Birth name: India Arie Simpson
Born: October 3, 1975
Age: 38
Birthplace: Atlanta, Georgia
Occupation: Musician, Songwriter, Record Producer

India.Arie (born India Arie Simpson; October 3, 1975) is a Grammy Award-winning American singer-songwriter and record producer . She has sold over 3.3 million records in the U.S. and 10 million worldwide. She has won four Grammy Awards from her 21 nominations, including Best R&B Album.



Simpson was born in Denver, Colorado. Her musical skills were encouraged by both parents early in life. Her mother Joyce is a former singer (she was signed to Motown as a teenager and opened for Stevie Wonder and Al Green) and is now her stylist. She has an older brother named J'On. After her parents divorced, Simpson's mother moved the family to Atlanta, Georgia when she was thirteen. Simpson had taken up a succession of musical instruments throughout her schooling in Denver, but her interest in the guitar while attending the Savannah College of Art and Design, in Savannah, led to a personal revelation about songwriting and performing. "When I started tapping into my own sensitivity, I started to understand people better. It was a direct result of writing songs", she said at the press release of her debut album, Acoustic Soul.

Co-founding the Atlanta-based independent music collective Groovement EarthShare (Groovement was the collective artists' name and EarthShare was their independent label name), her one-song turn on a locally-released compilation led to a second-stage gig at the 1998 Lilith Fair. In 1999, a Universal/Motown music scout spotted her and made an introduction to former Motown CEO Kedar Massenberg. Arie continued to reside in Atlanta, Georgia.

Musical career

Acoustic Soul (2001)

Main article: Acoustic Soul

Acoustic Soul was released on March 27, 2001 and debuted at number ten on the U.S. Billboard 200 and number three on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums. Within months, without the concentrated radio airplay that typically powers pop and rap albums, Acoustic Soul was certified double platinum, selling 2,180,000 copies in the U.S. and 3,000,000 copies worldwide. While Arie and the album were nominated for seven Grammy awards in 2002, they won no awards, losing in five of seven categories to Alicia Keys. She closed the ceremony with a performance of her song "Video".

Voyage to India (2002)

Main article: Voyage to India

Arie followed the success of her debut on September 24, 2002 with the release of Voyage to India. It debuted at number six on the Billboard 200 and number one on the R&B chart. In 2003 it won her two Grammy Awards in 2003—"Best R&B Album" and Best Urban/Alternative Performance" for the song "Little Things". Soon after its release, Voyage to India was certified platinum selling 1,400,000 copiesin the U.S. and 2,300,000 worldwide.

Testimony: Vol. 1, Life & Relationship (2006)

Main article: Testimony: Vol. 1, Life & Relationship

Arie's third studio album, Testimony: Vol. 1, Life & Relationship, was released on June 27, 2006. It gave Arie her first number-one spot on the Billboard 200 and was her second chart-topper on the R&B charts. This album was also the first number-one album for Motown in twelve years. Its first-week sales of 161,000 copies are Arie's best sales week to date and was certified gold in August 2006, selling 730,000 in US and 1,300,000 worldwide. "I Am Not My Hair" was the most successful release from Testimony: Vol. 1., reaching the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 at #97 and the UK Singles Chart at #65.

Her cover of Don Henley's "The Heart of the Matter" from Testimony: Vol. 1 was used in 2008 as a feature in the trailers to the film Sex and the City: The Movie.

Testimony: Vol. 2, Love & Politics (2009)

Main article: Testimony: Vol. 2, Love & Politics

Her highly anticipated next album, Testimony: Vol. 2, Love & Politics was released on Tuesday, February 10, 2009. It debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200, and No. 2 on the R&B chart. Within this CD, Arie collaborated with such artists as Sezen Aksu, Keb Mo, Gramps Morgan and Musiq Soulchild to fulfill her self-proclaimed desire to "do projects with people who are making music that is meaningful, with a lot of integrity and a lot of sonic diversity". Arie, in the cited interview, also identified this CD as the first of her collection to come directly from her own point of view, without feeling any necessity to fulfill fan or media needs. Arie was able to achieve this newfound ability to write and sing songs without worrying about public opinion after a much-needed vacation to Hawaii. This CD was Arie's first CD produced after her change from Motown to Universal Records.

Open Door

India.Arie's new album, a work produced in collaboration with Israeli singer Idan Raichel is due to be released in summer, 2012.


  • Arie performed a duet with rock singer-guitarist John Mellencamp on the song "Peaceful World" for his 2001 album Cuttin' Heads.
  • Arie performed a duet with jazz singer Cassandra Wilson on the song "Just Another Parade" for her 2002 album Belly of the Sun.
  • On the September 12, 2005 premiere of The Tyra Banks Show, Arie performed "Just 4 2day", a song she wrote especially for Tyra's show. She also performed "What About the Child", a song that did not air but was made available as a one-dollar Internet download to support child victims of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.
  • Arie is also featured on Stevie Wonder's album A Time to Love, released on October 18, 2005. Arie and Wonder duet on the title track "A Time to Love", written by Arie, which was nominated for "Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals" at the 2006 Grammy Awards. Three years earlier, their rendition of Mel Tormé's 1944 classic "The Christmas Song", recorded for the holiday TV commercial for retailer Target, had been nominated for the same category, making it the first song created and financed exclusively for a commercial to be nominated for a Grammy Award.
  • Arie performed a duet with Brazilian musician Sérgio Mendes on the title song "Timeless" for his 2006 album Timeless.
  • Arie performed the vocals for "It Might Be You" on Dave Koz's 2007 album At the Movies.
  • Arie collaborated with Akon for her song "I Am Not My Hair". On the April 16, 2007 episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show entitled "After Imus: Now What?", Arie guest-starred as a panelist. She stated that she was not completely crazy about the duet partner, but the label suggested that it would make the album more commercial. Versions without Akon on the song were made available.
  • Arie performed the song "She Is" for Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, inspired by the PBS Independent Lens documentary Iron Ladies of Liberia.
  • Arie performed a duet with singer Anthony David for his song "Words" for his 2008 album Acey Duecy.
  • Arie performed "Self-Fulfilling" in duet with Beate S. Lech of Beady Belle on the band's 2008 album Belvedere.
  • Arie appeared with Leona on Between the Lions singing a song about outlaw words.
  • Arie performed "Video" with British singer Adele at the 2009 VH1 Divas
  • Arie is one of over 70 artists singing on "We Are the World: 25 for Haiti", a charity single in aid of the 2010 Haiti earthquake.
  • Arie performed a duet with Marc Cohn on the song "Make It With You" for his 2010 album Listening Booth: 1970.
  • Arie collaborated in 2010 with Santana for the Beatles' cover, While My Guitar Gently Weeps.
  • Arie contributed vocals to "Imagine" for the 2010 Herbie Hancock album, The Imagine Project along with Seal, P!nk, Jeff Beck, Konono N°1, Oumou Sangare and others.
  • Arie collaborated with Idan Raichel to create a series of different songs including a performance at the Noble Peace Prize


Studio albums

Main article: India.Arie discography
  • 2001: Acoustic Soul
  • 2002: Voyage to India
  • 2006: Testimony: Vol. 1, Life & Relationship
  • 2009: Testimony: Vol. 2, Love & Politics
  • 2012: Open Door


Grammy Awards

The Grammy Awards are awarded annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Arie has won four awards from twenty-one nominations, including Album of the Year, Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best New Artist, she lost all. In 2002, She got record Most Nominations in One Night without winning with received seven nominations.

Year Nominated work Award Result
2002 India.Arie Best New Artist Nominated
Acoustic Soul Album of the Year Nominated
Best R&B Album Nominated
"Video" Record of the Year Nominated
Song of the Year Nominated
Best Female R&B Vocal Performance Nominated
Best R&B Song Nominated
2003 "Little Things" Best Urban/Alternative Performance Won
"The Christmas Song" Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals Nominated
Voyage to India Best R&B Album Won
2006 "A Time To Love" Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals Nominated
2007 "I Am Not My Hair" Best Female R&B Vocal Performance Nominated
Best R&B Song Nominated
Testimony: Vol. 1, Life & Relationships Best R&B Album Nominated
2008 "Beautiful Flower" Best R&B Song Nominated
2009 "Words" Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group Nominated
2010 "Pearls" Best Urban/Alternative Performance Won
"Chocolate High" Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group Nominated
Testimony Vol. 2, Love & Politics Best R&B Album Nominated
2011 "Imagine" Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals Won
Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s) Nominated
BET Awards
2002 - Best Female R&B Artist (Won)
2003 - Best Female R&B Artist (Won)
MTV Video Music Award
2001 - MTV2 Award for "Video" (Nominated)
Soul Train Music Award
2003 - Female R&B/Soul Single for "Little Things" (Nominated)


  • Voyage to World Tour (2002/03)
  • Testimony Tour (2006/10)
Opening act
  • Lovers Rock Tour (2001)


  • 2002: Soul Food - Herself "Lovers and Other Strangers"
  • 2003: American Dreams - ....Nina Simone "Act of Contrition"
  • 2003: The Bernie Mac Show - Herself "Raging Election"
  • 2004: Tinseltown TV - Herself
  • 2006: One on One - Herself "I Love L.A"
  • 2011: Pastor Brown - Lateefah


In 2009, India.Arie portrayed Nina Simone in a staged reading at the Roundabout Theatre Company of the upcoming Broadway musical "Soul Doctor", about the life of Shlomo Carlebach written by Daniel Wise.

[ Source: Wikipedia ]

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