Alternative folk artist Charlene Soraia was born and raised in the London Borough of Lewisham. When she was five years old, she took an interest in her father's guitar.
She eventually added singing and songwriting to her creative activity, as she developed a love for prog rock bands like King Crimson and Pink Floyd, as well as David Bowie and the Beatles.
Soraia was admitted to the BRIT School (The London School for Performing Arts & Technology) and attended alongside future stars Adele and Kate Nash. While there, Soraia played in a couple bands, neither of which gained much traction. From 2006 through 2009, she released several stripped-down solo EPs, including Lemonade (2006), Postcards from iO (2008), Daffodils & Other Idylls (2008), and One of the Sun (2009).
In 2011, her spacy cover of the Calling's "Wherever You Will Go" was licensed for use in a Twinings tea commercial. Released as a single on the Peacefrog label in late September, the song reached the Top Five of the U.K. singles chart. Moonchild, her debut album, was released that November.