Lisa Maffia (born 16 June 1979) is a British singer-songwriter, musician, rapper, actress, fashion designer, model and presenter, who originally came to the public's attention as the main female member of So Solid Crew. Whilst in So Solid Crew, the singer notched up five top 20 hits, including a platinum-selling single "21 Seconds" and a platinum selling album They Don't Know. As a solo artist, she has released two top 10 singles and an award-winning album including the platinum selling single "All Over". Her most recent release to date, was 2017’s "Wah Gwarn". Maffia is mixed race, born to a half-Italian mother[1] and a Jamaican father.[2][3][4][5] Often referred to as the "Queen of UK Garage", she is credited as one of the most influential acts within the UK Garage music scene.

Lisa Maffia
Lisa Maffia in 2016.
Lisa Maffia in 2016.
Background information
Birth nameLisa Maffia
Born (1979-06-16) 16 June 1979 (age 43)
OriginLondon, England
GenresR&B, hip hop, UK garage, electro house
Occupation(s)Singer, songwriter, rapper, actress, model, fashion designer, presenter
Years active1998–present
LabelsIndependiente
Epic Records
Maffia Recordz
Universal

BiographyEdit

Early life and career debutEdit

Maffia was born in Brixton, London, the daughter of a Jamaican father and Anglo-Italian mother, and raised by the latter, Shirley Maffia. Through her mother, Maffia is a first cousin once removed of actress Louisa Lytton – Shirley's cousin, Jane Nastri, is Lytton's mother.[6] Maffia has a daughter, Chelsea, born when she was 18.[1] She trained in Latin, ballroom, tap and modern dancing and practised gymnastics as a child. She attended Norwood School in West Norwood. Maffia then went on to Brixton College to do a diploma in Photography and Art & Design. In 2000, Maffia got her career debut when she added her vocals to the So Solid Crew track, "Oh No".

2001–2002: They Don't KnowEdit

On 6 August 2001, whilst with So Solid Crew, "21 Seconds" was released. It reached number one in the United Kingdom in August 2001. The single also won Best British Video at the 2002 BRIT Awards. With the success of "21 Seconds", the crew went on to release their debut album They Don't Know which ending up going platinum.

2003–2004: First LadyEdit

On 21 April 2003, departing from the So Solid Crew, Maffia made her debut at number 2 with "All Over".[7][8] It spent three weeks in the top 10. She then released "In Love" which reached number 13.[8] This led to the singer releasing her debut solo album, First Lady. Promo for the album included support slots for artists such as Christina Aguilera, Ashanti, Loudbankcoast, Ja Rule, Daniel Bedingfield and Blue. The album failed to reach the success of its singles reaching number 44 in the UK Albums Chart,[8] and led her to leave her record label. Maffia also performed her single "All Over" at the MOBO Awards.

2005–2006: The Games and Maffia RecordzEdit

Taking a break from music, Maffia took part in the Channel 4 reality TV show The Games. She earned a silver medal behind Kirsty Gallacher. After The Games, Maffia set up her own independent record label, Maffia Recordz, on which she released her underground single "Shake 4 Daddy" and signed acts such as North Star and Romeo. The label also signed the soundtrack to the film, Rollin with the Nines.

2007–2009: Celeb Air and So Solid Crew reunionEdit

In May 2007, Maffia announced on her official Myspace that she has been recording her upcoming album at the Murlyn Studios, known to have penned songs for Christina Milian, Madonna, Kylie Minogue and others. On 10 September, Maffia released her single "Bad Girl"; whilst the single reached 36 and number 4 in the overall dance charts,[9] the single had success over Europe leading to Maffia doing a European tour. On 20 August 2008, it was announced Maffia would participate in ITV2's CelebAir where cameras followed Maffia and other celebrities as they work as air hostesses. Maffia won CelebAir on 23 October 2008.[10]

Maffia updated via Twitter that she recorded every other week (during January 2009 to August 2009), working with various producers including Roger Sanchez and Bloodshy & Avant and to expect a surprise US star. She also recorded four songs for the comeback album of So Solid Crew including "Since You Went Away", the video of which was shot in June 2009.

2010–2011: House of MaffiaEdit

In January 2010, Maffia released and toured with So Solid Crew on their single "Since You Went Away". The track reached the top 10 in the independent singles chart, leading to various performances on Big Brother's Big Mouth, Channel 5's Five Live and Radio One's Live Lounge. With the success of the track, it was announced on Maffia's official Twitter that there would be one final album from So Solid Crew, and to also expect more albums from Maffia herself, with her next solo album to be expected in 2012. She also launched her fashion boutique House of Maffia.

2012–2013: Re-launch of Maffia RecordzEdit

In March 2012, Maffia announced her underground single titled "Don't Stop the Music", featuring Maffia Recordz signees MC Romeo and Tyler Daley. Its worldwide premiere was aired on BBC'S 1Xtra on 8 April 2012, and then went on to be released in July 2012. On 22 July, Maffia announced via Twitter she would be teaming up with Aggro Santos on a new track produced by Paul Morrell. Maffia also appeared on Peter Andre's album Angels & Demons on a track titled "X".

2014–present: New EP and autobiographyEdit

In July 2017, Maffia premiered the first single from her new album on BBC's 1Xtra, "Wah Gwarn".[11] Maffia also announced she would be executive producer for UK film Little Lighty, the first film to be produced under Maffia Media (Lisa's production company).[12] In 2019, she presented her own music cooking show on BritAsia TV called Certified.[13]

In December 2021, Maffia announced via Instagram her a new EP will be released in September 2022, and the release of her debut autobiography in 2023.

AwardsEdit

2001Edit

MOBO Awards
    • Best UK Garage Act (with So Solid Crew) – winner[14]
    • Best UK Newcomer (with So Solid Crew) – winner[14]
    • Best UK Act (with So Solid Crew) – nominated[15]

2002Edit

Brit Awards
    • Best British Video (with So Solid Crew) for "21 Seconds" – winner
    • Best British Newcomer (with So Solid Crew) – nominated
    • Best British Single (with So Solid Crew) – nominated
MOBO Awards
    • Best UK Garage Act (with So Solid Crew) – nominated
Dancestar World Dance Music Awards
    • Best UK Garage Act – winner

2003Edit

MOBO Awards
    • Best UK Garage Act – winner
    • Best UK Act – nominated
    • Best UK Newcomer – nominated

2004Edit

MOBO Awards
    • Best UK Garage Act (with So Solid Crew) – winner

2018Edit

Black Magic Awards
    • Music Honour — winner

Concert toursEdit

Year Title Duration Shows
2003 Blues & Soul/First Lady Tour 1 April 2003 – 20 July 2003 (England) 30
The First Lady Tour (also known as the Blues & Soul Tour) was a series of short concert-like promotional appearances at University and club-type venues by Lisa Maffia that took place from April to July 2003.
2013 They Don't Know Tour 21 March 2013 – 5 October 2013 (England)
5
The They Don't Know Tour is Lisa Maffia's first official tour with So Solid Crew. Dates are: 21 March 2013 – IndigO2, London 2 October 2013 – Waterfront, Norwich, 3 October 2013 – The Institute, Birmingham, 4 October 2013 – The Ritz, Manchester, 5 October 2013 – The O2 Arena, London

FilmographyEdit

FilmsEdit

  • The Living Dead (2020)
  • Time To Collect (2021)
  • RoadGirl (2023)

DocumentariesEdit

  • This Is So Solid (2001)
  • 25 Years of UK Garage (2022)

TelevisionEdit

ModellingEdit

Having modelled for Vogue, Elle and a range of women's and men's magazines, Maffia has also appeared in magazine polls. She ranked No. 91 (2002) in FHM's 100 Sexiest Women and ranked No. 77 (2002) in Loaded's Hot 100 Babes. In September 2007, Maffia was voted number 33 in the top 50 sexiest brunettes poll in Nuts magazine.

Business and venturesEdit

In 2012, Lisa founded her own interior design & home staging company, House Of Maffia.

In 2020, Lisa launched Salon 48, a hair & beauty salon in Margate. The same year she also opened Lyrical UK, a music industry personalised message service featuring artists from the UK Garage scene.

In 2022, Lisa announced via Good Morning Britain the release of Rum Maffia, a line of alcoholic beverages.

DiscographyEdit

AlbumsEdit

SinglesEdit

Year Title Chart positions Album
UK
[16]
UK
R&B
UK
Dance
AUS
[17]
NZ
[18]
NLD
[19]
SCO
2000 "Oh No (Sentimental Things) / Dilemma" (with So Solid Crew) They Don't Know
2000 "No Good 4 Me" (Oxide & Neutrino feat. Megaman, Romeo & Lisa Maffia) 6 3 Execute
2001 "21 Seconds" (with So Solid Crew) 1 1 1 45 9 They Don't Know
2002 "Romeo Dunn" (Romeo featuring Lisa Maffia, Tiger S & Thug Angel) 3 2 20 Solid Love
2003 "All Over" 2 1 42 23 42 9 First Lady
"In Love" 13 4 31
"Women of the World" 77 19
2005 "Shake 4 Daddy" Non-album single
2007 "Bad Girl (At Night)" (Dave Spoon feat. Lisa Maffia) 36 4 31 Non-album single
2010 "Since You Went Away" (So Solid Crew feat. Lisa Maffia and MC Romeo) 82 10 Non-album single
2012 "Don't Stop the Music" (Lisa Maffia feat. MC Romeo and Tyler Daley) Non-album single
2017 "Wah Gwarn" 9 Non-album single

Guest appearancesEdit

  • Deeper Part 2 - Romeo feat. Lisa Maffia

Released: 2002

Released: 2013

  • Shine - FooR feat. Lisa Maffia

Released: 2018

  • Bashdrill Remix - Shaqy Dread feat. Lisa Maffia, D-Live, J Kaz, Munie, & Big Zeeks

Released: 2020

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Emma Brockes. "The Monday interview: Lisa Maffia | Music". The Guardian. Retrieved 8 August 2014.
  2. ^ Brockes, Emma (26 January 2004). "The Monday interview: Lisa Maffia" – via www.theguardian.com.
  3. ^ "uk.askmen.com". Archived from the original on 2 May 2014. Retrieved 2 May 2014.
  4. ^ "thesituation.co.uk". Archived from the original on 6 April 2009.
  5. ^ "Lisa Maffia su Apple Music". Music.apple.com.
  6. ^ Davies, Alex (19 September 2018). "EastEnders' Louisa Lytton's life away from soap – from age to career". Ok.co.uk. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
  7. ^ "Wiltshire Clubbing – Lisa Maffia at The Brunel Rooms". BBC. 9 March 2004. Retrieved 8 August 2014.
  8. ^ a b c Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 343. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  9. ^ [1] Archived 1 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "I'm on CelebAir ... get me out of here!". The Independent. 23 October 2011. Archived from the original on 14 June 2022. Retrieved 16 April 2021.
  11. ^ [2] Archived 15 January 2019 at the Wayback Machine October 2014
  12. ^ "Actors Wanted for Short Film 'Little Lighty' - StarNow". Starnow.co.uk.
  13. ^ MAFFIA, LISA [@lisamaffiauk] (12 March 2018). ".@BritAsiaTV Certified | Coming soon - Hosted by @lisamaffiauk - Guests @jaysean | @mreazi | @joegrindsn1 | @jernademiah | @djironik | @raxstaruk | @arjunartist | @Paigey_Cakey | @FekkyOfficial | @steelbanglez | @mumzystranger | @realmostackpic.twitter.com/FfohFtzoDr" (Tweet). Retrieved 10 April 2019 – via Twitter.
  14. ^ a b [3] Archived 16 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ Llewellyn, Caspar (30 August 2001). "So Solid Crew in line for three Mobo pop awards". Telegraph. Retrieved 8 August 2014.
  16. ^ Peaks in the UK:
  17. ^ "Discography Lisa Maffia". australian-charts.com. Retrieved 24 August 2022.
  18. ^ "Discography Lisa Maffia". charts.nz. Retrieved 24 August 2022.
  19. ^ "Discography Lisa Maffia". dutchcharts.nl (in Dutch). Retrieved 24 August 2022.

External linksEdit