Alicia Keys & John Mayer – If I ain’t got you – Gravity (Better audio quality)

Alicia Keys & John Mayer – If I ain’t got you – Gravity

Alicia Keys is a multiple Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter whose debut album, ‘Songs in A Minor,’ went platinum five times over.

Who Is Alicia Keys?

Born in 1981, in New York, Alicia Keys began piano lessons at age 7. After graduating from the Professional Performance Arts School, she signed a deal with Clive Davis, the head of Arista Records. Davis left Arista to start J Records and Keys followed. Her debut album, Songs in A Minor (2001), went platinum five times over and earned her five Grammys. She followed up with hit albums such as The Diary of Alicia Keys (2003), As I Am (2007) and Girl on Fire (2009), all of which won the artist Grammys.

Early Life

Musician and actor Alicia Keys was born Alicia Augello Cook on January 25, 1981, in New York, New York. Growing up, Keys was raised by her mother, Nikki Augello—a part-time actress and paralegal. She began piano lessons at age 7 and Augello’s dogged insistence that her daughter stick with the instrument led Keys to attend Manhattan’s prestigious Professional Performance Arts School, where she majored in choir. Having excelled academically, Keys was allowed to graduate at the age of 16.

Keys had already attracted the attention of record company executives while in high school, and after what amounted to a bidding war for her talents, she signed with Arista Records in 1998. While she was accepted to Columbia University on a full scholarship, after a four-week stint at the school, Keys departed to devote herself fully to her music.

Albums and Songs

‘Songs in A Minor’

In 1999, Clive Davis—head of Arista Records—left the prominent record company where he worked to start J Records. Keys decided to follow Davis, who had engineered the careers of soul luminaries such as Aretha Franklin, to his new label. Unlike many of her pop-music contemporaries, the precocious Keys not only sings, but writes and produces her own music. At J Records, Keys found the freedom to complete her debut effort, which included material she had started work on years prior.

Davis carefully orchestrated a media blitz before the release of the album, including an appearance on Oprah the day before the album hit shelves. When it was finally released, Keys’ debut album, Songs in A Minor (2001), went platinum five times over.

Critics roundly praised the album not only for its musical polish, but also for its lyric maturity. At the 2002 Grammy Awards, Keys took home awards for Song of the Year, Best R&B Song, Best R&B Album, Best Female R&B Vocal Performance and Best New Artist.

‘The Diary of Alicia Keys’

Keys released her second album, The Diary of Alicia Keys, in 2003. She proved that her success as a new artist two years prior wasn’t a fluke, with the album debuting at No. 1. Keys also took home several Grammys for her sophomore album, including Best Female R&B Vocal Performance, Best R&B Song, Best R&B Album and Best R&B Performance by a Group or Duo with Vocals for her duet with Usher on the song “My Boo.”

‘As I Am,’ ‘Empire State of Mind’

Keys’ seemingly unstoppable career continued in 2007 with the release of As I Am. The album also debuted at No. 1, selling more than 740,000 copies in its first week, and went on to garner her two more Grammys.

It was during this time that Keys also began to collaborate with more artists. In 2008, she recorded “Another Way to Die” with Jack White, which was featured as the theme song for the James Bond film Quantum of Solace (2008). She also recorded the hit single “Empire State of Mind” with fellow New Yorker Jay-Z the following year.

‘The Element of Freedom,’ ‘Girl on Fire’

By the end of 2009, Keys released her fourth studio album, The Element of Freedom. Although the album didn’t fare nearly as well as her previous albums—it debuted at No. 2 with the lead single “Doesn’t Mean Anything” and reached No. 60 on the Billboard Hot 200—the album did become Keys’ first to hit No. 1 in the United Kingdom. Her fifth studio album, Girl on Fire (2012), put Keys back at her top spot, debuting at No. 1. She won the Grammy for Best R&B Album in 2014 for her work.

Alicia Keys and John Mayer Times Square 10/9/16

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