Jepsen cites a mix of classic rock and alternative bands as her musical influence, such as James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen, Van Halen, Kimbra, La Roux, and Robyn.
Life and career
Jepsen was born November 21, 1985 attended Heritage Park Secondary School in Mission, British Columbia and has since performed there post-graduation. She later attended the Canadian College of Performing Arts in Victoria, BC before auditioning for Canadian Idol. After completing the Canadian Idol
tour, Jepsen retreated to B.C. to focus on writing, recording and
completing her band. Her demos attracted attention and she was
eventually signed a joint management deal with Simkin Artist Management
and Dexter Entertainment. A deal with Fontana/Maple Music quickly followed, leading Jepsen into the studio with producer/writer Ryan Stewart.
2008–11: Tug of War
On June 16, 2008, Jepsen released her debut single and another single, a cover of John Denver‘s song “Sunshine On My Shoulders“. It is the only cover song on her debut album.
On July 21, 2008, Jepsen added two new songs from the album to her
MySpace page: “Bucket” and “Heavy Lifting”. In August 2008, Jepsen’s
MySpace page announced that the album’s title would be Tug of War,
and it was released on September 30, 2008. The page also mentioned two
more songs that were included on the album: “Tug of War” and “Sweet
Talker”. The former was released as a single on iTunes on September 16,
2008, and has been receiving radio airplay on various stations across
Canada. She performed the latter as her Canadian Idol audition.
A music video for “Tug of War” was released in January 2009. “Bucket”,
her second single, was released in May 2009, and the video for “Sour
Candy”, a duet with Josh Ramsay of Marianas Trench
who has also help produce some of her songs including “Call Me Maybe”,
has also been released. All of Jepsen’s music videos have been directed
by Ben Knechtel. In spring 2009, she toured western Canada with Marianas
Trench and Shiloh. She then went on a cross-Canada tour with Marianas Trench, The New Cities and Mission District.
2012–present: Curiosity and second studio album
Jepsen’s second album Curiosity was released on February 14,
2012. It was produced by Ryan Stewart and Kevin James Maher produced the
track “Dear Julien”. On the same day as the release, Justin Bieber made the announcement on the MuchMusic program New Music Live that Jepsen has been signed to School Boy Records, the label run by Justin Bieber’s manager, Scooter Braun.
The lead single, “Call Me Maybe” (which gained notoriety after “Primetime” Sam Roberts played the track during “After Opie and Anthony Live” on SiriusXM Satellite Radio) is from her second studio album Curiosity was released on September 21, 2011 and was produced by Josh Ramsay of Marianas Trench
and co-written by Jepsen, Ramsay and Tavish Crowe. “Call Me Maybe” is
the first song by a Canadian artist to reach the top of the digital
chart since Justin Bieber’s “Baby” in January 2010. It is also only the
11th song by a Canadian artist to reach No. 1 on the Digital Songs chart
since Nielsen SoundScan began tracking digital download sales in 2005.
The song has also peaked at #1 on Billboard‘s Canadian Hot 100, being the 4th Canadian artist to do so, after Avril Lavigne‘s “Girlfriend“, Nikki Yanofsky‘s “I Believe“, and the Young Artists for Haiti version of “Wavin’ Flag“, originally by Canadian rapper K’naan.
Jepsen is currently touring on the Shout it Out World Tour. She is the opening act for the pop-rock trio Hanson. In February 2012, Jepsen visited Justin Bieber and Scooter Braun in Los Angeles, California, where she subsequently signed to School Boy Records and Interscope. Her music will still be distributed by 604 Records in Canada. On March 23, 2012, Jepsen made her first American television debut on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, performing “Call Me Maybe” (with Jared Manierka on keys), later joined by Justin Bieber. Carly was also the first Canadian Idol contestant to enter the UK charts, when Call Me Maybe debuted at number one.
Carly played at Citywalk at Universal Studios on April 14, 2012. 400
people who paid $5 were allowed to meet with the singer and get CDs
autographed by her.
Jepsen, 26, has been observed as either dressing “too young” for her
age, in an effort either to appeal to the pre-teen demographic, or keep a
“squeaky clean” image in contrast to her scandal-ridden contemporaries.
On May 20, 2012 Jepsen performed “Call Me Maybe” at the 2012 Billboard Music Awards. On May 22, 2012 she performed “Tug of War”, “Curiosity”, and “Call Me Maybe” at the first Q102 Springle Ball concert. On June 17, 2012 Jepsen performed “Call Me Maybe” at the 2012 MuchMusic Video Awards and later on she dueted “Wild Ones” with Flo Rida. On June 26, 2012 Jepsen’s duet with Owl City “Good Time“, was released as a digital download. The song is expected to appear on both artists’ upcoming album. The song debuted at number 18 on the Billboard Hot 100, being his second top 20 hit single on the chart.
In October 2012, Jepsen will appear in the premiere episode of 90210 and perform a new song from her upcoming album.
Canadian Idol performances
|Episode||Song choice||Original artist||Order #||Result|
|Audition||“Sweet Talker”||Carly Rae Jepsen||N/A||Advanced|
|Top 80||“I Try“||Macy Gray||Duets||Advanced|
|Top 40||“Breathe (2 AM)“||Anna Nalick||N/A||Advanced|
|Top 22||“Put Your Records On“||Corinne Bailey Rae||11||Advanced|
|Top 18||“Sweet Ones“||Sarah Slean||4||Advanced|
|Top 14||“Waiting in Vain“||Bob Marley & The Wailers||3||Advanced|
|Top 10||“Inside and Out“||Bee Gees||3||Bottom 3|
|Top 9||“Georgia on My Mind“||Hoagy Carmichael||5||Safe|
|Top 7||“Killer Queen“||Queen||3||Bottom 3|
|Top 6||“Come To My Window“||Melissa Etheridge||4||Bottom 3|
|Top 5||“Chuck E’s in Love“||Rickie Lee Jones||4||Safe|
|Top 4||“My Heart Belongs to Daddy“||Mary Martin||1||Safe|
|“I Got It Bad (and That Ain’t Good)“||Ivie Anderson||5|
|Top 3||“At Seventeen“||Janis Ian||3||Eliminated|
- Tug of War (2008)
- Curiosity (2012)
|2007||Canadian Idol||Herself (Contestant)||Season 5/Eliminated 3rd|
Awards and nominations
|2010||Canadian Radio Music Awards||Song of the Year, “Tug of War”||Won|
|Western Canadian Music Awards||Song of the Year, “Tug of War”||Nominated|
|Juno Awards||New Artist of the Year||Nominated|
|Juno Awards||Songwriter of the Year (With Ryan Stewart)||Nominated|
|Much Music Video Awards||UR FAVE New Artist||Nominated|
|2012||Much Music Video Awards||Pop Video of the Year, “Call Me Maybe”||Nominated|
|Much Music Video Awards||UR Fave Artist||Nominated|
|Much Music Video Awards||Most Streamed Video of the Year, “Call Me Maybe”||Won|
|Much Music Video Awards||Video of the Year, “Call Me Maybe”||Won|
|Much Music Video Awards||UR Fave Video, “Call Me Maybe”||Won|
|Teen Choice Awards||Breakout Artist||Won|
|Teen Choice Awards||Summer Song, “Call Me Maybe”||Won|
|Teen Choice Awards||Music Star Female||Nominated|
|Western Canadian Music Awards||Pop Recording of the Year, “Curiosity”||Pending|
Who is Allah Rakha Rahman? The entertainment and music world knows him as A. R. Rahman, he an Indian composer, singer-songwriter, music producer, musician, multi-instrumentalist and philanthropist. Described as the world’s most prominent and prolific film composer by Time, his works are notable for integrating Eastern classical music with electronic music sounds, world music genres and traditional orchestral arrangements. He has won two Academy Awards, two Grammy Awards, a BAFTA Award, a Golden Globe, four National Film Awards, fifteen Filmfare Awards and thirteen Filmfare Awards South in addition to numerous other awards and nominations.
His extensive body of work for film and the stage earned him the
nickname “the Mozart of Madras” and several Tamil commentators and fans
have coined him the nickname Isai Puyal (English: Music Storm). In 2009, Time placed Rahman in its list of World’s Most Influential People. The UK based World Music magazine Songlines named him one of ‘Tomorrow’s World Music Icons’ in August 2011.
Having set up his own in-house studio called Panchathan Record Inn at Chennai,
arguably one of Asia’s most sophisticated and high-tech studios,
Rahman’s film scoring career began in the early 1990s with the Tamil
film Roja. Working in India’s various film industries, international cinema and theatre, Rahman has reportedly sold more than 300 million records worldwide of his film scores and soundtracks as of 2009 for over 100 film scores worldwide, making him one of the world’s all-time top selling recording artists.
In a notable career spanning two decades, Rahman has garnered
particular acclaim for redefining contemporary Indian film music and
thus contributing to the success of several films. Rahman is currently
one of the highest paid composers of the motion picture industry. He has
also become a notable humanitarian and philanthropist, donating and
raising money for beneficial causes and supporting charities.
A. R. Rahman was born as A. S. Dileep Kumar on January 6, 1966 in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India to a musically affluent Mudaliar Tamil family. His father R. K. Shekhar, was a film music composer and conductor for Tamil as well as Malayalam films. Rahman used to assist his father during recordings and play keyboard
for the songs. Rahman lost his father at the age of 9 and his family
had to rent out his father’s musical equipment as their source of
income. Rahman was raised by his mother Kareema (born Kashturi).
During these formative years, Rahman served as a keyboard player and an
arranger in bands such as “Roots”, with childhood friend and
percussionist Sivamani, John Anthony, Suresh Peters, JoJo and Raja. Rahman is the founder of the Chennai-based rock group, “Nemesis Avenue”. He mastered various music instruments like Keyboard, Piano, Synthesizer, Harmonium and Guitar.
His curiosity in Synthesizer in particular, increased because, he says,
it was the “ideal combination of music and technology”.
He began early training in music under Master Dhanraj.
At the age of 11, he started playing musical instruments in the
orchestra of Malayalam composer and a close friend of Rahman’s father, M. K. Arjunan. Soon he started working with other composers such as M. S. Viswanathan, Ilaiyaraaja, Ramesh Naidu, Raj-Koti and also accompanied Zakir Hussain, Kunnakudi Vaidyanathan and L. Shankar on world tours and obtained a scholarship with Trinity College, London, board of the Trinity College of Music. Studying in Chennai, he graduated with graded examinations and a diploma in Western classical music via the college. He was introduced to Qadiri Islam
when his younger sister fell severely ill in 1984. Subsequently, Rahman
along with other members of his family converted to Islam in 1989, when
he was 23 years old. He changed his name from A. S. Dileep Kumar to
Allah Rakha Rahman i.e. A. R. Rahman.
Film scoring and soundtracks
When he was nine, Rahman accidentally played a tune on piano during
his father’s recording for a film, which R. K. Shekhar later developed
into a complete song, “Vellithen Kinnam Pol”, for the Malayalam film Penpada. This track credited to his father, was sung by Jayachandran and penned by Bharanikkavu Sivakumar. His film career began in 1992, when he started Panchathan Record Inn,
a music recording and mixing studio attached to the backyard of his
house. Over time it would become the most advanced recording studio in
India, and arguably one of Asia’s most sophisticated and high-tech studios. He initially composed scores for documentaries, jingles for advertisements and Indian Television
channels and other projects. In 1987 Rahman, then still known as Dileep
got his first opportunity to compose jingles for new range of watches
being launched by Allwyn. In 1992, he was approached by film director Mani Ratnam to compose the score and soundtrack for Ratnam’s Tamil film Roja. The debut led Rahman to receive the Rajat Kamal (Silver Lotus) award for Best Music Director at the National Film Awards, an unprecedented win for a first-time film composer. Rahman has since been awarded the Silver Lotus three more times for Minsara Kanavu (Tamil) in 1997, Lagaan (Hindi) in 2002, Kannathil Muthamittal (Tamil) in 2003, the most ever by any composer.
Roja’s score met with high sales and acclaim in both its original and dubbed versions, led by the theme song “Chinna Chinna Aasai” bringing about a marked change in film music at the time. Rahman followed this with successful scores for Tamil–language films of the Chennai film industry including Ratnam’s politically charged Bombay, the urbanite Kadhalan, Thiruda Thiruda and S. Shankar‘s debut film Gentleman, spurred by the popular dance song “Chikku Bukku Rayile“. Rahman worked with director Bharathiraaja‘s Kizhakku Cheemayile and Karuththamma, producing successful Tamil rural folk inspired scores and delivered the grand saxophonic score for K. Balachander‘s Duet. The 1995 film Indira and the romantic comedies Mr. Romeo and Love Birds all gained him considerable notice. His fanbase in Japan increased with Muthu ‘s success there.
His soundtracks gained him recognition in the Tamil Nadu film industry
and around the world for his stylistic versatility incorporating Western classical, Carnatic and Tamil traditional/folk music traditions, jazz, reggae and rock music. The soundtrack of Bombay sold 12 million copies worldwide. The “Bombay Theme“—from Ratnam’s Bombay—would later reappear in his score of Deepa Mehta‘s Fire and various compilations and media around the world. It was featured in the Palestinian film Divine Intervention in 2002, and in the Nicolas Cage film Lord of War, in 2005. Rangeela, directed by Ram Gopal Varma, marked Rahman’s debut for Hindi-language films made in the Mumbai film industry. Many successful scores for films including Dil Se.. and the percussive Taal followed. Sufi mysticism would inspire the track “Chaiyya Chaiyya” from the former, as well as the composition “Zikr” from his score for the film Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose: The Forgotten Hero for which he created large symphonic orchestral and choral arrangements. His score for the Chennai production Minsaara Kanavu garnered Rahman his second National Film Award for Best Music Direction in 1997, and a South FilmFare Award for Best Music Direction in a Tamil film,
breaking a record with six consecutive wins in the latter category.
Rahman would go onto win the award a further three consecutive times.
Musical cues in scores for Sangamam and Iruvar employed Carnatic vocals and instruments such as the veena with leads of rock guitar and jazz. In the 2000s Rahman created hit scores for Rajiv Menon‘s Kandukondain Kandukondain, Alaipayuthey, Ashutosh Gowariker‘s Swades and Rang De Basanti. He composed songs with Hindustani motifs for Water (2005). By the end of 2003, Rahman had sold more than 150 million records of his film scores and soundtracks for over 50 film scores worldwide.
Rahman has worked with Indian poets and lyricists such as Javed Akhtar, Gulzar, Vairamuthu and Vaali. He has consistently produced commercially successful soundtracks when collaborating with particular film directors such as Mani Ratnam, who he has worked with since Roja, and the director S. Shankar in the films Gentleman, Kadhalan, Indian, Jeans, Mudhalvan, Nayak, Boys, Sivaji and lately for Enthiran.
In 2005, Rahman extended his Panchathan Record Inn studio by establishing AM Studios in Kodambakkam, Chennai, thereby creating the most cutting-edge studio in Asia. In 2006, Rahman launched his own music label, KM Music. Its first release was his score to the film Sillunu Oru Kaadhal. Rahman scored the Mandarin language picture Warriors of Heaven and Earth in 2003 after researching and utilizing Chinese and Japanese classical music, and won the Just Plain Folks Music Award For Best Music Album for his score of the 2006 film Varalaru (God Father). He co-scored the Shekhar Kapur project and his first British film, Elizabeth: The Golden Age, in 2007. He garnered an Asian Film Award nomination for Best Composer at the Hong Kong International Film Festival for his Jodhaa Akbar score. His compositions have been sampled for other scores within India, and appeared in such films as Inside Man, Lord of War, Divine Intervention and The Accidental Husband. In 2008, Rahman scored his first Hollywood picture, the comedy Couples Retreat released the next year, which won him the BMI London Award for Best Score. Rahman scored the film Slumdog Millionaire in 2008, for which he won a Golden Globe and two Academy Awards, becoming the first Asian to do so. The songs “Jai Ho” and “O…Saya“
from the soundtrack of this film met with commercial success
internationally. In 2010, Rahman composed scores for the romance film Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa, blockbuster sci-fi romance film Enthiran and Danny Boyle‘s 127 Hours. Rahman started off the year 2011 by scoring Imtiaz Ali‘s musical film Rockstar. The soundtrack became a phenomenal success and earned Rahman immense critical praise.
Performing and other projects
Rahman has been involved in several projects aside from film. Vande Mataram,
an album of his original compositions released on India’s 50th
anniversary of independence in 1997, enjoyed great commercial success. Vande Mataram is the largest selling Indian non-film album to date. He followed it up with an album for the Bharat Bala–directed video Jana Gana Mana, a conglomeration of performances by many leading exponents and artists of Indian classical music.
Rahman has written jingles for ads and composed several orchestrations
for athletic events, television and internet media publications,
documentaries and short films. He frequently enlists the Czech Film Orchestra, Prague and the Chennai Strings Orchestra.
In 1999, Rahman partnered with choreographers Shobana and Prabhu Deva and a Tamil cinema dancing troupe to perform with Michael Jackson in Munich, Germany at his “Michael Jackson and Friends” concert. In 2002, he composed the music for his maiden stage production, Bombay Dreams, commissioned by musical theatre composer Andrew Lloyd Webber. Finnish folk music band Värttinä collaborated with Rahman to write the music for The Lord of the Rings theatre production and in 2004, Rahman composed the piece “Raga’s Dance” for Vanessa-Mae‘s album Choreography performed by Mae and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
Since 2004, Rahman has performed three successful world tours to audiences in Singapore, Australia, Malaysia, Dubai, the United Kingdom, Canada, the United States and India. He has been collaborating with Karen David for her upcoming studio album. A two-disc soundtrack, Introducing A. R. Rahman (2006) featuring 25 of his pieces from Tamil film scores was released in May 2006, and his non-film album, Connections was released on 12 December 2008. Rahman also performed at the White House State dinner arranged by US President Barack Obama during the official visit of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on November 24, 2009. Rahman is one of over 70 artists who performed on “We Are the World 25 for Haiti“, a charity single to raise emergency relief funds in the wake of the 2010 Haiti earthquake. In 2010, Rahman composed “Jai Jai Garvi Gujarat” in honor of the 50th anniversary of the formation of Gujarat State,
“Semmozhiyaana Thamizh Mozhiyaam” as part of World Classical Tamil Conference 2010, and the official theme song of the 2010 Commonwealth Games, “Jiyo Utho Bado Jeeto“. Rahman organised his first world tour, named A. R. Rahman Jai Ho Concert: The Journey Home World Tour,
in 2010. The ongoing tour was kicked off on June 11 at the Nassau
Coliseum in New York and will span 16 major cities worldwide.
Some of his notable compositions were performed live by the London Philharmonic Orchestra in April 2010. In February 2011, Rahman collaborated with Michael Bolton for his new studio album Gems – The Duets Collection. Rahman reworked on his song “Sajna” from the 2009 American film Couples Retreat to create the track.
On 20 May 2011, English musician Mick Jagger announced the formation of a new supergroup, SuperHeavy, which includes Dave Stewart, Joss Stone, Damian Marley, and Rahman. The band’s self-titled album is slated for release in September 2011.
The album will see Mick Jagger singing in Rahman’s composition
“Satyameva Jayate”, which translates to “the truth alone triumphs”.
In January 2012, it was announced the German Film Orchestra Babelsberg would join KM Music Conservatory
musicians in a 100-member concert tour of five Indian cities performing
Rahman’s compositions. The tour, named “Germany and India 2011–2012:
Infinite Opportunities’. Classic Incantations”, will mark the centenary
of Indian cinema and of Studio Babelsberg, the world’s oldest film
Music style and impact
Skilled in Carnatic music, Western classical, Hindustani music and the Qawwali style of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan,
Rahman has been noted to write film songs that amalgamate elements of
these music systems and other genres, layering instruments from
differing music idioms in an improvisatory manner. Symphonic orchestral themes have accompanied his scores, occasionally employing leitmotif. In the 1980s, Rahman recorded and played arrangements on monophonic sound, synonymous with the era of his musical predecessors K. V. Mahadevan and Vishwanathan–Ramamoorthy.
In later years his methodology changed as he experimented with the
fusion of traditional instruments with new electronic sounds and
Rahman’s musical interests and outlook stem from his love of
experimentation. Rahman’s compositions, in the vein of past and
contemporary Chennai film composers, bring out auteuristic uses of counterpoint, orchestration and the human voice, melding Indian pop music with unique timbre,
forms and instrumentation. By virtue of these qualities, broad ranging
lyrics and his syncretic style, the appeal of his music cuts across the
spectrum of classes and cultures within Indian society.
His first soundtrack for Roja was listed in Time‘s “10 Best Soundtracks” of all time in 2005. Film critic Richard Corliss
felt the “astonishing debut work parades Rahman’s gift for alchemizing
outside influences until they are totally Tamil, totally Rahman.” Rahman’s initial global reach is attributed to the South Asian diaspora.
Described as one of the most innovative composers to ever work in the
industry, his unique style and immense success transformed film music in
the 1990s prompting several film producers to take film music more
seriously. The music producer Ron Fair considers Rahman to be “one of the world’s great living composers in any medium”.
The director Baz Luhrmann notes
|“||I had come to the music of A. R. Rahman through the emotional and haunting score of Bombay and the wit and celebration of Lagaan.
But the more of AR’s music I encountered the more I was to be amazed at
the sheer diversity of styles: from swinging brass bands to triumphant
anthems; from joyous pop to West-End musicals. Whatever the style, A. R.
Rahman’s music always possesses a profound sense of humanity and
spirit, qualities that inspire me the most.
Rahman has introduced the 7.1 technology in south Indian movies to provide better output.
Rahman was the 1995 recipient of the Mauritius National Award and the Malaysian Award for contributions to music. He was nominated for a Laurence Olivier Award for his first West-End production. A four-time National Film Award winner and recipient of six Tamil Nadu State Film Awards, fifteen Filmfare Awards and thirteen Filmfare Awards South for his music and scores. He has been conferred Kalaimamani from the Government of Tamil Nadu for excellence in the field of music, special music achievement awards from the Government of Uttar Pradesh and Government of Madhya Pradesh and the Padma Shri from the Government of India. In 2006, he received an honorary award from Stanford University for contributions to global music. In 2007, Rahman was entered into the Limca Book of Records as “Indian of the Year for Contribution to Popular Music”, and the Guinness World Records in 2010 as the original composer of “Maa Tujhe Salaam”, from the album Vande Mataram – the song performed in the most number of languages worldwide (265). He is the 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award recipient from the Rotary Club of Madras. In 2009, for his score of Slumdog Millionaire, Rahman won the Broadcast Film Critics Association Award, the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score, the BAFTA Award for Best Film Music, and two Academy Awards for Best Original Music Score and Best Original Song at the 81st Academy Awards. Rahman has received honorary doctorates from Middlesex University and Aligarh Muslim University. Later the year Rahman was conferred the honorary doctorate from Anna University in Chennai. He has also won two Grammy Awards, for Best Compilation Soundtrack Album and Best Song Written for a Visual Media. Rahman was awarded the Padma Bhushan, India’s third highest civilian honor, in 2010. Rahman’s work for the film 127 Hours
garnered him Golden Globe, BAFTA, and two Academy Award nominations for
Best Original Music Score and Best Original Song in 2011. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Trinity College of Music, presented to him by Trinity College London.
On May 7, 2012, he was conferred Honorary Doctorate from the Miami University, Ohio. During the acceptance speech, he mentioned that he received a Christmas card from the US President’s family and an invitation for the dinner at White House.
|Rahman and his wife|
He is married to Saira Banu and has three children, Khatija, Rahima, and Ameen. Ameen sings the track “NaNa” from Couples Retreat and his daughter Khatija the track “Pudhiya Manidha” from Enthiran. Rahman is the uncle of composer G. V. Prakash Kumar, who is the son of Rahman’s elder sister, A. R. Reihana. Prakash Kumar’s first work in film was singing on the Rahman composition “Chikku Bukku Rayile” from his score to the 1993 film Gentleman. A. R. Reihana debuted in film singing on the track “Vidai Kodu Engal Naadae” from Kannathil Muthamittal
and is also a music director. Rahman’s younger sister Fathima is in
charge of his Music conservatory in Chennai. The youngest Ishrath has
her own music studio. A. R. Rahman is brother-in-law of film actor Rahman.
An atheist through much of his childhood, in 1989 Rahman converted to
Islam, the religion of his mother’s family. After the early death of
his father, his family went through hard times and Sufism had a great influence on his mother and slowly on his family. During the 81st Academy Awards ceremony, he paid tribute to his mother, saying “There is a Hindi dialogue, mere pass ma hai, which means ‘even if I have got nothing I have my mother here’.” He also began his own catchphrase, “Ella pughazhum iraivanukke“, in Tamil
which literally means “All praises dedicated to God”. The phrase was
popularized after Rahman uttered it prior to his speech at the 81st
Academy Awards ceremony.
Rahman is involved in various charitable causes. In 2004, he was appointed as the Global Ambassador of the Stop TB Partnership, a project by WHO. He has shown support to charities including Save the Children, India, and worked with Yusuf Islam for his song “Indian Ocean”. The song featured a-ha keyboard player Magne Furuholmen and drummer Travis, Neil Primrose. The proceeds of the song went towards helping orphans in Banda Aceh, that was affected by the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami. He produced the single “We Can Make It Better” by Don Asian alongside Mukhtar Sahota. In 2008, Rahman opened his KM Music Conservatory
partnered with Audio Media Education facility to tutor and train
aspiring musicians in vocals, instruments, music technology and sound
design. The conservatory – with preeminent musicians on its panel and a
newly founded symphony orchestra – is located near his studio in Kodambakkam, Chennai, offering courses at Beginners, Foundation and Diploma level. Violinist L. Subramaniam is on its board of advisors. Several of Rahman’s proteges from the studio have gone onto score music for feature films. Rahman composed the theme music for a short film for The Banyan in 2006, in aid of destitute women in Chennai. In 2008, Rahman with noted percussionist Sivamani created a song titled “Jiya Se Jiya”, inspired by the Free Hugs Campaign and promoted it through a video shot in various cities in India.
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Who is Christopher Anthony John “Chris” Martin? The entertainment and music world knows Chris Martin as an English singer-songwriter, who is the lead vocalist, pianist and rhythm guitarist of the band Coldplay. He is married to actress Gwyneth Paltrow.
Chris Martin was born 2 March 1977 in Exeter, Devon, England and is the eldest of five children. His father, Anthony Martin, is a retired accountant, and his mother, Alison Martin, is a music teacher. Martin started his education at the preparatory Exeter Cathedral School. It was at the prep school that Martin formed his first band, The Rocking Honkies, with Nick Repton & Iwan Gronow. Their debut performance was met with boos from the crowd. After Exeter Cathedral, Martin boarded at Sherborne School, a boys’ independent school in Dorset. He also met future Coldplay manager Phil Harvey at the school. Martin continued his studies at University College London, staying at Ramsay Hall where he read Ancient World Studies and graduated with First Class honours in Greek and Latin. It is here he met future Coldplay bandmates Jonny Buckland, Will Champion and Guy Berryman 
While studying at University College London, Martin met Jonny Buckland, Will Champion and Guy Berryman. In January 1998, they formed the rock band Coldplay. The band has had internationally recognised fame and success since their debut album, Parachutes, in 2000. Since then, they have released several further albums/EP’s including: A Rush of Blood to the Head, Live 2003, X&Y, Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends, and Prospekt’s March.
As a solo artist, Martin has written songs for a variety of acts including Embrace (“Gravity“) and Jamelia (“See It in a Boy’s Eyes“, co-written with Coldplay producer Rik Simpson). Martin has also collaborated with Ron Sexsmith, Faultline, The Streets, and Ian McCulloch. He also sang a part of the vocals for the Band Aid 20 single, “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” at the end of 2004. In 2005, Martin collaborated with Nelly Furtado on the track “All Good Things (Come to an End)“, for her 2006 album, Loose. The two were once rumoured to be a couple, after they both performed at Glastonbury in 2002. Furtado joked about the situation, saying that “Yeah, he’s my boyfriend — he just doesn’t know it yet”.
Martin’s fascination with hip hop was shown in the summer of 2006 when he collaborated with rapper Jay-Z for the rapper’s comeback album Kingdom Come after the two met earlier in the year. Martin put some chords together for a song known as “Beach Chair” and sent them to Jay-Z who enlisted the help of hip hop producer Dr. Dre to mix it (contrary to popular knowledge it was Coldplay producer Rik Simpson and not Dre who conceived and performed the drum beats). The song was performed on 27 September 2006 by the two during Jay-Z’s European tour at Royal Albert Hall. In 2007, Martin appeared on a track titled “Part of the Plan” for Swizz Beatz‘ debut solo album One Man Band Man. Martin has also worked on a solo collaboration with Kanye West, with whom he shared an impromptu jam session during a 2006 concert at Abbey Road Studios. He performed the chorus of “Homecoming“, from West’s album Graduation.
Martin’s primary influence is the British rock band Radiohead. In a 2008 Rolling Stone interview Martin stated: “Sometimes I feel like they [Radiohead] cleared a path with a machete, and we came afterward and put up a strip mall. I would still give my left [testicle] to write anything as good as OK Computer.” Martin is very vocal about his love for Norwegian new wave/Synthpop band a-ha. In 2005 he stated the following in an interview: “I found myself in Amsterdam the other day and I put a-ha’s first record on. I just remembered how much I loved it. It’s incredible songwriting. Everyone asks what inspired us, what we’ve been trying to steal from and what we listened to as we were growing up – the first band I ever loved was a-ha.” Martin has also performed live together with Magne Furuholmen of a-ha.
U2 has been an important influence on Martin both musically and politically, in which he wrote for Rolling Stone magazine’s “100 Greatest Artists of All Time”, in the section on U2, saying: “I don’t buy weekend tickets to Ireland and hang out in front of their gates, but U2 are the only band whose entire catalog I know by heart. The first song on The Unforgettable Fire, “A Sort of Homecoming“, I know backward and forward – it’s so rousing, brilliant, and beautiful. It’s one of the first songs I played to my unborn baby.” Martin also comments on Bono‘s effect on his own charity and political involvement he is even known to joke with friends referring to himself as “Crono”.
He is known to be a fan of artists such as Manchester rock band Oasis, Irish pop group Westlife, British pop groups Girls Aloud and Take That, and Canadian indie rock band Arcade Fire. Solo artists Martin likes include Leona Lewis, Noel Gallagher, and Kylie Minogue.
Martin and Coldplay guitarist Jon Buckland made cameo appearances in the film Shaun of the Dead as supporters of the fictional charity ZombAid. Martin has a second cameo in this film as a Zombie. In 2006 Martin had a cameo role in the second series episode four of the Ricky Gervais- and Stephen Merchant-created comedy Extras. He also appears singing in the closing credits of the 2009 film Brüno alongside Bono, Sting, Slash, Snoop Dogg, and Elton John. Martin also played one gig with the “Sid James Experience”.
Martin has been particularly outspoken on issues of fair trade and has campaigned for the charity Oxfam‘s Make Trade Fair campaign. He traveled to Ghana and Haiti to meet farmers and view the effects of unfair trade practices. When performing he usually has variations of “Make Trade Fair”, “MTF” or an equal sign written on the back of his left hand and the letters “MTF” can be seen emblazoned on his piano.
He was a vocal critic of President George W. Bush and the war in Iraq. Martin was a strong supporter of Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry, most notably during his acceptance speech for the 2004 Grammy Awards Record of the Year, accepting for “Clocks“. Martin also supported the Democratic Party candidate for President in 2008, giving a shout-out to Barack Obama at the end of a performance of “Yellow” on 25 October 2008 episode of Saturday Night Live.
On 1 April 2006, The Guardian reported that Martin was backing the British Conservative Party leader David Cameron and had written a new theme song for the party titled “Talk to David”. This was later revealed to be an April Fool’s joke. Whilst touring Australia in March 2009, Martin and the rest of Coldplay were the opening act at the Sound Relief benefit concert at the Sydney Cricket Ground in Sydney, for the bushfires and floods in Victoria and Queensland. Whilst performing the final song “Fix You“, Martin leapt off the stage and proceeded to run through the crowd with thousands of fans chasing him. The song had finished well before he made it back on stage but he managed to sing the final refrain under exhaustion. He was so tired that he let the crowd sing it for him as well. At the end of the performance he was quoted to saying ‘I hope no-one got hurt’. He reportedly had to lie down for half an hour back stage and was suffering from heat exhaustion. The band then played a sold-out gig in Sydney that night.
Martin met American actress Gwyneth Paltrow in 2002 backstage at a Coldplay gig after the death of the actress’s father, Bruce Paltrow. The couple married a year later on 5 December 2003. Their daughter, Apple Blythe Alison Martin, was born on 14 May 2004 in London. Their second child, Moses Bruce Anthony Martin, was born on 8 April 2006 in New York City. Simon Pegg and Martin’s bandmate Jonny Buckland are Apple’s godfathers. Martin is a longtime friend of Pegg, having met him in 2001, and appears in Shaun of the Dead, one of Pegg’s movies.
Martin does not smoke or drink alcohol.
In a 2005 Rolling Stone magazine interview, Martin said of his religious views: “I definitely believe in God. How can you look at anything and not be overwhelmed by the miraculousness of it?” In the same interview he spoke of going through a period of spiritual confusion, stating “I went through a weird patch, starting when I was about sixteen to twenty-two, of getting God, religion, superstition, judgement all confused”.
|2006||Extras||Himself||“Chris Martin” (Season 2: Episode 4)|
|2010||The Simpsons||Himself||“Million Dollar Maybe” (Season 21: Episode 11)|
|2004||Shaun of the Dead||Himself||Cameo appearance
With Jon Buckland
- See Coldplay discography for his work with said group.
|2002||“Where Is My Boy?”
“Your Love Means Everything, Pt. 2″
|Faultline||Your Love Means Everything||Featured vocals|
|“Gold in Them Hills”||Ron Sexsmith||Cobblestone Runway||Featured vocals|
|2003||“Sliding”, “Arthur”||Ian McCulloch||Slideling||Piano, backing vocals|
|“See It in a Boy’s Eyes“||Jamelia||Thank You||Co-writer, backing vocals|
|2004||“Everybody’s Happy Nowadays”||Ash||Orpheus||Backing vocals|
|“Gravity“||Embrace||Out of Nothing||Writer|
|“Do They Know It’s Christmas?“||Band Aid 20||–||Featured vocals|
|2006||“All Good Things (Come to an End)“||Nelly Furtado||Loose||Co-writer, background vocals|
|“Beach Chair“||Jay-Z||Kingdom Come||Producer, featured vocals|
|2007||“Homecoming“||Kanye West||Graduation||Co-writer, featured vocals, piano|
|2009||“Lukas”, “Fun”, “Want“||Natalie Imbruglia||Come to Life||Co-writer|
|2009||“Dove of Peace”||Brüno||Brüno||Featured vocals|
|2010||“Most Kingz”||Jay-Z||–||Featured vocals|
|2010||“Me and Tennessee”||Gwyneth Paltrow and Tim McGraw||Country Strong||Writer|
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Who is Adam Noah Levine? The entertainment and music world knows Adam Levine as an American singer-songwriter and musician, best known as the front man and guitarist for the pop rock band Maroon 5. He is also a coach on the American talent show The Voice.
Levine was born March 18, 1979 in Los Angeles, the son of Patsy Noah and Fred Levine. His uncle is Slate writer and editor Timothy Noah. He has a brother, Michael, and a sister, Julia Milne. When he was six, he made the winning shot of his local YMCA championship basketball game (on a team his father coached) with no time left on the clock. He has said that the incident changed his life and gave him the confidence to be successful.
Levine attended French Woods Festival of the Performing Arts Camp (Hancock, NY) with best friend Jesse Carmichael, guitar player of the band known at that time as Kara’s Flowers. He graduated from Brentwood School in 1997.
Levine is Jewish on his father’s side and a Protestant on his mother’s side. He refused a Bar Mitzvah and is an atheist. 
Original band Kara’s Flowers
Having met at Brentwood School in Los Angeles, CA, the band released their first album entitled The Fourth World in 1997 as high school seniors. That same year the band appeared on an episode of Beverly Hills, 90210. The album had little success, and its only single, “Soap Disco”, failed commercially. Disappointed with the results of their album, the band went on hiatus and went their separate ways.
Levine and Carmichael left Los Angeles to study at Five Towns College, a small music and performing arts school in Dix Hills, Long Island, New York. This was the first time the two Los Angeles natives were exposed to a completely different music scene, a cultural awakening for the young men. On MTV News, in 2002, Levine said, “That’s when I started waking up to the whole hip hop, R&B thing. We had friends named Chaos and shit. It was not Brentwood High.”
Maroon 5 and mainstream success
During this time, Levine worked a two-week stint as a waiter at Johnny Rockets. After dropping out of Five Towns College, Levine and Jesse reunited with Mickey and Ryan, but added former Square guitarist, James Valentine in 2001. Renaming the band Maroon 5, Levine and his friends began to compile all of their new found musical influences into their music. While Levine was working as a writer’s assistant on the television show “Judging Amy,” he spent time writing the lyrics about his ex-girlfriend, Jane. Those lyrics became the album “Songs About Jane.”
Levine has collaborated with various musical acts. In 2005, Levine was featured on the Ying Yang Twins song “Live Again”. He appeared on Kanye West‘s Late Registration album, on the third single, “Heard ‘Em Say“. He is also featured in the song “Wild Horses” on Alicia Keys‘ third album Alicia Keys: MTV Unplugged. Over the next year, he co-wrote the track “Say It Again” on Natasha Bedingfield‘s album N.B.. He also performed the background vocals on this song. Most recently, Levine offered his vocals on Gym Class Heroes’ newest album in the song “Stereo Hearts.”
Levine has made several notable comic appearances on television. During 2007, he appeared on the 33rd season premiere of Saturday Night Live in an SNL Digital Short called Iran So Far with Andy Samberg, Fred Armisen and Jake Gyllenhaal. Levine played himself while singing a humorous bridge to a “love song” for Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. In 2008, he appeared on Comedy Central‘s “Night Of Too Many Stars”. Levine also had a cameo on Jimmy Kimmel Live for the night of stars and endorsed Barack Obama in the 2008 Presidential Election.
In October 2008, Levine collaborated with First Act to create the First Act 222 Guitar, fashioned to Levine’s specifications. The guitar was made available for purchase at Target retail stores.
Levine has stated in various interviews that he does not plan on continuing in Maroon 5 forever, and may stop after the tour for Maroon 5′s third album.
Levine made a guest appearance as himself on the season three finale of 30 Rock in the episode Kidney Now!.
In 2009, Levine recorded “Gotten”, a song for Slash‘s first solo album Slash released in April 2010. “Gotten” was premiered at amazon.com on March 29, 2010.
Levine is also featured as a singer for his band’s song “She Will be Loved” in the music rhythm game Band Hero.
In February 2010, he was among approximately 80 musicians who sang on the charity-single remake of “We Are the World” called “We Are the World 25 for Haiti“.
Levine is one of the contestant judges and coach mentors on the singing TV show, The Voice. The winner, Javier Colon, was on Levine’s team.
Levine’s ex-girlfriend Jane is the muse behind the name of the band’s debut album Songs About Jane. In a 2004 interview, he claimed that she had not contacted him despite the success of the album. They have since made up, and by 2007, Levine referred to them as being “close friends”.
Levine is a “car junkie”, his favorite car being his 1971 Mercedes 280 SE 3.5 Cabriolet.
In 2006, Levine broke his sternum while lifting weights, what he called “one of the most painful things I’ve ever experienced.” He began using spotters while lifting weights before giving up weightlifting completely when he began yoga in 2007.
In September 2010, Levine said on the Howard Stern Show he had been dating Russian Sports Illustrated swimsuit and Victoria’s Secret model Anne Vyalitsyna seriously for about eight months. The couple met when Maroon 5 performed at the 2010 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue release party in Las Vegas.
Levine stripped naked for testicular cancer awareness for a centerfold in Cosmopolitan UK’s February 2011 issue.
|centerfold in Cosmopolitan|
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Who is Gwyneth Kate Paltrow? The entertainment and acting world knows Gwyneth Paltrow as is an American actress and singer. She made her acting debut on stage in 1990 and started appearing in films in 1991. After appearing in several films throughout the decade, Paltrow gained early notice for her work in films such as Se7en (1995) and Emma (1996) (in which she played the title role). Following the films, Sliding Doors (1998) and A Perfect Murder (1998), Paltrow garnered worldwide recognition through her performance in Shakespeare in Love (1998), for which she won an Academy Award for Best Actress, a Golden Globe Award and two Screen Actors Guild Awards, for Outstanding Lead Actress and as a member of the Outstanding Cast.
Since then, Paltrow has portrayed supporting as well as lead roles in films such as The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999), Shallow Hal (2001), and Proof (2005), for which she earned a Golden Globe nomination as Best Actress in Motion Picture Drama. In 2008, she appeared in the highest grossing movie of her career, the superhero film Iron Man (2008), and then reprised her role as Pepper Potts in its sequel, Iron Man 2 (2010). Paltrow also appeared in the television series, Glee, and has been the face of Estée Lauder‘s Pleasures perfume since 2005. She is married to Chris Martin, the lead vocalist of Coldplay. They have two children together, Apple and Moses.
Paltrow was born September 27, 1972 in Los Angeles, California, the daughter of Blythe Danner, an actress, and Bruce Paltrow, a film and television director and producer. Paltrow’s father was of Ashkenazi Russian Jewish descent; her mother is a Quaker of Pennsylvania Dutch and more distant white Barbadian ancestry. Paltrow’s paternal great-great-grandfather, whose surname was “Paltrowicz”, was a rabbi in Nowogród, Poland. Paltrow has a younger brother, Jake Paltrow, and is a half-cousin of actress Katherine Moennig, and a second cousin of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords (AZ-08).
Paltrow was raised in Santa Monica, where she attended Crossroads School, before moving and enrolling in The Spence School, a private girls’ school in New York City. Later, she briefly studied art history at the University of California, Santa Barbara, before dropping out to act. She is an “adopted daughter” of Talavera de la Reina (Spain), where at 15 she spent a year as an exchange student and learned to speak Spanish.
Early work, 1990–1996
After spending several summers watching her mother perform at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts, Paltrow made her professional stage debut there in 1990. Her film debut followed next year with Shout (1991), starring John Travolta, she was cast by Steven Spielberg in his film, Hook (1991), as the young Wendy Darling. Paltrow then had minor roles in Malice (1993) and Flesh and Bone (1993). She was next cast in a supporting role in Se7en (1995) alongside Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman, which earned her a Satellite Award nomination. In 1996, she played the title character in Emma to critical acclaim.
Worldwide recognition, 1998–2003
Paltrow appeared in several films throughout 1998, including Sliding Doors and the leading role in the film adaptation of the Charles Dickens novel, Great Expectations with Ethan Hawke, Robert De Niro, Anne Bancroft and Chris Cooper. Also in 1998 Paltrow appeared in two thrillers, Hush opposite Jessica Lange and A Perfect Murder inspired by Alfred Hitchcock‘s 1954 film, Dial M for Murder. Paltrow appeared opposite Michael Douglas as Emily Taylor, based on Grace Kelly‘s character from the original film, though the film was met with mixed reviews.
In 1998, Paltrow starred in Shakespeare in Love, portraying the fictional lover of William Shakespeare, played by Joseph Fiennes. The film earned more than US$100 million in box office receipts in the United States and Paltrow gained critical acclaim for her portrayal. Entertainment Weekly commented, “Best of all is Gwyneth Paltrow, who, at long last, has a movie to star in that’s as radiant as she is.” The New York Times summed up her turn as Viola as such: “Gwyneth Paltrow, in her first great, fully realized starring performance, makes a heroine so breathtaking that she seems utterly plausible as the playwright’s guiding light.” The award-winning Shakespeare in Love earned Paltrow the award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role from the Screen Actors Guild, the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress and the Academy Award for Best Actress, among other honors. Her Pink Ralph Lauren dress worn at the 71st Academy Awards in collecting her Oscar was extremely popular and was credited for bringing pink back into fashion.
In 1999, Paltrow co-starred in The Talented Mr. Ripley alongside Jude Law, Matt Damon and Cate Blanchett which earned $80 million domestically and received positive reviews. She showcased her singing ability in 2000′s Duets, which was directed by her father and co-starred singer Huey Lewis. The same year, Paltrow co-starred with Ben Affleck in the romantic drama Bounce as Abby Janello. She was part of an ensemble cast, as Margot Tenenbaum, in The Royal Tenenbaums (2001). Also in 2001, she starred with Jack Black in the comedy Shallow Hal, where she had to wear a specially designed 25 pound fatsuit and heavy make-up. The film was released to mixed reviews.
Recent work, 2004–present
Since the Oscar for Shakespeare in Love, Paltrow’s film success has been less noteworthy. She said she was unequipped for the pressure, leading to several bad movie choices, agreeing with peers who believe the win is, in some ways, a curse. During this time, Paltrow took a career hiatus to raise her family rarely appearing in films. In The Guardian, she said she divided her career into movies for love and films for money: The Royal Tenenbaums, Proof, and Sylvia fell into the former category, while she did View from the Top and Shallow Hal for the latter. In 2004, she appeared in the science-fiction film, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow opposite Jude Law. The same year, she was recognized as an outstanding woman in entertainment by Women in Film Los Angeles with the Crystal Award. In 2005, she appeared in the film Proof as the depressed daughter of a brilliant, eccentric mathematician. The movie is based on the play of the same name, in which Paltrow also played the same character at London’s Donmar Warehouse in 2002. For her performance Paltrow earned her second Golden Globe nomination Best Actress – Motion Picture Drama. In 2006, she had small roles in Running With Scissors and Infamous, in which she sang Cole Porter‘s “What Is This Thing Called Love?“
In 2008, she appeared in the superhero film Iron Man as Pepper Potts, Tony Stark‘s closest friend, budding love interest, and business partner. Iron Man man is Paltrow’s highest-grossing film to date, earning more than $585,000,000 worldwide. Paltrow said she was hesitant to appear in a big-budget project but she was won over by Robert Downey Jr., the film’s lead, and director Jon Favreau. She recalled a conversation with Downey, saying:
In 2010, Paltrow reprised her role in the sequel to Iron Man, Iron Man 2. Later in 2010, she appeared in the musical, Country Strong, where she also recorded the song Country Strong for the films’ soundtrack. The song was released to country radio in August 2010. At the 83rd Academy Awards, Paltrow performed the song “Coming Home” from the film which was nominated for Best Original Song. She also appeared in Fox’s Glee, as substitute teacher, Holly Holliday who fills in for Matthew Morrison‘s character when he falls ill. She sang “Nowadays” from the musical Chicago with Lea Michele, Cee Lo Green‘s “Forget You” and Gary Glitter‘s “Do You Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah)“, plus a mash-up of “Singin’ In the Rain” and Rihanna‘s “Umbrella” with Morrison, Mark Salling and Chris Colfer in the episode. She later performed “Forget You” with Cee-Lo Green himself and The Muppets at the 2011 Grammy Awards. She reprised her role later that season performing “Do You Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah)” by Gary Glitter, an acoustic version of “Landslide” by Fleetwood Mac and “Kiss” by Prince. Paltrow’s upcoming film is the Steven Soderbergh thriller, Contagion, in which she is part of an ensemble cast including Kate Winslet, Marion Cotillard and her The Talented Mr. Ripley co-stars, Matt Damon and Jude Law.
Paltrow is a Save the Children artist ambassador, raising awareness about World Pneumonia Day. She is on the board of the Robin Hood Foundation, a charitable organization that works to alleviate poverty in New York City. In February 2009, Paltrow received a Grammy nomination for her reading of the classic bear books of author Bill Martin, Jr.
Paltrow had her singing debut in the 2000 film Duets, in which she performed a cover version of Smokey Robinson‘s “Cruisin’“. The song was released as a single. The song went to number one in Australia, while Paltrow’s rendition of the Kim Carnes classic “Bette Davis Eyes” reached number three. In the 2006 film Infamous, she sang “What Is This Thing Called Love”. On September 27, 2006, Paltrow sang with rapper Jay-Z during his concert at Royal Albert Hall. She sang the chorus for “Song Cry“, from the rapper’s album Blueprint. In an interview, she said she would be at the concert but not that she would perform. She was quoted as saying “I’m a Jay-Z fan. He’s my best friend.”
In May 2005, Paltrow became the face of Estée Lauder’s Pleasures perfume. She appeared in Chicago on 17 August 2007, to sign bottles of the perfume, and on 8 July 2008, she promoted Lauder’s Sensuous perfume in New York with the company’s three other models. Estée Lauder donates a minimum of $500,000 of sales of items from the ‘Pleasures Gwyneth Paltrow’ collection to breast cancer research. In 2006, she became the face for Bean Pole International, a Korean fashion brand.
In October 2007, she signed for a PBS television series Spain… on the road Again with Mario Batali that showcases the food and culture of Spain. In September 2008, she launched a weekly lifestyle newsletter, Goop, encouraging readers to ‘nourish the inner aspect’. The website’s title is derived from the initials of her first and last names. Each week, the newsletter focuses on an action: Make, Go, Get, Do, Be, and See. It has been ridiculed by E-Online, Vanity Fair, The Independent, and the UK‘s Daily Mirror.
In her early 20s, Paltrow was engaged for six months to, whom she dated from December 1994 to May 1997. The engagement was called off, according to Paltrow, because she wasn’t ready for marriage and later felt responsible for hurting Pitt since she was “such a mess” during that time in her life. Paltrow has since said that as this was her first high-profile relationship with another celebrity, it taught her the need for public discretion about her romantic life; she told Biography magazine, “I said things about being in a relationship [with Brad Pitt] that felt wrong to me even as I was saying them.”
Paltrow had an on-off three year relationship with Ben Affleck from 1997 to late 2000. They first dated from November 1997 to January 1999. Soon after their breakup, Paltrow convinced Affleck to work in the film Bounce with her; during the making of the film, which was shot in mid 1999, the couple started dating again and eventually broke up in October 2000. Paltrow has said that she stopped reading celebrity magazines in 1999.
In October 2002, Paltrow met Chris Martin of the British rock group Coldplay backstage three weeks after the death of her father Bruce Paltrow. They married on December 5, 2003 in a ceremony at a hotel in Southern California. On 14 May 2004, the couple had their first child, a girl named Apple Blythe Alison Martin. Paltrow explained the unusual first name on Oprah, saying: “It sounded so sweet and it conjured such a lovely picture for me – you know, apples are so sweet and they’re wholesome and it’s biblical – and I just thought it sounded so lovely and … clean! And I just thought, ‘Perfect!’” The child’s godfathers are Simon Pegg and Martin’s bandmate, Jonny Buckland.
Her second child, a boy named Moses Bruce Anthony Martin, was born on 8 April 2006, in New York City’s Mount Sinai Hospital. Her son’s first name was explained as the song, entitled “Moses”, that her husband wrote for her before their wedding. Paltrow has stated that she cut down on work after becoming a mother. She has also said that she suffered from postpartum depression after the death of her father and after the birth of her second child.
In December 2006, Paltrow was reported on the Internet to have told Notícias Sábado, the weekend magazine supplement of Portuguese newspaper Diário de Notícias, that she thought British people were more civilized and intelligent than Americans. Paltrow denied making the statements attributed to her and told People magazine that she never gave an interview to a Portuguese publication, but instead had tried to say in Spanish, during a press conference, that Europe was an “older culture” and Americans “live to work”. Diário de Notícias said in their 6 December 2006 edition that it had obtained the quotes from English-language articles that are still referenced online, though Paltrow has insisted that she was misquoted, declaring in 2007: “I love America, and I’m an American through and through.”
|Saturday Night Live||1999||Host||Hosted episodes in 1999, 2001, and 2011|
|Spain… on the road Again||2008||Herself|
|The Marriage Ref||2010||Herself|
|Glee||2010–2011||Holly Holliday||Season 2 Episode 7 “The Substitute“
Season 2 Episode 15 “Sexy“
Season 2 Episode 17 “A Night Of Neglect“
|Who Do You Think You Are?||2011||Herself||Season 2 Episode 6 “Gwyneth Paltrow”|
|Single||Year||Peak chart positions||Certifications
|“Cruisin’“ (with Huey Lewis)||2000||—||1||—||1||1||—||Duets|
|“Bette Davis Eyes“||—||—||—||3||—||—||
|“Country Strong“||2010||81||—||30||—||—||—||Country Strong|
|“Me and Tennessee” (with Tim McGraw)||2011||—||—||34||—||—||63|
|“—” denotes releases that did not chart|
|Single||Year||Peak chart positions||Album|
|“Forget You” (with Glee Cast)||2010||11||24||12||20||31||Glee: The Music, Volume 4|
|“Nowadays / Hot Honey Rag” (with Glee Cast)||—||—||—||—||—||Non-album singles|
|“Singing in the Rain / Umbrella” (with Glee Cast)||18||23||20||10||22|
|“Do You Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah)” (with Glee Cast)||2011||57||—||63||—||95||Glee: The Music, Volume 5|
|“Kiss” (with Glee Cast)||83||98||80||—||—|
|“Landslide” (with Glee Cast)||23||38||35||36||52|
|“Turning Tables” (with Glee Cast)||66||—||66||—||75||Glee: The Music, Volume 6|
|“—” denotes releases that did not chart.|
|“Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me)” (with Babyface)||2000||Duets|
|“Shake That Thing”||2010||Country Strong|
|“Somewhere Over The Rainbow” (with Matthew Morrison)||2011||Matthew Morrison|
|“Country Strong”||2010||Kristin Barlowe, Christoper Sims|
|“Me and Tennessee” (with Tim McGraw)
To see more of Who Is click here
Who is Miranda Leigh Lambert? The entertainment and country music world knows Miranda Shelton. Shelton is an American country music/Texas Country artist who gained fame as a finalist on the 2003 season of Nashville Star, where she finished in third place and later signed to Epic Records. Lambert made her debut with the release of “Me and Charlie Talking”, the first single from her 2005 debut album Kerosene. This album, which was certified Platinum in the United States, also produced the singles “Bring Me Down”, “Kerosene“, and “New Strings”. All four singles were Top 40 hits on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts.
After Epic’s Nashville division closed, Lambert was transferred to Columbia Records Nashville for her second album, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, which was released in early 2007. Although the title track failed to make top 40, the next three singles (“Famous in a Small Town“, “Gunpowder & Lead“, and “More Like Her“) were all Top 20 hits, with “Gunpowder & Lead” becoming her first Top 10 country hit in July 2008. Lambert’s third album, Revolution, was released in September 2009. Five singles have been released from the album, including Lambert’s two Number One hits “The House That Built Me,” which spent four weeks at the top of the chart, and “Heart Like Mine“. Lambert has also been honored by the Grammy Awards, the Academy of Country Music Awards, and the Country Music Association Awards.
Miranda Leigh Lambert was born November 10, 1983 in Longview, Texas and raised in Lindale, Texas. Her father, Richard Lee “Rick” Lambert, is a retired police officer who in later life became a private investigator in partnership with her mother, Beverly June Lambert (née Hughes). Miranda was taught about guns by her father at an early age and later became an avid deer hunter. Her parents took her to a Garth Brooks concert when she was nine and this started her interest in country music. Her father wrote and performed country music and she soon began singing in talent contests under his tutelage.
At age sixteen, Lambert began appearing on the Johnny High Country Music Review in Arlington, Texas, the same show that helped launch the career of LeAnn Rimes. Lambert quickly landed a recording session in Nashville, but left the studio after she became frustrated with the “pop” sound of music. She then went back to Texas and asked her dad to teach her how to play guitar so she could write her own songs.
While still in high school, Lambert made her professional singing debut. She fronted the house band at the Reo Palm Isle Ballroom in Longview, Texas, a long-running venue that has showcased Elvis Presley, Willie Nelson, and is where Brooks & Dunn started out as a bar room band.
In 2003, Lambert auditioned for the talent competition Nashville Star, eventually becoming a third-place finisher on the show. On September 15, 2003, she signed with Epic Records. Her debut single, “Me and Charlie Talking” (co-written by her father and Heather Little), was released in summer of 2004 as the lead-off single to her debut album. Titled Kerosene, Lambert’s first album comprised twelve songs, eleven of which she co-wrote. The album debuted at number one on the Billboard Top Country Albums charts, and eventually gained a Platinum certification by the RIAA for shipments of over one million copies, selling more than 930,000 copies up to July 2008. Overall, the album produced four Top 40 singles on the Billboard country charts, including the title track which was a Top 20 hit. Lambert also toured with Keith Urban and George Strait in early 2006. In 2007, she toured with Dierks Bentley and Toby Keith.
2007-2008: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Lambert’s second album, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend was released on May 9, 2007. She wrote eight of the album’s eleven tracks, including its four singles. Much of the track “Gunpowder & Lead,” the album’s third single and her highest-charting single, was written while she was taking a concealed handgun class in her home town.
In 2005, at the 40th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards in Las Vegas, Lambert won the Cover Girl Fresh Face of Country Music Award. She was also nominated for the Country Music Association‘s Horizon Award in 2005; in 2007, Lambert also received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Female Country Vocal Performance for her single “Kerosene”. She also won the Top New Female Vocalist award at the 2007 ACM (Academy of Country Music) Awards. At the 2008 ACM (Academy of Country Music) Awards, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend won Album of the Year.
Lambert was ranked #90 on the 100 Greatest Women (of Country Music) by Country Universe in 2008.
In February 2009, Miranda Lambert entered the studio to record her third album, Revolution, which was to be released on September 29, 2009. Lambert co-wrote all but four of the album’s 15 tracks; the album also includes co-writes from Blake Shelton, Dave Haywood and Charles Kelley of Lady Antebellum. Ahead of the album’s release, an EP, titled Dead Flowers, was issued on September 8, 2009. The EP, available exclusively at Best Buy, featured the Revolution album track “Dead Flowers” and three bonus tracks previously included on limited editions of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.
During this time, Lambert (along with two other singers), became the new face of Cotton Inc.’s revived “The Touch, The Feel of Cotton” campaign. She has appeared in ads to promote cotton, and the website features a free download of the full version of her song, “Fabric of My Life.”
Lambert debuted her new single, “Dead Flowers“, at the 44th annual Academy of Country Music Awards on April 5, 2009. It was released to country radio on May 4, 2009, and was a minor Top 40 hit on the charts.
On September 24, 2009, Lambert and her band performed all the tracks on Revolution in sequence at the Ryman Auditorium, five days before its scheduled release date.
Upon the release of Revolution, Lambert’s work was met with significant critical praise. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 85, based on 11 reviews, which indicates “universal acclaim”.
Rolling Stone magazine praised the album saying, “Lambert remains country’s most refreshing act, and not just because she makes firearms seem like a matter-of-fact female accessory.” Entertainment Weekly magazine said, “She’s found stylistic shades of songwriters twice her age…” and that the album is “…a portrait of an artist in full possession of her powers, and the best mainstream-country album so far this year.” Boston Globe commented that “Revolution’’ is the sound of Miranda Lambert coming into her own.” Slant magazine also had high praises reserved for the album saying, “Miranda Lambert expands on her fascinating, fully realized artistic persona on Revolution.”
The album’s second single, “White Liar“, was released on August 17, 2009, and debuted at #50 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. In February 2010, “White Liar” became Lambert’s highest-charting single to date, reaching a peak of #2 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs chart.
In promotion of Revolution, Miranda Lambert launched a headlining tour; Roadside Bars & Pink Guitars kicked off in March 2010 and included stops in over 22 cities, as well as a performance at the Bonnaroo Music Festival.
“The House That Built Me,” the album’s third single, was released on March 8, 2010 and became a #1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. It retained this position for four weeks and it received a platinum certification from the RIAA on July 8, 2010.
“Only Prettier” followed as the album’s fourth single in July 2010 and its accompanying music video became somewhat viral. The music video for “Only Prettier” was directed by Trey Fanjoy and filmed in Joelton, Tennessee in June 2010, and premiered on VEVO on August 3, 2010. It features a 1950s theme and cameo appearances by fellow country artists Kellie Pickler, Laura Bell Bundy, and Hillary Scott of Lady Antebellum. In the video, Lambert and her friends portray two rival cliques attending a high school sock hop. The alter-egos are shown doing things such as spiking the punch, stuffing their bras and smoking. Ultimately, the alter-egos have a bad time at the party, while Lambert, Pickler, Bundy and Scott enjoy themselves the entire night. Additionally, Lambert is also shown performing with her band on stage at the event. The humorous video introduced Lambert to a larger audience outside of her Country music base.
On September 1 it was announced Miranda led nominations with an impressive 9 CMA awards, setting a record for the female with the most nominations in a single year by the organization. Miranda performed at the 44th Annual Country Music Association Awards on November 10, 2010. That same night she won the CMA Award for Female Vocalist of the Year and Revolution won Album of the Year. Lambert and Sheryl Crow performed “Coal Miner’s Daughter” as a tribute to country legend Loretta Lynn, who also entered the stage to join them and finished the song with Crow and Lambert as backup. Later that night, Lynn presented the Female Vocalist of the Year CMA award to Lambert.
In December 2010, “Only Prettier“, eventually reached a peak of number 12 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, giving Lambert her seventh Top 20 hit. The fifth single from Revolution was “Heart Like Mine“, which later would become Lambert’s second number one hit.
On February 13, 2011, Lambert won a Grammy Award in the Best Female Country Vocal Performance category for “The House That Built Me.”
On April 4, 2011 during the taping of the Academy of Country Music’s ‘Girls’ Night Out’ television special in Las Vegas, Lambert debuted her new project, girl group Pistol Annies. The group consists of Lambert, Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley. They released their single, “Hell On Heels”, in May 2011.
Miranda Lambert is currently working on two albums which is her fourth solo album and her band “Pistol Annies” debut album.
In 2006, Lambert began dating fellow country singer Blake Shelton. Lambert sang background vocals on Shelton’s 2008 country cover of Michael Bublé‘s song “Home“. The two recorded and co-wrote duet “Bare Skin Rug,” for his studio album Startin’ Fires released later in 2008. Shelton also co-wrote three songs on Revolution, and provided background vocals on “Maintain the Pain.” On May 9, 2010, Shelton proposed to Lambert, after seeking (and receiving) her father’s blessing and they became engaged. The two got married on May 14, 2011 at Don Strange Ranch in Boerne, Texas. Wearing her mother’s wedding dress, Miranda walked down the aisle and exchanged vows with Blake in front of five hundred fifty family members and friends, including fellow celebrities Reba McEntire, Kelly Clarkson, Cee Lo Green, Martina McBride, Dierks Bentley, Charles Kelley, and the Bellamy Brothers. After the ceremony, Miranda expressed her excitement saying, “I’m married to my best friend! Looking forward to a lifetime of laughter.”
- Miranda Lambert (2001)
- Kerosene (2005)
- Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (2007)
- Revolution (2009)
|2005||Country Music Association||Horizon Award||Nominated|
|2006||CMT Music Awards||Female Video of the Year — “Kerosene”||Nominated|
|Breakthrough Video of the Year — “Kerosene”||Nominated|
|Country Music Association||Horizon Award||Nominated|
|2007||Grammy Awards||Best Female Country Vocal Performance — “Kerosene”||Nominated|
|Academy of Country Music||Top New Female Vocalist||Won|
|Female Vocalist of the Year||Nominated|
|Country Music Association||Female Vocalist of the Year||Nominated|
|2008||Grammy Awards||Best Female Country Vocal Performance — “Famous in a Small Town”||Nominated|
|CMT Music Awards||Female Video of the Year — “Famous in a Small Town”||Nominated|
|Academy of Country Music||Top Female Vocalist||Nominated|
|Album of the Year — Crazy Ex-Girlfriend||Won|
|Single Record of the Year — “Famous in a Small Town”||Nominated|
|Country Music Association||Female Vocalist of the Year||Nominated|
|Single of the Year — “Gunpowder & Lead”||Nominated|
|2009||Academy of Country Music||Top Female Vocalist||Nominated|
|Single Record of the Year — “Gunpowder & Lead”||Nominated|
|CMT Music Awards||Female Video of the Year — “More Like Her”||Nominated|
|Country Music Association||Female Vocalist of the Year||Nominated|
|2010||Grammy Awards||Best Female Country Vocal Performance — “Dead Flowers”||Nominated|
|Academy of Country Music||Top Female Vocalist of the Year||Won|
|Album of the Year — Revolution||Won|
|Single Record of the Year — “White Liar”||Nominated|
|Song of the Year — “White Liar”||Nominated|
|Video of the Year — “White Liar”||Won|
|MusicRow Awards||Song of the Year – “The House That Built Me”||Won|
|CMT Music Awards||Video of the Year – “White Liar”||Nominated|
|Female Video of the Year – “White Liar”||Won|
|Teen Choice Awards||Choice Female Country Artist||Nominated|
|Choice Music: Country Song – “The House That Built Me”||Nominated|
|16th Inspirational Country Music Awards||Mainstream Inspirational Country Song, “The House That Built Me”||Nominated|
|Inspirational Country Music Video, “The House That Built Me”||Nominated|
|8th French Country Music Awards||Best Female Vocalist of the Year (Meilleure Chanteuse)||Nominated|
|Country Music Association||Entertainer of the Year||Nominated|
|Female Vocalist of the Year||Won|
|Album of the Year – Revolution||Won|
|Musical Event – “Bad Angel” (with Dierks Bentley and Jamey Johnson)||Nominated|
|Single of the Year – “The House That Built Me”||Nominated|
|Single of the Year – “White Liar”||Nominated|
|Song of the Year – “White Liar”||Nominated|
|Song of the Year – “The House That Built Me”||Won|
|Music Video of the Year – “The House That Built Me”||Won|
|Music Video of the Year – “White Liar”||Nominated|
|American Country Awards||Artist of the Year||Nominated|
|Female Artist of the Year||Nominated|
|Album of the Year – Revolution||Nominated|
|Single by a Female Artist – “White Liar”||Nominated|
|Music Video by a Female Artist – “White Liar”||Nominated|
|2011||Grammy Awards||Best Female Country Vocal Performance — “The House That Built Me”||Won|
|Best Country Collaboration with Vocals — “Bad Angel” (with Dierks Bentley and Jamey Johnson)||Nominated|
|Best Country Album — Revolution||Nominated|
|Academy of Country Music||Entertainer of the Year||Nominated|
|Top Female Vocalist of the Year||Won|
|Single Record of the Year — “The House That Built Me”||Won|
|Song of the Year — “The House That Built Me”||Won|
|Video of the Year — “The House That Built Me”||Won|
|Video of the Year — “Only Prettier”||Nominated|
|CMT Music Awards||Female Video of the Year — “The House That Built Me”||Won|
|Video of the Year — “The House That Built Me”||Nominated|
|Collaborative Video of the Year — “Coal Miner’s Daughter” (with Loretta Lynn and Sheryl Crow)||Nominated|
Sun City Carnival Tour(w/ Kenny Chesney,Lady Antebellum,Sugarland & Montgomery Gentry (2009)
“Amarican Saturday Night Tour 2010″ (w/Brad Paisley,Justin Moore)(2010)
Roadside Bars & Pink Guitars (w/Chris Young,Randy Houser,Luke Bryan,Eric Church,James Otto,David Nail,Wade Bowen,Jake Owen,Cross Canadian Ragweed((2010)
CMT On Tour: Miranda Lambert Revolution(w/Eric Church & Josh Kelley(2010)
“Miranda Lambert: Revolution Tour 2011″(w/Justin Moore,Josh Kelley & Little Big Town) (2011)
Lambert’s road band and crew consists of the following:
- Aden Bubeck — bass guitar
- Chris Kline — keyboard, harmonica, pedal steel, percussion, guitar
- Alex Weeden — lead guitar
- Scotty Wray — rhythm guitar, lap steel guitar, resonator guitar, banjo
- Keith Zebroski — drums
- Scott Fowler — backline tech
- Jason “Pone” Macalik — front of house engineer, backup bus driver
- Chris Newsom — monitor engineer, production manager, stage manager
- Sammy Bones — backline tech
- Jordan Powell — tour manager
- Jose “Puma” Raices — merchandise manager
- Aaron Luke — lighting director
- Charlie Sherman — bus driver
- David Sherman — bus driver
To see more of Who Is click here
Who is Paula Julie Abdul? The entertainment and acting world knows Paula Abdul as an American recording artist, dancer, choreographer, actress and television personality.
In the 1980s, Abdul rose from cheerleader for the Los Angeles Lakers to highly sought-after choreographer at the height of the music video era before scoring a string of pop music-R&B hits in the late-1980s and early-1990s. Her six number one singles on the Billboard Hot 100 tie her for fifth among the female solo performers who have reached #1 there. She won a Grammy for “Best Music Video – Short Form” for “Opposites Attract” and twice won the “Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Choreography“.
After her initial period of success, she suffered a series of setbacks in her professional and personal life, until she found renewed fame and success in the 2000s as a judge on the television series, American Idol, for eight years, before departing from the show. Abdul had moved on to another television series, CBS‘s Live to Dance, which debuted in January 2011. The series has since been canceled. Following her judging role in Live to Dance, Abdul moved to the American version of The X Factor with her former American Idol co-judge Simon Cowell which will premiere in September 2011. She is said to be working on a new album.
Abdul’s father, a Syrian Jew, was born in Aleppo, Syria, raised in Brazil, and subsequently emigrated to the United States; Abdul’s mother, a Canadian Jew, is originally from Minnedosa, Manitoba, with ancestors from Russia and Ukraine, and Abdul derives Canadian citizenship through her. She was June 19, 1962 she has a sister named Wendy, who is 7 years her senior. In 1980, she graduated from Van Nuys High School and was voted girl with the funniest laugh.
An avid dancer, Abdul was inspired towards a show business career by Gene Kelly in the classic film Singin’ in the Rain as well as Debbie Allen, Fred Astaire, and Bob Fosse.
Abdul began taking dance lessons at an early age in ballet, Jazz, and Tap. She attended Van Nuys High School, where she was a cheerleader and an honor student. At 15, she received a scholarship to a dance camp near Palm Springs, and in 1978 appeared in a low-budget Independent musical film, Junior High School.
Abdul studied broadcasting at the California State University at Northridge. During her freshman year, she was selected from a pool of 700 candidates for the cheerleading squad of the Los Angeles Lakers NBA basketball team—the famed Laker Girls. Within three months, she became head choreographer. Six months later, she left the university to focus on her choreography and dancing career.
1982-1986: Dance and choreography era
Abdul was discovered by The Jacksons, after a few of the band members had watched her while attending a Los Angeles Lakers game. She was signed to do the choreography for the video to their single “Torture“. “My only problem was how to tell the Jacksons how to dance,” Abdul later recalled. “Imagine me telling them what routines to do. I was young, I was scared. I’m not quite sure how I got through that.” The success of the choreography in the video led to Abdul’s career of choreographer in music videos. It was also due to the success of the video that Abdul was chosen to be the choreographer for the Jacksons’ Victory tour.
Abdul choreographed videos for several singers throughout the 1980s, including many videos for Janet Jackson during her Control era. In 1995, Abdul released a dance workout video entitled Paula Abdul’s Get Up and Dance! (re-released on DVD in 2003), a fast-paced, hip-hop style workout. In 1998, she released a second video called Cardio Dance (re-released on DVD in 2000). In December 2005, Abdul launched a cheerleading/fitness/dance DVD series called Cardio Cheer, which is marketed to children and teenage girls involved with cheerleading and dance.
In film, Abdul choreographed sequences for the giant keyboard scene involving Tom Hanks’s character in Big. Further credits include Coming to America, Action Jackson, Jerry Maguire, The Running Man, American Beauty (1999 film), Can’t Buy Me Love (film), and Oliver Stone‘s, The Doors. Television credits include The Tracey Ullman Show, American Music Awards, the Academy Awards, and several commercials, such as The King’s touchdown celebration, as seen in a string of popular Burger King television commercials that aired during the 2005–2006 NFL season.
1987-1994: Forever Your Girl and Spellbound
In 1987, Abdul used her savings to make a singing demo. Although her voice was relatively untrained, her exceptional dancing proved marketable to the visually-oriented, MTV-driven, pop music industry. She was a tireless worker, and relied on input from her vocal coach and producers to improve her sound.
In 1988, Abdul released her pop debut album, Forever Your Girl. The album took 62 weeks to hit #1 on the Billboard 200 album sales chart—the longest an album has been on the market before hitting #1—and spent 10 weeks there. The album eventually became multi-platinum in the spring and summer of 1989, and it spawned five American Top Three singles, four of them #1s (three in 1989 and one in 1990): “Straight Up,” “Forever Your Girl,” “Cold Hearted,” and “Opposites Attract.” A remix album, Shut Up and Dance, was also released and reached #7 on Billboard’s album chart, becoming one of the most successful remix albums to date. The Grammy award-winning video for “Opposites Attract” featured an animated cat named MC Skat Kat.
At the 33rd Grammy Awards, Abdul won her first Grammy for Best Music Video for Opposites Attract, She was also nominated for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance For her song Straight Up but it lost to Bonnie Raitt‘s Nick Of Time.
In the early 1990s, Yvette Marine, backing vocalist on Forever Your Girl, claimed that she sang “co-lead vocals” on the album and sued Paula and Virgin Records for compensation. After one month of court proceedings, Abdul and Virgin won the case.
Abdul’s follow-up album, 1991′s Spellbound, contained another string of hits, and sold 7 million copies worldwide. The first single from Spellbound was the ballad, “Rush, Rush,” which topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for five consecutive weeks, and was noted for its music video and Rebel Without a Cause motif featuring Keanu Reeves in the James Dean role. “Promise of a New Day,” the second release from the album, also hit No. 1, and was followed by the Top 10 hit “Blowing Kisses in the Wind” and two Top 20 hits: “Vibeology” and “Will You Marry Me?.” The album, Spellbound, retained much of the dance-oriented formula heard on her debut album. The track “U” was written for Paula by Prince.
Abdul promoted the album through the “Under My Spell Tour,” which was named by an MTV contest for fans. This tour was nearly cancelled due to an accident during rehearsals. The tour began on schedule and ran from October 1991 to the summer of 1992. In 1991, Abdul embraced advertising and starred in a popular Diet Coke commercial in which she danced with a digital image of her idol, a young Gene Kelly.
1995-2001: Head over Heels and a music hiatus
By 1995, Paula Abdul had recovered from her battle with the eating disorder bulimia nervosa and prepared to return to the spotlight with her new album Head over Heels. The first single off the album, “My Love Is for Real” featured a fusion of R&B and traditional Middle Eastern instruments, and was performed with Yemeni-Israeli singer Ofra Haza. Its accompanying Lawrence of Arabia-inspired music video was played in theaters across the world as a preface to the film Clueless. The single was a hit in the clubs (peaking at #1 on Billboard’s Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart), and made it to #28 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart.
The second single, “Crazy Cool,” peaked at #13 on the dance charts. “Ain’t Never Gonna Give You Up” was the album’s third and final single. To date, Head over Heels has sold 3 million copies worldwide.
In January 1997, Abdul starred in the ABC television movie Touched by Evil, playing a businesswoman who discovers that her boyfriend is a serial rapist. Also that year, Abdul co-wrote the song “Spinning Around” with songwriter and producer Kara DioGuardi, who became a fellow judge on American Idol in 2009. “Spinning Around” was a dance-pop track intended to be the lead single on Abdul’s follow-up album to Head over Heels. But the album never materialized, and “Spinning Around” was instead given to Kylie Minogue. The song was highly successful, reaching #1 in numerous countries.
While Abdul took a break from the music industry, she remained busy behind the scenes. Abdul served as the choreographer for several film and theater productions, including the 1998 musical Reefer Madness and the cheerleading scenes in the 1999 film American Beauty (she had previously also choreographed the 1991 film The Doors). Abdul also co-produced a 2001 pilot episode of Skirts, a dramatic series that would have aired on MTV about a high-school cheerleading squad; Abdul was also set to appear as the head coach. The pilot never aired.
In 2000, Abdul’s Paula Abdul: Greatest Hits CD was released by Virgin Records (with whom Abdul was already no longer affiliated). It included all her hit singles and other noteworthy tracks. The song “Bend Time Back ‘Round” had previously been heard only on the 1992 soundtrack for the hit television series Beverly Hills, 90210.
2002-2009: American Idol
In 2002, Abdul appeared as one of three judges for the reality television music competition show American Idol. Abdul, along with fellow judges Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson (joined by Kara DioGuardi in 2009) were to evaluate the talent of a large group of young amateur singers, eliminate most of them in various audition rounds, and then judge the finalists as American television viewers voted on which finalists would continue to each successive round, until all but the winner were eliminated. Abdul won praise as a sympathetic and compassionate judge. She seemed especially kind compared to fellow judge Simon Cowell, who was often blunt in his appraisals of the contestants’ performances. When she realized that Cowell’s over-the-top judging style was heartbreaking for many young contestants, Abdul was so horrified that she considered leaving the show. Although their differences often resulted in extremely heated on-air exchanges and confrontations, Cowell says he played a major role in convincing Abdul not to leave the show.
While serving as a judge on “American Idol,” Abdul accepted a second assignment as reporter for Entertainment Tonight.
In March 2006, Fox announced that Abdul had signed to stay on American Idol as a judge for at least three more years. Later that year, fellow American Idol judge Simon Cowell invited her to be a guest judge at some of the early auditions for the third series of his similar UK talent show The X Factor. Abdul was present at the initial audition of the eventual winner, Leona Lewis.
The week of May 14 to May 18, 2007 (the week before the season 6 finale), Abdul broke her nose when she tried to “avoid tripping over her pet chihuahua.” She was present at the May 22 performance and the May 23 finale.
Abdul’s American Idol wardrobe often includes a number of necklaces, rings, bracelets, and earrings that she designs, and she often gives show contestants custom-designed jewelry. In 2007, Paula Abdul Jewelry launched its nationwide consumer debut on QVC, with the tagline “fashion jewelry designed with heart and soul.” Paula’s first QVC appearance resulted in 15 sellouts of her first jewelry collection involving more than 34,000 pieces. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times on July 18, 2009, Paula’s manager David Sonenberg told the newspaper that, “Very sadly, it does not appear that she’s going to be back on ‘Idol’.” This came about as a result of stalled negotiations between Paula and the show. On August 4, 2009, after numerous contract negotiations, Abdul confirmed that she would not be returning to Idol for its ninth season. The Times cited reports Abdul had been earning as much as $5 million per season and that she was reportedly seeking as much as $20 million to return.
On August 18, 2009, it was reported that Abdul was negotiating to return to Idol after not taking part in season nine of Dancing with the Stars. Two days later, Abdul’s manager said that there were not any talks with Fox, but they were not ruling anything out.
Abdul claimed her departure from Idol was not about money, but that she had to stand on principle.
On September 9, 2009 Ellen DeGeneres was confirmed as Abdul’s successor for Idol.
2007-2011: Post-Idol projects
Paula Abdul’s second greatest-hits CD, Greatest Hits: Straight Up!, was released by Virgin Records on May 8, 2007. Virgin Records also released the music videos to all six of Abdul’s #1 singles to iTunes. Meanwhile, Bravo began airing the reality television series Hey Paula, which followed Abdul through her day-to-day life. The series was produced by Scott Sternberg Productions and debuted on June 28, 2007. Abdul’s behavior as depicted on the show was described as ‘erratic’ by comedian Rosie O’Donnell and decried by numerous fans and critics. The show aired for only one season.
In January 2008, Abdul returned to the music charts for the first time in nearly 13 years with the single “Dance Like There’s No Tomorrow,” the first track on the album Randy Jackson‘s Music Club Vol 1. The song debuted on On Air with Ryan Seacrest., and Abdul performed it during the pre-game show for Super Bowl XLII. “Dance Like There’s No Tomorrow” was a modest comeback hit for Abdul, peaking at #62 on the Billboard Hot 100, #11 on iTunes and #2 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart. She also made a brief guest appearance in season 3 episode 1 of the British television Comedy-Drama Hotel Babylon, which aired in the United Kingdom on February 19, 2008.
In January 2009, Abdul hosted “RAH!,” a 90-minute cheerleading competition on MTV. “RAH!” featured five collegiate squads competing in a series of challenges with Abdul crowning one the winner. In May 2009, Abdul debuted her latest song “I’m Just Here for the Music” (originally an unreleased song from Kylie Minogue‘s ninth album Body Language) on the Ryan Seacrest Radio KIIS-FM show and performed the single on the American Idol results show. “I’m Just Here for the Music“ reached #87 on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming Abdul’s 15th song to appear on the chart.
Paula Abdul has remained busy since leaving American Idol. She hosted “VH1 Divas Live” in September 2009, and opened the show by performing a medley of #1 hits, including “Straight Up”, “Cold Hearted”, “Opposites Attract”, and “Forever Your Girl.” Also on the program, Paula poked fun at her American Idol replacement Ellen DeGeneres.
In 2009 and 2010, Abdul appeared in several episodes of Lifetime Television’s hit series Drop Dead Diva, a comedy about a shallow model whose soul resurfaces in the body of a brilliant, plus-size and recently deceased attorney, Jane. On the show, Abdul played herself as “Judge Paula,” a figment of Jane’s subconscious.
In November 2010, Abdul launched and co-founded AuditionBooth.com, a website that allows aspiring talents to connect with casting directors, producers, and managers.
Abdul kicked off 2011 by serving as lead judge, executive producer, creative partner, mentor and coach on CBS‘ new dancing competition, Live to Dance (formerly Got to Dance) Abdul said that unlike American Idol, her new show is less about “competition” and more about “celebration.” After its first season of seven weekly shows, it was cancelled by CBS.
2011-present: The X Factor
On May 7, 2011, it was announced that Abdul would join Simon Cowell on the first season of the American version of The X Factor. The judging panel will consist of Abdul, Cowell, music executive L.A. Reid and former Pussycat Dolls lead singer Nicole Scherzinger. The series will premiere in September 2011.
Marriages and relationships
Abdul was married to Emilio Estevez from 1992-1994. Another short lived marriage for Paula Abdul was to clothing designer Brad Beckerman in 1996. They divorced in 1998 citing irreconcilable differences.
On Valentine’s Day 2006, Abdul appeared on Dr. Phil as part of a prime time special on love and relationships. She was set up on two dates and Phil McGraw gave her advice.In mid July 2007, Abdul announced that she had begun dating J.T. Torregiani, a restaurant owner 12 years her junior. She told Access Hollywood: “He is a good guy. Things are looking upwards. It’s looking good right now. I wasn’t even looking for someone and that’s what usually happens.“ Paula and JT broke up in June 2008, citing their hectic work schedules.
On December 20, 2004, Abdul was driving her Mercedes on an L.A.-area freeway when she changed lanes and hit another vehicle. The driver and passenger snapped a photograph with a cell phone camera and wrote down the license plate number of the car, which was traced to Abdul. On March 24, 2005, Abdul was fined $900 and given 24 months of informal probation after pleading no contest to misdemeanor hit-and-run driving in Los Angeles. In addition to the fines, she was ordered to pay $775 for damage to the other car.
Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy
Victim of battery
On April 4, 2006, Abdul filed a report at a Hollywood police station claiming she had been a victim of battery at a private party at about 1 a.m. April 2, according to L.A.P.D. spokesman police Lt. Paul Vernon. “According to Abdul, the man at the party argued with her, grabbed her by the arm and threw her against a wall,” Vernon said. “She said she had sustained a concussion and spinal injuries.”
Paula practices Judaism and is proud of her heritage. She once stated, “My father is a Syrian Jew whose family immigrated to Brazil. My mother is Canadian with Jewish roots. My dream is to come to Israel for a real holiday.” In November 2006, Israeli Tourist Minister Isaac Herzog invited her to Israel, Abdul responding with a hug, adding, “I will come; you have helped me make a dream come true.”
Paula is also a dog lover who raised awareness about National Guide Dog Month in May 2009 and she is teaming up with Dick Van Patten to help people with blindness to have more independence through the help of guide dogs. She does not wear real fur.
In May 2005, ABC‘s news magazine Primetime Live reported claims by Season 2 American Idol contestant Corey Clark that he and Abdul had an affair during that season, and that she had coached him on how to succeed in the competition. The fact that Clark came forward at a time when he was marketing a CD and trying to get a book deal was seen as suspicious by some, but Clark maintains that his career was being prejudiced because of his relationship with Abdul and that is why he came forward with the information to clear his name. For the most part, Abdul refused to comment on Clark’s allegations. Simon Cowell came to Abdul’s defense, calling Corey Clark a creep and stating “It was just somebody using her to get a lot of publicity for an appalling record, full stop. At the height of the debacle, Abdul appeared in a Saturday Night Live skit, making light of the situation. While Fox launched an investigation, Abdul received numerous calls of support from celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey and Kelly Ripa; Barbara Walters even addressed the camera during an episode of ABC’s The View to say she was sad to be part of an operation that would report Clark’s flimsy tabloid claims under the guise of a news story. In August 2005, the Fox network confirmed that she would be returning to the show, as the investigation had found “insufficient evidence that the communications between Mr. Clark and Ms. Abdul in any way aided his performance.”
Substance abuse allegations
Substance abuse allegations arose as the result of what some described as “erratic behavior” by Abdul during episodes of American Idol. After reading these allegations on message boards, Abdul told People magazine in April 2005 that she suffered from chronic pain for years following a “cheerleading accident” at age 17 and was diagnosed with reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD) in November 2004. Abdul says she is now pain-free following treatment, including the anti-inflammatory medication Enbrel.
Allegations arose again in January 2007 when videos circulated on the Internet of Abdul appearing to sway in her chair and slur her speech during a set of interviews. Abdul’s publicist attributed this to fatigue and technical difficulties during the recording of the interviews. It was revealed on the Bravo show Hey Paula, which had followed Abdul with a video camera prior to the interviews, that Abdul had not been sleeping, perhaps suffering from some mild form of insomnia.
In February 2007, Abdul told Us Weekly that she had never been drunk or used illegal drugs and called the allegations “lies.”
In a March 2007 appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman, Abdul joked that her scrutinized behavior was caused by her being “abducted by aliens.”
In several interviews given in the late 2000s, Paula claimed to have been left in debilitating pain after a 1992 car accident and a 1993 plane crash that required 15 spinal surgeries and which left her dependent on pain medication for years.
In May 2009, Ladies’ Home Journal posted an article on its Web site that said Abdul told them she attended the La Costa Resort and Spa the previous year to recover from physical dependence on prescription pain medications. The medications, prescribed due to injuries and her RSD diagnosis, included a pain patch, nerve medication, and a muscle relaxant. According to the article, Abdul said the medications made her “get weird” at times and that she suffered from physical withdrawal symptoms during her recovery.
Later that same week, though, in an interview with Detroit radio station WKQI, Abdul rejected the article’s accuracy. She told the radio station she never checked into a rehab clinic and never had a drug abuse problem.
- The Club MTV Tour
- The Under My Spell Tour
- Studio Albums
- 1988: Forever Your Girl
- 1991: Spellbound
- 1995: Head over Heels
Film and television
|1978||Junior High School||Sherry|
|1987||Can’t Buy Me Love||Dancer||Uncredited|
|1997||Touched By Evil||Elle Collier||TV Movie|
|1998||The Waiting Game||Amy Fuentes||TV Movie|
|Sabrina, the Teenage Witch||Herself||1 Episode|
|1999||The Wayans Bros.||Sasha||1 Episode|
|Mr. Rock ‘n’ Roll: The Alan Freed Story||Denise Walton||TV Movie|
|Family Guy||Herself||2 Episodes|
|2002–2009||American Idol||Judge||Guest Appearance Finale 2010 2003 Zoe’s Dance Moves Herself|
|2004||That’s So Raven||Undercover Judge||1 Episode|
|2005||Romy and Michele: In the Beginning||Herself||TV Movie|
|Less Than Perfect||Kathleen||1 Episode|
|2006||The X Factor UK||Guest Judge||3 Episodes|
|2007||Hey Paula||Herself||7 Episodes, also Executive Producer|
|2009||RAH! Paula Abdul’s Cheerleading Bowl||Herself||Host|
|2008||Hotel Babylon||Herself||Guest star|
|2009– present||Drop Dead Diva||Herself||4 episodes|
|2011||Live to Dance||Judge|
|2011-present||The X Factor (U.S.)||Judge|
|1986||A Smoky Mountain Christmas|
|1987||The Tracey Ullman Show||Won 1989 Emmy Award for
“Outstanding Achievement in Choreography“
|Can’t Buy Me Love|
|The Running Man|
|Coming To America|
|1989||She’s Out of Control|
|Dance To Win|
|The Karate Kid, Part III|
|1990||17th American Music Awards||Won 1990 Emmy Award for
“Outstanding Achievement in Choreography“
|1991||The Doors||Val Kilmer‘s choreographer|
|2002||The Master of Disguise|
To see more of Who Is click here
Who is Jill Scott? The entertainment and music world knows Jill Scott as an American soul and R&B singer-songwriter, poet, and actress. In 2007, Scott made her cinematic debut in the films Hounddog (as Big Mama Thornton) and in Tyler Perry‘s feature film, Why Did I Get Married? That year, her third studio album, The Real Thing: Words and Sounds Vol. 3, was released on September 25, 2007. She has won three Grammy Awards. She also appeared in the lead role of the BBC/HBO series The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency.
Scott was born April 4, 1972 grew up an only child in a North Philadelphia neighborhood, raised by her mother, Joyce Scott, and her grandmother. She indicated in an interview with Jet Magazine that she had a happy childhood and was “very much a loved child”. Scott was raised as a Jehovah’s Witness and attended the Philadelphia High School for Girls. After graduating, she attended Temple University while simultaneously working two jobs. She studied secondary education for three years and had planned to become a high school English teacher, but after spending time as a teacher’s aide, disillusionment with the teaching profession set in causing her to drop out of school.
Prior to breaking through the music industry, Scott worked at a variety of jobs, including a number of retail positions and stints at a construction site and an ice cream parlor. She remains close to her mother and grandmother who is nicknamed Blue Babe. Scott has resided in Mount Laurel Township, New Jersey and currently resides in California.
2000-2009: Words and Sounds
Scott began her performing career as a spoken word artist, appearing at live poetry readings to perform her work. She was eventually discovered by Amir “?uestlove” Thompson of The Roots. ?uestlove invited her to join the band in the studio. The collaboration resulted in a co-writing credit for Scott on the song, “You Got Me.” In 2000, Erykah Badu and The Roots won a Grammy for best rap performance by a duo or group for “You Got Me”, and Scott debuted as an artist during a Roots live show, singing as original artist/singer of the song. Subsequently, Scott collaborated with Eric Benet, Will Smith, and Common, and broadened her performing experience by touring Canada in a production of the Broadway musical Rent.
Scott was the first artist signed to Steve McKeever’s ‘Hidden Beach Recordings’ label. Her debut album, Who Is Jill Scott? Words and Sounds Vol. 1 was released in 2000. She experienced some notice and chart success with the single “A Long Walk”, eventually earning a Grammy nomination in early 2003 for Best Female Vocal Performance. Scott lost that award, but won a 2005 Grammy for Best Urban/Alternative R&B Performance for “Cross My Mind.” The live album, Experience: Jill Scott 826+, was released November 2001. Scott’s second full-length album, Beautifully Human: Words and Sounds Vol. 2, followed in 2004.
Scott continues to write poetry; a compilation volume of her poems, The Moments, The Minutes, The Hours, was published and released by St. Martin’s Press in April 2005. In early 2007, Scott was featured on the George Benson & Al Jarreau collaboration “God Bless The Child“, which earned Scott her second Grammy award, Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance, at the 2007 Grammy Awards ceremony. Scott shared the win with Benson & Jarreau. Recently, Scott was prominently featured on hip-hop artist Lupe Fiasco‘s 2006 single “Daydreaming” which won a 2008 Grammy for Best Urban/Alternative Performance and also appeared on a new Scott collection called Collaborations on January 30, 2007.
The Collaborations collection served as “an appetizer” for her next studio album, The Real Thing: Words and Sounds Vol. 3 released September 25, 2007. A clip of the title track was released on a bonus disc from Hidden Beach Records and included with Collaborations. The lead single “Hate on Me”, gained airplay in May 2007 with a video released in mid-July. In advance of the album’s release, Hidden Beach released a 17-minute album sampler through their forums. Interspersed between the dozen songs previewed on the sampler was a personal explanation from Jill for the inspiration behind some of her songs.
In 2008, Scott released her second live album, Live In Paris+, which consists of 8 songs recorded during her set list of the “Big Beautiful Tour” in Europe. The bonus DVD contains the same concert, plus some live cuts from The Real Thing: Words and Sounds Vol. 3. In the same year, “Whenever You’re Around”, a single from The Real Thing which features George Duke, was a moderate hit on urban radio.
2010-present: The Light of the Sun
Following up 2007′s Grammy nominated Gold certified album The Real Thing, Jill is currently about to release her fourth studio album titled The Light of the Sun. The album embarks Jill on a flurry of emotional poetry as both her career and personal life have skyrocketed with success in Hollywood and the birth of her first child.
In an interview with HitQuarters, producer and album collaborator JR Hutson commented on Scott’s approach to the record by saying, “She’s now in charge of a lot of different things and with it comes a lot of trials and tribulations, and I think her goal is to just give people a very realistic glimpse of where she is in her life right now.”
In 2011, following a recently settled, tumultuous legal battle with previous label Hidden Beach—which found her countersuing the label’s claim that she exited halfway through a six-album deal last year—Jill Scott signed a distribution deal with Warner Brothers Records. Jill plans to release her fourth studio album, The Light of the Sun, June 21, 2011. Dance auditions for Jill’s buzz single from the album, “Shame”, were held in Philadelphia on March 17, 2011. West Philly native Eve, who is featured on the song, will appear in the video, as will Black Thought, Mos Def, Pharaohe Monch, Peedi Crakk and Ms. Jade, says the video’s director, Devin Hampton. “So in Love” featuring Anthony Hamilton will be released as the first official single from the album.  The song debuted at number 43 on Billboards Hot R&B/Hip Hop Songs chart, making it the highest debut of her career on that chart.
Before she releases her fourth studio album, former record label Hidden Beach Recordings is releasing a 10 song compilation entitled “Just Before Dawn: Jill Scott From the Vault, Vol. 1” She also has a cover of Bill Withers’ Lovely Day.
Other appearances and song-writing
Her live performance in 2004 with members of The Roots, which also includes a joint performance with Erykah Badu, is featured in Dave Chappelle’s 2006 concert film, Dave Chappelle’s Block Party. UK dance duo Goldtrix covered Scott’s song “It’s Love”, re-naming it “It’s Love (Trippin’)” with singer Andrea Brown taking over vocal duties. The song became a top ten hit in the UK, peaking at number six. “It’s Love (Trippin’)” was also covered by South West Beats (Featuring Claudia Patrice) in 2008. The song “Golden” is featured in a R&B themed radio station in the Rockstar Games video game Grand Theft Auto IV. She recently appeared on Pharoahe Monch’s 2011 release W.A.R. (We Are Renegades). Also Jill is one of the featured artists in Kirk Franklin’s video “I Smile” released 2011.
Scott is a vocalist who infused jazz, R&B, spoken word, and hip hop among other genres to create a distinct style that many refer to as neo soul. Her vocal capabilities are so rich that a reviewer on Pop Matter, referring to Scott’s vocal ability, stated ‘Scott draws on her upper register, recalling the artistry of the late “songbird” Minnie Riperton and Deniece Williams‘. The same reviewer in another article stated, ‘The song evokes the artistry of Minnie Riperton as Scott sings in the upper register that makes its only appearances on Who is Jill Scott? on the teasing “I Think It’s Better” and “Show Me.” Scott has “a very rare facility to hit notes in the sixth octave as displayed on songs such as ‘Gimme’ where she hits a D6 with full vibrato, and on ‘Spring Summer Feeling’ where she hits a C7 in the background”.
Film and television
On the advice of her good friend, director Ozzie Jones, she began pursuing a career in acting in 2000. She joined a fellowship at a theater company in Philadelphia. For two years, she took small, menial jobs in exchange for acting lessons.
In 2004, Scott expanded her resume by appearing in several episodes of season four of UPN’s Girlfriends, playing Donna, a love interest to main character, William Dent (Reggie Hayes). She also appeared in the Showtime movie Cavedwellers, starring Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick.
In 2007, Scott appeared in Hounddog (as Big Mama Thornton) and in Tyler Perry‘s movie, Why Did I Get Married?
In 2008, Scott appeared as Precious Ramotswe in Anthony Minghella‘s film adaption of Alexander McCall Smith‘s series of books The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency playing a detective. Scott then filmed additional episodes for the series in Botswana in late 2008, co-funded by the BBC and HBO that were broadcast as a seven-part series on BBC1 in March 2009; and on HBO, which debuted March 29, 2009. BBC and HBO are contemplating whether to produce a second round of episodes of the series.
In 2010 she voiced Storm of the Xmen on the BET series Black Panther.
On March 24, 2010, Scott guest-starred in an episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. She reprised her role as Sheila in Why Did I Get Married Too? (2010). The movie was shot in August 2009 and received an April 2, 2010 release.
In 2010, Scott starred in the Lifetime Movie, “Sins of the Mother”, as Nona, an alcoholic mother confronted by her estranged daughter who she neglected. At the 42nd NAACP Image Awards, Jill Scott was awarded Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special for her role in “Sins of the Mother”.
Jill Scott will perform at BET Awards 2011 on June 26, 2011.
Scott and longtime boyfriend Lyzel Williams, a graphic artist and DJ, married in 2001 in a private Hawaiian ceremony during a vacation. The couple dated for seven years before they wed. Scott wrote and recorded the song “He Loves Me (Lyzel in E Flat)” about Williams. After six years of marriage, Scott and Williams divorced in 2007.
|Lil’ John Roberts|
On June 20, 2008, at a concert in New York’s Carnegie Hall, Scott shared a long on-stage kiss with her drummer, Lil’ John Roberts; the couple then told the audience that they were engaged. They expected their first child on April 25, 2009 but the baby boy, Jett Hamilton Roberts, arrived five days earlier. On June 23, 2009, Scott announced that she and Roberts had broken up, with Scott breaking the news to Essence. Despite the break-up, Scott hopes for both parents to have an active part in their child’s upbringing, stating that “We definitely love our son and we are co-parenting and working on being friends. It is what it is. I have a lot of support, so I want for nothing as far as that’s concerned.” During her 2010 tour with Maxwell, Scott has introduced her music band and Roberts is no longer a member. He is now a member of Mo’Nique‘s band on The Mo’Nique Show.
Charity work and advocacy
Scott has established the Blues Babe Foundation, a program founded to help young minority students pay for university expenses. The Blues Babe Foundation offers financial assistance to students between the ages of sixteen to twenty-one, and targets students residing in Philadelphia, Camden, and the greater Delaware Valley. Scott donated USD$100,000 to help start the foundation. The foundation was named after Scott’s grandmother, known as “Blue Babe”. On the foundation’s website, it defines its mission statement as one where it “seeks to provide financial support and mentoring for those students who have shown the aptitude and commitment to their education, but whose families may not have the resources to ensure completion of their undergraduate degrees”.
In Spring 2003, the Blues Babe Foundation made a donation of more than $60,000 to the graduating class of the Creative Arts School in Camden, New Jersey. Any student who maintained a 3.2 GPA received a yearly stipend for the next three years that was put toward his or her college education.
At the Essence Music Festival in July 2006, Scott spoke out about how women of color are portrayed in the lyrics of rap songs, and in rap music videos. Scott criticized the content for being “dirty, inappropriate, inadequate, unhealthy, and polluted” and urged the listening audience to “demand more”.
Scott was a columnist in the April issue of Essence magazine and she expressed her point of view about Black men who marry Caucasian women. In the column Scott says “We reflect on this awful past and recall that if a Black man even looked at a White woman, he would have been lynched, beaten, jailed or shot to death. These harsh truths lead to what we really feel when we see a seemingly together brother with a Caucasian woman and their children.” The column has sparked controversy on the internet.
- Studio albums
- 2011: The Light of the Sun
- Words And Sounds Tour (2001)
- Buzz Tour (2004)
- Big Beautiful Tour (2005)
- Sugar Water Festival Tour (2005)
- The Real Thing Tour (2008)
- Maxwell & Jill Scott: The Tour (2010)
- Summer Block Party (2011)
To see more of Who Is click here
|america’s got talent|
Who is Cas Haley? The entertainment and music world knows Cas Haley as an American singer/guitarist who was the runner-up on Season 2 of America’s Got Talent. He also plays in the band Woodbelly, and plays both acoustic and electric guitar.
Cas Haley was born December 27, 1980; Paris, Texas. His self-titled album charted as the #8 Best selling reggae album of 2008 on the Billboard Charts. His album is available at Best Buy stores nationwide and on iTunes.
In June 2009, it was announced that Haley & former Jah Roots lead singer, Josh Heinrichs, would release “Favorites”, a collection of modern and classic reggae favorites redone by Haley and Heinrichs. Announced to be released in late summer 2009 by Big Karma Records, the album was postponed to due to producer Jim Slaton’s unexpected death from a heart attack in August 2009. The album has since been released. The album was mastered by Rob Fraboni who also produced and mastered artists such as Bob Marley, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, The Rolling Stones, Etta James, etc…
In December 2009, Cas joined jamaican reggae artist Tanya Stephens to sing on a cover of “Wolfman’s Brother” for the Phish reggae tribute album “Dub Like An Antelope – Legends of reggae celebrate Phish” The albums was released December 14 2009.
In June 2010, Haley toured Hawaii with Josh Heinrichs playing shows on Oahu & The Big Island. While on tour they appeared on several local radio programs and the television morning news portion of Hawaii News Now.
On June 3, 2010, Easy Star Records announced that they would be releasing Cas’ much anticipated follow up album, “Connection”. The album has a September 14, 2010 release date.
Haley is married to Cassie Black and has a son
America’s Got Talent
|Week||Theme||Song choice||Original artist||Result|
|Audition||Chicago||“Walking on the Moon“||The Police||Advanced|
|Vegas Verdicts||N/A||“Living for the City“||Stevie Wonder||Advanced|
|Top 20||Group 2||“Higher and Higher“||Jackie Wilson||Advanced|
|Top 10||N/A||“Bring it on Home to Me“||Sam Cooke||Advanced|
|Top 8||Heroes||“Easy“||Lionel Richie||Advanced|
|Top 4||Judges’ Choice
|“Can’t Help Falling in Love“
|Finale||Duets||“Red Red Wine“||UB-40 (duet)||Runner Up|
|Year End Reggae|
|“—” denotes the single didn’t chart.|
|“—” denotes the single didn’t chart.|
To see more of Who Is click here
Who is Marie McDonald McLaughlin Lawrie? The entertainment and music world knows Lulu Kennedy-Cairns by her stage name Lulu. She is a Scottish singer-songwriter, actress, and television personality who has been successful in the entertainment business from the 1960s through to the present day. She is most famous worldwide for her hit “To Sir, with Love” and in the UK for “Shout“.
Lulu was born 3 November 1948 and she grew up in Dennistoun, Glasgow, where she attended Thomson Street primary school and Onslow Drive Junior School. She lived in the Gallowgate for a while before moving to Garfield Street. At the age of 12-13, she and her manager approached a band called the Bellrocks asking if she could sing with them to get used to a live band and the stage. Alex Thomson (bass player of the Bellrocks) said even at that age her voice was unbelievable. She then went on to sing with them every Saturday night. They were asked to become her backing band, but at that time, playing was just a hobby and a bit of fun. Taken under the wing of Marion Massey, she became famous at the age of fifteen with her version of The Isley Brothers‘ “Shout”, delivered in a raucous and extraordinarily mature voice. Her backing group was called The Luvvers, but after several more British hits, she left the group to become a solo artist. Massey would guide her career for more than 25 years, for most of which she was Lulu’s equal partner as a business enterprise. Massey’s husband Mark London also wrote many of Lulu’s hits.
In 1966, Lulu toured Poland with the British rock and roll band The Hollies, making her the first British female singer to appear live behind the Iron Curtain. In the same year, she recorded two German language tracks, “Wenn du da bist” and “So fing es an” for the Decca Germany label. All of Lulu’s Decca recordings were made available in 2009 on a 2-CD entitled Shout!, issued on RPM Records.
She left Decca after failing to place any singles on the chart in 1966 and signed with Columbia to be produced by Mickie Most, who also hired Jimmy Page to play guitar on a few sessions. All of the seven singles she cut and released with Most made the UK Singles Chart. Despite this, Lulu was disparaging about Most in her autobiography I Don’t Want To Fight, published in 2002. She described him as “cheap” and had little positive to say about their working relationship, which she ended in 1969 after her biggest UK solo hit. Nonetheless, when Mickie Most died in 2003, Lulu was full of praise for him and told the BBC they had been very close. 
In 1967 she made her debut as a film actress in To Sir, with Love, a British vehicle for Sidney Poitier. She had a major hit with the title song “To Sir, with Love“, which shot to number one in the United States; she makes notable use of melisma in the song, and decades later it remains the song for which she is best known in that country. In the UK, it was released only on the B-side of “Let’s Pretend”, a # 11 hit, but “To Sir, with Love” sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc. In the meantime, she continued with a thriving pop career in the UK and several television series of her own. From 30 June to 2 July 1967, Lulu appeared on The Monkees tour at the Empire Pool, Wembley. Rumors of a romance and indeed an engagement with Davy Jones of The Monkees were rife, but it was a complete media fabrication, created by Jones himself, apparently with her tacit approval.
The Eurovision Song Contest
On 29 March 1969, she represented the United Kingdom by performing the song “Boom Bang-a-Bang” at the Eurovision Song Contest. The song was chosen by viewers of her BBC1 variety series Happening for Lulu from a shortlist of six entries. Lulu performed one song a week for six weeks and then on week seven, Michael Aspel presented Lulu performing all six songs, one after another. The performances were then repeated and viewers invited to send in postcard votes for their favourites. The six songs were: “Are You Ready For Love?”, “March!”, “Come September”, “I Can’t Go On Living Without You”, “Boom Bang-a-Bang” and “Bet Yer!”. “I Can’t Go On…” was written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin who were introduced by Aspel as Elton Jones and Bernie Poppins. Their song came last in the postcard vote, but was later recorded by Cilla Black, Sandie Shaw, Polly Brown, Lulu and Elton himself. “Boom Bang-a-Bang”, written by Peter Warne and Alan Moorhouse was declared the winner. On stage in Madrid, Lulu was accompanied by Sue and Sunny, two well-known backing singers who went on to be the first female members of Brotherhood of Man. The orchestra was conducted by Johnny Harris, Lulu’s resident musical director.
“Boom Bang-a-Bang” was the winner – with three other songs. The entries from Spain, (“Vivo cantando” by Salomé), Netherlands, (“De Troubadour” by Lenny Kuhr) and France, (“Un jour, un enfant” by Frida Boccara) also finished in first place with 18 votes each. There had never been a tie before, and the rules were altered to prevent it ever happening again. According to John Kennedy O’Connor‘s The Eurovision Song Contest – The Official History, the result caused dismay and disgust, leading to Austria, Portugal, Norway, Sweden and Finland all refusing to enter the 1970 competition. Lulu had the biggest hit around the continent with her winner, recording German, French, Spanish and Italian versions alongside the original English.
In 1975 she hosted the BBC’s A Song for Europe (now Eurovision: Your Country Needs You) contest, the qualifying heat for the Eurovision Song Contest, in which The Shadows performed six shortlisted songs. Lulu joined fellow Eurovision winners at a charity gala held in Norway in 1981. She was also a panellist at the 1989 UK heat, offering views on two of the competing eight entries. She told John Peel backstage that although she did not like “Boom Bang-a-Bang”, she would have sung anything just so long as she won the contest. “I know it’s a rotten song, but I won, so who cares? I’d have sung “Baa, Baa, Black Sheep” standing on my head if that’s what it took to win…. I am just so glad I didn’t finish second like all the other Brits before me, that would have been awful.” Oddly enough, her potentially inflammatory statement only endeared her further to the European public.
Since then, Lulu rarely talks about her Eurovision experiences, or her song “Boom Bang-a-Bang”, which she then and now dislikes despite the fact that it was her biggest solo UK hit (reaching number two on the chart in 1969).
Below Lulu explains how she got into the contest, and about what came out (from the BBC Radio 2 special on 50 Years Of The Eurovision Song Contest):
Late 1960s – mid 1970s
Only weeks before her Eurovision appearance, Lulu married fellow musical star Maurice Gibb of the Bee Gees in a ceremony in Gerrards Cross. Maurice’s older brother Barry was opposed to their marriage as he believed them to be too young. Their honeymoon in Mexico had to be postponed because of Lulu’s Eurovision commitment. Their careers and his heavy drinking forced them apart, and they divorced, childless, in 1973 but remained on good terms. In 1970 Lulu was back on the US charts with the Top 30 hit, “Oh Me Oh My (I’m a Fool for You Baby)” (later covered by Aretha Franklin and also John Holt) and a collaboration with the Dixie Flyers on “Hum a Song (From Your Heart)”. In 1969, she recorded New Routes an album recorded at Muscle Shoals studios; several of the songs featured slide guitarist Duane Allman, including a version of Jerry Jeff Walker‘s “Mr. Bojangles“. A year later she followed with a similar album Melody Fair. Both were recorded for Atlantic‘s Atco label and were produced by Jerry Wexler, Tom Dowd and Arif Mardin. She also recorded four other German language tracks, (“Ich brauche deine Liebe”, “Wach’ ich oder träum’ ich”, “Warum tust du mir weh”, and “Traurig, aber wahr”) on the Atlantic/WEA label. These songs again, went unnoticed in the German music market.
After appearing in a successful TV series, Three Of A Kind, which aired on the BBC in 1967, a format that featured music and comedy, Lulu was given her own TV series in 1968, which ran annually until 1975 under various titles including Lulu’s Back In Town, Happening For Lulu, Lulu, and It’s Lulu which featured Adrienne Posta. She later co-hosted a revived series of Oh Boy! for ITV in the early 1980s. Her BBC series featured music and comedy sketches and star guests. Her most famous guest was possibly Jimi Hendrix, who appeared in 1969, swore live on the show and refused to stick to the original songs that had been planned. Lulu began 1970 by appearing on the BBC‘s highly rated review of the sixties music scene Pop Go The Sixties, performing “Boom Bang-A-Bang” live on the show broadcast on BBC1, December 31, 1969. She was one of the main artists invited to appear on the BBC’s anniversary show Fifty Years Of Music in 1972. On December 31, 1976, Lulu performed “Shout” on BBC1′s A Jubilee Of Music, celebrating British pop music for Queen Elizabeth II’s impending Silver jubilee. In 1999, Lulu returned to BBC1 to host their Saturday night lottery/game show Red Alert.
In 1972 she starred in the Christmas pantomime Peter Pan at the Palace Theatre, Manchester where the show was a huge success. She repeated her performance at the London Palladium in 1975, and returned to the same role in different London-based productions from 1987 to early 1989. Other notable London stage appearances came in the early 1980s in Andrew Lloyd Webber‘s Song and Dance and the Royal National Theatre‘s Guys and Dolls. She damaged her vocal cords while performing in the Webber show, requiring surgery that threatened her singing voice. She also made an appearance on the Morecambe and Wise Show in 1973, singing “All the Things You Are” and “Happy Heart”.
In 1974 she performed the title song in the James Bond movie The Man with the Golden Gun. Two slightly different versions of the song were used, at the start and end respectively – the end song actually name-checking James Bond.
Also during 1974, she did a cover of two of David Bowie‘s classic songs, “The Man Who Sold the World” and “Watch That Man“. Bowie himself produced the recordings and played saxophone, and provided back-up vocals on it. There were also rumours that they had a brief affair at the time. Lulu confirmed these rumours in her 2002 autobiography. Bowie, perhaps characteristically, evaded comment on the subject.
“The Man Who Sold the World” peaked at number three on the UK chart, her first UK top 10 hit in five years and also her last until 1986.
In 1977, Lulu married John Frieda, who was previously her hairdresser, and remained with him for twenty years until divorcing him in 1995, having separated in 1991. They had one son, Jordan Frieda, later in 1977. She became interested in Eastern mysticism and joined Siddha Yoga, a new religious movement.
Lulu’s singing career waned, but she continued to remain in the public eye, continuing to act and host her own long running radio show on London’s Capital Radio station. She also became the celebrity spokes-model for Freemans fashion catalogue for a long while during the late 1970s and early 1980s. In late 1979, Lulu’s career suffered a minor setback when she was in a car accident that nearly took her life, having collided head on with another car on Brooksend Hill. That same year, she recorded for Elton John’s label Rocket Records and seemed about to hit the charts again, with the lauded “I Love to Boogie”, but surprisingly, despite critical acclaim and much airplay, it did not make the top 75.
In 1981, Lulu returned to the US charts with “I Could Never Miss You (More Than I Do)“, a Top 20 hit which also reached number two on the Adult Contemporary chart despite stalling at number 62 in the UK. Early the following year, she had a more modest US hit with “If I Were You”, which just missed the Top 40. Also in 1982, she appeared in the video for “Ant Rap” alongside Adam and the Ants and was nominated for a Grammy for “Who’s Foolin’ Who” from the “Lulu” album. She won the Rear of the Year award in 1983 and re-recorded a number of her songs. These included “Shout,” which reached the Top 10 in 1986 in the UK, securing her a spot to perform on the popular BBC music programme, Top of the Pops. In 2002, Lulu achieved the accolade of being one of only two performers (Cliff Richard being the other) to have sung in the Top of the Pops studio in each of the five decades that the show ran. A follow up single to “Shout”, an updated version of Millie‘s 1960s hit “My Boy Lollipop“, failed to chart and Lulu stopped recording until 1992, focussing instead on TV, acting and live performances. These tracks were released on the Jive Records label. Lulu has had hits on the Decca, Columbia, Atco, Polydor, Chelsea, Alfa, Jive, Dome, RCA, Mercury and Universal labels. She has also released singles for GTO, Atlantic, Globe, EMI, Concept, Lifestyle, Utopia and Rocket, and Epic in the US. For a while, she held the record for the most number of hit labels in the UK charts. In 1987, she played Adrian Mole‘s mother on television (replacing Julie Walters), and in 1993 she made a recording comeback, with the single Independence which reached number 11 on the UK charts.
Later that year she guested on the cover version of the Dan Hartman song “Relight My Fire“, with boy band Take That. The single reached number one in the British charts and Lulu went on to become Take That’s support act for their 1994 tour. By this time, her marriage to John Frieda had completely crumbled, and with the divorce, she released “Independence” in January 1993. She also appeared as herself, an unhappy public relations client of main character Edina Monsoon in two episodes of the hugely popular BBC television programme Absolutely Fabulous. She teamed with French & Saunders many times, including their send up of the Spice Girls (The Sugar Lumps) for Comic Relief in 1997 when she took the role of “Baby Spice”, mimicking Emma Bunton, who in turn appeared on Saunders’ show Absolutely Fabulous in a self-mocking cameo as herself, a refugee (with Edina’s daughter, Saffy) of a prestigious girls’ school. The title track from “Independence” just missed the top ten and all four singles released from the album hit the UK charts, as did two later singles released in 1994. Despite these hit singles, the album itself did not make a major impact on the charts, though it seemed to do nothing to diminish her European celebrity. A further album, recorded in 1999, and provisionally titled ‘Where the Poor Boys Dance’ was shelved due to supporting singles such as “Hurt Me So Bad” which charted, but did not make the Top 40.
Also in 1999, she co-wrote and recorded a duet with UK pop singer Kavana entitled “Heart Like The Sun”, but it was not released commercially until Kavana’s 2007 greatest hits collection, Special Kind Of Something: The Best of…. The National Lottery Game Show “Red Alert” saw Lulu return to prime time BBC television but, despite an attempted revamp, the shows commission soon ceased.
Now officially known as Lulu Kennedy-Cairns, in 2000, she was awarded an OBE by Queen Elizabeth. Her 2002 autobiography is called I Don’t Want to Fight after the hit song she and her brother wrote with hit songwriter Steve DuBerry for Tina Turner, which is a song that Lulu later released in 2003, as part of her The Greatest Hits album. In 2002 her gold album Together was a collection of duets with such as Elton John and Paul McCartney, tracks from which were performed in a high profile TV special for ITV, An Audience With Lulu, which saw Lulu reunite with her first husband Maurice Gibb for a live performance of “First of May“. She followed this with the publication of her autobiography, “I Don’t Want To Fight”.
In 2004, she released the album Back on Track and went on a UK-wide tour to celebrate 40 years in the business despite the album charting at a low No 68. In late 2004, Lulu returned to radio, becoming the host of her own 2-hour radio show, on BBC Radio 2, playing an eclectic blend of music from the 1950s to the 2000s, all having to do with the influence of songwriting. In 2005, Lulu released A Little Soul in Your Heart, a collection of soul classics that entered the UK Albums Chart at number 28. In March 2006, Lulu launched her official MySpace profile, where she could keep in contact with current fans, and reconnect with old ones.Lulu continues to act occasionally and starred alongside Tom Courtenay and Stephen Fry in the British movie, Whatever Happened to Harold Smith?. She has more recently appeared in the BBC’s reality TV show Just the Two of Us in 2006 as a judge, and in late June and early July 2006, appeared on Take That’s UK and Ireland tour, to perform their song “Relight My Fire”. She appeared on American Idol Season 6 on 20 March 2007 as a mentor for the female contestants, and the following night performed “To Sir, With Love” live. Later in 2007, Lulu appeared in the UK as a guest for Jools Holland in his series of concerts and features and on Holland’s CD release “Best of Friends”, performing “Where Have All the Good Guys Gone?”
Lulu’s complete Atco recordings (made between 1969 and 1972) were released onto a twin CD set for the first time on 12 November 2007. The two CD set included previously unreleased and demo versions of some of her recordings from this period. In December 2007, Lulu released a download single on iTunes in the UK, called “Run Rudolph Run“. At this time Lulu was also promoting a range of beauty products on QVC (UK), called “Time Bomb”, and appeared on the 2007 Christmas television advertisement for Morrisons, the UK supermarket chain.
In November 2008, Lulu was announced as one of a number of Scottish celebrities that would feature in the advertising campaign for Homecoming Scotland, a year-long event to encourage people around the world with Scottish heritage to return to Scotland.
Also in November 2008, Lulu posted the following message on her website, celebrating the election of Barack Obama as President of the USA: “Barack Obama Is In – Yippee, now we have got hope in the World. I’ve just turned 60, Obama is the new president of the USA and I think its going to be a fantastic yeah. Love Lu X”. In both the 1979 and 1983 UK General Elections, Lulu had been a staunch and highly visible supporter of British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and the Conservative Party.
In January 2009, Lulu began a four week stint as an advisor/coach on the BBC show Eurovision: Your Country Needs You, helping to choose the singer to represent the UK at the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest.
In the summer of 2009, Lulu guest presented on STV‘s daily lifestyle show The Hour, alongside main anchor Stephen Jardine. She appeared between 27 and 31 July. The Scottish magazine programme airs weekdays at 5 pm. As of 2009, she continues to pitch her range of “Lulu’s” anti-ageing products and other cosmetics through the QVC (UK) home shopping channel, using her youthful appearance as a promotional tool.
After appearing at an ABBA tribute concert in Hyde Park, London, during September 2009, Lulu announced that she would be touring the UK in a ‘Here Come The Girls’ concert performance alongside Chaka Khan and Anastacia. The trio promoted the concert series on UK TV, ahead of the first performance in November 2009, which took in 20 different dates.
In early 2010, Lulu performed the theme “The Word Is Love” to the movie Oy Vey! My Son Is Gay!!.
In tribute to Lulu’s amazing career, the Scottish Town of Ullapool holds an annual music festival Loopallu (pronounced Loop A Lulu). Each September the small town welcomes people from all over the country to watch bands who were inspired by Lulu’s Music.
- Gonks Go Beat (1965)
- To Sir, with Love (1967)
- Cucumber Castle (1970)
- The Cherry Picker (1972)
- Alicja (1982) (voice)
- To Sir, with Love II (1996)
- Whatever Happened to Harold Smith? (1999)
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Life and career
Brion was born December 11, 1963 in Glen Ridge, New Jersey. He came from a musical family; his mother, LaRue, was an administrative assistant and singer, and his father, Keith Brion, was a band director at Yale. His brother and sister became a composer/arranger and a violinist, respectively. Brion had difficulties at Hamden High School and at the age of 17 left education, opting instead to play music professionally. From 1980-85 Jon was part of the band, The Excerpts, along with Stephen Harris, Dean Falcone & Spike Priggen.
In the early 1980s, Brion and musician/producer Bill Murphy began a writing collaboration in New Haven, Connecticut. They eventually enlisted bassist Don “Riff” Fertman and together formed The Bats, (not to be confused with the New Zealand group of the same name). The Bats released a single, “Popgun” and one album How Pop Can You Get?, on Gustav records in 1982. The recordings had much critical acclaim, but little commercial success, and the trio eventually disbanded.
In 1987, Brion moved to Boston, where he played solo gigs, formed the short-lived band World’s Fair and became a member of the last touring version of Aimee Mann’s new wave band ‘Til Tuesday. He contributed guitar work to Jellyfish‘s 1993 album Spilt Milk, and in 1994, joined Dan McCarroll, Buddy Judge and Jellyfish guitarist Jason Falkner in the short-lived pop band The Grays. Brion played numerous instruments on Sam Phillips‘ 1996 release Omnipop (It’s Only A Fleshwound Lambchop). Brion is featured as keyboardist and drummer on Marianne Faithfull‘s 2003 album, Kissin’ Time, and co-wrote a song, “City of Quartz”, for her next work, 2005′s Before the Poison.
After being recognized as an accomplished session player, Brion branched out into production on then-girlfriend Mann’s 1993 solo debut, Whatever, and its follow-up, I’m With Stupid. He has also produced albums by Fiona Apple, Rufus Wainwright, Eleni Mandell, Rhett Miller, Robyn Hitchcock, Brad Mehldau and Evan Dando.
He also co-produced Kanye West‘s Late Registration album in 2005.
In the fall of 2002, Brion began producing the album Extraordinary Machine with Fiona Apple, but she later brought in producers Mike Elizondo and Brian Kehew (a friend of Brion’s) to complete the album. Brion’s versions leaked onto the Internet, where the album gained a cult following long before its official release.
Brion worked and performed on some of the tracks for Sean Lennon‘s 2006 album Friendly Fire. Lennon said that working with him was “how I would imagine it’s like to work with Prince. It’s like having a weird alien prodigy in your room.”
More recently, Brion has produced recordings by British pop performer Dido, Spoon, and Keane, as well as 2009′s Jon Brion Remix EP by Of Montreal.
Brion was signed to the Lava/Atlantic label in 1997, but was released from his contract after turning in his solo debut album Meaningless; the album was released independently in 2001.
He is rumored to be working on his second solo full-length album at Abbey Road Studios.
Brion is an accomplished film composer, having started scoring by frequently working with director Paul Thomas Anderson, with whom he has a preferential working relationship. In addition to scoring many of his films, Brion contributed music to Boogie Nights and had a cameo in the film as a moustached guitar player.
Particularly in his film soundtracks, Brion is noted for his use of early analog sampling instruments, particularly the Chamberlin and Optigan, to create near-realistic emulations of certain instruments.
He has earned a Best Score Soundtrack Album Grammy nominations for his work on 1999′s Magnolia and 2004′s Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
Brion was hired at the last minute to write the incidental music for The Break-Up. He has also scored the films and provided original music for I Heart Huckabees, Punch Drunk Love, Step Brothers and Synecdoche, NY. He also did live composition for a musical commentary on the Step Brothers DVD.
|Mary Lynn Rajskub|
He dated comedic actress Mary Lynn Rajskub for five years until they broke up in the fall of 2002.
Touring and live performances
Brion is renowned for his regular Friday-night gigs at the Los Angeles club Largo, which feature covers and original songs, a variety of instruments and occasional guest musicians and comedians. He works without a set list, instead using audience suggestions as a jumping-off point. His extraordinary use of layered loops and frequent adoption of a “jigsaw puzzle” approach to performing songs (starting often with drums, then adding piano, bass, guitar, and vocals in turn) have captivated the capacity crowds at Largo and earned Brion a strong following. Recent shows have featured spontaneous appearances with vocalist Rickie Lee Jones, singing old jazz standards like “My Funny Valentine”, with upright bassist Stephen Patt (ex-Chambers Brothers), percussionist Matt Chamberlain (ex-Wallflowers), bassist Sebastian Steinberg (ex-Soul Coughing), and fiddler Sara Watkins (ex-Nickel Creek).
In April 2006, recurring tendonitis in Brion’s right hand forced him to cancel all of his upcoming Largo shows. As a temporary ‘farewell’, he played one show only using his left hand, even looping his songs as he normally does and playing the drums with one stick. He is now back to playing at Largo on a regular basis.
Recalling his approach to the Largo shows with Chicago Tribune music editor Lou Carlozo, Brion said: “I taught my hands to follow whatever was coming into my head—and wherever my consciousness would go, I had to push my hands to follow. And at some level, you just had to abandon any concern about how you’d look. Performing without a set list: That was special.”
With The Bats
- How Pop Can You Get? (1982)
With The Grays
- Ro Sham Bo (1994)
With Elliott Smith
- Background vocals in the song “Happiness” (2000)
Vocals on “Shine it all on” E song from the album Broken Toy Shop (1993)
- Meaningless (2001)
- Hard Eight (with Michael Penn) (1996)
- Magnolia (1999)
- Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
- Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
- I ♥ Huckabees (2004)
- The Break-Up (2006)
- Synecdoche, New York (2008)
- Step Brothers (2008)
- Glago’s Guest (2008)
- The Other Guys (2010)
- Aimee Mann, Whatever, (1993)
- Aimee Mann, I’m with Stupid, (1995)
- The Crystal Method – “Bad Stone” (1997)
- Rufus Wainwright, Rufus Wainwright, (1998)
- Eleni Mandell, Wishbone, (1998)
- Robyn Hitchcock, Jewels for Sophia, (1998)
- Robyn Hitchcock, A Star for Bram, (1999)
- Fiona Apple, When the Pawn…, (1999)
- Aimee Mann, “Bachelor No. 2“, (2000)
- The Crystal Method – “Over the Line” (2001)
- Elliott Smith, From a Basement on a Hill, (unreleased version, recorded 2001)
- Brad Mehldau, Largo, (2002)
- Rhett Miller, The Instigator, (2002)
- Evan Dando, Baby I’m Bored, (2003)
- Fiona Apple, Extraordinary Machine, (unreleased version, recorded 2002–2003)
- The Crystal Method – “Realizer” (2004)
- Kanye West, Late Registration (as co-executive producer and co-producer on several tracks), (2005)
- Marjorie Fair, Self Help Serenade (as co-executive producer), (2005)
- Kanye West, Graduation (as co-producer), (2007)
- Spoon, “The Underdog,” Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga, (2007)
- Keane, “You Haven’t Told Me Anything”, Perfect Symmetry, (2008)
- Dido, Safe Trip Home, (2008)
- Of Montreal, Jon Brion Remix EP, (2009)
- Of Montreal, False Priest, (2010)
- Brad Mehldau, Highway Rider, (2010)
- Punch Brothers, “Antifogmatic“, (2010)
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Who is Jay Chou? The entertainment and acting world know Jay Chou as a Taiwanese musician, singer-songwriter, music and film producer, actor and director who has won the World Music Award four times. He is well-known for composing all his own songs and songs for other singers. In 1998 he was discovered in a talent contest where he displayed his piano and song-writing skills. Over the next two years, he was hired to compose for popular Mandarin singers. Although he was trained in classical music, Chou combines Chinese and Western music styles to produce songs that fuse R&B, rock and pop genres, covering issues such as domestic violence, war, and urbanization.
In 2000, Chou released his first album, titled Jay, under the record company Alfa Music. Since then he has released one album per year except in 2009, selling several million copies each. His music has gained recognition throughout Asia, most notably in regions such as Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and in overseas Asian communities, winning more than 20 awards each year. He has sold more than 28 million albums worldwide up to 2010. He debuted his acting career in Initial D (2005), for which he won Best Newcomer Actor in both the Hong Kong Film Awards and the Golden Horse Awards, and was nominated for Best Supporting Actor by Hong Kong Film Awards for his role in Curse of the Golden Flower (2006). He produced the theme song for the film Ocean Heaven starring Jet Li. His career now extends into directing and running his own record company JVR Music.
Life and career
Jay Chou was born 18 January 1979 and grew up in Linkou, Taipei County, Taiwan. Both his parents were secondary school teachers: his mother, Ye Hui Mei , taught fine arts, while his father, Zhou Yao Zhong , was a biomedical researcher. His mother noticed his sensitivity to music and took him to piano lessons at the age of three. During his childhood, he was fascinated with capturing sounds and songs with his tape recorder, which he carried everywhere with him. In the third grade, he became interested in music theory and also started cello lessons. He is an only child and loved to play piano, imitate TV actors, and perform magic tricks. His favorite composer was, and still is to this day, Chopin. His parents divorced when he was 13, which caused him to become reclusive and introverted. Although he had friends, he often preferred to be alone, listening to music, contemplating and daydreaming. At Tamkang Senior High School, he majored in piano and minored in cello. He showed talent for improvisation, became fond of pop music and began to write songs.
Chou graduated from high school with inadequate grades for university, so he prepared for military service, which was compulsory for all Taiwanese men at the age of 18. However, a sports injury triggered by an unexplainable and severe back pain eventually led to the diagnosis of ankylosing spondylitis, a hereditary spine inflammation disease; as a result, he was exempted from conscription. Meanwhile, he found himself a job as a waiter. Without his knowing, his friend had entered both their names in a talent show called Super New Talent King. Chou played the piano accompaniment for his friend, whose singing was described as “lousy”. Although they did not win, the show’s host Jacky Wu—an influential character in Taiwan’s entertainment business—happened to glance at Chou’s music score and was impressed with its complexity. Wu hired him as a contract composer and paired him with the novice lyricist Vincent Fang.
Over the next two years he wrote songs for Mandarin pop artists, and also learned recording and sound mixing; his dedication was apparent as he even slept in the music studio. Wu’s music studio was later sold to Alfa Music, and the new manager Yang Jun Rong asked him to release his own album. Chou already had an arsenal of songs he wrote for others but had been rejected, so among those he chose 10 for his debut CD Jay that was released in 2000. The album established his reputation as a musically gifted singer-songwriter whose style is a fusion of R&B, rap, classical music, and yet distinctly Chinese. His fame spread quickly in Chinese-speaking regions including countries throughout Southeast Asia. Since 2000, Chou has released one album per year, except the year 2009, each selling several million copies, and has been recognized with hundreds of awards. In 2003, he was the cover story of Time magazine (Asia version), acknowledging his influence on popular culture. He has held four world tours, “The One” (2002), “Incomparable” (2004), “Jay Chou The World Tours” (2007–2008) and “The Era” (2010–2011) performing in cities such as Taipei, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Beijing, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Las Vegas, Toronto and Vancouver. Unlike most singers, Chou has an enormous amount of creative control over his music. He is not only the songwriter but also the producer on all of his albums; since 2005 he is also the music director and also directs his own music videos.
Chou’s compositions are loosely categorized as pop music. While many of his works fall into contemporary R&B, rap, and rock genres, the term “Chou Style” has been popularized to describe his trademark cross-cultural music and his insistence on singing with relaxed enunciation. Taipei Times once described the meaning of “Chou Style”: “In what has become the archetypal Chou style, Taiwan’s favorite son blends pop, rap, blues and a smorgasbord of esthetic elements of world music to create his dream-like never-never land …”
He regularly fuses traditional Chinese instruments and styles with R&B or rock to form a new genre called “Zhongguo feng” which literally means “Chinese Style Music“,[a] some of which are written in the Pentatonic Scale as opposed to the more common seven-note scale (Diatonic Scale) to accentuate an oriental style. Besides his own culture, he also incorporated Spanish guitar in “Red Imitation” , American techno/electronica in “Herbalist’s Manual” , rap with subtle classical music undertones in “Reverse Scales” , and Bossanova style in “Rosemary” , to name a few. Sound effects from everyday life are frequently woven into his music, such as bouncing ping pong balls, touch tone phone dialing, helicopter blades, dripping rain, and radio static noise (concrete music).[b]
His formal musical training is evident by the use of classical textures in his compositions. For example, counterpoint was used in “Perfection” and “Sorry” , while polyphony can be found in “The Wound That Ends War” and “Twilight’s Chapter Seven”.
Chou’s albums have been noted for the lack of change compared to his earlier works, yet he firmly stated that he will not alter his style: “They say I’ve been standing still … but this is the music I want, and I don’t see what I want by moving ahead.” To demonstrate his point, he named his 2006 album Still Fantasy after his 2001 album Fantasy. His use of relaxed enunciation has been criticized as “mumbling” which he also insisted will not change; however, recently he has adopted clearer pronunciation for certain songs, particularly more traditional Chinese style songs, such as “Faraway” which features Fei Yu-ching and “Chrysanthemum Terrace” .
Chou is more often a singer-composer than a lyricist. Several “regulars” write the lyrics for most of his music, but the content and style is unified with his own personality and image, covering a diverse range of topics and ideas. Vincent Fang accounts for more than half of the lyrics in his albums, helping to establish an important element in Chou’s music: the use of meaningful, imagery- and emotionally-rich lyrics, sometimes written in the form of ancient Chinese poetry with reference to Chinese history or folklore.[c] In addition to writing romantic hits,[d] he also touches on war, the Bible, sports, and martial arts.[e] Vivian Hsu is a singer herself and has helped with Chou’s earlier hits,[f] while Huang Jun Lang is noted for his work surrounding unusual themes (such as a detective story and chess game).[g]
Chou himself has written lyrics for many ballads,[h] but has also discussed societal ills such as drug addiction in “Coward” and loss of the rural countryside to urbanization in “Terrace fields” . Domestic violence discussed in “Dad, I am back” received a great deal of commotion since he was the first to bring up this taboo subject in Sanscript music, which helped solidify his status as a pioneer and a unique pop singer capable of approaching serious issues. In the songs “Maternal grandmother” and “Listen to Mother”, he voiced his high regard for family values. He addressed personal issues about his failure to enter university in “Split” , his resentment towards the paparazzi in “Besieged From All Sides” , and highlighted the importance of individuality in “Popular Imitation” . “Rice Fragrance” , a song from his 9th album Capricorn encourages people not to give up their dreams even when facing difficulties in life.
Chou began as a songwriter for other singers and continued this area of work even after he debuted his own career in singing. He has composed frequently for Jolin Tsai, Landy Wen, and occasionally for other Taiwanese singers such as Coco Lee, S.H.E, Vivian Hsu, Leehom Wang, Will Liu, Valen Hsu, and Hong Kong pop stars Edmond Leung, Gigi Leung, Jordan Chan, Edison Chen, Karen Mok, Leo Ku, Eason Chan, and Joey Yung, as well as a one-time collaboration with Howard Su. He has also written for singers outside of his generation—over one dozen songs for his mentor Jacky Wu, later also for Taiwanese singer Jody Chiang, and Hong Kong singers Jacky Cheung, Andy Lau, Aaron Kwok, and Kenny Bee.
He initiated the band Nan Quan Mama in 2004, selecting band members and overseeing their album production. The group has been noted for sounding too similar to their mentor; as a result, Chou has reduced his involvement in the band, but continues to help increase their exposure to mass audiences by inviting them as guests performers for his own concerts and music videos.
He has performed live duets with Landy Wen, Jolin Tsai, and former girlfriend news anchor Patty Hou, but only two studio recordings of duets have been formally placed in his own albums: “Coral Sea” in 2005 with Lara Veronin (of Nan Quan Mama) and “Faraway” in 2006 features Fei Yu-Ching, who began his career in the 1970s. Besides working with singers, Chou’s longest-running collaboration is with lyricist Vincent Fang, as they both started their careers in the music field in 1998. The compilation album Partners featured 12 songs, each consisting of Chou’s musical and Fang’s lyrical compositions. Fang has written the words to more than 40 of Chou’s songs, was the chief editor of Chou’s book Grandeur de D Major , and is now Chou’s business partner (together with Chou’s manager JR Yang) for the record company JVR Music. Jay Chou was also featured in Cindy Yen‘s song “Sand Painting” released in October 2009. Jay Chou collaborates with Kobe Bryant on “The Heaven and Earth Challenge” in order to “promote youth creativity, as well as an upcoming slam-dunk competition in China.” The song was released at a press conference before the NBA All-Star Game on 20 February 2011.
Jay held his first series of five solo concerts, titled Fantasy Concert , with the first stop on 11 January 2001 at Taoyuan Arena, Taiwan. Followed by two shows at the Hong Kong Coliseum, one in Malaysia and ended in Singapore on 10 February 2002. His second concert tour, The One Concert commenced on 28 September 2002 at Taipei Municipal Stadium, followed by 11 stops and ended at Shenzhen Stadium, China on 3 January 2004.
Two more series of world tours followed: Incomparable Concert in 2004 and Jay Chou 2007 World Tours , with stops in cities such as Taipei, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Beijing, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Las Vegas, Toronto and Vancouver. In 2010, to celebrate Jay’s 10 year career in the entertainment industry, he embarked on his fifth series of concert tour titled, New Era World Tour, with the first stop of three concerts from 11 to 13 June 2010 at Taipei Arena, followed by 24 stops ending in Malaysia on 5 March 2011.
- World tours/Live (DVD) album releases
- 2001 – Fantasy Concert
- 2002 – The One Concert – Jay Chou The One Concert Live
- 2004 – Incomparable Concert – Incomparable Jay Concert Live
- 2007 – Jay Chou World Tours – Jay Chou 2007 the World Tours Concert Live
- 2010 – New Era World Tour – Jay Chou 2010 The Era World Tours Concert Live
Chou formally entered the film industry in 2005 with the release of the movie Initial D . He has since acted in three other movies, directed one film and more than a dozen music videos. Chou, who once said “I live because of music”, ventured into movies because he felt the need for a new challenge. As fans have grown concerned that movies will compromise his music career, Chou has repeatedly reassured that movies are a source of inspiration and not a distraction; at the same time, he realizes the need to balance both careers and maintain his place in the music field to garner the continued support of fans.
Entry into acting was an unexpected move for Chou. His high school English teacher thought he was capable of very few facial expressions, and the director of Hidden Track (2003, a movie in which Chou had a cameo role) said that his strong individualistic personality will not make him a good actor. In 2005, Chou’s first role as the lead actor in Initial D served two purposes: to launch his acting debut, and to increase his exposure to Japanese audiences. This film is based on the Japanese comic Initial D, where Chou played Takumi Fujiwara, a gifted touge racer who is quiet and rarely shows expression. Some reviewers criticized his bland acting while others felt he performed naturally, but only because the character’s personality closely mirrored his own. His performance in Initial D won him Best Newcomer Actor in Golden Horse Awards and Hong Kong Film Awards. Chou’s second film was Curse of the Golden Flower (2006). As a supporting character, he drew much of the attention of Chinese reporters; Chou’s involvement in this movie was announced in its own press conference, separate from the meeting held for Chow Yun-fat, Gong Li, and the other actors. Chou portrayed Prince Jai, the ambitious second eldest prince and general of the Imperial army whose personality epitomizes Xiao , the Chinese virtue of filial piety. In this internationally-released film, North American audiences saw Chou for the first time. According to Chinese movie critics, comments about his acting ranged from “lacks complexity” to “acceptable,” but was critically praised by Western reviewers. His performance in Curse of the Golden Flower was nominated Best Supporting Actor in the Hong Kong Film Awards. In the 2008 film Kung Fu Dunk, Chou portrayed a kung fu student and dunking prodigy, and the film earned over ¥100 million (US$14.7 million). Chou portrayed Kato in The Green Hornet, directed by Michel Gondry and released in January 2011, after Hong Kong actor Stephen Chow withdrew from the project, the film grossed over $228 million worldwide. MTV Networks‘ NextMovie.com named him one of the ‘Breakout Stars to Watch for in 2011′.
Chou’s acquired his first directing experience in 2004 through music videos. He initially experimented with a song by the group Nan Quan Mama titled “Home” where he was involved throughout the entire process from research to editing. After learning the difficulties of being a director, he refused to direct again even at the request of his record company. However, his interest resurfaced again as he directed music videos for 4 of the 12 songs in own album November’s Chopin in 2005, and later television advertisements. By 2006, he had taken responsibility for the storyboard, directing, and editing of music videos for all his songs. It is unclear how the public appraises his work, since music videos are rarely the subject of critical review; however, director Zhang Yimou said that Chou’s directing abilities may surpass his own in the future, after viewing several of Chou’s music videos.
In February 2007, Chou finally directed his first movie Secret. The story he wrote is based loosely on his relationship with a high school girlfriend, with a plot focused on music, love, and family. He stars as the lead actor of the film with Kwai Lun-Mei as the female lead, and Hong Kong veteran actor Anthony Wong as Chou’s father. Despite previous experience in filming music videos, Chou admits that movies are more challenging due to storyline and time constraints. This movie was released in July 2007.
In 2005, Jay Chou played the male lead in Initial D, but according to reports, he will be back to direct the sequel, while Andrew Lau, who was a co-director of the first Initial D, will take on the role of the producer.
Book: Grandeur de D Major
Chou published his first book titled Grandeur de D Major on November 25, 2004.[k] This 200-page book features a prologue written by his family, friends, and co-workers; the main section is a compilation of his personal attitudes, philosophies, and recollections of childhood experiences along with pictures from his music videos, many of which have never been released; and lastly, a list of the artist’s major awards, musical and lyrical compositions, and discography. For the usually low-profile singer, this book revealed his personality and convictions that has served as the basis of his musical and public image. He demonstrated a strong appreciation of family values with an especially deep connection with his mother and maternal grandmother. His confidence and dedication towards music is evident as he dedicated 2 out of 7 chapters to music: the current state of the industry, his composition methodology, and the importance of individualism to his success in music. This pride is contrasted against his modesty and self-assessed naivety about many aspects in life, particularly regarding relationships and marriage.
Chou has been a spokesperson for popular brands such as Pepsi (2002–2007), Panasonic (2001–2005), Motorola (since 2006), M-Zone/China Mobile (since 2003), Levi’s (2004–2005), Deerhui (sporting goods, since 2003), and Metersbonwe Group (casual wear, since 2003), Colgate (2004–2005), popular computer game Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos (2002), science and nature magazine National Geographic (2005). To maximize the celebrity branding effect, advertisements are nearly always linked to his music and TV commercials are occasionally directed by him. He acted as the tourism ambassador for Malaysia in 2003. Recently[when?], Jay is promoting Sprite with Angela Chang. In the commercial, he can be seen performing magic tricks. He also did a Sprite commercial with Kobe Bryant.
From the launch of his music career in 2000, Jay Chou has won more than 350 singer, singer-songwriter, and producer awards in Asia. The highly coveted Golden Melody Awards in Taiwan[j] awarded “Best Album” for his debut CD Jay (2000) in 2001, and five awards (including “Best Album”, “Best Composer”, and “Best Producer”) in the following year for the album Fantasy (2001). However, failure to win “Best Album” for three consecutive years has left him disheartened with award ceremonies. Although he continues to win more than 20 awards per year from various organizations in Asia, Chou has stated he will rely more on album sales as an indicator of his music’s quality and popularity. In 2004, 2006, 2007 and 2008, he was awarded Best-Selling Artist in China by World Music Awards for the albums Common Jasmin Orange, Still Fantasy and On the Run.
Media and public relations
Despite living under continual media scrutiny, Chou’s public image has changed little over the years as he emphasizes individuality as his “personal philosophy”. In his music, this is also evident as he fuses Chinese and Western styles and explores topics unconventional for a pop singer, which have been described as “authentic” and “revolutionary”. The media describes a hard-working perfectionist with clear self-direction who is occasionally regarded as competitive and a “control freak”. There is a misunderstanding about his nickname “Chairman Chou” , used by both the press and fans to underscore his domineering personality and impact on Asian music, but also points at his musical talent. Yet the origin of this nickname emerges from his fever of collecting antiques as the word comes from “antique” in Chinese . Outside of music, Chou is reported as shy, quiet, modest, and views filial piety as “the most important thing“. In-line with his aim to present a positive image, he is a non-smoker, non-drinker, and does not go to nightclubs. Government officials and educators in Asia have awarded him for his exemplary behaviour, designated him a spokesperson in the youth-empowerment project “Young Voice” in 2005 and an anti-depression campaign in 2007, His lyrics for two songs[i] has been incorporated into the school syllabus to inspire motivational and filial attitudes. In November 2007, Chou was criticized for attending the funeral of Taiwanese gang leader Chen Chi-li to console Chen’s son Baron Chen, whom Chou met while filming Kung Fu Dunk.
Response to the news media and paparazzi
As with other stars, Chou has expressed a strong dislike of the paparazzi. In the early years of his career, unwanted attention by the media was usually dealt with by avoidance. In-line with his quiet nature, he frequently wore baseball caps and hoods while lowering his head and evading eye contact during interviews. In recent years however, he has been less passive about the invasion of his privacy. To discourage the paparazzi from taking unsolicited pictures, Chou is known to photograph the paparazzi that follow him. He openly calls the paparazzi “dogs” and tabloids “dog magazines”, as shown in his lyrics for “Besieged From All Sides”. The media have also accused Chou of evading compulsory military service by feigning to suffer from ankylosing spondylitis. Later that year he was acquitted after providing the relevant medical records and letters from the army confirming a lawful exemption from draft dated before the start of his music career.
Despite constant harassment and stalking by the media, he does acknowledge that not all media attention is unwelcome. Coverage by international journals and news agencies such as Time, The Guardian, and Reuters help ascertain his influence on mainstream culture. An editorial written by Kerry Brown of Chatham House named Chou as one of the 50 most influential figures in China, one of only three singers on a list dominated by politicians and corporate owners. At the end of 2009, he was included on JWT’s annual list of 100 Things to Watch in 2010.
It is difficult to estimate the size and global spread of Chou’s fanbase. Jay’s fanbase originated and grew extensively in China. The Chinese-speaking populations of Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Mainland China make up a significant percentage of Chou’s fans. Despite rampant piracy issues in this region of Asia, particularly in China, every album Chou has released so far has surpassed 2 million sales. According to Baidu, the most popular internet search engine in China, Chou is the number one searched male artist in 2002, 05, 06 and 07.
In Hong Kong, he has been the best-selling Mandarin artist for the past 4 years. According to a 2004 survey in five Chinese urban centers for children ages 9 to 14, 1 in 6 named Chou as their favorite idol; he was also reported as the favorite singer of youths aged 8 to 25 in a study conducted in seven Asian countries (2006). He has a solid fanbase throughout Southeast Asia, including Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Vietnam. In Singapore, Chou was the second most searched celebrity behind Britney Spears in the music category.
Currently, Chou remains largely unknown outside of Asia, except in cities with large Chinese immigrant populations such as Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Vancouver, Toronto, Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. He has held concerts in major venues such as the Acer Arena (Sydney – 3 July 2009), HP Pavilion at San Jose (San Jose – 31 December 2010), Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena (Los Angeles – 8 January 2011), MGM Grand (Las Vegas—25 December 2002), Rogers Arena (Vancouver – 23 December 2010), Shrine Auditorium (Los Angeles—18 December 2004), Galen Center (Los Angeles—24 December 2007) and the Air Canada Centre (Toronto – 18 December 2008). His intention to increase his prominence in the Western world beyond Chinese audiences is clear. In 2006, Chou composed and sang the theme song for Fearless, a movie released in major theatres in most English-speaking countries, though the impact to his fame has been minimal. His role in Curse of the Golden Flower (limited release) marks his acting debut in North America. Despite having a supporting but important role in the story’s plot, the North American version of the official posters only featured a view of his back, greatly contrasting the Asian versions where his face and name were clear and placed between the leading actor and actress. Although Chou is still far from being well-known to English audiences, this movie has brought him international exposure. Chou gained further exposure to western audiences in his starring role as crimefighter Kato in January 2011′s The Green Hornet.
Chou has won the Favorite Male Artist of the 20th Golden Melody Awards in Taiwan. He did not attend the event to collect the award because he was on tour in China at the time.
|2005||Initial D||“Takumi Fujiwara“|
|2006||Curse of the Golden Flower||“Prince Jai – Yuan Jie”|
|2007||Secret||“Jay – Ye Xiang Lun – “
Original story author
|2008||Kung Fu Dunk||“Fang Shi Jie – Fong Sai Kit – “|
|2009||The Treasure Hunter||“Lead actor  – Qiao Fei”|
|2010||True Legend||“God of Wushu” / “Drunken God”|
|2011||The Green Hornet||“Kato” (First Hollywood Film)|
|Secret 2||“Jay – Ye Xiang Lun –”
|Viral Factor||Lead actor|
|2012||Initial D 2||“Takumi Fujiwara“
|2010||Pandamen||“Detective Leo Lee”
|Mr.J Channel||“Himself – Host”|
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Perry was October 25, 1984 in Santa Barbara, California, and raised by Christian pastor parents, Perry grew up listening to only gospel music and sang in her local church as a child. After earning a GED during her freshman year of high school, she grew up in Southern California. Perry is of German and Portuguese descent on her mother’s side. She is the second child of two pastors. She has an older sister and younger brother. Perry’s mother’s aunt and uncle were screenwriter Eleanor Perry and director Frank Perry.Perry was incorporated into her parents’ ministry and sang in their church between the ages of nine and seventeen. She grew up listening to gospel music, was not allowed to listen to what her mother called “secular music“, and attended Christian schools and camps. As a child, Perry learned how to dance in a recreation building in Santa Barbara. She was taught by seasoned dancers and began with swing, Lindy Hop, and jitterbug.
Began Music Career
1984–2006: Early life and career beginnings
At the age of 15, Perry’s singing in church attracted the attention of rock veterans from Nashville, Tennessee, who brought her there to polish her writing skills. In Nashville, Perry started recording demos and was taught by country music veterans on how to craft songs and play guitar. Perry signed to the Christian music label Red Hill, under which she recorded her first album at the age of 15. Performing as Katy Hudson, she released the self-titled Gospel-rock album in 2001. The album was unsuccessful, however, after the label ceased operations at the end of 2001. She later changed her surname to Perry, her mother’s maiden name, because “Katy Hudson” was too close to film actress Kate Hudson. At the age of 17, Perry left her home for Los Angeles, where she worked with Glen Ballard on an album for record label Island. The album was due for release in 2005, but Billboard reported it also went nowhere. Perry was dropped by Island Def Jam Music Group. Some of Perry and Ballard’s collaborations included “Box”, “Diamonds” and “Long Shot”, were posted on her official MySpace page. “Simple”, one of the songs she recorded with Ballard, was released on the soundtrack to the 2005 film The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.
Perry signed to Columbia Records in 2004. However, the label was not amenable with her vision, not putting her in the “driver’s seat”. Instead, one of Columbia’s ideas was to pair Perry with the record production team The Matrix, who was working on an album, to serve as its female vocalist. Although the album was later shelved, she caught the attention of the music press: Her burgeoning music career led to her being named “The Next Big Thing” in October 2004 by Blender magazine. With no album project ongoing, Perry began recording her own. Eighty percent completed, however, Columbia decided not to finish it and dropped her off the label. While waiting to find another label, she worked in an independent A&R company called Taxi Music. In 2006, Perry was featured in the tail-end of the video to P.O.D.‘s single “Goodbye for Now“. She made a cameo appearance in Carbon Leaf‘s video, “Learn to Fly”.
As Katy Hudson, she released a self-titled gospel album in 2001, which due to the closing of her record label, was deemed unsuccessful. She later recorded an album with production team The Matrix and completed the majority of a solo album from 2004–5; neither of which were released.
Signing with Capitol Music Group
After signing with Capitol Music Group in 2007, her fourth record label in seven years, she adopted the stage name Katy Perry and released her first Internet single “Ur So Gay” that November, which garnered public attention but failed to chart. She rose to fame with the release of her second single “I Kissed a Girl” in 2008, which went on to
|One of the Boys|
top international charts. Perry’s first mainstream studio album One of the Boys followed later that year and
subsequently, became the thirty-third best selling album worldwide of 2008. It was accredited platinum certification by the Recording Industry Association of America, while “I Kissed a Girl” and her second single “Hot n Cold“ both received multi-platinum certifications. Her sophomore studio album Teenage Dream was released in August 2010 and debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. The album included hit singles “California Gurls“, “Teenage Dream“, “Firework” and “E.T.” , all of which topped the charts on the Billboard Hot 100.
Perry was credited as a guest judge on the seventh series of British television show The X Factor; has released a fragrance called “Purr”; and will appear in the upcoming 2011 film The Smurfs.
2007–09: One of the Boys and MTV Unplugged
While in the process of being dropped by Columbia in 2006, the company’s publicity executive Angelica Cob-Baehler enthusiastically recommended Perry to Virgin Records chairman Jason Flom. At the time Flom was leading a complete revival in fortunes at the label and looking to crown recent achievements by breaking a global pop act. Despite mixed reactions from fellow Virgin executives, Flom became convinced that Perry could be that breakthrough star, and at the start of 2007 extended discussions with Columbia resulted in Katy Perry signing to the newly created Capitol Music Group, a merger between Virgin and Capitol. As part of the deal the label secured the masters to the unfinished album recorded while at Columbia that would go on form a significant part of her debut album official mainstream debut album, One of the Boys.
The Columbia recordings were seen by Flom as being “very strong but lacking an undeniable smash or two that would work both at U.S. pop radio and internationally” and so one of the executive’s first actions after completing the signing was to set up a collaboration between Perry and the writer-producer Dr Luke. The results were the songs “I Kissed a Girl” and “Hot n Cold“. Establishing her image was one of the immediate concerns of her management. A campaign was started in November 2007 with the release of the video to “Ur So Gay“, aimed at introducing her to the music market. A digital EP led by “Ur So Gay” was later released to create online buzz and press story. This was a successful move that resulted in bringing Perry to the attention of Madonna, who mentioned her on KISS FM and KRQ‘s JohnJay & Rich morning show in Arizona. On March 10, 2008, she appeared as herself on the ABC Family television series, Wildfire, on the episode “Life’s Too Short“.
She went on the next step of promoting the album, undertaking a two-month tour of radio stations. The album’s official lead single, “I Kissed a Girl“, was released on May 6, 2008. Perry’s A&R, Chris Anokute, told HitQuarters the song and its controversial theme met with strong resistance at the label, “People said, ‘This is never going to get played on the radio. How do we sell this? How’s this going to be played in the bible belt?’” Anokute said that they needed the support of one of the label’s radio promoters to convince people to believe in the record otherwise Perry would have likely been dropped again. Capitol’s SVP of Promotions Dennis Reese saw the vision and helped push the single on national radio. The first station to pick it up and take a chance was The River in Nashville. After playing it for three days they were innundated with enthusiastic calls. With the song climbing atop the charts, Perry embarked on the annual Warped Tour music festival, which her management used to “establish her as a credible performer and make sure she wasn’t seen as just a one-hit wonder.” The single was a commercial success, peaking at number one for seven weeks on the Billboard Hot 100. It has since become a major worldwide hit, topping charts in 30 countries, including Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom. On June 12, 2008, Perry appeared as herself on the daytime soap opera The Young and the Restless, posing for the cover to the June 2008 issue of the fictional magazine Restless Style.
One of the Boys was released on June 17, 2008 to mixed critical reviews. The album has reached number nine on the Billboard 200, and has been certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America. Perry released her second single, “Hot n Cold“, which became her second top three single in dozens of countries around the world, including the United States where it reached number three on the Billboard Hot 100, as well as topping the charts in Germany, Canada, and Denmark. After Perry wrapped up her appearance at the Warped Tour, she went on tours in Europe. She later launched her first headlining tour, the Hello Katy Tour, in January 2009. “I Kissed a Girl” earned Perry a nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance at the 2009 Grammy Awards. Perry was nominated in five categories at the 2008 MTV Video Music Awards, including Best New Artist and Best Female Video, but lost to Britney Spears. She won Best New Act at the 2008 MTV Europe Music Awards, which she co-hosted, and Best International Female Artist at the 2009 BRIT Awards. On February 9, 2009, both “I Kissed a Girl” and “Hot n Cold” were certified three-time platinum by Recording Industry Association of America for individual digital sales of over three million. The Guinness Book of World Records recognized Perry in its 2010 version as the “Best Start on the US Digital Chart by a Female Artist,” for having her first two singles sell over two million digital copies.
The Matrix’s self-titled debut album, which features Perry, was later released via the team’s label, Let’s Hear It, during Perry’s solo tour. When the release date was scheduled, “I Kissed a Girl” had been charting well. Matrix member Lauren Christy spoke to Perry about the decision, but she wanted to hold the release until the fourth single of One of the Boys had been dispatched. Despite their communication, The Matrix was released on January 27, 2009, via iTunes Store.
On May 16, 2009, Perry performed at the opening ceremony of the annual Life Ball in Vienna, Austria. In June 2009, lawyers acting for Katy Perry opposed the recent trademark of Australian fashion designer Katie Perry who uses her own name to market loungewear. Some media outlets reported this as a lawsuit, which Katy Perry has denied on her blog. Katie Perry the designer reports on her blog that at a hearing with IP Australia on July 10, 2009, the singer’s lawyers withdrew their opposition to the trademark. During the summer of 2009 Perry filmed a cameo appearance for Get Him to the Greek; her scene, in which she kisses her future fiancé Russell Brand was cut, and does not appear in the final film. Discussing the issue with MTV, Perry hypothesized there may have been some fear that seeing the two make out would have taken viewers out of the experience. In 2009, Perry was featured on two singles: a remix of Colorado-based band 3OH!3‘s song “Starstrukk” in August (the idea for the collaboration came after Perry’s tour that featured 3OH!3 as the supporting act). The song was released over iTunes on September 8, 2009; and “If We Ever Meet Again“, the fourth single off Timbaland‘s album Shock Value II in December. In October 2009, MTV Unplugged revealed that Perry was one of the artists to perform for them, and that she would be releasing a live album of the performance, including two new tracks, “Brick by Brick” and Fountains of Wayne cover “Hackensack”. The album was released on November 17, and includes both a CD and a DVD.
2010–present: Teenage Dream
Perry appeared as a guest judge alongside Simon Cowell, Cheryl Cole and Louis Walsh during the Dublin audition stage of the seventh series of the British television show The X Factor on June 28, 2010 (later televised on August 28). She was one of the many celebrities chosen to fulfil the role of judge whilst Dannii Minogue was on maternity leave. She later returned to the show on October 17 to perform “Firework“. Perry’s second mainstream studio album was titled Teenage Dream and was released in August 2010. The first single from the album was titled “California Gurls“. The single peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and was the fastest rising single from a Capitol Records artist since Bobbie Gentry‘s “Ode to Billie Joe” in 1967. The cover art for Teenage Dream is a painting by Will Cotton in which depicts Perry lying naked on clouds of cotton candy; resembling the shots of Perry in the video for “California Gurls”. The booklet of the physical edition of the album, in keeping with the theme of cotton candy, has a cotton candy scent. The album’s second single “Teenage Dream” was released in July 2010. “Firework” is the album’s third single.
Katy Perry appeared at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards on September 12, 2010. She was nominated for two awards and presented the award of “Best Male Video” with Nicki Minaj to Eminem. On September 14, she returned to her old high school, Dos Pueblos High School, where she performed a short set for the school’s students. Perry performed “Hot n Cold” with Elmo from Sesame Street, which was originally to appear on the forty-first-season premiere of the educational children’s program on September 27, 2010. However, four days before the scheduled airing, Sesame Workshop announced, “In light of the feedback we’ve received on the Katy Perry music video … we have decided we will not air the segment on the television broadcast of Sesame Street, which is aimed at preschoolers. Katy Perry fans will still be able to view the video on YouTube.” The main reason was that parents complained about what appeared to be a great amount of cleavage shown by her dress. Perry shot the video for Firework in Budapest in September 2010. An open casting call drew an unprecedented 38,000 applicants. She proceeded to perform at a concert in Budapest on October 1, her first concert in Central and Eastern Europe. Perry has announced her own fragrance to be released in autumn of this year, named “Purr”. It will come in a cat-shaped bottle, and will be available through Nordstrom stores. ‘Teenage Dream led Perry to nominations four awards at the 2011 Grammy Awards: Album of the Year, Best Pop Vocal Album, Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for “Teenage Dream”, and Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals for “California Gurls“.
Musical style and themes
Perry has a contralto vocal range. Among Perry’s musical influences are Alanis Morissette, pop rockers Cyndi Lauper, Pat Benatar, Joan Jett, Shirley Manson, and Freddie Mercury, the late frontman of the British band Queen. Growing up listening to gospel music, Perry had few references when she began recording songs. Asked by the producer with whom she would like to collaborate, Perry had no idea. That night, she went with her mother to a hotel. Inside, she turned on VH1 and saw producer Glen Ballard talking about Morissette; Ballard produced Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill, the album that had a “huge influence” on Perry. She told her initial collaborator that she had decided to work with Ballard. The producer arranged a meeting for her and Ballard in Los Angeles. Perry presented him a song, and a day later she was called. Ballard developed Perry for a few years.
Perry described her music by saying, “Someone kind of penned it for me the other day, and I’ve been using it ever since.” According to her, she has “changed a lot between the ages of 15 to 23.” Her first album dwells on Gospel music. She related that her perspective in music was “a bit enclosed and very strict”, and everything she did was church-related. Her second album, One of the Boys, is described as “secular” and “rock,” and reflects a departure from her religious musical roots. Perry expects to record more pop songs for her next album.
Perry is artistically involved in her projects, especially in the writing process. Since she could play guitar, she would start writing songs at home and present it to her producers. Perry is mostly inspired by specific moments of her life. She said it is easy for her to write songs about heartbreak. Most of the themes in One of the Boys deal with heartbreak, teen adventure, and “puking into toilets”. Perry’s mother reportedly told British tabloid Daily Mail that she dislikes her daughter’s music, calling it “shameful and disgusting”. Perry said her mother was misquoted and told MTV that it was false information. Her songs “Ur So Gay” and “I Kissed a Girl” have received negative reactions from both religious and gay sectors. The songs have been respectively labeled as being homophobic and promoting homosexuality, as well as “lez ploitational“. MTV mentioned criticism suggesting that Perry is using “bi-curiosity” as a way to sell records. Perry responded to the controversy surrounding “Ur So Gay”: “It’s not a negative connotation. It’s not, ‘you’re so gay,’ like, ‘you’re so lame,’ but the fact of the matter is that this boy should’ve been gay. I totally understand how it could be misconstrued or whatever … It wasn’t stereotyping anyone in particular, I was talking about ex-boyfriends.”
Perry is known for her unconventional style of dress. It is often humorous, bright in color, and reminiscent of different decades, and she frequently uses fruit-shaped accessories, mainly watermelon, as part of her outfits. Having learned dancing at an early age, she fantasized about having her own style. Perry’s transformation into an artist began with fashion, inspired by American film actress Dominique Swain‘s portrayal in 1997 film adaptation of the novel Lolita. She defines her fashion style as “a bit of a concoction of different things”. Johnny Wujek, Perry’s stylist, described her style, upon meeting her for the first time, as “very colorful and vintage”. Her fashion has caught the attention of designers. In June 2008, a publicity photo that showed Perry posing with a switchblade was criticized. The picture was defended as only an effort to give Perry a “sexy, harder edge”. The criticism leveled at her was mocked by Perry who subsequently posed with a spoon instead. She has appeared in FHM Magazine’s 100 Sexiest Women poll twice, ranking at #23 in 2009 and #37 in 2010.
Perry first met British comedian Russell Brand in the summer of 2008 when Perry filmed a cameo for Brand’s film Get Him to the Greek. Perry and Brand began dating after meeting again in September 2009 at the MTV Video Music Awards, where Brand, as host, remarked, “Katy Perry didn’t win an award and she’s staying at the same hotel as me, so she’s gonna need a shoulder to cry on. So in a way, I’m the real winner tonight.” The couple became engaged in December 2009 while vacationing in India. In a July 2010 YouTube interview, Perry said Brand would be a “perfect” father. Perry has stated that she plans to take dual British citizenship when she marries Brand. “One of the first things I’ll do is apply for dual citizenship. I’m not too sure if I have to take a test as I’ve not had time to look into it. But England is like my second home”. Perry and Brand married on October 23, 2010 in a traditional Hindu ceremony near the Ranthambhore tiger sanctuary in Rajasthan, India, the same location where Brand had proposed.
|2008||The Young and the Restless||Herself||Episode 8914|
|2008||Wildfire||Herself||“Life’s Too Short” (Season 4, episode 8)|
|2010||American Idol||Guest judge||“Season 9, episode 5“|
|2010||The X Factor||Guest judge||“Series 7, episode 2“|
|2010||Sesame Street||Herself||Online special (deleted from televised episode due to viewer controversy)|
|2010||The Simpsons||Herself||1 episode, “The Fight Before Christmas“|
|2011||How I Met Your Mother||Honey||1 episode, “Oh Honey“|
|2010||Get Him to the Greek||Herself||Deleted scene
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Who is Corinne Jacqueline Bailey? The entertainment and music world knows Corinne Bailey Rae as a British singer-songwriter and guitarist from Leeds, who released her debut album Corinne Bailey Rae in February 2006. Bailey Rae was named the number-one predicted breakthrough act of 2006 in an annual BBC poll of music critics, Sound of 2006. She became the fourth female British act in history to have her first album debut at number one. Bailey Rae was nominated for Grammy Awards and BRIT Awards, and has won two MOBO Awards and an Album Of The Year Grammy and Best Contemporary Jazz Album for her work as a featured artist in Herbie Hancock‘s River: The Joni Letters. Bailey Rae was married to fellow musician Jason Rae from 2001 until his death in 2008. Bailey Rae released her second album, The Sea on 26 January 2010, after a hiatus of nearly two years. Tracks on the new album have been produced by Steve Brown and also Steve Chrisanthou (who produced her debut album in 2006). She has sold 4 million albums, with her two albums combined, worldwide. Bailey Rae was nominated for the 2010 Mercury Prize for Album of the Year for The Sea.
Bailey Rae was born on 26 February 1979 in Leeds to a black Kittitian father and a white English mother as the oldest of three daughters, including Candice Bailey and actress Rhea Bailey.
Bailey Rae began her musical career at school where she studied classical violin before she turned her attention to singing: “I started off singing in church, I suppose, but people think it must have been a gospel church because of the whole, you know, black assumption,” she says in reference to her multiracial background. “But it wasn’t gospel at all, it was just your regular Brethren church, very middle-class, where we would sing these harmonies every Sunday. It was always my favourite part of the service, the singing.”
Bailey Rae later transferred to a Baptist church, where the youth leader was coaching rock bands in the local high school. The church young people wrote their own worship songs and sang covers by the likes of Primal Scream. “We changed the words though,” Bailey Rae states on her website. “We didn’t want to offend the regular churchgoers, now did we?” She recorded two albums with the youth group under the name of Revive.
Performing in church broadened Bailey Rae’s musical horizons, and her love for making music was solidified after the church youth leader offered to lend her the money for her first guitar. In her mid-teens, she was highly influenced by Lenny Kravitz, and through him she discovered rock legends Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin. “I loved that band during my teens; I wanted, somehow, to follow in their footsteps, and to create music of my own.”
Bailey Rae formed an all-female (barring the drummer) indie group called Helen, which was inspired by similar acts such as Veruca Salt and L7. “It was the first time I’d seen women with guitars. They were kinda sexy—but feminist. I wanted to be like that, at the front of something.”
The group raised eyebrows on several fronts; in the white male-dominated world of indie music, they were a mainly female group, fronted by a mixed-race singer from Leeds. The moniker “Helen” also drew attention, albeit for not all the right reasons: “What can I say? We were 15 years old, and thought that Helen was a cheeky, indie kind of thing to do. It seemed clever at the time. Admittedly, it seems less so now”.
The group played many gigs around Leeds and eventually became the first indie act to be signed to heavy metal record label Roadrunner Records, home to acts such as Slipknot, in 1995. The venture proved to be short-lived however after the bassist became pregnant and the group disbanded. “[Was I] Disappointed? I was gutted! I had no idea what to do next”.
Bailey Rae studied English Literature at the University of Leeds where she graduated in 2000. While at University, she began work as a hat check girl on an evening in her local jazz club. Permitted to sing on stage with the jazz band when business was slow, it was there that she discovered a different type of music that sent her on a different musical path: “I kept hearing this jazz and soul stuff and I realized I loved music too”.
Corinne Bailey met Scottish-born Jason Rae in a jazz club in Leeds where she had a part-time job as a cloakroom attendant; they got married in 2001 at age of twenty-two and Bailey changed her name to Bailey Rae. Jason Rae (born in 1976), a musician, played saxophone for the eight-piece group called Haggis Horns, and had recorded with Bailey Rae The New Mastersounds and Martina Topley-Bird (Quixotic) albums. On 22 March 2008, Jason Rae was found dead in a flat in the Hyde Park area of Leeds. In December 2008, Leeds Coroner’s Court gave a verdict of death by misadventure, and stated that Rae died of an accidental overdose of methadone and alcohol. Her current partner is guitarist John McCum
2004–2008: Career music development
In the three years after she got married, Bailey Rae began working on solo material—this time steering away from her indie past and embarking on a more “soulful” path. She collaborated with Leeds-based funk group The New Mastersounds on the track “Your Love Is Mine,” featured on their 2003 album Be Yourself, released via One Note Records. The following year she again worked with another Leeds-based group, Homecut Directive, on the song “Come the Revolution”, which was the first single from the group’s debut album.
In 2004, Bailey Rae got a breakthrough when she was signed by Global Talent Publishing and then approached by Craig David‘s mentor Mark Hill, from the duo The Artful Dodger, to appear on his new album better luck next time under his new alias, The stiX. The resulting collaboration, “Young and Foolish”, was released in April 2005 and brought Bailey Rae to the attention of the major record label bosses.
Bailey Rae released her debut single, “Like a Star“, in November 2005 and her first album, Corinne Bailey Rae, in February 2006. It debuted at number one in the UK and entered the top ten of the U.S.Billboard 200, peaking at number four and spending 71 weeks in the chart from 2006 to 2008. According to Nielsen SoundScan, the album sold 1.9 million copies in the United States alone.
The lead single, “Like a Star” became a hit in the UK and U.S., and sold over 327,000 U.S. downloads. Follow-up single “Put Your Records On“, her biggest hit to date, rose to number two in the UK, and sold over 945,000 U.S. downloads. “Trouble Sleeping” made the top forty, and “I’d Like To“, the top seventy. In the middle of 2006, Bailey Rae embarked on her first international tour through Europe and North America with singer R&B, John Legend, playing 55 shows including the festivals Rock in Rio Lisboa 2 and Live Earth. In early April 2006, Corinne Bailey Rae was certified 2x platinum by the BPI and platinum by the RIAA. In September 2006, Bailey Rae scooped two awards at the UK’s MOBO Awards: “Best UK Newcomer” and “Best UK Female”. Bailey Rae recorded a live session at Abbey Road Studios in July 2006 for Live from Abbey Road.
Bailey Rae also received three nominations at the 2007 Grammy Awards: Record of the Year, Song of the Year (both for “Put Your Records On“), and Best New Artist. During the ceremony, she performed “Like a Star” and joined John Legend and John Mayer in a collaborative performance, providing accompanying vocals to Legend’s “Coming Home” and Mayer’s “Gravity“. The following year Like a Star was nominated for a Grammy for Song of the Year. Bailey Rae won in two categories for Album of the Year and Best Contemporary Jazz Album for her collaboration on River: The Joni Letters. During the American and European tour Bailey Rae recorded her first DVD with the title Live in London & New York. The DVD was filmed in London and the bonus CD was recorded in New York. Several songs from Bailey Rae’s debut album comprise the soundtrack to the 2006 film Venus. Bailey Rae is co-credited by the filmmakers for the score.
2009–present: The Sea
Corinne Bailey Rae released her new album titled The Sea on 26 January 2010. The album was released after a gap of two years following the death of her husband Jason Rae. Lead single I’d Do It All Again premiered on 25 November in 2009 on the Jools Holland program Later. Follow up single “Closer” will be added to Smooth Jazz Radio on 25 January, Urban AC on 1 February and AC radio in late February. The album’s second single “Paris Nights and New York Mornings” will go to Triple A radio on 15 February. After the release of the second album, Corinne went on a national tour. Her london concert at Somerset House in the summer was an instant sold-out and she returned to London again in October to perform in Royal Festival Hall with Pete Lawrie as a supporting act.
- Bailey Rae was the musical guest on the 7 October 2006 episode of Saturday Night Live with the host being Jaime Pressly. She performed “Put Your Records On” and “Like a Star”. She also appeared on Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip on the episode “B-12″, which aired on 27 November 2006, with Howie Mandel. She performed “Like a Star” and “Trouble Sleeping“.
- Bailey Rae performed on Radio 1 Live Lounge with the songs “Like a Star”, a cover version of Editors‘ “Munich”, and a cover version of Justin Timberlake‘s “SexyBack”.
- Recorded John Lennon‘s “I’m Losing You” for Make Some Noise, Amnesty International‘s music venture. The song was also released on the 2007 John Lennon tribute album, “Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur“.
- On 7 July 2007 Bailey Rae performed at the UK leg of Live Earth at Wembley Stadium, London.
- Recorded with Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, and other well-known jazz musicians Joni Mitchell‘s “River” for Herbie Hancock‘s September 2007 Joni Mitchell tribute album “River: The Joni Letters“. At the 2008 Grammy Awards, the album won Album of the Year and Best Contemporary Jazz Album. She recorded a live session of “River” with Hancock at Abbey Road Studios in for Live from Abbey Road for Channel 4 which was broadcast on Series 2.
- On December 7, 2009 Rae recorded a live performance in New York City, that was broadcast in the summer of 2010 on the US TV program, Live From the Artists Den.
- The song I’d Like To from Bailey Rae’s debut album was featured in the soundtrack for the movie He’s Just Not That Into You (2009).
- Bailey Rae is the Special Ambassador for the charity CORD.
- Bailey Rae is the central ambassador for International water and Sanitation charity, Pump Aid
- The music Like a Star, is part of the soundtracks of several films, series and soap opera, like Cashmere Mafia, 27 Dresses, Men in Trees, Nancy Drew, Perfect Stranger, Medium, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, Venus, Grey’s Anatomy, and Sete Pecados.
- In the film Venus, six songs from the debut album were included on the soundtrack of the film, which are “I’d Like To”, “Another Rainy Day”, “Choux Pastry Heart”, “Put Your Records On”, ” Like a Star”, ” Breathless”.
- On June 2, 2010 Bailey Rae appeared with Herbie Hancock, singing Blackbird in a concert honoring (Sir) Paul McCartney in the East Room at the White House.
Awards and nominations
The Grammy Awards are awarded annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Bailey Rae has won two awards from four nominations, including Album of the Year; she featured artist, Best New Artist, Record of the Year, Song of the Year.
|2007||Corinne Bailey Rae||Best New Artist||Nominated|
|“Put Your Records On”
||Record of the Year||Nominated|
|Song of the Year||Nominated|
|2008||River: The Joni Letters
||Album of the Year||Won|
|Best Contemporary Jazz Album||Won|
|“Like a Star”||Song of the Year||Nominated|
Others Awards and nominations
|2006||Nominated||BET Awards||BET J Cool Like Dat Award||General|
|Nominated||MTV Europe Music Awards||Best UK & Ireland Act||General|
|Nominated||MTV Woodie Awards||International Woodie (Favorite International Artist)||General|
|Nominated||UK Festival Music Awards||Best Urban Act||General|
|Nominated||Premios 40 Principales||Mejor Artista Nuevo Internacional||General|
|Nominated||MOBO Awards||Best Song||Put Your Records On|
|Won||Best UK Female||General|
|Won||Best UK Newcomer||General|
|Won||MOJO Awards||Best New Act||General|
|Won||Q Awards||Best New Act||General|
|2007||Nominated |rowspan=”2″| BET Awards||Best New Artist||General|
|Nominated||Best Female R&B Artist||General|
|Nominated||BRIT Award||Best British Single||Put Your Records On|
|Nominated||British Female Artist||General|
|Nominated||British Breakthroug Act||General|
|Nominated||Teen Choice Awards||Best Female Breakthrough Artist||General|
|Nominated||ECHO Awards||International Newcomer of the Year||General|
|Nominated||Ivor Novello Awards||PRS Most Performed Work||General|
|Nominated||MOBO Awards||Best UK Female||General|
|Nominated||Image Awards||Outstanding Album||Corinne Bailey Rae|
|Nominated||Outstanding Female Artist||General|
|Won||Outstanding New Artist||General|
|Won||Music Week Awards||International Marketing Campaign of the Year||General|
|Won||European Border Breakers Awards||United Kingdom||General]|
|Won||Soul and Jazz Awards||Album of the Year||Corinne Bailey Rae|
|Won||Best Album of Soul|
|Won||Best New Artist of the Year||Corinne Bailey Rae|
|2008||Won||ASCAP Awards||Song of the Year||Put Your Records On|
|Nominated||Urban Music Awards||Best Neo Soul Act||General|
|Won||BMI Pop Awards||Song of the Year||Put Your Records On|
|2010||Nominated||Soul and Jazz Awards||Album of the Year||The Sea|
|Won||Best Album R&B of the Year|
|Nominated||Artist of the Year||Corinne Bailey Rae|
|Won||Best Artist of the Year Act Soul/R&B|
|Nominated||Mercury Prize||Album of the Year||The Sea|
Kickers Urban Music Awards 2007
- Best Neo-Soul Act – Nominated
- Best Crossover Chart Act – Nominated
MOBO Awards 2010
- Best UK R&B/Soul Act – Nominated
American Smooth Jazz Awards 2010
- Best Female Act – Pendent
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Who is Eve Tramar Dillard? The entertainment and Rap World knows Flo Rida as an American rapper and singer. He released his debut album, Mail on Sunday, in March 2008. His debut single “Low“, featuring T-Pain, was a #1 hit for ten weeks in United States in early 2008. Two other singles resulted from Mail on Sunday: “Elevator” and “In the Ayer“. In 2009, his second album R.O.O.T.S. was released; its most successful single “Right Round” was at the top of the Hot 100 for six weeks. Since then, he has released his third studio album titled Only One Flo (Part 1), which will see a sequel titled Only One Rida (Part 2).
Tramar Dillard was born December 16, 1979 in the 187th Street projects of Carol City, Florida. His single mother raised him and his seven sisters, some of whom sang in a local gospel group. Dillard’s brother-in-law was a hypeman for local rap group 2 Live Crew, and, while in Ninth Grade, Dillard formed his own amateur group with some friends called the Groundhoggz. His work with 2 Live Crew member Fresh Kid Ice attracted attention of DeVante Swing, a member of the band Jodeci. However, he was rejected by several of the major labels, so he sought many other jobs outside of music. After graduating from high school in 1998, he studied international business management at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas for two years and attended Barry University for two months. He returned to Florida to continue pursuing his music career after receiving a phone call from a representative of the independent label Poe Boy Entertainment. Dillard signed with Poe Boy in 2006, and as Flo Rida he began affiliating with other artists, such as Rick Ross, Trina, T-Pain, and Trick Daddy. A promotional street single entitled “Birthday”, featuring Rick Ross, was his first significant release. He made his debut guest appearance with the song “Bitch I’m from Dade County” on DJ Khaled‘s album We the Best, which featured Trick Daddy, Trina, Rick Ross, Brisco, C-Ride, and Dre.
Mail on Sunday (2007–08)
Flo Rida’s first single was “Low“, featuring T-Pain. It was his first official single from his debut album Mail On Sunday and the soundtrack to the movie Step Up 2: The Streets. “Low” reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. “Elevator“, featuring Timbaland, “In the Ayer” featuring will.i.am, and “Roll” featuring Sean Kingston followed and all charted on the Hot 100 and other charts.
After the success of Mail on Sunday, Flo Rida made guest performances on other R&B, rap, and pop singles, including “Move Shake Drop” by DJ Laz, “We Break the Dawn” by Michelle Williams, the remix of “4 Minutes” by Madonna, “Running Back” by Australian R&B singer Jessica Mauboy, “Feel It” by DJ Felli Fel, and the remix of “Speedin’” by Rick Ross. During the summer of 2008, he did live performances on the Fox dance competition program So You Think You Can Dance in the US and 2008 MuchMusic Video Awards in Canada. He appeared on the albums We Global by DJ Khaled, Gutta by Ace Hood, and The Fame by Lady Gaga, among others.
According to Billboard magazine, Flo Rida began recording his sophomore nine months after Mail On Sunday. The album is titled R.O.O.T.S. and was released on March 31, 2009. The first single “Right Round” featured Ke$ha and was released for airplay in January 2009. “Right Round” jumped from number 58 to the top spot in one week in late February. The song broke a record for the most digital one week sales in the U.S., with 636,000, beating the previous record he had set himself with “Low“. “Right Round” sampled “You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)“, a 1985 hit by Dead or Alive. The second official single was “Sugar“, which featured R&B singer Wynter Gordon. The song reached #5 on the Billboard Hot 100. Other singles were “Jump” featuring Nelly Furtado, which reached #54 on the Hot 100 and was the promotional single for the animated film G-Force, and “Be On You” featuring Ne-Yo, which reached #19 on the Hot 100. In addition to singles from his own album, Flo Rida made guest performances on “Feel It” by DJ Felli Fel, “Starstruck” by Lady Gaga, and “Feel It” by Three 6 Mafia. “Bad Boys“, the first single by winner of British reality show The X Factor Alexandra Burke that featured Flo Rida, debuted at #1 on the UK Singles Chart in October.
Only One Flo (Part 1) (2010)
Flo Rida’s third album Only One Flo (Part 1) was released on November 24, 2010. In March 2010, Flo Rida announced on Twitter that the album would be titled The Only One. Billboard reported that The Only One was to be a double album. “Club Can’t Handle Me“, produced by David Guetta, was the first official single and reached #9 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States. Flo Rida also made guest appearances on “iYiYi“, a song by Australian teen singer Cody Simpson, and on the song “Out My Video” by Bulgarian singer LiLana. Flo Rida collaborated with UK girl group The Saturdays, recording a new version of the girl’s single, “Higher“.
In December 2010, the Associated Press reported that Flo Rida had created his own label, International Music Group, inspired by Nicki Minaj‘s signing with Lil Wayne‘s. He has signed an 18 year-old rapper, Brianna and Git Fresh  to International.
- Mail on Sunday (2008)
- R.O.O.T.S. (2009)
- Only One Flo (Part 1) (2010)
- Only One Rida (Part 2) (2011)
Awards and nominations
|2008||American Music Awards||Breakthrough Performer||Nominated|
|Favourite Male Hip-Hop Artist||Nominated|
|BET Awards||Best New Artist||Nominated|
|Best Collaboration (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|BET Hip Hop Awards||Ringtone of the Year (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|Rookie of the Year||Nominated|
|Best Hip-Hop Collabo (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|MuchMusic Video Awards||Best International Video (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|People’s Choice Favourite International Video (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|MTV Video Music Awards||Best Hip-Hop Video (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|Best Male Video (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|Ozone Awards||Breathrough Artist||Nominated|
|Club Banger of the Year (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|Teen Choice Awards||Choice Breakout Artist||Nominated|
|Choice Rap Artist||Nominated|
|Choice Hook-Up (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|2009||ARIA Music Awards||Breakthrough Artist Single (“Running Back” with Jessica Mauboy)||Nominated|
|Highest Selling Single (“Running Back” with Jessica Mauboy)||Won|
|APRA Awards||Urban Work of the Year (“Running Back” with Jessica Mauboy)||Won|
|Grammy Awards||Best Rap/Sung Collaboration (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|Best Rap Song (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|MOBO Awards||Best Song (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|MTV Australia Awards||Best Video (“Low” with T-Pain)||Nominated|
|Best Collaboration (“Running Back” with Jessica Mauboy)||Nominated|
|MTV Video Music Awards||Best Hip-Hop Video (“Right Round” with Kesha)||Nominated|
|NT Indigenous Music Awards||Single Release of the Year (“Running Back” with Jessica Mauboy)||Won|
|People’s Choice Awards||Favourite Hip-Hop Song (“Low” with T-Pain)||Won|
|Teen Choice Awards||Best Hip-Hop Rap Track (“Right Round” with Kesha)||Nominated|
|2010||APRA Awards||Urban Work of the Year (“Running Back” with Jessica Mauboy)||Nominated|
|Grammy Awards||Best Rap Album (R.O.O.T.S.)||Nominated|
|People’s Choice Awards||Hip-Hop Artist of the Year||Nominated|
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Who is Sheryl Suzanne Crow? The entertainment acting, music world knows her as Sheryl Crow. Crow is an American singer-songwriter, record producer, musician, and actress. Her music incorporates elements of rock, folk, hip hop, country and pop. She has won nine Grammy Awards from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.
She has performed with The Rolling Stones and has sung duets with Mick Jagger, Michael Jackson, Eric Clapton, Luciano Pavarotti, John Mellencamp, Kid Rock, Michelle Branch, and Sting among others. She has performed backing vocals for Tina Turner, Don Henley and Belinda Carlisle, on her 1991 hit Little Black Book. Crow has released seven studio albums, two compilations, and a live album, and has contributed to film soundtracks. She has sold 16 million albums in the United States and 35 million albums worldwide and her newest album, 100 Miles from Memphis, was released on July 20, 2010. Recently she appeared on NBC‘s 30 Rock, ABC‘s Cougar Town, Disney Channel‘s Hannah Montana Forever and Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear.
Sheryl Suzanne Crow was born February 11, 1962 in Kennett, Missouri, on February 11, 1962. Her father Wendell Crow is a lawyer and trumpet player, and her mother Bernice, a piano teacher. She has older sisters Kathy and Karen, and a younger brother Steven.
While studying at Kennett High School, Crow was a majorette and an All-State track athlete, winning medals in the 75-meter low hurdles. She also joined the Pep Club, the National Honor Society, National FFA Organization and Paperdoll Queen. She then enrolled at the University of Missouri, in Columbia, and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Composition, Performance, and Education. While in college, Crow sang in a local band, Cashmere. She was a member of the Kappa Alpha Theta social sorority, Sigma Alpha Iota International Music Fraternity for Women, and the Omicron Delta Kappa Society. Later, Crow was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Southeast Missouri State University, in Cape Girardeau, Missouri.
Crow has stated that her musical inspirations are not restricted to one genre, as she likes absolutely anything with a drum beat. In 2008, she told Ellen DeGeneres that “If it didn’t have a drum beat, you can just forget about it!” 
Crow toured with Michael Jackson as a backup vocalist during his Bad World Tour from 1987–1989, and often performed with Jackson on “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You.” She also recorded background vocals for performances from various established artists including Stevie Wonder, Belinda Carlisle and Don Henley.After graduating from college, Crow worked as a music teacher at the Kellison elementary school, in Fenton, Missouri. Teaching during the day allowed her the opportunity to sing in bands on weekends. Later, she was introduced to local musician and producer Jay Oliver. He had a thriving studio in the basement of his parents’ home, in St. Louis, and helped her by using her in advertising jingles. Her first jingle was a back-to-school spot for the St. Louis department store Famous-Barr. McDonald’s and Toyota commercial jingles soon followed. She was quoted in a 60 Minutes segment as saying she made $40,000 on her McDonald’s commercial alone.
Crow also sang in the short-lived Steven Bochco drama, Cop Rock, in 1990. The following year, she performed “Hundreds of Tears,” which was included in the Point Break soundtrack, and sang a duet with Kenny Loggins on the track “I Would Do Anything”, from his album Leap of Faith.
Scrapped debut album (1992)
In 1992, Crow recorded her first attempt at her debut album with Phil Collins‘ producer Hugh Padgham. The self-titled debut album was due to be released on September 22, 1992, but was ultimately rejected by her label. However, a handful of cassette copies of the album were leaked along with press folders to be used for album publicity. This album has been widely dispersed via file sharing networks and fan trading. In the meantime, Crow’s songs were recorded by major artists such as Celine Dion, Tina Turner and Wynonna Judd.
International success (1993-1997)
She then began dating Kevin Gilbert and joined him in an ad hoc group of musicians known to everyone in the group as the “Tuesday Music Club.” Group members, Gilbert, David Baerwald and David Ricketts (both formerly of David & David), Bill Bottrell, Brian MacLeod, and Dan Schwartz share songwriting credits with Crow on her debut album, Tuesday Night Music Club.
The group existed as a casual songwriting collective prior to its association with Crow, but rapidly developed into a vehicle for her debut album after her arrival. Her relationship with Gilbert became acrimonious soon after the album was released, and disputes arose about songwriting credits.
Crow appeared in the “New Faces” section of Rolling Stone in 1993. Tuesday Night Music Club featured many of the songs written by Crow’s friends, including the second single, “Leaving Las Vegas.” The album was slow to garner attention, until “All I Wanna Do” became an unexpected smash hit in the spring of 1994. As she later stated in People, she found an old poetry book in a used book store in the L.A. area and used a poem as lyrics in the song. The singles “Strong Enough” and “Can’t Cry Anymore” were also released, with the first song (“Strong Enough”) charting at #5 on Billboard and “Can’t Cry Anymore” hitting the Top 40. Tuesday Night Music Club went on to sell more than 7 million copies in the US and UK during the 1990s. The album also won Crow three Grammy Awards, in 1995: Record of the Year, Best New Artist and Best Female Vocal Performance. She performed at the 1994 and 1999 Woodstock Festivals, as well as the Another Roadside Attraction in 1997.
Crow supplied background vocals to the song “The Garden of Allah” from Don Henley‘s 1995 album Actual Miles: Henley’s Greatest Hits.
In 1996, Crow released her self titled second album. The album had songs about abortion, homelessness and nuclear war. The debut single, “If It Makes You Happy,” became a radio success and netted her two Grammy awards for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance and Best Rock Album. Other singles included “A Change Would Do You Good,” “Home” and “Everyday Is A Winding Road.” Crow produced the album herself. The album was banned from sale at Wal-Mart, as in the “Love Is A Good Thing” lyric Wal-Mart is implicated (by name) of supplying guns to which children later gain access. In 1997, Crow contributed the theme song to the James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies. Her song “Tomorrow Never Dies” was nominated for a Grammy Award and Best Original Song Golden Globe. Crow collaborated on Scott Weiland‘s 1998 album, 12 Bar Blues.
The Globe Sessions and Live (1998-1999)
In 1998 Crow released The Globe Sessions. During this period, she discussed in interviews having gone through a deep depression, and there was speculation about a brief affair with Eric Clapton. The debut single from this album, “My Favorite Mistake,” was rumored to be about him, although Crow claims otherwise about a philandering ex-boyfriend. Crow has refused to say who the song was about telling Billboard Magazine on the release of her album. “Oh, there will be just so much speculation, and because of that there’s great safety and protection in the fact that people will be guessing so many different people and I’m the only person who will ever really know. I’m really private about who I’ve had relationships with, and I don’t talk about them in the press. I don’t even really talk about them with the people around me.” Despite the difficulties in recording the album, Crow told the BBC in 2005 that: “My favorite single is ‘My Favorite Mistake,’ it was a lot of fun to record and it’s still a lot of fun to play.” The album won Best Rock Album at the 1999 Grammy Awards. It was re-released in 1999, with a bonus track, Crow’s cover of the Guns N’ Roses song “Sweet Child o’ Mine,” which was included on the soundtrack of the film Big Daddy. The song won the 1999 Grammy for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance. Other singles included “There Goes the Neighborhood,” “Anything But Down,” and “The Difficult Kind.” Crow won Grammy best female rock vocal performance for “There Goes the Neighborhood” in 2001. The Globe Sessions peaked at #5 on the Billboard 200 chart, achieving US sales of 2 million as of January 2008.
Later in 1998, Crow took part in a live concert in tribute to Burt Bacharach, in which she contributed vocals on One Less Bell to Answer.
In 1999, Crow also made her acting debut as an ill-fated drifter in the suspense/drama The Minus Man, which starred her then-boyfriend Owen Wilson as a serial killer.
She also released a live album called Sheryl Crow and Friends: Live From Central Park. The record featured Crow singing many of her hit singles with new musical spins and guest appearances by many other musicians including Sarah McLachlan, Stevie Nicks, the Dixie Chicks, Keith Richards, and Eric Clapton. “There Goes the Neighborhood” was included in the album, eventually winning the Grammy for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance.
C’mon, C’mon and The Very Best of (2002-2004)
Crow had been involved with the Scleroderma Research Foundation (SRF) since the late 1990s, performing at fund-raisers and befriending Sharon Monsky. In 2002, as a result of her friend Kent Sexton dying from scleroderma, she interrupted work on her new album C’mon C’mon to record the traditional hymn “Be Still, My Soul,” to be played at his funeral. In November of that year it was released as a single, with the proceeds going to SRF.
Crow’s fourth studio album, C’mon, C’mon was released in 2002, spawning the hit single “Soak Up the Sun.” Second single “Steve McQueen” won the Female Rock Vocal Performance Grammy.
Crow opposed the 2003 invasion of Iraq, wearing a shirt that read “I don’t believe in your war, Mr. Bush!” during a performance on Good Morning America and posting an open letter explaining her opposition on her website. Crow, performing with Kid Rock at the 45th annual Grammy Awards, wore a large peace sign and a guitar strap with the words “No War.”
Crow recorded the song “Kiss That Girl” for the film Bridget Jones’s Diary. She also recorded a cover version of the Beatles‘ song “Mother Nature’s Son” for the film I Am Sam. Crow duetted with rapper Kid Rock on the crossover hit single “Picture.” She also assisted Rock on the track “Run Off to L.A.”
Crow collaborated with Michelle Branch on the song “Love Me Like That” for Branch’s second album, Hotel Paper, released in 2003. Crow was featured on the Johnny Cash album American III: Solitary Man in the song “Field of Diamonds” as a background vocalist, and also played the accordion for the songs “Wayfaring Stranger” and “Mary of the Wild Moor.”
In 2003, Crow released a greatest hits compilation called The Very Best of Sheryl Crow. It featured many of her hit singles, as well as some new tracks. Among them was the ballad “The First Cut is the Deepest” (originally a Cat Stevens song), which became her biggest radio hit since “All I Wanna Do.” She also released the single “Light In Your Eyes,” which received limited airplay. “The First Cut is the Deepest” earned her two American Music Awards for Best Pop/Rock Artist and Adult Contemporary Artist of the Year, respectively.
In 2004, Crow appeared as a musical theater performer in the Cole Porter biopic De-Lovely.
Her fifth studio album Wildflower was released in September 2005. Although the album debuted at #2 on the Billboard charts, it received mixed reviews and was not as commercially successful as her previous albums. In December 2005, the album was nominated for a Best Pop Vocal Album Grammy, while Crow was nominated for a Best Female Pop Vocal Performance Grammy for the first single “Good Is Good.” However, she ultimately lost in both categories to Kelly Clarkson. The album got a new boost in 2006 when the second single was announced as “Always on Your Side,” re-recorded with British musician Sting and sent off to radio, where it was quickly embraced at Adult Top 40. The collaboration with Sting resulted in a Grammy-nomination for Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals. As of January 2008, Wildflower has sold 949,000 units in the U.S.
In 2006, Crow contributed the opening track, “Real Gone,” to the soundtrack for Disney/Pixar‘s animated film Cars. She also voices Elvis in the film. Crow was diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer in mid-February 2006, her doctors stating that “prognosis for a full recovery is excellent.”
Crow’s first concert after her cancer diagnosis was on May 18 in Orlando, Florida where she played to over 10,000 information technology professionals at the SAP Sapphire Convention. Her first public appearance was on June 12, when she performed at the Murat Theater in Indianapolis, Indiana.
The singer also appeared on Larry King Live on CNN on August 23, 2006. In this show she talked about her comeback, her breakup with Lance Armstrong, her past job as Michael Jackson’s backup singer, and her experience as a breast cancer survivor.
In late 2006, Crow was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for the song “Try Not To Remember” (Best Original Song category) from the film Home of the Brave.
Crow wrote a foreword for the book Crazy Sexy Cancer Tips, author Kris Carr’s book that was based on her 2007 documentary film Crazy Sexy Cancer. Crow contributed her cover of the Beatles’s “Here Comes the Sun” on the Bee Movie soundtrack in November 2007. She contributed background vocals to the Ryan Adams song “Two” from the album Easy Tiger.
Crow returned with her sixth studio album Detours, which was released on February 5, 2008. Detours debuted at number two on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart, selling about 92,000 copies in its first week and an additional 52,000 copies in its second week.
Detours was recorded at Crow’s Nashville farm. Her son, Wyatt, makes an appearance on the song “Lullaby for Wyatt,” which is featured in the movie Grace Is Gone. “The songs are very inspired by the last three years of events in my life,” Crow said of a time that found her battling breast cancer and splitting with partner Lance Armstrong.
“Shine Over Babylon” was the first promotional single from the album (download only). The first ‘official’ single to be released from the album was “Love Is Free,” followed by “Out of Our Heads.”
A liberal political activist, she endorsed Barack Obama for the United States Presidential Election and later performed on the 4th and last day of the 2008 Democratic National Convention.
Crow has also recorded a studio version of “So Glad We Made It” for the “Team USA Olympic Soundtrack” in conjunction with the 2008 U.S. Olympic team sponsors AT&T. Crow also stated that $1 of each ticket purchased for her 2008 tour would be donated to the United Nations World Food Programme.
A&M Records re-released Sheryl’s debut album, “Tuesday Night Music Club” as a deluxe version 2CD/DVD set on November 17, 2009. The bonus CD contains unreleased songs and B-sides, and a new mix of “I Shall Believe.” The DVD features music videos for each of the album’s singles.
100 Miles from Memphis (2010 – )
In 2010, Crow contributed the original spoken-word track “My Name is Mwamaroyi” to the Enough Project and Downtown Records‘ Raise Hope for Congo compilation. Proceeds from the compilation fund efforts to make the protection and empowerment of Congo’s women a priority, as well as inspire individuals around the world to raise their voice for peace in Congo.
A&M Records released Crow’s seventh studio album, 100 Miles from Memphis, on July 20, 2010. The album has a classic soul vibe and features lead single “Summer Day.” 100 Miles from Memphis (released July 20 on A&M Records), the distance from her hometown to the music mecca, is an ode to her formative memories of music – and one that the label hopes can inspire young music fans to investigate the landscape beyond processed pop and Auto-Tune.
Later that year, she joined Loretta Lynn and country singer Miranda Lambert on an update of Lynn’s song “Coal Miner’s Daughter” for the 2010 album Coal Miner’s Daughter: A Tribute to Loretta Lynn. The song was later performed on the 44th Annual Country Music Awards in November. 
Sheryl’s eighth studio album is in the works and is said to have more country flavor… Sheryl explained the album will be out early 2012
Crow began dating cyclist Lance Armstrong in 2003. The couple announced their engagement in September 2005 and their split in February 2006. Immediately following her split from Lance Armstrong, Crow was treated for breast cancer at a Los Angeles-based facility by breast cancer surgeon Dr. Kristi Funk. Crow had “minimally invasive” surgery in late February 2006, followed by radiation therapy.
On May 11, 2007, Crow announced on her official website that she had adopted a two-week-old boy named Wyatt Steven Crow. The child was born on April 29, 2007. She and Wyatt live on a 154-acre (0.62 km2) farm outside Nashville, Tennessee.
On June 4, 2010, Crow announced that she adopted another boy named Levi James Crow, born on April 30, 2010.
She is the great-granddaughter of former congressman Charles A. Crow (1873–1938).
- 1993: Tuesday Night Music Club
- 1996: Sheryl Crow
- 1998: The Globe Sessions
- 2002: C’mon C’mon
- 2005: Wildflower
- 2008: Detours
- 2010: 100 Miles from Memphis
- 1996: Live From London
- 1998: The Minus Man
- 1999: Rockin’ the Globe Live
- 2003: C’mon America 2003
- 2003: The Very Best of Sheryl Crow: The Videos
- 2006: Wildlower Tour: Live from New York
- 2008: Sheryl Crow – Live
- 2009: 30 Rock 3×22 – Kidney Now!
- 2010: Cougar Town 1×18; 1×19; 1×20
- 2010: Hannah Montana 4×5
- 2011: Miles From Memphis – Live At The Pantages Theatre
- 2011: If It Makes You Healthy with Chuck White
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- The Kick Inside (1978)
- Lionheart (1978)
- Never for Ever (1980)
- The Dreaming (1982)
- Hounds of Love (1985)
- The Sensual World (1989)
- The Red Shoes (1993)
- Aerial (2005)
- Director’s Cut (2011)
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Who is Solange Piaget Knowles? , The acting and singer world knows Solange Knowles as an entertainment. Solange is an American recording artist, actress and model. Knowles was born and raised in Houston, Texas along with her older sister singer Beyoncé, a former member of R&B group Destiny’s Child. Showing an interest in music recording at an early age, she eventually broke into the music scene at 16. She has released two studios albums: Solo Star in 2003 and Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams in 2008, which peak at number nine in the US Billboard 200 chart.
Aside from recording, Knowles has ventured into film, modeling, and entrepreneurship. She co-launched the junior apparel collection Deréon, a sister line to House of Deréon that was established by her mother and sister. Knowles has been compared to her sister by the media, but she dismisses the notion, saying they are artistically different.
Knowles was born on June 24, 1986, in Houston, Texas, to Mathew and Tina Knowles. Solange is the second child of Mathew and Tina, and the younger sister of Beyoncé. Her father is African American and her mother is Creole (of African American, Native American, and French descent). Her maternal grandparents are Lumis Beyincé and Agnéz Deréon, (a seamstress). As a child, Knowles studied dance and theater. At the age of five, she made her singing debut at an amusement park. She began writing songs at the age of nine. At 13, she decided to pursue recording, but her parents initially advised her to wait. At the age of 15 Knowles replaced a departed dancer and performed with her sister’s group Destiny’s Child on tour. During the group’s opening stint for American pop singer Christina Aguilera‘s tour, Knowles temporarily replaced Destiny’s Child member Kelly Rowland after Kelly broke her toes backstage during a costume change. When Knowles was 16, her father, who was then also her manager, signed her to his recording company, Music World Entertainment.
2001–2003: Early career and Solo Star
Managed by her father Mathew, Knowles’ first foray into the music business was in 2001 as the lead singer, backed with Destiny’s Child, on the title theme song for the animated television series The Proud Family. She also was a featured performer on “Hey Goldmember” for the soundtrack to the 2002 film Austin Powers in Goldmember, as well as a backup singer on the track “Little Drummer Boy” on her sister’s group’s 2001 holiday album 8 Days of Christmas. In 2002, she was featured on Lil Romeo‘s second studio album Game Time, singing portions of Luther Vandross-penned “So Amazing” on the single “True Love”, and on Rowland’s debut solo album Simply Deep, for which she also wrote the title track and “Alone”. In 2001 she also appeared as Lil’ Bow Wow’s date in the music video for his single “Puppy Love“.
In June 2003, Mathew Knowles excitedly announced that he was considering adding Solange to Destiny’s Child when the group reunited in 2004, thus turning them into a quartet for the first time since short-lived member Farrah Franklin left in 2000. Mathew Knowles said he was testing the reactions, and, judging by what he had heard, “it seems like a good idea”. Later in August, however, Beyoncé said it was only a rumor and Destiny’s Child would remain a trio. Rowland added, “She’s a Solo Star,” namedropping Knowles’ debut album.
At the age of 14, Solange Knowles started working on her debut album Solo Star, which involved American producers such as Jermaine Dupri, The Neptunes, Linda Perry and Timbaland among others. The album is primarily uptempo R&B, although Knowles said there are pop, rock, reggae and hip hop influences. Knowles co-wrote and co-produced some of the 15 tracks in the album, including its lead single, “Feelin’ You (Part II)“. The song failed to enter the Billboard Hot 100, but reached number three on both the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles Sales and Hot Dance Singles Sales chart. Solo Star was released on January 21, 2003 in the United States, where it debuted at number 49 on the Billboard 200 and reached number 23 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart. Solo Star had a mixed critical reception: William Ruhlmann of Allmusic called it a “state-of-the-art contemporary R&B album”, but deemed Knowles “lost somewhere in the mix”. As of mid-2008, the album had sold 112,000 copies domestically according to Nielsen Soundscan.
2004–2008: Career break and Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams
After the release of her debut album, Knowles started acting in films followed by a career break. When she was married, her family moved to Idaho, and, while staying there, resumed writing songs including the singles “Get Me Bodied“ and “Upgrade U“ off her sister’s second solo album, B’Day. Knowles earned the R&B and Hip-Hop Song accolade for “Get Me Bodied” at the 2008 ASCAP Awards. She had also written songs for Destiny’s Child, and members Rowland and Michelle Williams. In 2004, while pregnant with son Daniel, she made a cameo appearance in Destiny’s Child’s music video for “Soldier“.
After the divorce, Knowles returned to Houston to began working on her second album. Knowles renewed her management, signing a record deal with Geffen and a publishing deal with EMI. Knowles finished working on her second studio album in 2008 and titled the project Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams. It includes production by Cee-Lo Green, Soulshock & Karlin and Mark Ronson as well as an appearance by Bilal. A collection of 1960s- and 1970s-influenced songs, it is seen as a departure from her pop-oriented debut, with what Billboard magazine called “more of a modern twist on hip-hop and R&B flecked with tinges of blues and jazz”. The album was released on August 26, 2008 in the United States. By December 2008, the album had sold over 114,000 copies according to Nielsen Soundscan. The album was positively received by critics, some of whom considered it far better than her debut. The album’s lead single, “I Decided“, was released in April 2008, and reached the top of the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play; Rolling Stone magazine labelled it her breakthrough single. In support of the album, Knowles began the Solange Presents Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams Tour in Britain in November 2008.
Knowles announced, via her blog HadleyStreetJournal.com, that she will be releasing a series of mixtapes, to coincide with the album. The first mixtape, “I Can’t Get Clearance…”, includes the leaked track “Fuck the Industry (Signed Sincerely)”. On this record, Knowles expresses her views on the current state of the music industry. The lyrics to the song name check some major artists such as Mary J. Blige, Ashanti, Keyshia Cole, and Beyoncé, although she made a point of stating that it does not have “a negative light to any of [them]“.
2009–present: Third studio album
In an interview with MTV in 2009, Knowles revealed that she was determining the type of sound for the follow up to Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams. Knowles also parted ways with the Interscope-Geffen-A&M record label group. She will now release her third studio album independently. Early in 2010, Knowles traveled to Australia to work with Australian rock band, Midnight Juggernauts on her third studio album Knowles plans to release the album in summer as revealed on her official twitter account in 2009 She also revealed on her twitter account that she rented a house in Santa Barbara, California to get into a certain state of mind while writing and making music On 7 May 2010, Knowles made a guest appearance on the popular children show, Yo Gabba Gabba! for a “Mothers Day Special” where she performed an original song called, “Momma Loves Baby”. In an interview with Vibe on 7 July 2010, Knowles said she suffered “a little bit of a breakdown” while recording her new album: “I literally gave up my sanity for a while to do this record. [...] We literally were waking up in the morning and just making music all day and all night. [...] It just started to wear on me in so many different ways. I started having these crazy panic attacks.” Knowles explained how she made sacrifices “mentally, emotionally and financially”, and continued, “It’s more than an album to me. It’s a transitional time in my life.” Regarding the musical direction of the album, she said the inspiration came from New Wave music and stated, “This is a dance record, but the lyrics can get pretty dark at times.”. She recorded a charity song called “Kenya” with Chris Taylor.
Aside from recording, Knowles ventured into film, modeling, and entrepreneurship. According to her father Mathew Knowles, her goal of merging music and film was part of the overall plan for her career. Knowles appeared as a nubile teenager in the 2004 comedy film Johnson Family Vacation, starring alongside American actors Cedric the Entertainer, Vanessa Williams and Bow Wow. She provided a song for its soundtrack—”Freedom“, a collaboration with the Houston-based funk-jazz band Drop Trio. Although the reviews were generally negative, Knowles earned praise from Variety magazine: “Solange Knowles is nearly as dazzling as big sister Beyoncé and does little more than smile winningly in her first bigscreen outing.” In 2006, she starred as a cheerleading captain in the film Bring It On: All or Nothing, the third installment of the Bring it On series, alongside American actress and singer Hayden Panettiere. What little critical reaction the low-budget, direct-to-DVD movie got was negative, and Knowles was described as an “affordable young starlet”. Knowles uses her full name for her acting, rather than just the first name she uses when singing; for Bring It On: All or Nothing, she was billed as Solange Knowles-Smith, reflecting her married state at the time.
Knowles also appeared in several television series. In 2002, she lent her voice for the character Chanel, the cousin of the protagonist Penny Proud, in the episode “Behind Family Lines” to the animated television series The Proud Family. In 2004, she guest starred in the episode “The Catch” to the sitcom One on One.
Knowles and sister Beyoncé model for their families’ clothing line, House of Deréon, named after their grandmother, Agnéz Deréon. She also helped launch Deréon, a junior apparel collection and a sister line to House of Deréon. Both sisters model for Deréon, and are featured in most of Deréon’s marketing campaigns. They were featured in a “Got Milk?” campaign ad, while still wearing House of Deréon. In 2008, Knowles was named as ambassador for Giorgio Armani‘s younger diffusion line, Armani Jeans. Armani said Knowles epitomizes the style, which is a “vision of a young, independent, casual lifestyle with a strong and cool, fashion sensibility”.
Knowles has been promoting Baby Jamz, a hip hop-styled toy line for pre-schoolers. It was inspired by her son, Julez, who is fond of hip hop music. She is the executive producer of the CD, composed of updated hip hop inspired nursery rhymes, which is featured in all of the toys.
Also, Knowles has been known for her work in the award-winning children’s TV show, Yo Gabba Gabba!. She performed “When I Hear Music” during the live performance when it toured the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. She also performed “Mama Loves Baby” during a 2010 episode called “Baby”.
Knowles, at age 17, married Daniel Smith in February 2004. Knowles met Smith at a high school party through mutual friends. He was in high school at the time and Knowles was 13 and in middle school; they called themselves high school sweethearts. On October 18, 2004, Knowles gave birth to their son, Daniel Julez Smith, Jr. Knowles has partly expressed regret that she bore a child at an early age, but calls her son the greatest unplanned blessing. A song she wrote for her baby, “An Ode to Marvin”, was included on Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams.
After Daniel Julez’ birth, the family moved to Moscow, Idaho, where Knowles’ husband continued studying in college. In October 2007, Solange confirmed in an interview with Essence magazine that she and Smith had divorced. Both of them co-parent the child. After the divorce, Knowles and her child moved to Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, where they established their new home.
Knowles cites as her influences Motown girl groups such as The Supremes and The Marvelettes, and Martha Reeves, lead singer of Martha and the Vandellas. She also listened to the music of English pop singer Dusty Springfield, and according to Knowles, her “greatest music influence” is her mother, Tina Knowles, who was a one-time member of the 1960s harmony group The Veltones.
Knowles says her first passion is writing songs. She has been doing this since she was nine years old, and has collaborated with a number of songwriters and producers. On her debut album, Knowles had no control over which kinds of music to produce, because “when you’re 14, everyone else is older and more seasoned and you trust their decisions”. Knowles was more concerned with pleasing her record label by submitting to their desires. Her musical influences were better expressed on Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams, when she considered herself mature and was able to write and produce songs as she wished, without worrying about the expectations of others. Knowles’ lyrics tackle relationships, world issues, and deceased friends, with her second album focusing on events in her life, such as marriage, divorce, and parenthood.
Aside from recording, Knowles occasionally paints as her hobby: “I think that painting, for me, is such an affirmative expression in that sometimes you don’t know what the outcome is gonna be and each stroke and each brush for me is an emotion and, in the end, it comes out as a piece which is the most amazing thing. … It definitely provides a different outlet.”
Knowles has always been compared by the media to her sister, Beyoncé, whom she considers one of her role models. She has expressed her opinion of the comparison in the lyrics to “God Given Name”: “I’m not her and never will be” — which was purposely set as the album’s opening track to show their differences. In her review for the album, Jody Rosen of Rolling Stone magazine referred to the lyrics a declaration of independence. In an interview with the Daily Mail, Knowles commented: “People think there should be this great rivalry between us, but there’s never been any competition. There’s a big age gap and we are two very different characters.” In another interview, Knowles said that she would not live by her sister’s level of stardom, stressing that she and Beyoncé are artistically different, even stating that blogger Teddy Birmingham was “disrespectful” for saying she was living in her sister shadow on his website “Teddytalks” in June 2009. Beyoncé was unwilling to bring her sister into the recording industry, reasoning that it “involves a lot of pressure”. Knowles countered by saying, “It’s good to have her advice, but we really have different goals”.
|2001||Intimate Portrait||Herself||1 Episode|
|2002||The Proud Family||Chanel||1 Episode|
|2003||Soul Train||Herself||1 Episode|
|The 30th Annual American Music Awards||Herself|
|The Today Show||Herself||1 Episode|
|The Brothers Garcia||Herself||1 Episode|
|2004||One On One||Charlotte||1 Episode|
|Johnson Family Vacation||Nikki Johnson|
|2005||Listen Up||Erika||1 Episode|
|2006||Bring It On: All or Nothing||Camille|
|2008||Ghost Whisperer||Singer||Uncredited 1 Episode|
|2010||Yo Gabba Gabba||Herself||1 Episode|
Awards and nominations
|2009||Solange Knowles||BET Award for BET Centric Award||Nominated|
|Soul Train Music Award for Best New Artist||Nominated|
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Who is Patti LuPone? The entertainment and movie world knows Patti LuPone as an American singer and actress, known for her Tony Award-winning performances as Eva Perón in the 1979 musical Evita and as Rose in the 2008 revival of Gypsy, and for her Olivier Award-winning performance as Fantine in the original London cast of Les Misérables.
Early life and training
LuPone was born April 21, 1949 in Northport, New York, on Long Island, the daughter of Angela Louise (née Patti), a college library administrator, and Orlando Joseph LuPone, a school administrator. Her great-grand-aunt was the celebrated 19th-century opera singer Adelina Patti. Her brother Robert LuPone is an actor, dancer, and director who originated the role of Zach the choreographer in A Chorus Line. Her other brother William LuPone is a teacher. When they were young, they performed on Long Island as the LuPone Trio. She is of Italian/Abruzzese descent and a graduate of Northport High School, where she studied under the musical direction of voice coach Esther Scott. LuPone was part of the first graduating class of Juilliard‘s Drama Division.
In 1972, LuPone became one of the original members of The Acting Company, formed by John Houseman. The Acting Company was a nationally touring repertory theater company. LuPone’s stint with the company lasted from 1972 to 1976, and she appeared in many of their productions, such as The Cradle Will Rock, The School for Scandal, Women Beware Women, The Beggar’s Opera, The Time of Your Life, The Lower Depths, The Hostage, Next Time I’ll Sing to You, Measure for Measure, Scapin, Edward II, The Orchestra, Love’s Labours Lost, Arms and the Man, The Way of the World. She made her Broadway debut in the play The Three Sisters as Irina in 1973. For her work in The Robber Bridegroom (1975) she received her first Tony Award nomination, for Best Featured Actress in a Musical.
In 1976, producer David Merrick hired LuPone as a replacement to play Genevieve, the title role of the troubled pre-Broadway production of The Baker’s Wife. The production toured at length but Merrick deemed it unworthy of Broadway and it closed out of town.