Career

Posted in music with tags , , , on September 15, 2008 by largehadroncollider

Early life
As the son of famed jazz musician Mor Thiam, Akon was raised in a musical setting and taught to play several instruments. At the age of 7, he moved to New Jersey. During Akon’s alleged time in jail, he began to understand his music abilities and developed an appreciation for his musical background. When he was released he immediately began recording his music and sending out demo tapes. Akon’s unique blend of West African-style vocals and hip-hop lyricism eventually caught the ears of executives at Universal Records.
Name and age
Akon’s given name is Aliaune Thiam. Some sources have written his name as Aliaune Badara Thiam or Alioune Badara Thiam However, About.com claims that this middle name has never been independently verified. In addition, some media institutions have incorrectly reported that he was born in 1981. Sources such as the AP have indicated he was born in 1973. Legal documents released by The Smoking Gun list his name as Aliaune Dalama Thiam and date of birth as 1973-04-30 or 1973-04-16. According to the Smoking Gun article, “By all indications, he was born April 16, 1973”. When asked his age during an interview with VIBE, Akon reportedly responded, “The only thing I hide is my age… before I lie to you, I’d rather say nothing.”
Background
He is the son of the Senegalese percussionist Mor Thiam. He then spent split time between Senegal and America until he was 15, and then permanently moved to Jersey City, New Jersey.[15] He recorded his first song, “Operations of Nature,” at the age of fifteen.[citation needed] Akon began writing and recording tracks in his home studio. The tapes found their way to SRC/Universal, which released Akon’s debut LP Trouble in June 2004. The album is a hybrid of Akon’s silky, West African-styled vocals mixed with East Coast and Southern beats. Most of Akon’s songs begin with the sound of the clank of a jail cell with him uttering the word “Convict.”
2004–2005
Akon’s solo debut album, Trouble was released on June 29, 2004. It spawned the hit singles “Locked Up” and “Lonely,” as well as “Belly Dancer (Bananza),” “Pot Of Gold,” and “Ghetto”. Akon allegedly served a three-year jail sentence for grand theft auto, an experience that supposedly inspired his “Locked Up”. “Locked Up” reached the top 10 in the U.S. and the top five in the UK. His manager Robert Montanez was shot to death following a dispute in New Jersey in December 2005. “Ghetto” became a radio hit when it was remixed by Green Lantern to include verses from legendary rappers 2Pac and The Notorious B.I.G. In 2005, he released the single “Lonely” (which samples Bobby Vinton’s “Mr. Lonely”). The song reached the top five on the Billboard Hot 100, and topped the charts in Australia, the UK and Germany. His album also climbed to number one in the UK in April, 2005. When music channel The Box had a top ten weekly chart, which was calculated by the amount of video requests, Akon’s “Lonely” became the longest running single on the top of the chart, spanning over fifteen weeks. Akon then released another single featuring with a New Zealand rapper, Savage with the single Moonshine, which had become a success in both New Zealand and Australia, becoming number one in the New Zealand charts. In 2005, Akon gained more popularity after being featured on Young Jeezy’s debut album, Let’s Get It: Thug Motivation 101, on the song “Soul Survivor.”
2006–2008
In 2006-2007 Akon has had one of the most successful spans any singer has ever enjoyed with eleven songs in the Billboard Hot 100. Akon’s second album, entitled Konvicted, was released on November 14, 2006. Konvicted included collaborations with Eminem, Snoop Dogg and Styles P. Late August 2006, Akon released the single “Smack That” featuring Eminem, from the album. This single peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 for five consecutive weeks. The music video for “Smack That” was directed by Raymond Garced. “I Wanna Love You”, the second single off Konvicted, was released in September 2006. It is a collaboration between Akon and Snoop Dogg. This single earned Akon his first number-one single on the Billboard Hot 100, and Snoop’s second. “I Wanna Love You” topped the U.S. charts for two consecutive weeks. In January 2007, Akon released his third single “Don’t Matter” which earned him his first solo number one and second consecutive Hot 100 chart topper. “Mama Africa” was released as a European single in July 2007, making it the fourth single. It debuted in the UK at number 47. “Sorry, Blame It on Me” is the album’s fifth single which debuted in August 2007, on the Hot 100 at number seven, which also happened to be a career best. The song is not available on the original album, but instead part of the Deluxe Edition of Konvicted, which came out August 28, 2007. The sixth and final single was confirmed in an interview by Akon to be “Never Took the Time”. Konvicted debuted at number two on the Billboard 200, selling 286,000 copies in its first week. After only six weeks, Konvicted sold more than one million records in the U.S. and more than 1.3 million worldwide. The album was certified platinum after seven weeks, and after sixteen weeks it was certified double platinum. Konvicted was able to stay in the top twenty of the Billboard 200 for 28 consecutive weeks, where it peaked at number two on four different occasions. On November 19, 2007, the RIAA has certified the Konvicted album triple platinum status with 3 million units sold in th United States. Currently it has sold more than 4 million worldwide.
On October 5, 2006, Akon broke a record on the Hot 100, as he achieved the largest climb in the chart’s 48-year-history with “Smack That” jumping from number 95 to 7. The leap is fueled by its number six debut on Hot Digital Songs with 67,000 downloads. The record was broken on April 7, 2007 by Beyoncé and Shakira’s “Beautiful Liar” when it jumped from 94 to 3 on the Hot 100, because of their 150,000 digital downloads on the Hot Digital Songs.
In December 2006, Akon’s “Smack That” was nominated for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration at the 49th Annual Grammy Awards, but lost to Justin Timberlake and T.I.’s My Love.
On July 7, 2007 Akon performed at the American leg of Live Earth.
From April to July 2007 Akon performed in The Sweet Escape Tour with Gwen Stefani. From July to September he embarked on his worldwide Konvicted Tour, and in September, he toured with Rihanna on the Canadian leg of her Good Girl Gone Bad Tour.
Akon has been featured in Kat Deluna’s “Am I Dreaming.”
Akon will be making a guest appearance on singer Ciara’s new album “Fantasy Ride” due out early December 2008.
Akon has recorded a song with E-40 titled “Wake it Up” for E-40’s album, The Ball Street Journal. Akon experiments with the auto-tune effect in the song.
Akon co-wrote and recorded a song with the newly-reunited 90’s boyband New Kids on the Block for their 2008 album release called “Put it On My Tab”.

Akon

Posted in music with tags , , on September 15, 2008 by largehadroncollider

Akon (born April 16, 1973), better known by his stage name Akon is a WolofSenegalese-American hip hop and R&B singer-songwriter, rapper, and record producer. Akon rose to fame in 2004 following the release of his single “Locked Up” from his debut album Trouble. His second album, Konvicted, earned him a Grammy Award nomination for the single “Smack That”. He is the founder of Konvict Muzik and Kon Live Distribution. He is well known for singing hooks and has over 145 guest appearances and 21 Billboard Hot 100 songs to his credit. He is the only artist to ever accomplish the feat of holding both the number one and two spots simultaneously on the Billboard Hot 100 charts twice.