Alexandra Ioana Stan (born 10 June 1989) is a Romaniansinger and songwriter. Born in the city of Constanța, she made her worldwide breakthrough with her 2011 single "Mr. Saxobeat", which was written and produced by Marcel Prodan and Andrei Nemirschi. They had previously discovered her at a karaoke bar in 2009 and offered her a contract with their own label, Maan Records. "Mr. Saxobeat" was preceded by the singer's debut recording, "Lollipop (Param Pam Pam)" (2009), which rose Stan to fame in her native country. "Mr. Saxobeat" quickly achieved commercial success in her native Romania and then abroad, reaching the number one spot in a total of ten countries. The singer's follow-up single, "Get Back (ASAP)" (2011), reached the top ten in Finland and Romania, and the top 20 in other European territories. Saxobeats, her debut studio album, was made available for purchase that same year.
Alexandra Ioana Stan was born on 10 June 1989 in the city of Constanța, Romania. From a very young age, she showed special interest and went on to study at the Traian Secondary School and the Faculty of Management Andrei Șaguna. In 2003, Stan, who was 15-years-old, was invited to sing for the first time on a televised show. She participated in various music-related contests, including the Mamaia Music Festival in 2009. That year, Stan was discovered by Romanian producers and songwriters Marcel Prodan and Andrei Nemirschi at a karaoke bar in Constanța. They offered her a record deal with their own label, Maan Records, and she recorded a promotional single called "Show Me the Way" that year. Stan rose to major fame in Romania with the release of her debut single, "Lollipop (Param Pam Pam)" (2009), which was aided heavy radio airplay. The song's low-budget and provocative music video was generally criticized and was not received well by audiences.
After the success of "Mr. Saxobeat", Stan released the follow-up single "Get Back". "Get Back" gained moderate recognition, reaching the top ten in Finland and Romania, and the top 20 in other European countries. In early 2012, Stan released another single "1.000.000" with German rapper Carlprit Her debut studio album titled Saxobeats was released in August 2011 to French digital stores. The record featured eight tracks plus five remixes and was first released on 25 October 2011 through Ultra Records in Europe, then in Canada and the United States. Saxobeats experienced commercial success in Japan, selling more than 68,000 copies there as of May 2012. In June 2012, Stan released a new single titled "Lemonade", which charted at number one in Bulgaria, and in the top 40 in Japan and Italy. It was also certified Gold in the latter country. For her international achievements in 2011, Stan won a European Border Breaker award along with Inna that year. The singer's next single releases, "Cliché (Hush Hush)" (2012) and "All My People" (2013), reached number 11 and 50 respectively on the Japan Hot 100.
Stan performing in Osaka, Japan during her Unlocked Tour (2014).
In April 2014, after a short break, Stan released her comeback single, "Thanks for Leaving". She expressed that the recording it is very personal to her. The song peaked at number one in Ukraine on FDR's pop component chart, and experienced minor success in Italy and Romania. Following this, she released another single called "Cherry Pop" in May 2014. It reached number 64 on the Japanese Hot 100 and within two hours became the most-sought ringtone on Recochoku The singer's third single following her hiatus, "Dance", was released two months later, and reached number 25 in Japan.Unlocked, Stan's second studio album was released in August 2014 to Japanese digital retailers, where it charted within the top 20 and sold more than 17,000 copies.
Two more singles from Unlocked, were released, "Give Me Your Everything" (2014) and "Vanilla Chocolat" (2014). "Vanilla Chocolat" was collaboration with Romanian rapper Connect-R. "Vanilla Chocolat" was promotoed by a selfie video, which raised controversy for a scene where Stan is wearing a robe inscribed with masonic symbols on the back.Unlocked was followed by the Unlocked Tour, where Stan was accompanied by Romanian dance group StanBoyz. Later in 2014, the singer sang Cher's "Strong Enough" (1999) translated in Catalan for Spanish annual charity event La Marató. She also appeared as a special guest at Spanish Carnival of Las Palmas.
In June 2015, Stan released "We Wanna" in collaboration with Inna and American reggaeton singer Daddy Yankee. The track reached the top 30 in Argentina, Poland and Turkey, and the top 60 in Italy, Romania and Slovakia. In addition to her music career, Stan was involved with ecological and humanitarian causes, and at Expo 2016 in Antalya, Turkey, she planted a tree which she named after herself. Following the release of Dorian's "Motive" (2015), a song for which Stan provided guest vocals, she won a trophy at the Celebrity Awards. There, she was awarded alongside other Romanian women who had notable results in their domain. In addition to that, Stan was nominated for Best Pop Artist at the Elle Style Awards România. In November 2015, Stan released a new single called "I Did It, Mama!" The track reached the top ten in Romania, accompanied by a music video in which Stan portrays a goddess surrounded by different types of men, including models, rugby players, motor bikers and dancers.
In March 2016, Stan released her third studio album, Alesta, and toured Japan in order to promote the record. The album debuted at number 34 on the Japanese Albums Chart, and featured a collaboration with Swedish-Congolese singer Mohombi on "Balans" (2016). Later that year, Stan made her fashion debut with "Alesta X Bershka", a clothing line available in Japan.The line includes a silver backpack, for $40, that can be also used as a handbag, as well as gray dress for $60, that can be also used as a sweatshirt. On 22 April 2016, the singer opened The Back To Life Easter Festival 2016 in Cairo with her 2011 single "Mr. Saxobeat". In June 2016, Stan released the fourth single from Alesta, "Écoute", in collaboration with Romanian band Havana. A video to accompany the song was filmed in Obârșia-Brezoi, a city which the singer used to visit in her youth. Later that year, Stan became a member of G Girls, a girl band, together with Antonia, Inna and Lori; the latter participated at Vocea României in the past. Their debut single, "Call the Police" was released in June 2016 and reached number six in Poland. Meanwhile, Stan was invited as a special guest to a basketball tournament in her native Constanța. A music video was eventually filmed in the same city for the fifth release from Alesta, "Boom Pow" (2016). In November 2016, Stan announced her appearance at parade "Dumnezeu nu face politica" ("God does not make politics") through Facebook, and expressed her support towards the LGTB community. The same month, in two separate Twitter posts, British recording artist Ellie Goulding praised Stan's "Mr. Saxobeat" and Inna's "Hot" (2008). Both singers thanked Goulding in Twitter comments. In January 2017 a music video for "9 Lives", the final single from Stan's album, was released and featured Bulgarian rapper Jahmmi. The singer also recorded a cover version of Madonna's "Like a Virgin" (1984), stating that she is a fan of the song.
When interviewed at the EBBA 2012, Stan stated that her music is influenced by the diversity of nationalities in her hometown Constanța. In another interview she listed Michael Jackson, Madonna, Adele, Rihanna, David Guetta, Sia and Robbie Williams as influences.AllMusic classified her music in the electronic genre. Stan's first studio album, Saxobeats (2011), featured hi-NRG, dance, electronic, house and eurodance music alongside saxophone hints in some songs. When interviewed, the singer confessed that she likes saxophone and that it is very used in her region. The use of the instrument in her songs has become her signature sound.Unlocked (2014) approaches dance, techno, pop and R&B, and has been regarded as an evolution in her artistry. The album also featured "Thanks for Leaving" (2014), which was the first ballad released in her career. "Cherry Pop" (2014), another song from Unlocked approached a J-pop style, which, Stan confessed, "It's a music genre I haven't approached so far, but one that fits my style. I find J-pop music very energetic, it's got such a positive vibe to it. We all got pretty excited when we first thought about doing a J-pop song and we're all very happy with the result."
Stan has been named one of the most successful Romanian artists along with Inna. During a review of the singer's debut studio album, Saxobeats (2011), Mike Schiller from PopMatters called her "the sort of young upstart pop diva that it's hard to hate, yet hard to take seriously." Stan frequently receives media attention for her "sexy" public appearances and photo shoots. Her music video for "I Did It, Mama!" (2015) aroused controversy for a scene in which the singer and a background dancer are miming sexual intercourse and oral sex. The publications Cancan and Click! said this could have even led to the video being banned in Romania.
When interviewed, the singer stated that she believes in God and that she has her own religious principles, describing herself as an untraditional Christian. Since August 2011, Stan has lived in her hometown Constanța. During her court case with Prodan, he and others testified that Stan had more than a professional relationship with him, although this was denied by the singer. In 2016, it was announced that Stan had been in a relationship with Bogdan since 2014, regarding which the singer confessed that it is mainly based on trust and communication. During her appearance on Romanian talk show Răi da Buni in February 2017, the singer said that there are a bunch of women she would want to kiss, including Antonia.