“It was chilling but at the same time very beautiful.” Pop’s new It Girl, Dido, is talking about the first time she heard “Stan,” the unsettling hit by shock rapper Eminem in which he incorporates vocals from “Thankyou,” her own much sweeter-sounding single. “I like the darkness it adds to my song,” says Dido (pronounced Dye-doe). “And the attention is kind of nice too.”
So is the notice Dido, 28, has garnered thanks to her tune “Here with Me” from her now platinum 1999 debut album, No Angel (Arista), which provides the eerie theme for The WB’s teen sci-fi series Roswell.
A late-blooming pop star who studied to become a British barrister and worked as a London literary agent before turning to a music career, Dido Armstrong (Mum’s a poet, her father is in publishing) adopted her singular stage name in the mid-’90s when she became a guest vocalist with the Brit trip-hop group Faithless, which happens to be led by her older brother Rollo. “I was very sneaky about it,” says Dido, who also plays guitar, violin and piano. “I would just show up when they’d record, and they’d need a singer, so I’d innocently volunteer. Okay, maybe not so innocently.”