Kenneth 'Babyface' Edmonds Biography
Kenneth Brian "Babyface" Edmonds (born April 10, 1958 in Indianapolis, Indiana), is a successful American R&B and pop singer, songwriter, guitarist, keyboardist, record producer, film producer, and entrepreneur.
Edmonds,who is the 5th of six brothers, attended North Central High School and as a shy youth, wrote songs to express his emotions. Edmonds later played with funk superstar Bootsy Collins, who tagged him "Babyface" while he was still a teen, and the nickname has stuck with him throughout his life. He also played in the groups Manchild (which had a 1977 hit "Especially for You" with band member Daryl Simmons), then in the light-funk and R&B group The Deele (which also included Antonio "L.A." Reid), with whom he would later form a successful partnership. In 1988, both Babyface and Reid left the group.
In 1989, Edmonds co-founded LaFace Records with Reid. Two of the label's first artists Toni Braxton and TLC achieved massive success. Braxton's eponymous 1993 debut album went on to sell over eight-million copies, and earned her a Grammy Award as the year's best new artist in 1994. Meanwhile, TLC's two albums on LaFace Ã¢â‚¬â€ 1992's Ooooooohhh.... On the TLC Tip and 1994's CrazySexyCool Ã¢â‚¬â€ combined to sell more than 15 million copies, and CrazySexyCool won the 1996 Grammy Award for Best R&B album. Edmonds was also instrumental in forming the popular late-90's R&B group, Az Yet.
Edmonds is also behind some of the biggest successes in contemporary music. He wrote and produced Boyz II Men's "End of the Road" and "I'll Make Love To You", both of which established records for the longest stay at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. He penned, produced, and provided backing vocals on Madonna's 1995 7 week-#1 hit "Take a Bow" and he shared billing with Eric Clapton on the chart-topping Grammy winner "Change the World" from the Phenomenon soundtrack. Additionally, he has produced and written music for many artists including Toni Braxton, Michael Jackson,Tamia, Janet Jackson, Shola Ama, Whitney Houston, Sisqo, Dru Hill, CÃƒÂ©line Dion, Mary J. Blige, Mariah Carey, Vanessa Williams, En Vogue, Eric Clapton, Madonna, Aretha Franklin, Japanese singer Ken Hirai, Pink, Sheena Easton, Marc Nelson and Phil Collins among others, and he has received an amazing three consecutive Grammy Awards for Producer of the Year, in 1995Ã¢â‚¬â€œ1997.
In the mid-1990s, Edmonds and his then wife, Tracey Edmonds, expanded into the business of motion pictures, setting up "Edmonds Production Company" and producing films such as Soul Food (1997) and Josie and the Pussycats (2001). They are the current executive producers of the hit BET reality series College Hill. Edmonds also worked with David Foster to compose "The Power of the Dream", the official song of the 1996 Summer Olympics. Linda Thompson provided the lyrics.
In 1999, a 25-mile (40-km) stretch of Interstate 65 that runs through Indianapolis was renamed Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds Highway.
In October 2005, Edmonds and his wife, Tracey, announced that they were ending their marriage of thirteen years. They have two sons.
Babyface is participating in a charity single written and produced by Michael Jackson. It is unclear if he is participating in the single as a performer or producer. The single to be titled "I Have This Dream".
Babyface also participated as a duet partner on the FOX reality show Celebrity Duets.
Babyface has recently signed a new deal with Island Records to release his new album due 2007.