Black Celebrity: Ciara

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Back in 2005, Ciara Harris was an 18-year-old who performed under the stage name of Ciara and was dubbed the First Lady of “Crunk & B,” a genre of music described as a grinding, dance floor-friendly alternative to R&B.

Her 2004 album, “Goodies,” topped the charts, and she was nominated at the 19th annual Soul Train Music Awards in four categories, including best R&B/soul single, female (“Goodies”) and best R&B/soul or rap new artist.

Ciara was born Ciara Princess Harris on October 25, 1985, in Austin, Texas. As the only child of Jackie and Carlton Clay Harris, she grew up on U. S. Army bases all over the world, including stops in Nevada, New York, California, Arizona and even Germany. Ciara settled in Atlanta as a teen and after watching pop group Destiny’s Child on television, she decided that music was what she wanted to pursue.

She got a publishing deal and met prominent Atlanta producer Jazze Pha, who helped her get a record deal at LaFace Records. The single that put Ciara on the map, “Goodies,” was co-written by her and produced by popular rapper/producer Lil Jon.

The song reached the top of the singles charts in the U. S. and the U.K. The follow-up singles, “1, 2 Step,” featuring Missy Elliott, and “Oh,” featuring rapper Ludacris, were also successes, both reaching No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles Chart.

Ciara has become a fixture in fashion magazines as well, due to her deal with Wilhelmina Models, which focuses on casting her for photo shoots and commercials. Her career has generated eight Billboard Hot 100 top 10 singles, three MTV Video Music Awards and one Grammy Award.

Crunk Superstar