English chanteuse Julia Fordham looked like a sure thing for American stardom. Her voice is as pure and lovely as her clean English looks, but she hasn't yet captured the American public's fancy. Our loss is Europe and Japan's gain, as Fordham's music -- like the work of Sade, Aimee Mann and Tracie Thorn -- is full of exquisite misery and short love affairs that result in long heartaches. Porcelain (1989) is her best album, but East West (1997) stripped down her usually sophisticated, Sting-style production to intimate voice and guitar. Unless you consider Lemmy of Motorhead to be the ne plus ultra in romance, pick up her career-spanning Collection -- it shows that Fordham has always been too smart for Adult Contemporary and too polished for the Indie crowd. It took a soundtrack album to finally break Aimee Mann... Julia, do you know any young, trendy directors?