killer’ released in 1990 and, of course, that ‘Batman Forever’ song ‘Kiss From a Rose’, released in 1995. He has won four Grammy Awards, numerous Brit Awards and sold more than 20 million albums around the world.
In January last year, the 50-year-old and his supermodel and TV presenter wife Heidi Klum, announced they were separating after seven years of marriage. The pair, often considered one of the most endearing couples, have four children.
Seal, whose last album was released in 2011, currently serves as a coach on the Australian version of singing reality show ‘The Voice’, which often brings him transiting through Dubai International Airport, as we have often revealed through our moles.
So, as he steps out into Meydan and on to the stage, here are the 10 things you need to know about Seal.
His discography is heavy
Seal’s eight albums are not his only babies. He’s also got four live albums, two compilations, two box sets and a number of credited collaborations including his breakthrough song with Adamski (‘Killer’) and songs with Jeff Beck (‘Manic Depression’), Joni Mitchell (‘How Do You Stop’), Santana (‘You Are My Kind’) and Michael Bolton (‘When a Man Loves a Woman’). His last album, Soul 2, was released in 2011.
‘Kiss From a Rose’ wasn’t such a big deal when it first released
Sometimes all you need is a bit of help. And for the song with which he would become forever associated with, it was a re-release that did it – and Batman. ‘Kiss From a Rose’ was first released as a single in 1994 and was included in Seal’s second album. It didn’t do much on the charts then. But once it was re-packaged for the soundtrack of ‘Batman Forever’ in 1995, it went on to become a commercial and critical success, earning seal a Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance in 1996.
Seal is a qualified architect
If he wasn’t a singer, we know what Seal would be. The pop star worked a few odd jobs in London, including electrical engineering and designing leather clothing, while also hitting the night clubs of the city. It was a meeting with techno music producer Adamski that would change both their lives. Seal landed a recording contract soon after ‘Killer’ became a massive hit. And the rest, as they say, is sealed with a kiss from fate.
The phrase ‘Seal’s scar’ has been searched more than four million times on Google:
Along with fame in the nineties came scrutiny and attention. Seal’s scarred face has always been talked about ever since he burst into the limelight. Are those tribal scars? (He has Nigerian and Brazilian parentage). Are they the result of a gang fight? The truth is, Seal suffers from a chronic skin condition called Discoid lupus erythematosus (DLE) which leaves the skin, especially of the face, inflamed and scarred.
He has a weakness for supermodels
Like many of us, Seal likes his supermodels. And before Heidi Klum, there were a few of them. The high-profile ones include a long-term relationship with German (achtung!) model Tatyana Patitz and model-turned-TV presenter (what!) Tyra Banks.
He is not a fan of rappers
Seal has spoken out many times against rappers and what he calls their ‘derogatory treatment of women in lyrics and videos’.
“It’s sad when you see the rappers on TV and in the videos making these derogatory videos towards women ... kind of like sexual objects,” he told black entertainment magazine Sister 2 Sister. “It’s sad because we’re damaging our own. Like, in different cultures, you would never see that.
I really feel that there is a responsibility and what goes around comes around.”
Seal and Heidi Klum renewed their wedding vows five times
Of course the separation last year came as a shock to every one. They, after all, were showbiz’ most loved-up couple who renewed their wedding vows almost every year and made a spectacle of it. In fact, Klum appeared in his racy video for ‘Secret’, off his 2010 album ‘Commitment’. The video is so saucy you will be hard-pressed to find it in the UAE. The same year, the couple announced they were working on a reality show called ‘Love’s Diving’. The show, like their marriage, didn’t make it.
He formerly adopted Heidi Klum’s daughter
Before he met Klum, she was dating Italian rich man Flavio Briatore with whom she had a daughter Leni. Seal formerly adopted Leni in 2009.
“It doesn’t make [Leni] any more or less my daughter,” he told People later. “She always has been. All it means is that both Heidi and I wanted her to have the same last name as the rest of us… It was about Leni. I don’t want her to feel different because I know what that’s like, being a kind of stepson. And I don’t want that dynamic for my little girl.”
The couple have three children: Henry, Johan and Lou Sulola. Seal was raised by foster parents in London’s City of Westminster.
Yes, he said it.
A hearbroken Seal dropped a bomb when he accused Klum in September last year of ‘fornicating with the help’. Yes, those are his actual words. Prodded about his separation (the couple are not formally divorced yet) by gossip website TMZ.com, Seal said on video: “I preferred Heidi would have showed a little bit more class and at least waited until we separated first before deciding to fornicate with the help.”
He was of course referring to Klum’s bodyguard Martin Kirsten whom she is rumoured to be dating. Seal’s publicist immediately clarified afterwards, telling Us Weekly: “Seal would like to clarify that he was not implying his wife was cheating while they were together, but he was merely pointing out that their separation and divorce were not final and they are still legally married.”
Seal and Heidi love Dubai. Separately, of course
The last time Seal was in Dubai, he was phone shopping at Dubai Duty Free. We’ve spotted him a few times before that, cooly browsing through shop shelves and patiently posing for pictures with fans. Klum, good friends with Dubai designer Furne One, was here in December, filming for her show ‘Germany’s Next Top Model’ at Atlantis, The Palm.
* Only ticket holders to the Dubai World Cup will be eligible for entry into the concert area. Ticket prices start at Dh350 for Apron Views, all the way to Dh3,750 for the First Class Lounge. No tickets will be available at the venue. Go to dubairacingclub.com or meydan.ae or call 04-327 2110.
By David Tusing