Caro Emerald

Caro Emerald
Caro Emerald singing
Emerald singing in Hilversum, 2013
Background information
Birth nameCaroline Esmeralda van der Leeuw
Born (1981-04-26) 26 April 1981 (age 40)
Amsterdam, Netherlands
GenresJazz, pop, swing, electro swing
Years active2007–present
LabelsGrandmono Records

Caroline Esmeralda van der Leeuw (born 26 April 1981), known by her stage name Caro Emerald, is a Dutch pop and jazz singer who mainly performs in English. Active since 2007, she rose to prominence in 2009 with her debut single, "Back It Up". Her follow-up single "A Night Like This" topped charts in the Netherlands. Emerald is often praised for her outstanding live performances.

Her debut album Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor was released on 29 January 2010. By August 2010, the album had spent its 30th week at number one in the Dutch album charts, setting an all-time record and beating Michael Jackson's "Thriller" by one week.[1] The album became the biggest selling album of 2010 in the Netherlands with over 350,000 copies to date. Worldwide, approximately 2 million copies have been sold to date. On 3 October 2010, Emerald was awarded the Dutch music prize "Edison Award" for Best Female Artist.[2] In 2013, a second studio album titled The Shocking Miss Emerald was released. The album entered at number one in the Dutch and United Kingdom album charts[3] and sold over 600.000 copies.

Early and personal life

Caroline Esmeralda van der Leeuw was born on 26th April, 1981, in Amsterdam, the Netherlands[4] to a Dutch father and an Aruban mother. She started singing lessons at age 12 with James Gilloffo in Amsterdam and joined a girl vocal group, Les Elles, under his guidance. Following high school, she trained as a jazz vocalist at the Amsterdam Conservatory, graduating in 2005.

During her September 2013 UK tour, she announced her pregnancy. She gave birth to a girl in March 2014.[5][6]

Emerald gave birth to a second daughter in August 2017.


In early 2007 Dutch producer Jan van Wieringen invited van der Leeuw to sing the vocal on a demo he was producing with David Schreurs. The song, "Back It Up", had been written by Schreurs and Canadian songwriter Vince Degiorgio and was based around a hip-hop beat created by Robin Veldman and Jan van Wieringen. Caro's jazzy vocal was considered a "perfect match" for the new song.[7]

The demo was pitched to various publishers and labels but without result.[7] But online the demo quickly reached public notice around the world and radio stations started playing the song.

Degiorgio, Schreurs, van Wieringen and van der Leeuw realised their sound had potential and started working on a studio album. Writing began in the summer of 2008 using "Back It Up"'s mix of 40s–50s jazz, easy listening, orchestral Latin, combined with infectious beats as a model.[7] Adopting a sample based approach but with live instrumentation, the writing sessions drew from a wide range of influences including jazz organist Jackie Davis, exotica composer Martin Denny, mambo king Perez Prado, 1920s/30s jazz and van der Leeuw's own vocal inspirations of The Andrews Sisters, Billie Holiday and Sarah Vaughan.[7] The usual method would be for Schreurs to create the ideas and backing tracks and then get together with top line writer and lyricist Degiorgio to write the songs. Van der Leeuw co-wrote several songs on the album, and van Wieringen co-created the tracks for "The Other Woman" and "Dr Wanna Do".[7] Schreurs and Degiorgio are credited as "Creative Directors".

2009–12: Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor

Emerald singing in Rotterdam, Netherlands on 9 July 2010

After record labels either refused or failed to sign the project, Schreurs set up their own label Grandmono. "Back It Up" was released as debut single on 6 July 2009. The song gained airplay and popularity overnight and listed in the Dutch Top 40 for 12 weeks, peaking at No. 12. It became the most played song on 3FM in 2009.[8]

Debut album Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor was released on 28 January 2010 in The Netherlands by Grandmono. It entered at #1 in the Album Charts and stayed there for weeks. By August 2010, the album had been #1 for 27 weeks, beating Michael Jackson's chart record for Thriller (26 weeks #1 in 1983).[1] The album returned to #1, spending a total of 30 non-consecutive weeks on top spot of the Dutch Albums Chart.

The album reached double platinum (>100,000 copies) status in the Netherlands on 5 July 2010.[9] In August 2010 it reached triple platinum,[1] in November 2010 four times platinum (200,000),[10] and in December 2011, sextuple platinum (>300,000 copies). Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor was removed from the Dutch charts after 104 weeks due to a rule providing albums can't spend >2 years in the charts. Upon re-entry, the album climbed back to #8.

Second single "A Night Like This" was released in December, 2009 and listed in the Dutch Charts for 26 weeks peaking at #1 in January 2010. It was the most played song in The Netherlands in 2010.

In 2011 Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor was released throughout Europe with great commercial success. It became a hit in the UK (1× platinum with sales exceeding 360,000, 8 weeks top 10 peaking at No. 4), Germany (1× platinum with sales exceeding 280,000, peaking at No. 5 and Platinum single for "A Night Like This" with sales exceeding 340,000), Poland (6× platinum with sales exceeding 60,000), Italy (Gold Single for "Back it Up"), and Austria (No. 1 with "A Night Like This") In the UK, all six singles and the entire album were A-listed by BBC Radio 2. Over 1,400,000 albums have been sold in Europe.[11]

The cinematic sound of the project resulted in frequent use in TV series, movies and advertising. Selected credits include The Playboy Club, a brand campaign by Martini, 2 Days in New York, The Secret Circle, Wind Mobile, Strictly Come Dancing, Dancing with the Stars, The Vampire Diaries, Agent Carter, Nestlé, Ferrero Rocher, Wrigley and Disney Nature film Chimpanzee.

Due to its exceptional success, the album was included in an episode of the Dutch version of Classic Albums in April 2012.[12]

On New Year's Eve 2011 Caro appeared on Jools Holland's Hootenanny

In January 2011, Emerald won the Popprijs 2010 for Best Dutch Pop Act of 2010.[13] In early 2012 Emerald a Goldene Kamera for Best Musik International and an Echo Award for Best Newcomer International.

2013–14: The Shocking Miss Emerald

In April 2013, a second studio album The Shocking Miss Emerald was released, including singles "Tangled Up" and "Liquid Lunch". The album went to # 1 in the UK album chart. She performed in the UK at The BBC Radio Theatre; it was broadcast on BBC Radio 2 and BBC Red Button.

On 29 June 2014, she played the opening music set on the pyramid stage at the Glastonbury Festival 2014.[14]

2015–present: Emerald Island

In April 2015, Grandmono released a single called "Quicksand".[15] March 2017 Grandmono released a mini album called "Emerald Island (EP)", with new material for the project inspired by the Exotica music genre, to accompany the "Emerald Island Tour".



Studio albums

Title Details Peak chart positions[21] Certifications
Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor
  • Release date: 29 January 2010
  • Label: Grandmono
1 3 23 79 5 14 39 3 10 4
The Shocking Miss Emerald
  • Release date: 3 May 2013
  • Label: Grandmono
1 69 3 31 166 3 21 71 17 3 1
  • BPI: Gold[37]
  • NVPI: Platinum
"—" denotes album that did not chart or was not released.

Live albums

Title Details Peak chart positions[21]
Live at the Heineken Music Hall
(with the Grandmono Orchestra)
51 65 34

Extended plays

Title Details Peak chart positions
Emerald Island
  • Release date: 6 March 2017
  • Label: Grandmono
MO x Caro Emerald By Grandmono 52


List of singles as lead artist, with selected chart positions, showing year released and album name
Title Year Peak chart positions Certifications Album
"Back It Up" 2009 13 11 33 70 53 190 Deleted Scenes from
the Cutting Room Floor
"A Night Like This" 1 10 52 4 1 2 1 9 65
"That Man" 2010 29 99 84
"Stuck" 28 18 41 42 48
"Riviera Life" 2011 70 25
"You're All I Want For Christmas"
(with Brook Benton)
26 Non-album single
"Tangled Up" 2013 6 13 62 81 53 77 9 The Shocking Miss Emerald
"Liquid Lunch" 64 182 70 89
"One Day" 75 152
"I Belong to You" 99 131
"Ne Me Quitte Pas" 2014 Non-album single
"Coming Back as a Man" The Shocking Miss Emerald
"Quicksand" 2015 103 Non-album single
"Whatchugot" 2017 Emerald Island
"Wake Up Romeo" 2020
"—" denotes single that did not chart or was not released.


  1. ^ a b c "Caro Emerald verbreekt record Michael Jackson" [Caro Emerald breaks Michael Jackson's record] (in Dutch). Nu.nl. 20 August 2010. Retrieved 20 August 2010.
  2. ^ "Caro Emerald wins Edison for Best Female Artist (In Dutch)". 25 October 2010.
  3. ^ "Caro Emerald Shines at No. 1 on U.K. Albums Chart, Daft Punk's 'Get Lucky' Reigns Again". 13 May 2013.
  4. ^ "iTunes Preview". Riviera Life – EP Caro Emerald reviews (in Dutch and English). Grandmono Records, & Apple Inc. 2011. Retrieved 6 May 2012.
  5. ^ "Caro Emerald bevallen". nu.nl. 26 March 2014. Retrieved 29 June 2014.
  6. ^ "CARO EMERALD GIVES BIRTH TO HER BABY". caroemeraldtribute.com. 3 April 2014. Retrieved 29 June 2014.
  7. ^ a b c d e "Q&A on Caro Emerald with songwriter David Schreurs". HitQuarters. 23 September 2011. Archived from the original on 23 June 2016. Retrieved 27 September 2011.
  8. ^ "Caro Emerald meest gedraaid op 3FM" [Caro Emerald most played on 3FM]. de Volkskrant (in Dutch). 6 April 2010.
  9. ^ "Double Platinum". 5 July 2010.
  10. ^ "4x Platinum NED". November 2011. Archived from the original on 24 July 2011.
  11. ^ "Caro Emerald maakt zelfstandige oversteek naar VS". entertainmentbusiness.nl. 22 August 2012. Retrieved 22 August 2012.
  12. ^ "Classic Albums: Caro Emerald". publiekeomroep.nl. 14 April 2012. Archived from the original on 17 April 2012. Retrieved 22 August 2012.
  13. ^ "Caro Emerald wint Popprijs 2010". nos.nl. 15 January 2011. Retrieved 22 August 2012.
  14. ^ "English National Ballet and Caro Emerald". BBC Two @ Glastonbury. 29 June 2014. Retrieved 29 June 2014.
  15. ^ Eames, Tom (21 April 2015). "Caro Emerald announces new single and UK winter tour". Digital Spy. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  16. ^ "Caro Emerald Best Dutch and Belgian Act". de Pers (in Dutch). 8 October 2010. Archived from the original on 23 October 2010.
  17. ^ "Winnaars Buma Harpen Gala 2011 bekend!". Buma Cultuur (in Dutch). 8 October 2010. Archived from the original on 24 July 2011.
  18. ^ "De Jeugd, Go Back to the Zoo en Caro winnen 3fm Awards". nlpop.blog.nl (in Dutch). 14 April 2011.
  19. ^ "Ben Saunders grote winnaar TMF Awards". De Telegraaf (in Dutch). 12 June 2011.
  20. ^ "Preisträger der 47. GOLDENEN KAMERA – Caro Emerald". goldene-kamera.de (in German). 25 January 2012. Archived from the original on 30 July 2012.
  21. ^ a b "Caro Emerald – Music Charts".
  22. ^ a b c "Discografie Caro Emerald". dutchcharts.nl/ Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 9 March 2013.
  23. ^ a b c "Discographie Caro Emerald". austriancharts.at/ Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 30 May 2013.
  24. ^ a b "Discografie Caro Emerald". ultratop.be/nl/ Hung Medien.
  25. ^ a b "Discographie Caro Emerald". lescharts.com/ Hung Medien.
  26. ^ a b "Discographie Caro Emerald". charts.de/ Hung Medien.
  27. ^ "Search for: Caro Emerald – Albums". italiancharts.com/ Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 12 January 2015.
  28. ^ "FIMI - Pagina non-trovata - FIMI". Archived from the original on 23 June 2013. Retrieved 1 August 2016.
  29. ^ "Discography Caro Emerald". irish-charts.com/ Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 12 January 2015.
  30. ^ a b "Caro Emerald". hitparade.ch/ Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 15 February 2014.
  31. ^ a b "Caro Emerald - UK Charts". Official Charts Company. officialcharts.com.
  32. ^ "Caro Emerald – NEWS – No. 8 ON THE UK ALBUM CHART". Caroemerald.com. 21 June 2011. Retrieved 23 December 2011.
  33. ^ "Bundesverband Musikindustrie: Gold-/Platin-Datenbank". Musikindustrie.de. Retrieved 23 December 2011.
  34. ^ "Gold in Switzerland".
  35. ^ "Album Caro Emerald 1.000.000 keer verkocht". caroemerald.com. 6 December 2011. Retrieved 6 December 2011.
  36. ^ zpav.pl/rankingi/wyroznienia/platynowe/index.php
  37. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 6 February 2013. Retrieved 15 July 2016.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  38. ^ "Search for: Caro Emerald – Singles". italiancharts.com/ Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 12 January 2015.
  39. ^ "Peak position A Night Like This in Poland". 17 November 2010. Archived from the original on 12 October 2013.
  40. ^ "Peak position Back It Up and Stuck in Slovakia". 17 November 2010.
  41. ^ "Peak position A Night Like This in Romanian Radio Airplay Chart". 31 December 2010. Archived from the original on 28 February 2011. Retrieved 25 February 2011.
  42. ^ Rádio Top 100 Oficiální
  43. ^ Gaon Singles Chart
  44. ^ a b c d "CERTIFICAZIONI DOWNLOAD FIMI – Week 21- Ending: 29/05/2011" (PDF) (in Italian). Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 June 2011. Retrieved 7 June 2011.
  45. ^ "Italian single certifications – Caro Emerald – Stuck" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved 26 August 2014. Select "Tutti gli anni" in the "Anno" drop-down menu. Select "Stuck" in the "Filtra" field. Select "Singoli" under "Sezione".
  46. ^ "Certificazioni - Archivio" (in Italian). Federation of the Italian Music Industry. Archived from the original on 6 October 2014. Retrieved 8 July 2013. Select Online, Week 26, Year 2013, then press Avvia la ricerca.

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