Jason Derulo

Pop and R&B hitmaker Jason Derulo was born in Miami and grew up studying opera, theater and ballet, writing his first song at age eight. One pivotal moment came at age 12 when he was cut from his junior-high basketball team and enlisted Frank Harris, a local law student, as a coach; Harris instead recognized Derulo's musical talent and became his manager. By 2006 a 17-year-old Derulo was signed as a songwriter to the New Orleans-based rap label Cash Money; one of his first recorded songs was "Playing With Fire" on Lil Wayne's Tha Carter III. That year he won the grand prize singing and dancing on TV's "Showtime at the Apollo" (syndicated 1987-2008), which led to his discovery by artist/producer J.R. Rotem. Already hot with hit tracks by Rihanna, Lil Kim, Britney Spears and others, Rotem now began collaborating with Derullo. His debut single "Whatcha Say" was released in May 2009. Equal parts pop and R&B, it sampled Imogen Heap's "Hide & Seek" and featured heavy use of Auto-Tune. Derulo based the lyric on the his brother trying to win back a woman who'd left him. Not only did the song hit Number One on Billboard's pop and R&B charts, his brother got the woman back and married her. Derulo's self-titled debut album initially took off in the U.K. where it produced three hit singles, but entered the U.S. Top Ten after Derulo did a spell of touring, including an opening slot on Lady Gaga's Monster Ball tour. While rehearsing for a followup tour in 2012 Derulo broke one of his vertebrae; as a result most dates behind his second album Future History were canceled. The album still produced two Top 20 hits in "Don't Wanna Go Home" and "It Girl," and Derulo made a high-profile return to live work later that year. His third album was released as Tattoos abroad and in reworked form as Talk Dirty in the U.S. Both versions were highlighted by a number of hit collaborations including "Fire" with Pitbull, "Wiggle" with Snoop Dogg and "Vertigo" with Jordin Sparks, who was then Derulo's girlfriend. He would later guest on a Pitbull single, "Drive You Crazy." Success continued with the release of Everything is 4 and its advance single, "Want to Want Me," his sixth Top Ten. The album continued his string of collaborations, this time with Stevie Wonder, Meghan Trainor, Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban. 2017 brought anopther paid of hit singles, "Swalla" and "Tip Toe." Despite the sexual theme of both tunes, he announced in 2018 that the forthcoming album 777 would display a "very emotional side" of him that wasn't heard before.