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Robbie Williams

Robbie Williams (born February 13, 1974) in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire is a British pop singer. Originally a member of boy band Take That[?], he split from the group in the late 1990s and launched a solo career. This following a highly publicized battle with drugs and alchohol during which he put on nearly 40 pounds and was often seen in public poorly dressed, dirty and unshaven.

His solo career took off in Europe after his #1 single "Kids," a duet with mega-star Kylie Minogue. He continued with a string of hits in Europe and became a major celebrity in the U.K., though much like Minogue it took him a great deal of time to "break" in the United States.

He finally did so in 2000 with his hit song "Rock D.J." The video featured Williams in a roller-disco as he stripped nude and then proceeded to strip off his own flesh, muscle tissue and organs until he was a dancing skeleton. (A point of interest in social differences between Europe and the U.S.: it's said that frontal nudity was edited out in the U.S. while the gore was left in, whereas the opposite was true for the U.K.) Williams has built quite a reputation for appearing nude (or nearly nude) in photographs, videos and live performances.

His United States and global success was cemented after a duet cover version of the Frank and Nancy Sinatra song "Somethin' Stupid" with Austrailian actress Nicole Kidman, who was fresh off of her Oscar winning performance in the film "Moulin Rouge". In 2002 he released an album called "Sing While YOu're Winning" in which his image was tamed down and he sang jazz, blues and pop standards from the fifties.

Robbie appears in the 2002 List of the "100 Greatest Britons" (sponsored by the BBC and voted for by the public).

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