Alicia Keys – musical prodigy
Alicia Keys is an American singer, pianist, songwriter, and the winner of fifteen Grammy awards.
Alicia J. Augello-Cook was born on January 25, 1981. Alicia was born and raised in New York, in a poor area of Manhattan into a family of lawyer’s assistant and actress Teresa and steward Craig Cook.
Alicia began writing music at the age of 14. She studied at Professional Performing Arts School. An all-around outstanding student, her musical talents grew to an even higher level under the guidance of one of her instructors. This instructor helped to train her voice, enabling Alicia to further grow as a multi-talented musician.
After school she entered Columbia University but four weeks later she left it because of a musical career. She signed a trial contract with Jermaine Dupri and his label So So Def (then a part of Columbia Records).
She took part in the writing and recording of the song Dah Dee Dah (Sexy Thing), which appeared in the soundtrack to blockbuster Men in Black (1997). This song became the first professional recording for Alicia.
In 1998, Keys met impresario Clive Davis and signed contract with J Records. Davis has supported and groomed many high-profile artists in the past, including Janis Joplin, Bruce Springsteen and Santana.
She recorded the songs Rock With U and Rear View Mirror, which appeared on the soundtrack to Mine (2000) and Dr. Dolittle 2 (2001).
On June 5, 2001 Keys released her first studio album Songs in A Minor. The album brought her great popularity all over the world. The 19-year-old musician’s debut album entered the Billboard album charts at #1. She became the best new singer and best R&B singer of 2001. Keys won 5 Grammy Awards at the 44th ceremony in 2002.
On December 2, 2003 Keys released her second studio album The Diary of Alicia Keys.
In 2004, Alicia became the best-selling artist of R&B.
At the 47th Grammy Awards in 2005, Keys won four Grammy Awards.
In 2005, Alicia opened her own recording studio The Oven Studios.
In 2006 Keys received five Grammy awards.
On November 13, 2007 Alicia released he third studio album As I Am. She received 5 nominations at the American Music Award 2008 for her album.
Alicia Keys and Jack White recorded a main theme song for the movie Quantum of Solace, the 22nd James Bond film. The song Another Way to Die was the first duet in Bond soundtrack history. Soundtrack was released on October 28, 2008. First there were rumors that the vocalists for the 22nd James Bond film would be Amy Winehouse or Leona Lewis.
In June 2009, Keys was awarded Golden Note Award. The award is given to artists who have attained extraordinary peaks in their career.
The Element of Freedom, the fourth studio album, was released on December 1, 2009.
Alicia is the winner of many prestigious American and international music awards, including 5 American Music Awards, 10 Billboard Music Awards, 14 Grammys, 4 MTV Video Music Awards, 13 NAACP Image Awards, 6 Soul Train Music Awards, and others.
Keys starred in the film alongside Ben Affleck, Ray Liotta, Common, Andy Garcia, Jeremy Piven, and Ryan Reynolds entitled Smokin’ Aces, released on January 26, 2007, in which she plays an assassin named Georgia Sykes.
She also starred in the film The Nanny Diaries alongside Scarlett Johansson, which was released on April 20, 2007. She is playing Johannson’s best friend in the film.
In 2008 she played in the film The Secret Life of Bees.
On July 31, 2010 Alicia married rapper Swizz Beatz.
Their first son was born on October 14, 2010.
Their second son was born on December 27, 2014.