German R&B singer Miss Platnum delivers her bold songs with a sense of humor, a quirky, somewhat dark sense of humor that comes from hard times in her birthplace, Romania. While she was growing up in what she calls "the vampire country," her parents fled the "corruption, brutality, pogroms, trafficking of women, the Mafia and criminal gangs threatening everybody" -- her words again -- and landed in Germany. The young Miss Platnum had no idea where they had gone since her parents had said nothing about their journey in fear their daughter would slip up and say something to the authorities. She lived with her grandparents until six months after their exile, when her parents came calling and brought their daughter to their new life in Germany. A product of Romania's strict school system, the youngster was considered a nerd right away, so she retreated into music. Throughout her teens she sang in a church choir, and when she was 18 she attended a workshop held by the legendary singer Jocelyn B. Smith. The workshop turned into an apprenticeship and helped shape Miss Platnum's soulful style. Work as a studio singer and as a background singer came before Platnum broke out as a solo artist with the single "Give Me the Food," an anthem for Rubenesque women. The single landed on her 2007 debut album, Chefa. ~ David Jeffries
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