Soko (singer)


Background information
Birth name Stéphanie Sokolinski
Born (1985-10-26) 26 October 1985[1]
Bordeaux, France
  • Singer-songwriter
  • musician
  • actress
  • dancer
  • Vocals
  • guitar
  • bass
  • drums
  • keyboards[4]
Years active 2002–present
Labels Because Music
Associated acts Ariel Pink, The Brian Jonestown Massacre

Stéphanie Sokolinski (born 26 October 1985),[5] better known by her stage name Soko (stylized as SoKo), is a French singer-songwriter, musician and actress.

Early life

Sokolinski was born in Bordeaux, France from a Russian-Polish father and a French-Italian mother.[6] She has used the nickname Soko as long as she can remember.[7] Soko left home at 16, quit school and moved to Paris to start acting class with Eva Saint-Paul where she studied for one year; she then resumed her education at several different schools, but quickly became tired of it and dropped out. She later appeared in several French films and began to write songs.[7]

Musical career

Soko in 2009.

In 2007, Sokolinski achieved a hit single in Denmark with a personal anecdotal song, "I'll kill her", after the radio program The Black Boy Scouts began to promote it.[8] The song reached number one on the chart of the Danish version of the iTunes Store and was the number one song in rotation on radio.[7][8] The song is also a hit in Australia, being played on high rotation on Triple J radio;[9] it later placed number nine in the Triple J Hottest 100 2007 music poll. The song was also popular in Belgium being played by Studio Brussel, Radio 1 and Pure FM, and in The Netherlands, being picked up by 3FM radio station. In October 2007 her music was featured in Stella McCartney’s fashion show in Paris.[10] She toured in the UK in late 2007 supporting M.I.A. on the KALA Tour. Since early 2008 she has also been played in Germany by 1LIVE, first only at night in 1Live Plan B but later, due to high demand, throughout the whole day.

Sokolinski has self-released one EP Not Sokute, and collaborated with The Go! Team and Cornershop, the latter on a song called "Something Makes You Feel Like". She has her own record label called Babycat Records and is signed to Because Music in France.

In 2010, her song "I'll Kill Her", was sampled by Cee Lo Green on his Stray Bullets mixtape under the track of the same name.

In 2011, she wrote a song and featured in the animated short film Mourir Auprès De Toi, which was co-written and directed by Spike Jonze.

Her debut album, I Thought I Was an Alien, was released in February 2012.

In 2014, Soko's song "We Might Be Dead by Tomorrow" was featured in Tatia Pilieva's short video "First Kiss". She was also one of the video's twenty subjects. After "First Kiss" went viral on YouTube, the song debuted at number 9 in the Billboard Hot 100 and number 1 on Billboard's Streaming Songs chart.[11][12]

In March 2014, Soko appeared in the music video for the song "Jealous" by Canadian electro-funk band Chromeo.[13]

Her second studio album, My Dreams Dictate My Reality was released in March 2015, its first single "Who Wears the Pants??" was released on January 7. The Sonic Seducer wrote that the album was darker than the previous releases and called it a "female version of early The Cure discs."[14]

Soko collaborated with The Brian Jonestown Massacre on a song called "Philadelphie Story" for their album Musique de Film Imaginé, released in April 2015.

Live performances

Soko performing at Loppen in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Sokolinski has had sold-out concerts in Scandinavia, Britain, and Australia.[7] She performed at the Falls Festival at the end of 2008, the Southbound Festival and the Sunset Sounds Festival at the start of 2009. She has performed in the Los Angeles venues Henry Fonda, Troubadour, Bootleg Theatre, Spaceland, and Echoplex, and has played in support of Peter Doherty, Babyshambles, Kate Nash, Nouvelle Vague, Daniel Johnston, Foster The People, and Johnny Borrell. In San Francisco, she performed at Bottom of the Hill on 15 June 2012.

As a live performer, she is unpredictable and never uses a set list; her backing band consists mostly of different friend-musicians at each show. She sometimes plays up to 3 hours by herself, in intimate and quiet venues.

Musical hiatus

On 19 January 2009 Sokolinski stated on her MySpace page that she was quitting music and is 'dead', writing that she was scared of the music industry and wanted to return to acting. Despite having recorded a double album in Seattle, she is not willing to release it. In August of the same year, she declared that she was 'reborn' and writing songs such as "I'm So Ready to Be a Good Man" where she writes:

"in my battle with the demons I just had to die coz they're way too evil and I couldn't fight"

She later referred to the pressure of the music industry, before declaring that she was "having a new heart and being ready to be a new man".

In August 2011, Soko announced the release of her first album I Thought I Was an Alien on 6 February 2012, on her website and a 17 August 2012 show at the Bootleg Theatre in Los Angeles, CA on Facebook. She released her first single on YouTube 1 August 2011 entitled "No More Home, No More Love". Two other singles were released "I Thought I Was An Alien" and "First Love Never Die".

Acting career

Soko during the Césars Awards

In February 2010, Soko was nominated for a César Award for Most Promising Actress for her role in À l'origine (English title In the Beginning), directed by Xavier Giannoli.

Personal life

Soko is a vegan. This may be connected with the fact that she became straight edge when she was 18.[15] Soko also refers to herself as a "white goth".[4]

Soko identifies as bisexual.[16] In March 2016, she confirmed her relationship with American actress Kristen Stewart in an interview with W.[17] On May 5, 2016, US Weekly confirmed that Stewart and Soko had split after a few months of dating.[18]



Year Album FR
2012 I Thought I Was an Alien 53 74 76 35
2015 My Dreams Dictate My Reality 75 68


Year Album FR
2007 Not Sokute


Year Song FR
2007 "I'll Kill Her" 2[21] 3[22] 54* Not Sokute
2011 "I Thought I Was an Alien" I Thought I Was an Alien
2012 "First Love Never Die" 130 66*
"We Might Be Dead by Tomorrow" 61 51 72 39 145 9

*Did not appear in the official Belgian Ultratop 50 charts, but rather in the bubbling under Ultratip charts. Added 50 positions to actual Ultratip position.


Year Title Role Director Notes
2003 L'escalier Béa Frédéric Mermoud Short
P.J. Anouchka Gérard Vergez TV Series (1 Episode)
Action Justice Léa Franqui Alain Nahum TV Series (1 Episode)
2004 Au secours, j'ai 30 ans ! Chloé Marie-Anne Chazel
Ben et Thomas The girl Jon Carnoy Short
Clara cet été là Zoé Patrick Grandperret TV Movie
2005 Palais royal ! The hairdresser Valérie Lemercier
On s'appelle Various Francis Coté, Fabrice Michelin, ... TV Series (4 Episodes)
2005-08 Commissaire Valence Camille Valence Franck Apprederis, Patrick Grandperret (2), ... TV Series (3 Episodes)
2006 Girlfriends Manon Sylvie Ayme
Madame Irma The high school girl Didier Bourdon & Yves Fajnberg
Les irréductibles Lucie Renaud Bertrand
Oh ! Ma femme Clémentine Olivier Dujols Short
Poésie del amor Margot Olivier Vidal Short
Louis Page Lydia Jean-Louis Bertucelli TV Series (1 Episode)
2007 Dans les cordes Sandra Magaly Richard-Serrano
Ma place au soleil Sabine Eric de Montalier
Ma vie n'est pas une comédie romantique Lisa Marc Gibaja
Les diablesses Denise Harry Cleven TV Movie
2008 Adrien Sandra Pascale Bailly TV Movie
2009 In the Beginning Monika Xavier Giannoli Nominated - César Award for Most Promising Actress
2011 Mourir auprès de toi Mina Spike Jonze & Simon Cahn Short
2012 Augustine Augustine Alice Winocour Mar del Plata International Film Festival - Best Actress
Women Film Critics Circle - Courage in Acting Award
Nominated - Lumières Award for Most Promising Actress
Nominated - Prix Romy Schneider
Bye Bye Blondie Young Gloria Virginie Despentes
Fat Bottomed Girls Rule the World Joséphine Flora Desprats Short
2013 Friends from France Carole Philippe Kotlarski & Anne Weil
Her Voice of Isabella Spike Jonze (2)
2014 First Kiss Marianna Palka's Kisser Tatia Pilieva Short
Artbound Bruce Dickson TV Series (1 Episode)
2015 Always Worthy Alvin Marianna Palka
Hi How Are You Daniel Johnston Dream Laurie Gabriel Sunday Short
I Still Chose to Stay Woman Natalie Neal Short
2016 The Dancer Loie Fuller Stéphanie Di Giusto
The Stopover Marine Delphine and Muriel Coulin


  1. "Rookie". Rookie.
  2. O'Brien, Jon. "Soko". Allmusic. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
  3. Roberts, Randall (28 February 2015). "Soko mines '80s new wave on 'My Dreams Dictate My Reality'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  4. 1 2 Soko and Lime the acid sweet indie singer talks singing acting and kissing Asia Argento, Afterellen
  5. "SOKO - Musician - Angelique Max". Angelique Max.
  6. "Les démons de Soko" (in French). Les Inrockuptibles . 13 March 2012.
  7. 1 2 3 4 Nir, Sarah Maslin (5 July 2007). "Soko: sweet tunes with dangerous lyrics". The Times. UK. Retrieved 14 October 2007.
  8. 1 2 Meesenburg, Thomas (2 May 2007). "Soko kommer til Danmark" (in Danish). Soundvenue. Archived from the original on 15 January 2008. Retrieved 14 October 2007.
  9. Mathewson, Catriona (5 September 2007). "Down Under MySpace hit for French singer". The Courier Mail.
  10. Trebay, Guy (5 October 2007). "Why It All Looks So Easy, and Why It Isn't". New York Times. Retrieved 17 December 2007.
  11. Video, Youtube
  12. Viral first kiss video, Billboard
  13. Jealous, Huhmagazine
  14. Pilgrim, Thomas (2015). "SoKo: My Dreams Dictate My Reality". Sonic Seducer (in German). No. 3. pp. 101–2.
  15. "Facebook".
  16. «Bye Bye Blondie», bonjour Despentes , Libération, 19 March 2012
  17. Petrarca, Emilia. "Soko On Modern Love and What Goes Down In the DM". wmagazine.
  19. 1 2 3 Soko discography
  20. Tracklisten week 18 2007
  21. "I'll Kill Her" at
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