Before Rita Ora’s catchy songs were playing on the radio, the English pop icon was performing – and working – in her dad’s London pub: The Queens Arms. “My blood, sweat and tears were on the bar,” recalls Rita, at age 14. “I didn’t drink alcohol… I would go to school and then I would go back, and my dad would be like, ‘get up and sing’.”
These days, Ora’s known for her hits, such as I Will Never Let You Down and How We Do (Party), and her sophomore album is set to release this year. But she hasn’t forgotten her roots.
It’s no surprise, then, that she partnered with Absolut on an initiative that is appropriately titled The Open Mic Project. The campaign gave people across the nation a platform to share their stories of acceptance. The stories inspired a song, Proud, which she released on Spotify ahead of the GRAMMYs.
The now 27-year-old – and member of 30 Under 30 Europe – says the time she spent working at the pub, with her family, taught her 7 important lessons that have helped her succeed in the music industry. Read on, as Ora reveals how life at the bar gave her a distinctive education.
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