Katy Perry

  • Singer/Songwriter born Katheryn Hudson in 1984 in Santa Barbara California.
  • Her parents are Pentecostal pastors, and Katy grew up listening to gospel music, as secular music was discouraged in her home. She sang at her parent’s church from age 9 to 17. She discovered pop music through CDs that she smuggled home from her friends.
  • At age 15, she completed her GED requirements, and pursued a musical career. She studied Italian opera at a music academy near home, and her singing was noticed by artists who brought her to Nashville to learn how to write and play guitar. She signed with a Christian record label and released an album, called Katy Hudson, in 2001. It sold 200 copies before the record label ceased operations.
  • She started writing pop songs, and moved to Los Angeles at 17. In 2003, she performed using the name Katheryn Perry, to avoid confusion with the actress Kate Hudson. Perry is her mother’s maiden name.
  • By 2004, she was signed by a record label and started working on an album. It was shelved after the record label went defunct. She then signed with another record company, and she worked on her debut major label solo album for 2 years. Before it was released, the label dropped her.
  • Her demos were brought to another label and she was signed by Capitol Records in 2007. Her first release was an EP called UR So Gay, a trip hop song released to gain attention in the industry.
  • In 2008, her album One of the Boys was released. It was a huge success, selling over 7 million copies worldwide. Three of the singles hit the top 10 on the Billboard Hot 200 chart – I Kissed a Girl (peaking at #1), Hot n Cold, and Waking Up in Vegas. The singles themselves sold over 13 million copies.
  • Her next album, Teenage Dream, was another major success. Released in 2010, the 5 singles to hit #1 were California Gurls (featuring Snoop Dogg), Teenage Dream, Firework, E.T. (featuring Kanye West), and Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)The combined sales of these singles were over 33 million copies. She is the first woman to have an album with 5 singles that reached #1. The album was re-released in 2012 with additional songs – titled Teenage Dream: The Complete Confection. One of the new songs, Part of Me, also hit #1.
  • Perry continued her success with the release of the Prism album in 2013. Singles hitting #1 were Roar and Dark Horse (featuring Juicy J). Dark Horse became her biggest selling single, with over 13 million digital sales worldwide.
  • Her most recent album, Witness, was released in June this year, debuting at #1 on the Billboard 200 album chart. Its first single, Chained to the Rhythm (featuring Skip Marley, grandson to Bob Marley), is a disco/dancehall song and has already sold over 1 million digital copies.
  • In 2015, Perry performed at the halftime show of the Super Bowl. It was watched by 118.5 million viewers – more than the number of viewers of the Super Bowl – and was the most watched television event in the history of TV.
  • Perry will be one of the judges for 2018’s American Idol, receiving $25 million for her contribution to the show.
  • She has received 13 Grammy award nominations, but has not yet won a Grammy.
  • Perry was the first artist to have multiple videos exceed 1 billion views on YouTube, for Dark Horse and Roar (both are now over 2 billion views). Subsequently, Firework has also exceed 1 billion views, and Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F) is close. She also is the first artist to have 3 singles that sold over 10 million copies, for Dark Horse, Roar, and Firework.
  • For films and TV, she has released 2 video albums, performed in 8 films (including the voice of Smurfette in 2 Smurf movies), 14 TV appearances (including 3 times on Saturday Night Live, 1 time hosting) and 13 commercials.
  • It is clear that Katy Perry is among the most popular musical artists today, and of all time. Her music is infectious pop, and it is cool that she has literally written or co-written everything that she has ever recorded, including her early gospel album. Her music puts you on the dance floor, and you will sing along with them at the top of your lungs! Watch Katy get pissed at her boyfriend and decide to join the Marines, in Part of Me. 

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