|Stage Name||Real Name||Birthdate||Sun Sign|
|Christina Auguilera||Christina Maria Aguilera||December 18, 1980||Sagittarius|
don't know how many of you remember the old Star Search talent-contest program, but most of us who were subjected to it back then (channel-surfing wasn't what it is today) spent most of our time trying to figure out which was worse: the "talent" or Ed McMahon. At the age of 8, future teen sensation Christina Aguilera appeared on the program (you can be sure VH1 wasted no time in digging up the clip to air on Before They Were Rock Stars). But that was just the beginning: At age 10, she sang the national anthem for the Pittsburgh Steelers, and from ages 12 to 14 she appeared on the new Mickey Mouse Club show alongside other future stars Britney Spears and J.C. and Justin of *NSYNC. Her duet with Japanese pop star Keizo Nakanishi on "All I Wanna Do" also allowed her video exposure and even a tour of Japan.
Aguilera returned to the U.S. in 1998 in time to audition for the singing part of "Reflection" in the Disney film Mulan; her living room boombox demo of Whitney Houston's "I Wanna Run To You" was Fed-Exed by her manager to Disney, and within a week she had the Disney job and a solo deal with RCA Records. Talk about timing!
Aguilera's 1999 self-titled debut was recorded with a variety of hot-shot producers, including Carl Sturken and Evan Rogers (*NSYNC), Travon Potts (Monica), and Guy Roche (Brandy). Hit-songwriter-for-hire Diane Warren gave her the ballad "I Turn To You," while "Genie In A Bottle" was produced by ex-System David Frank and Steve Kipner. Not surprisingly, Christina Aguilera shot all the way to number one in its first week of release and maintained a spot in the upper reaches of the Billboard charts for weeks. That same year, Aguilera took home a Grammy for Best New Artist.
At age 21, Aguilera continued do her own thing with her long-awaited sophomore album, Stripped, much of which she co-wrote. The album's first single, "Dirrty," featured a rap by Redman and a scandalous, envelope-pushing video. Whether this new direction will ultimately widen her audience or alienate her fanbase still remains to be seen, but it's certain that Stripped is helping her stand out from the teen-pop pack.
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