Alannah Myles (born December 25, 1958) is a Canadian singer-songwriter and the daughter of Canadian broadcast pioneer William Douglas Byles (1914-1988), who was inducted into the Canadian Association of Broadcasters' Hall of Fame in 1997.
She changed her surname to Myles at age 19 after deciding to pursue a career in entertainment. Appearances in TV commercials paid for music demos which weathered countless rejections from homeland, Canada until she recorded masters for three songs; "Who Loves You" and a video demo for "Just One Kiss" directed by photographer Deborah Samuel. With matched financing from songwriting collaborator, Much Music (City TV) DJ and program director, Christopher Ward and FACTOR. She signed her first record contract with Atlantic Records in 1987.
In fall of 1987, Warner Music Canada's director of artists and repertoire (A&R) Bob Roper sent the three-song video package to all of Warner Music Group's U.S. affiliates which garnered a seven-eight year contract from Atlantic Records (WMG) sight unseen by head of A&R Tunc Erim and Atlantic label founder Ahmet Ertegun. Myles quit a lucrative acting career, co-wrote and recorded the remainder of her first album with collaborator Christopher Ward and producer David Tyson. In 1989, Atlantic Records released self titled debut album and toured internationally for 18 months. Her first album was awarded the Diamond Award for sales of over one million units; she is the only Canadian debut artist to attain that award. Her first album was reported to have sold upwards of six million copies internationally and remains a classic-selling album to date.
Myles' eponymous debut album achieved top 10 hits in several countries around the world beginning with "Love Is", "Still Got This Thing For You", The only single to hit number one in 1990 in Canada was "Lover of Mine". Alannah's fourth American 1990 single, "Black Velvet." hit number one for two weeks with a bullet on the U.S. Billboard Top 40 Chart to become a worldwide classic radio hit. It also won the 1990 Grammy Award for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance.
In 1992, Myles was nominated for a second Grammy award for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance for the title track "Rockinghorse", the flip side of lead off single, "Song Instead Of A Kiss" from her second CD Rockinghorse. "Song Instead Of A Kiss" was a 60-piece orchestrated ballad that reached number one on several radio stations around the globe but was met with little response in America, whose audiences were accustomed to "that slow southern style" of Black Velvet.