Helen Folasade Adu, OBE (Yoruba: Fọláṣadé Adú; born 16 January 1959), known as Sade (/ʃɑːˈdeɪ/ shah-day), is a British Nigerian singer, songwriter, composer, and record producer. Following a brief stint of studying fashion design and modelling Adu began back up singing for a band named Pride, during this time she attracted attention from record labels and along with other members left Pride and formed Sade. Following a record deal Sade and her eponymous band released their debut album Diamond Life (1984), the album was a commercial success and sold over six million copies, becoming one of the top-selling debut recordings of the '80s and the best-selling debut ever by a British female vocalist.
Following the release of the band's debut album they went on to release a string of multi-platinum selling albums, their follow up Promise was released in 1985 and peaked at number one in the UK Albums Chart and the US Billboard 200 and went on to sell four million copies in the US. Sade would later go on to make her acting debut in the film Absolute Beginners, before the release of the band's albums Stronger Than Pride (1988), Love Deluxe (1992) and Lovers Rock (2000) all of which went multi-platinum in the US. After the release of Lovers Rock the band embarked on a ten year hiatus in which Sade raised her daughter. Following the hiatus the band returned with their sixth album Soldier of Love (2010) which became a commercial success and won a Grammy award.
Sade has been nominated six times for the Brit Award for Best British Female. In 2002, she was bestowed the Officer of the Order of the British Empire by Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace for services to music, and she dedicated her award to "all black women in England". In 2012, Sade was listed at No. 30 on VH1's 100 Greatest Women In Music. Sade has a contralto vocal range.