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In Celebration of the Human Voice - The Essential Musical Instrument

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The Singers

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Adele

Adele Laurie Blue Adkins, better known simply as Adele, is an English singer-songwriter and musician. Adele was offered a recording contract from XL Recordings after a friend posted her demo on Myspace in 2006. The next year she received the Brit Awards "Critics' Choice" award and won the BBC Sound of 2008. Her debut album, 19, was released in 2008 to much commercial and critical success. The album is certified four times platinum in the UK, and double platinum in the US. Her career in the US was boosted by a Saturday Night Live appearance in late 2008. At the 2009 Grammy Awards, Adele received the awards for Best New Artist and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.

Adele released her second album, 21, in early 2011. The album was well received critically and surpassed the success of her debut. 21 helped Adele earn six Grammy Awards in 2012 including Album of the Year, equalling the record for most Grammy Awards won by a female artist in one night. The album has also helped her receive numerous other awards, including two Brit Awards and three American Music Awards. The album has been certified 16 times platinum in the UK; in the US the album has held the top position longer than any other album since 1985.


Madonna

After a star reaches a certain point, it's easy to forget what they became famous for and concentrate solely on their persona. Madonna is such a star. Madonna rocketed to stardom so quickly in 1984 that it obscured most of her musical virtues. Appreciating her music became even more difficult as the decade wore on, as discussing her lifestyle became more common than discussing her music. However, one of Madonna 's greatest achievements is how she manipulated the media and the public with her music, her videos, her publicity, and her sexuality. Arguably, Madonna was the first female pop star to have complete control of her music and image.


Christina Aguilera

Christina Maria Aguilera was born on December 18, 1980, in Staten Island, New York. Her parents divorced when she was young and she lived with her mother, although they moved around quite a bit. Christina's goal almost since birth was to be a singer, and at age 12 she was invited to audition for "The All New Mickey Mouse Club" (1989). She wound up getting the part and stayed there for a few years, until the show ended. In 1999 she had her breakthrough hit, "Genie in a Bottle". Since then she's made millions of fans, sold millions of records and has won many awards, including a Grammy for best new female artist. She has even made a Latin album and will be working on a second one. A Christmas album has also been released.


Louis Armstrong

Louis Daniel Armstrong (usually pronounced 'Louee' in the French pronunciation with a silent s) (also known by the nicknames Satchmo and Pops) was an American jazz musician. Armstrong was a charismatic, innovative performer whose musical skills and bright personality transformed jazz from a rough regional dance music into a popular art form. Probably the most famous jazz musician of the 20th century, he first achieved fame as a trumpeter, but towards the end of his career he was best known as a vocalist and was one of the most influential jazz singers.

Known for his brilliant improvisation techniques both onstage and during recordings, Louis Armstrong became one of the Jazz movement's most important musicians. As his trumpet would cease, his voice would shine. Able to perform and improvise with his voice as much as with his trumpet, he laid the foundation for a long-lasting, ideal and charismatic career.


Sara Bareilles

1979, she was raised as a Catholic and participated in high school choir as well as local community theater musical productions when she was young. During her time in UCLA, she joined a capella group named Awaken a Cappella and won twice in the annual student concert, UCLA Spring Sing.

Post graduating from the college, she performed at local bars and clubs in an attempt to build a fanbase for a bigger show. She issued two demos, sang in an indie film and self-released an album. Eager to go back to the studio and create a second full-length album, she started shopping her CD around and finally sealed a deal with Epic Records in 2005.

Three years after her debut, Bareilles dropped a sophomore set "Little Voice". Despite the title, the album was a big one. It led her claiming her fame as it shot to No. 1 on the list of most downloaded album in iTunes music store and reached No. 7 on Billboard Hot 200. Its first single "Love Song", meanwhile, peaked at No. 4 on Hot 100.


Pat Benatar

Patricia Andrzejewski was born in Brooklyn and raised in suburban Lindenhurst, Long Island. Her mother Millie had sacrificed her own career as an opera singer to bring up Pat and son Andrew. Years later it was Pat who singing classical, honing the powers of her 4.5-octave voice as a member of Lindenhurst High's musical-theater department. Having been accepted at Juilliard, Pat shocked friends and family by marrying her high-school sweetheart Dennis T. Benatar, a soldier, and moving off to Virginia where he had been stationed. Before too long, the tedium of life as a housewife/bank teller proved too much for Pat, and she joined Coxon's Army, a cabaret band on the Richmond club circuit. Coxon's Army rose to new heights of fame, and Pat was instilled with the confidence to move to New York City and pursue her own dream, which brought her to Manhattan's "Catch A Rising Star". Having thrilled the audience with her first performance on amateur night, Pat soon found herself with a paying gig, a manager and a recording contract, but her image was still in limbo. Primarily singing torch song and Judy Garland classics, she longed to perform hard-rocking tunes in the Led Zeppelin vein. Her wishes were fulfilled when her handlers introduced her to Cleveland guitar-man Neil Giraldo, whose aggressive playing unleashed Pat's inner rocker. She had found her muse, and when her audience roared one Halloween night over a sultry costume she wore on stage, she had found her image.


Tony Bennett

Raised in New York City, Bennett began singing at an early age. He fought in the final stages of World War II as an infantryman with the U.S. Army in the European Theatre. Afterwards, he developed his singing technique, signed with Columbia Records, and had his first number one popular song with "Because of You" in 1951. Several top hits such as "Rags to Riches" followed in the early 1950s. Bennett then further refined his approach to encompass jazz singing. He reached an artistic peak in the late 1950s with albums such as The Beat of My Heart and Basie Swings, Bennett Sings. In 1962, Bennett recorded his signature song, "I Left My Heart in San Francisco". His career and his personal life then suffered an extended downturn during the height of the rock music era.

Bennett staged a remarkable comeback in the late 1980s and 1990s, putting out gold record albums again and expanding his audience to the MTV Generation while keeping his musical style intact. He remains a popular and critically praised recording artist and concert performer in the 2000s. Bennett has won fifteen Grammy Awards, two Emmy Awards, been named an NEA Jazz Master and a Kennedy Center Honoree. He has sold over 50 million records worldwide. Bennett is also a serious and accomplished painter, creating works under the name Benedetto that are on permanent public display in several institutions. He is also the founder of Frank Sinatra School of the Arts in Astoria, Queens.


Justin Bieber

Born in Stratford, Ontario in Canada on March 1, 1994, Justin Drew Bieber quickly became the teenage heart throb for 2009. Before he was famous, Justin Bieber enjoyed playing sports - especially hockey because he's from Canada. His parents were young when they had him, and broke up when he was a young child. Many of Justin Bieber's friends growing up didn't even know he could sing - he didn't exactly advertise it.

Justin used to sit outside a theatre in Stratford Ontario, famous for the Shakespeare Festival, and play the guitar and sing for crowds that would gather. He always had either one of his grandparents or mom with him as he was too young to hang out there alone. Bieber had many videos of himself singing at various venues on youtube - his mom videotaped all his performances along the way. When people would call and ask about managing his career, his mom was reluctant because of the horror stories everyone hears about young stars.

Justin was discovered singing on youtube.com by his agent, who quickly arranged for him to fly to Georgia to meet with Usher. Just a short time later, the young star, who has two top tens on youtube, signed with Island Records.


Clint Black

Clint Patrick Black (born February 4, 1962) is an American country music singer-songwriter, record producer, multi-instrumentalist and occasional actor. Signed to RCA Records in 1989, Black made his debut with his Killin' Time album, which produced four straight Number One singles on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks charts. Although his momentum gradually slowed throughout the 1990s, Black consistently charted hit songs into the 2000s. He has amassed more than 30 singles on the U.S. Billboard country charts (of which 13 have reached Number One), in addition to releasing nine studio albums and several compilation albums. In 2003, Black founded his own record label, Equity Music Group. Black has also ventured into acting, having made a cameo appearance in the 1994 film Maverick, as well as a starring role in 1998's Still Holding On: The Legend of Cadillac Jack.


Andrea Bocelli

Andrea Angel Bocelli, OMRI, OMDSM is an Italian tenor, singer-songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. Born with poor eyesight, he became blind at the age of twelve following a football accident.

Since winning the Newcomers section of the Sanremo Music Festival in 1994,(6) Bocelli has recorded fourteen solo studio albums, of both pop and classical music, three greatest hits albums, and nine complete operas, selling over 80 million records worldwide. Thus, he is the biggest-selling artist in the history of classical music and has caused core classical repertoire to "cross over" to the top of international pop charts and into previously uncharted territory in popular culture.

Widely regarded as both the most popular Italian and classical singer in the world, Bocelli was made a Grand Officer of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic in 2006, and on March 2, 2010, was honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contribution to Live Theater


Susan Boyle

Susan Magdalane Boyle is a Scottish singer who came to international public attention when she appeared as a contestant on the TV programme Britain's Got Talent on 11 April 2009, singing "I Dreamed a Dream" from Les Miserables. Her first album was released in November 2009 and debuted as the number one best-selling album on charts around the globe.

Susan Boyle's initial appearance on the talent show fired public imagination when her modest stage introduction and thick speaking accent left audience, viewers and judges alike unprepared for the power and expression of her mezzo-soprano voice. Before she had finished the song's opening phrase a standing ovation for Boyle had erupted. An international media and Internet response coincided. Within nine days of the audition, videos of Boyle - from the show, various interviews and her 1999 rendition of "Cry Me a River" - had been watched over 100 million times. Despite becoming an international sensation she eventually finished in second place on the show behind dance troupe Diversity.


Michael Buble

Multi-platinum artist Michael Buble grew up near Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. He was introduced to swing music and old standards by his grandfather, who offered his services for free as a professional plumber to musicians who were willing to let Michael sing a couple of songs with them on stage.

He got his big break in show business after former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney discovered his music. At 10 years of struggling, the discovery came at a time when distraught Michael was considering giving up a career in music and getting a job in media. His performance at a corporate gig in summer 2000 impressed Michael McSweeney, speech writer/right hand man to Brian Mulroney, and told Mcsweeney to feel free to use his independent CD as a coaster if he didn't like it. Mcsweeney gave the CD to Brian & Mila Mulroney, which led to an invitation to sing at their daughter's wedding, where he was introduced to music producer David Foster, who took him under his wing.

His self-titled debut album came out February 12, 2003 and has since won several music awards and incredible worldwide success.


Maria Callas

Maria Callas was an American-born Greek soprano and one of the most renowned opera singers of the 20th century. She combined an impressive bel canto technique, a wide-ranging voice and great dramatic gifts. An extremely versatile singer, her repertoire ranged from classical opera seria to the bel canto operas of Donizetti, Bellini and Rossini; further, to the works of Verdi and Puccini; and, in her early career, to the music dramas of Wagner. Her remarkable musical and dramatic talents led to her being hailed as La Divina.

Born in New York City and raised by an overbearing mother, she received her musical education in Greece and established her career in Italy. Her dramatic life and personal tragedy have often overshadowed Callas the artist in the popular press. However, her artistic achievements were such that Leonard Bernstein called her "The Bible of opera"; and her influence was so enduring that, in 2006, Opera News wrote of her: "Nearly thirty years after her death, she's still the definition of the diva as artist-and still one of classical music's best-selling vocalists."


Ann Hampton Callaway

Pop/jazz singer and songwriter Ann Hampton Callaway is the daughter of television journalist John Callaway and vocal coach Shirley Callaway, and the sister of Broadway performer Liz Callaway. She was born and raised in Chicago. Her earliest recordings were on a series of releases by Ben Bagley's Painted Smiles label; she recorded bonus tracks for CD reissues of Noel Coward Revisited (1990), Cole Porter Revisited (1991), and Alan Jay Lerner Revisited (1992), as well as appearing on recordings of the shows Shoestring Revue and Tallulah. For the Porter album, she became the first person allowed by Porter's estate to write music for a previously unrecorded Porter lyric, "I Gaze in Your Eyes."


Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey was born in Long Island, New York, on March 27, 1969. Her parents are Patricia Hickey (Irish-American) and Alfred Roy Carey (African-American/Venezuelan). Mariah attended Greenlawn's Harborfields High School. In June of 1990, Mariah made her debut with "Mariah Carey" which entered at #73, but on August 4, 1990, it reached #1. Her 1990 self-titled debut album went multi-platinum and spawned an extraordinary four consecutive #1 singles: "Vision of Love," "Love Takes Time," "Someday" and "I Don't Wanna Cry," and led to Grammy Awards for Best New Artist and Best Female Vocalist. Her 1993 album titled Music Box went ten-times platinum. On September 30, 1995, she made music history. Her single "Fantasy" from her 1995 Daydream album debuted at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, making her the first female artist to accomplish a number one debut in the U.S.


Enrico Caruso

Enrico Caruso (February 25, 1873 - August 2, 1921) was an Italian tenor. He sang to great acclaim at the major opera houses of Europe and North and South America, appearing in a wide variety of roles from the Italian and French repertoires that ranged from the lyric to the dramatic. Caruso also made approximately 290 commercially released recordings from 1902 to 1920.

Caruso was the first recording star in history, who sold more than a million records with his 1902 recording of 'Vesti le gubba' from 'Pagliacci' (Clowns) by 'Leoncavallo'. His voice had a combination of the full baritone-like character with the smooth and brilliant tenor qualities. His range was broadened into baritone at the expense of the higher tenor notes, Caruso never sang the high C, and often transposed in order to avoid it. He was a master of interpretation, having a rare gift of portamento and legato, and a superior command of phrasing. His legendary 1904 Victor recording of 'Una furtiva lagrima', by Gaetano Donizetti is used in many film soundtracks.


Johnny Cash

John R. Cash was an American singer-songwriter, guitarist, actor, and author. He is widely considered one of the most influential popular musicians of the 20th century and is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold more than 90 million records worldwide. Although primarily remembered as a country music icon, his genre-spanning songs and sound embraced rock and roll, rockabilly, blues, folk, and gospel. This crossover appeal won Cash the rare honor of multiple inductions in the Country Music, Rock and Roll, and Gospel Music Halls of Fame.


Tracy Chapman

Tracy Chapman helped restore singer/songwriters to the spotlight in the '80s. The multi-platinum success of Chapman's eponymous 1988 debut was unexpected, and it had lasting impact. Although Chapman was working from the same confessional singer/songwriter foundation that had been popularized in the '70s, her songs were fresh and powerful, driven by simple melodies and affecting lyrics. At the time of her first album, there were only a handful of artists performing such a style successfully, and her success ushered in a new era of singer/songwriters that lasted well into the '90s. Furthermore, her album helped usher in the era of political correctness -- along with 10,000 Maniacs and R.E.M., Chapman's liberal politics proved enormously influential on American college campuses in the late '80s. Of course, such implications meant that Chapman's subsequent recordings were greeted with mixed reactions, but after several years out of the spotlight, she managed to make a very successful comeback in 1996 with her fourth album, New Beginning, thanks to the Top Ten single "Give Me One Reason."


Ray Charles

American pianist, singer, composer, and bandleader, a leading black entertainer billed as "the Genius." Charles was credited with the early development of soul music, a style based on a melding of gospel, rhythm and blues, and jazz music.

When Charles was an infant his family moved to Greenville, Florida, and he began his musical career at age five on a piano in a neighbourhood cafe. He began to go blind at six, possibly from glaucoma, completely losing his sight by age seven. He attended the St. Augustine School for the Deaf and Blind, where he concentrated on musical studies, but left school at age 15 to play the piano professionally after his mother died from cancer (his father had died when the boy was 10).

Charles built a remarkable career based on the immediacy of emotion in his performances. After emerging as a blues and jazz pianist indebted to Nat King Cole's style in the late 1940s, Charles recorded the boogie-woogie classic "Mess Around" and the novelty song "It Should've Been Me" in 1952-53. His arrangement for Guitar Slim's "The Things That I Used to Do" became a blues million-seller in 1953. By 1954 Charles had created a successful combination of blues and gospel influences and signed on with Atlantic Records. Propelled by Charles's distinctive raspy voice, "I've Got a Woman" and "Hallelujah I Love You So" became hit records. "What'd I Say" led the rhythm and blues sales charts in 1959 and was Charles's own first million-seller.


Kristin Chenoweth

Kristin Dawn Chenoweth is an American actress and singer, with credits in musical theatre, film and television. In 1999, she won a Tony Award for her performance as Sally Brown in You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown on Broadway. In 2003, she received wide notice for originating the role of Glinda in the musical Wicked, including a nomination for another Tony. Her television roles have included Annabeth Schott in NBC's The West Wing and Olive Snook on the ABC comedy-drama Pushing Daisies, for which she won a 2009 Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. Chenoweth also starred in the ABC TV series GCB in 2012.


Charlotte Church

Charlotte Maria Church was born on February 21, 1986 in Llandaff, Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom to Steven Reed and his wife Maria. The couple separated shortly after the child's birth, and she was left in her mother's care. She started singing publicly when she was only three and a half years old, singing the Ghost Busters (1984) theme with her cousin at a seaside holiday camp in Caernarfon, Wales. She came to public notice after an appearance on the UK daytime magazine program, "This Morning" (1988) (aka "This Morning with Richard and Judy") and then made an impromptu appearance on "The Big Big Talent Show" (1996). She came on to say a few words about her aunt Caroline Cooper, who was also making an appearance on the show, and the show's host, Jonathan Ross, asked her to sing. She stole the show and immediately became an overnight sensation in her native Wales. More television and concert appearances followed, such as the ones at Cardiff Arms Park in Wales, the London Palladium, and the Royal Albert Hall, and opening for Shirley Bassey in Antwerp, Belgium. She was signed to Sony Music (UK) and has released three best selling albums of popular classics.


Kelly Clarkson

Growing up in Texas, Kelly originally aspired to be a marine biologist, but when she was encouraged by the choir teacher at her junior high to join the school choir, her dreams changed. She started starring in school plays and continued on with her involvement in choir. Finally when she graduated high school, Kelly started working on demo and got serious about pursing her musical career.

For the first few years after high school, Kelly didn't have much luck breaking into the biz. Just when Kelly Clarkson was ready to give up, her best friend, Jessica, convinced her to try out for American Idol. Suddenly Kelly was really on her way to becoming a music superstar. She quickly shot to number one and claimed the first ever American Idol title in 2002.

Kelly Clarkson really hasn't slowed down since taking home the American Idol crown. Soon after she won, her debut album, Thankful, was released. It featured songs like Miss Independent and Beautiful Disaster. Some thought that Kelly's time in the spotlight might be over after her first disc, but she came back in late 2004 with her second disc, Breakaway. Breakaway turned out to be even better than Thankful, featuring hit singles like Breakaway and Since U Been Gone. This latest CD proves that Kelly isn't just a reality TV celebrity, she's a talented singer who still has a lot more to offer.


Patsy Cline

Patsy Cline, born Virginia Patterson Hensley, was an American country music singer who enjoyed pop music crossover success during the era of the Nashville sound in the early 1960s. Since her death in 1963 at age 30 in a private airplane crash at the height of her career, she has been considered one of the most influential, successful, and acclaimed female vocalists of the 20th century.

Cline was best known for her rich tone and emotionally expressive bold contralto voice, which, along with her role as a mover and shaker in the country music industry, has been cited as an inspiration by many vocalists of various music genres. Her life and career have been the subject of numerous books, movies, documentaries, articles and stage plays.

Her hits included "Walkin' After Midnight", "I Fall to Pieces", "She's Got You", "Crazy", and "Sweet Dreams". Posthumously, millions of her albums have sold over the past 50 years. She has been given numerous awards, which have given her an iconic status with some fans similar to that of legends Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley. Ten years after her death, she became the first female solo artist inducted to the Country Music Hall of Fame.


Rosemary Clooney

Rosemary Clooney (May 23, 1928 - June 29, 2002) was an American singer and actress. She came to prominence in the early 1950s with the novelty hit "Come On-a My House" written by William Saroyan and his cousin Ross Bagdasarian (David Seville), which was followed by other pop numbers such as "Botch-a-Me" (a cover version of the Italian song Ba-Ba-Baciami Piccina by Alberto Rabagliati), "Mambo Italiano", "Tenderly", "Half as Much", "Hey There" and "This Ole House", though she would go on to success as a jazz vocalist.

Clooney's career languished in the 1960s, partly due to problems related to depression and drug addiction, but revived in 1974, when her White Christmas co-star Bing Crosby asked her to appear with him at a show marking his 50th anniversary in show business. She continued recording until her death in 2002. She is the aunt of Academy Award winning actor George Clooney.


Nat King Cole

American musician hailed as one of the best and most influential pianists and small-group leaders of the swing era. Cole attained his greatest commercial success, however, as a vocalist specializing in warm ballads and light swing.

Cole grew up in Chicago where, by age 12, he sang and played organ in the church where his father was pastor. He formed his first jazz group, the Royal Dukes, five years later. In 1937, after touring with a black musical revue, he began playing in jazz clubs in Los Angeles. There he formed the King Cole Trio (originally King Cole and His Swingsters), with guitarist Oscar Moore and bassist Wesley Prince (later replaced by Johnny Miller). The trio specialized in swing music with a delicate touch in that they did not employ a drummer; also unique were the voicings of piano and guitar, often juxtaposed to sound like a single instrument. An influence on jazz pianists such as Oscar Peterson, Cole was known for a compact, syncopated piano style with clean, spare, melodic phrases.


Sam Cooke

Samuel Cook (January 22, 1931 - December 11, 1964), known professionally as Sam Cooke, was an African-American gospel, R&B, soul, and pop singer, songwriter, and entrepreneur. He is considered to be one of the pioneers and founders of soul music. He is commonly known as the King of Soul for his unmatched vocal abilities and influence on the modern world of music. His contribution in pioneering Soul music led to the rise of Aretha Franklin, Bobby Womack, Al Green, Curtis Mayfield, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and popularizing the likes of Otis Redding and James Brown.

Cooke had 29 top-40 hits in the U.S. between 1957 and 1964. Major hits like "You Send Me", "A Change Is Gonna Come", "Chain Gang", "Wonderful World", and "Bring It on Home to Me" are some of his most popular songs. Cooke was also among the first modern black performers and composers to attend to the business side of his musical career. He founded both a record label and a publishing company as an extension of his careers as a singer and composer. He also took an active part in the American Civil Rights Movement.

On December 11, 1964, Cooke was fatally shot by the manager of the Hacienda Motel in Los Angeles, California at the age of 33. At the time, the courts ruled that Cooke was drunk and distressed, and that the manager had killed Cooke in what was later ruled a justifiable homicide. Since that time, the circumstances of his death have been widely questioned.


Elvis Costello

Elvis Costello was born Declan Patrick MacManus in London, England and raised in Liverpool. The son of British band leader Ross MacManus, Costello took his pseudonym from Elvis Presley and his mother's maiden name (Costello). He began performing professionally in 1969 and was a musician and/or singer in many bands around London before forming a moderately successful pub-rock band called "Flip City" in the mid-1970s. Working full time as a computer operator, he landed his first record deal with Stiff Records in 1977 and recorded his first album "My Aim Is True" while on vacation. The album was a smash hit in England and landed Costello a worldwide distribution deal with Columbia records. Forming his backup group, "The Attractions", for his second album, Costello went on to record several popular and influential albums over the next decade. Today, he is regarded as one of the most influential and popular singer/songwriters in modern music. In 1998, he collaborated with legendary tune smith, Burt Bacharach, on a highly successful album of love songs "Painted From Memory".


Michael Crawford

Michael Crawford OBE (born 19 January 1942) is an English actor and singer. He has garnered great critical acclaim and won numerous awards during his career, which covers radio, television, film, and stagework on both London's West End and on Broadway in New York City.

With a career that spans over four decades, he is known both in and out of Britain for originating the title role in The Phantom of the Opera, as well as playing the hapless Frank Spencer in the popular 1970s British sitcom, Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em, which made him a household name.


Bing Crosby

Harry Lillis "Bing" Crosby Jr. was an American singer and actor. Crosby's trademark warm bass-baritone voice made him the best-selling recording artist of the 20th century, having sold over one billion records, tapes, compact discs and digital downloads around the world.


Sheryl Crow

Sheryl Suzanne 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.


Billy Ray Cyrus

Cyrus, a multi-platinum selling recording artist, has scored a total of eight top-ten singles on the Billboard Country Songs chart. His most successful album to date is the debut of Some Gave All, which has been certified 9 Multi-Platinum in the United States and is the longest time spent by a debut artist at Number One on the Billboard 200 (17 consecutive weeks) and most consecutive chart-topping weeks in the SoundScan era. It's the only album (from any genre) in the SoundScan era to log 17 consecutive weeks at Number One and is also the top-ranking debut album by a male country artist. It ranked 43 weeks in the top 10, a total topped by only one country album in history, Ropin' The Wind by Garth Brooks. Some Gave All was also the first debut album to enter at the number 1 in the Billboard Country Albums. The album has also sold more than 20 million copies worldwide and is the Best selling debut album of all time for a solo male artist. Some Gave All was also the best selling album of the 1992 in the US with 4,832,000 copies. In his career, he has released 29 charted singles, of which 15 charted in the Top 40./


Miley Cyrus

The daughter of country-music superstar Billy Ray Cyrus, Miley Cyrus got her start in the entertainment industry on an episode of her father's PAX TV medical series Doc before appearing in Tim_Burton's fantastical 2003 adventure Big_Fish. A fateful appearance as the character Hannah Montana in the Disney Channel series The Suite Life of Zack and Cody followed in 2006, and her character proved so popular that a spin-off series called Hannah_Montana was launched shortly thereafter. In the series, Cyrus portrayed a fun-loving California teen who just happens to be moonlighting as a world-famous pop star. Only Hannah's family (which includes her real-life father on the series) and her two closest friends, Lilly (Emily_Osment) and Oliver (Mitchel_Musso), know the truth about Hannah's remarkable secret life.


Bobby Darin

Bobby Darin was born Walden Robert Cassotto on May 14, 1936. Growing up in a rough section of the Bronx, New York, Bobby barely survived several serious bouts of rheumatic fever that left him with a damaged heart (which undoubtedly contributed to his early death). Bobby's ambition was to become a legend by the time he was 25. Thinking that his damaged heart would eventually kill him, he planned to live life as fully as he could. In 1958, after several forgettable recordings, Bobby came up with his first big hit, "Splish Splash", which he claimed took only 12 minutes to write. "Mack the Knife", climbed to the top-ten music charts the following year. Bobby moved to Hollywood in 1960, and met and later married his wife Sandra Dee. He was in the process of making a comeback when he died in 1973, at the age of 37, following open-heart surgery.


Sammy Davis Jr

Singer, actor, and dancer. Born December 8, 1925 in New York City. After his parents split up when he was three, Davis lived with his father and soon began a career tap-dancing in vaudeville. He, his father and Will Mastin performed as the Will Mastin Trio until Davis left to serve in the United States Army during World War II. During his time in the service, he overcame racial prejudice by joining the entertainment unit.

Uupon returning home, Davis resumed his showbiz career, with solo performing and recording success in the 1950s and 1960s. In 1956 he starred on Broadway in Mr Wonderful, and in 1964 in Golden Boy. His refusal to appear in any clubs that practiced racial segregation led to the integration of several venues in Miami Beach and Las Vegas.

Davis' films include Porgy and Bess (1959), Robin and the Seven Hoods with fellow Rat Pack members Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin (1964), Sweet Charity (1968), and Taps (1980). He continued to entertain and record until the early 1980s.

Davis married Swedish-born actress May Britt in 1960, when interracial marriages were forbidden by law in 31 states. The couple had one daughter and adopted two sons and divorced in 1968. Davis was married to dancer Altovise Gore from 1970 until his death in 1990.


Neil Diamond

Singer and songwriter. Born Neil Leslie Diamond on January 24, 1941, in New York City, USA, Diamond began writing songs while studying at New York University. Neil Diamon is best known as successful pop music singer who scored a number of hits during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s -- including writing the hits "I'm A Believer" (1966) and "A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You" (1967) for the Monkees. He had his own first number 1 hit with "Cracklin' Rose" (1970).

Diamond's albums include Jonathon Livingston Seagull (1974), Headed for the Future (1986), Tennessee Moon (1996), and 12 Songs (2005). His songs have been taken up by many recording artists, including The Hollies, Elvis Presley, and UB40.

Diamond's musical contributions will be honored when he'll be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011.


Celine Dion

Hailing from the small town of Charlemagne, Quebec, Celine Dion has become one of the all-time greatest singers. Celine was born in 1968, the youngest of 14 children. Early in childhood, she sang with her siblings in a small club owned by her parents. From these early experiences, Celine gained the know-how to performing live. At the age of 12, Dion composed a song in her native French and sent it to a record company, where it garnered the attention of Rene Angelil, a respected manager. Angelil believed in Celine so much that he actually mortgaged his house in order to finance her debut album. Already very popular and successful internationally, Celine burst onto the U.S. stage when she recorded the theme song to Disney's hit Beauty and the Beast (1991). The song garnered a Grammy and an Oscar, and from this point Celine has brought forth hit after hit. Her 'Falling Into You' album, released in 1996, became the best-selling album of that year, selling more than 25 million copies worldwide. In 1999, Dion took a hiatus in order to begin a family. She returned to the spotlight in 2002, releasing yet another hit album. Starting in 2003, Celine began a three-year commitment to perform in an arena built for her in Las Vegas.


Hilary Duff

An appealing actress and singer known for her spunk, Duff was only 14 when she came to prominence on the hit Disney sitcom Lizzie McGuire, which spawned a feature film in 2003. She solidified her teen-icon status with roles in a succession of popular family-oriented movies (Cheaper by the Dozen, A Cinderella Story) and a series of successful pop albums and tours, including 2005's Most Wanted, a compilation of remixed hits and a handful of new songs cowritten by her then-boyfriend, Good Charlotte frontman Joel Madden. A fashion plate and tabloid magnet, Duff's personal life was often the subject of gossip, including rumors of a long-running feud with Lindsay Lohan over their mutual ex, Aaron Carter. The gossip about her romantic life has died down with the announcement of her engagement to hockey player Mike Comrie n February 2010. When not working, she's been a supporter and ambassador for Blessings in a Backpack, which provides healthy food for needy kids to take home to their families for the weekend.


Linda Eder

Linda Eder is an American singer and actress. She made her Broadway debut in the musical Jekyll & Hyde, for which she received 1997 Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Nominations, as well as the Theatre World Award for Best Actress in a Musical. Eder is also featured on the concept albums of several other Broadway shows, such as The Scarlet Pimpernel and The Civil War.

When Linda Eder was growing up in Brainerd, MN, all she knew about Broadway was what she heard on her treasured recordings. Without the visuals, there was no context, no roles meant for men or women, young or older characters. She interpreted the songs in her imagination. She created Broadway, her way.

Now, after starring in the Broadway smash Jekyll & Hyde, selling out concert halls around the country to stunning reviews and recording six solo records of her own, Linda has decided to record BROADWAY MY WAY. A collection of her favorite songs from musicals ranging from classic to one from her upcoming show, Camille Claudel, Eder offers her take on a range of familiar songs, performed with some unfamiliar twists.


Duke Ellington

Born 29 April 1899 in Washington DC, composer, bandleader, and pianist Edward Kennedy ("Duke") Ellington was recognized in his lifetime as one of the greatest jazz composers and performers. Nicknamed "Duke" by a boyhood friend who admired his regal air, the name stuck and became indelibly associated with the finest creations in big band and vocal jazz. A genius for instrumental combinations, improvisation, and jazz arranging brought the world the unique "Ellington" sound that found consummate expression in works like "Mood Indigo," "Sophisticated Lady," and the symphonic suites Black, Brown, and Beige (which he subtitled "a Tone Parallel to the History of the Negro in America") and Harlem ("a Tone Parallel to Harlem").


Gloria Estefan

Gloria Estefan's family fled Cuba for Miami in 1959. She began her singing career in 1975 with the group Miami Sound Machine, and in 1978 married the group's keyboardist, Emilio Estefan. After several Spanish-language albums the group began releasing material in English, their breakthrough album coming in 1985 with Primitive Love, which included the catchy single "Bad Boys." The "Miami Sound Machine" label faded away as Estefan became the band's attraction. The 1987 album Let It Loose included pop hits like "Betcha Say That" and the uptempo "Rhythm Is Gonna Get You," and with Emilio Estefan as her producer and promoter, she became for a time America's leading Latin recording artist. Cuts Both Ways was another big hit album in 1989. Gloria's career was interrupted in 1990 when she was seriously injured in a bus accident. She bounced back, winning a 1993 Grammy for Best Tropical Latin Album. In the 21st century she embraced her Latin roots with Spanish-language albums like Alma Carribena (2000 -- in English, "Caribbean Soul") and 90 Millas ("90 Miles," 2007).


Jackie Evancho

Jackie Evancho was born April 9, 2000 and started singing since she was just eight years old. She found her interest in music after watching musical "The Phantom of the Opera". She later competed in a local singing contest in his native Pennsylvania, winning the runner-up place. Living in the suburb area of Pittsburg, she then took vocal lessons, took part in other contests to enrich her experience and uploaded her rendition of music on YouTube.

In 2009, Jackie released an indie album called "Prelude to a Dream" which covered songs from the likes of Andrea Bocelli, Josh Groban and Martina McBride. It debuted at No. 2 on iTunes and Billboard Classical Albums Chart.

A year later, Jackie entered "America's Got Talent" after winning the YouTube competition sponsored by the TV show. She received the most votes from fans to be advanced to the next round and continued to become one of the audience favorites until the finale. Making a duet with Sarah Brightman in "Time to Say Goodbye" and singing solo in "Ave Maria", she finished at the second place.

Following her win as the runner-up on "AGT", Jackie signed a record deal with Columbia Records. She dropped a mini album called "O Holy Night" in October 2010. It was ranked the first on Amazon's bestseller pre-order list and debuted at No. 1 on Billboard Classical chart. Also, it landed at No. 2 on Hot 200, making her the youngest female solo artist to debut in the top 10.


Ella Fitzgerald

Dubbed "The First Lady of Song," Ella Fitzgerald was the most popular female jazz singer in the United States for more than half a century. In her lifetime, she won 13 Grammy awards and sold over 40 million albums.

Her voice was flexible, wide-ranging, accurate and ageless. She could sing sultry ballads, sweet jazz and imitate every instrument in an orchestra. She worked with all the jazz greats, from Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Nat King Cole, to Frank Sinatra, Dizzy Gillespie and Benny Goodman. (Or rather, some might say all the jazz greats had the pleasure of working with Ella.)

She performed at top venues all over the world, and packed them to the hilt. Her audiences were as diverse as her vocal range. They were rich and poor, made up of all races, all religions and all nationalities. In fact, many of them had just one binding factor in common - they all loved her.


Aretha Franklin

Aretha Louise Franklin is an American singer and songwriter. Franklin began her career as a child singing gospel at the church of her father, minister C. L. Franklin's church. In 1960, at the age of 18, Franklin embarked on a secular career, recording for Columbia Records but only achieving modest success. Following her signing to Atlantic Records in 1967, Franklin achieved commercial acclaim and success with songs such as "Respect", "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman", "Spanish Harlem" and "Think". By the end of the 1960s decade she had gained the title "The Queen of Soul".


Lady Gaga

"Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta", better known by her stage name "Lady Gaga", is an American singer, songwriter and performance artist. After being signed to and then dropped from Def Jam Records at age 19, she began performing in the rock music scene of New York City's Lower East Side. During this time, she was also working at Interscope Records as a songwriter. While at Interscope Records, Akon, after hearing Gaga sing, convinced Interscope chairman Jimmy Iovine to sign her to a joint deal with the label and Akon's Kon Live Distribution label.

Her debut album "The Fame" was released in August 2008 and was a critical and commercial success. In addition to receiving generally positive reviews, it has gone to number one in four countries, also topping the "Billboard" Top Electronic Albums chart in the United States. The album's first two singles, 'Just Dance' and 'Poker Face', have become international number-one hits, and the former was nominated for Best Dance Recording at the 51st Grammy Awards. In 2009, after having opened for New Kids on the Block and the Pussycat Dolls, Gaga embarked on her first headlining tour, The Fame Ball Tour.

Gaga is inspired by glam rockers such as David Bowie and Queen, as well as pop singers such as Madonna and Michael Jackson. She is also inspired by fashion, which she has said is an essential component to her songwriting and performances. To date she has sold over 20 million digital singles and more than four million albums worldwide.


Judy Garland

One of the brightest, most tragic movie stars of Hollywood's Golden Era, Judy Garland was a moved-loved character whose warmth and spirit, along with her rich and exuberant voice, kept theatre-goers entertained with an array of delightful musicals. She is still an icon to this day with her famous performances in The Wizard of Oz (1939), Meet Me in St. Louis (1944), Easter Parade (1948) and A Star Is Born (1954).

Through a career that spanned 45 of her 47 years, Garland attained international stardom as an actress in musical and dramatic roles, as a recording artist and on the concert stage. Respected for her versatility, she received a juvenile Academy Award, won a Golden Globe Award, as well as Grammy Awards and a Special Tony Award. She was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in A Star is Born and for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in the 1961 film, Judgement at Nuremberg.


Amy Grant

Amy Lee Grant (born November 25, 1960) is an American singer-songwriter, musician, author, media personality and actress, best known for her Christian music. She has been referred to as "The Queen of Christian Pop". As of 2009, Grant remains the best-selling contemporary Christian music singer ever, having sold over 30 million units worldwide.

Grant has won six Grammy Awards, 25 Gospel Music Association Dove Awards, and had the first Christian album ever to go Platinum. Heart in Motion is her highest selling album, with over five million copies sold in the United States alone. She was honored with a star on Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2005 for her contributions to the entertainment industry.


Josh Groban

Joshua Winslow "Josh" Groban is an American singer-songwriter, musician, actor, and record producer. His four solo albums have been certified at least multi-platinum, and in 2007, he was charted as the number one best selling artist in the United States with over 21 million records in this country. To date, he has sold over 24 million albums worldwide.

Groban originally studied acting but as his voice changed, it developed into a "significant instrument". The event that changed Groban's life was when his vocal coach, Seth Riggs, submitted a tape of Josh singing, "All I Ask of You", from The Phantom of the Opera, to Riggs' friend, renowned producer, composer and arranger David Foster. Foster called him to stand in for an ailing Andrea Bocelli to rehearse a duet, "The Prayer," with Celine Dion at the rehearsal for the Grammy Awards in 1998. Groban, being shy, reluctantly agreed. Rosie O'Donnell was so impressed that she immediately invited him to appear on her daytime talk show. He got another big break when Foster asked him to sing at the California Governor's Gray Davis' 1999 inauguration.


Faith Hill

Faith Hill (born Audrey Faith Perry; September 21, 1967) is an American country singer. She is known both for her commercial success and her marriage to fellow country star Tim McGraw. Hill has sold more than 40 million records worldwide and accumulated 8 number-one singles and 3 number-one albums on the U.S. Country charts.

Hill has been honored by the Grammy Awards, the Academy of Country Music, the Country Music Association, the American Music Awards and the People's Choice Awards. Her Soul2Soul II Tour 2006 with husband McGraw became the highest-grossing country tour of all time.(1) In 2001, she was named one of the "30 Most Powerful Women in America" by Ladies Home Journal. In 2008, Faith Hill released her first Christmas album, titled Joy to the World. In 2009 Billboard named her as the #1 Adult Contemporary artist of the decade 2000-2009. Hill was ranked the 39th best artist of the 2000-10 decade by Billboard.


Billie Holiday

Considered by many to be the greatest jazz vocalist of all time, Billie Holiday lived a tempestuous and difficult life. Her singing expressed an incredible depth of emotion that spoke of hard times and injustice as well as triumph. Though her career was relatively short and often erratic, she left behind a body of work as great as any vocalist before or since.

Born Eleanora Fagan in 1915, Billie Holiday spent much of her young life in Baltimore, Maryland. Raised primarily by her mother, Holiday had only a tenuous connection with her father, who was a jazz guitarist in Fletcher Henderson's band. Living in extreme poverty, Holiday dropped out of school in the fifth grade and found a job running errands in a brothel. When she was twelve, Holiday moved with her mother to Harlem, where she was eventually arrested for prostitution.


Marilyn Horne

Horne was born in Bradford, Pennsylvania, but moved with her parents to Long Beach, California, when she was 11. At the age of 13, she became part of the newly formed Los Angeles Concert Youth Chorus. She attended the University of Southern California where she was a member of Pi Beta Phi fraternity. She is an alumna of Long Beach Polytechnic High School and returned in 1995 in a performance to benefit its music program. As a high school student, Marilyn was part of the St. Luke's Choir of Long Beach under the direction of William Ripley Dorr. This prestigious choir often worked for the movie studios and recorded on Capitol Records. Marilyn and her sister Gloria were part of St. Luke's Quartet along with tenor, Bob James and Baritone, Philip D. Haynes.

She studied voice under William Vennard at the University of Southern California School of Music and participated in Lotte Lehmann's vocal master classes.

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