Born on February 22, 1974 in Tidworth, Hampshire, England, James Blunt had an unusual route to pop stardom. A champion skier educated at the exclusive Harrow School, he was a captain in the British Army and served in Kosovo before leaving in 2002 to embark on his music career. His upper-class breeding was seen by many as a stumbling block, but his melodic voice and finely-crafted songs proved the critics wrong and his debut album Back To Bedlam (2004) - including the smash hit single "You're Beautiful," a No 1 both in the UK and US - went on to sell over 11m copies, making it the best-selling British album of the 2000s. Unsurprisingly, James Blunt failed to match it with his second album All the Lost Souls in 2007 but, while becoming the butt of many jokes due to his smooth style and privileged upbringing, his popularity as a concert performer endured and he broadened his style in collaborations with French rapper Sinik and Italian singer-songwriter Laura Pausini. He continued to build on his reputation across another four albums, Some Kind of Trouble in 2010, Moon Landing in 2013, The Afterlove in 2017, and Once Upon a Mind in 2019, which peaked at Number 3 in the UK. In November 2021, James Blunt released his first greatest hits album, The Stars Beneath My Feet (2004–2021).