Katy Perry’s Teenage Dream

Eva Rinaldi
Born Kathryn Elizabeth Hudson, Katy is an American songwriter, actress, and singer. She is dubbed as the only artist to have spent over 52 consecutive weeks in the top ten of the billboard hot 100. She was nominated for the Grammy awards for album of the year (Teenage Dream) and record of the year (Fireworks). She has also sold millions of copies in the U.S. and also appeared as one of the judges in the X- Factor.

Katy was born in Santa Barbara, California, on October 24, 1984 to two pastors. She started singing as a child by copycatting her sister. She would take her sisters’ practice cassette tapes listen and rehearse them. She would then perform the songs in front of her parents who thought it would do her good to take up vocal coaching lessons which she did with interest.  Her love for music began at an early age and this saw her become incorporated in her parents’ ministry between the ages of 9 and 17. She was not allowed to listen to any other type of music except gospel. As a child, she attended Christian schools and camps and learned to dance in Santa Barbara.

Katy left school during her first year at DOS Pueblos High School where she was undertaking her GED. She did this to follow her career in music.   At 15, her singing in the church caught the attention of rock veterans, from Nashville, Tennessee, who would then bring her there to polish her skills in writing. It was while in Nashville that she started recording and was taught to play the guitar.

She recorded her first album, Katy Hudson with the record label Red Hill at 15. Her mother would take her to and from Nashville to record and the album was released in 2001. The album was unsuccessful and only reached about a hundred people after the label went bankrupt and ceased operations.

At 17, she moved to L.A. to work with Glen Ballard, a song writer who worked with Christina Aguilera. Staying by herself proved tough. She told Seventeen Magazines that she had no money, wrote bad checks, sold her clothes for rent and borrowed money. She experienced a string of disappointments before her big break.

Together with Ballard, they found it hard to find a label that would sign them and faced more obstacles when three of her record deals fell apart. Katy did not give up. She would later sign with Capitol Records 2007.

That year, she won herself a high profile fan in Madonna with her first single, Ur So Gay, Madonna called it one of her favorite songs and it drew comparisons to the likes of Lily Allen. However, her career did not take off just yet until she released, I Kissed a Girl, which saw her reach the top of the charts in the summer of 2008. Her album, One Of  The Boys, would then make it to the top 10 billboard hot 100 chart. The song also got her get nominated for the Best Female Pop Vocal Performance in the Grammy Awards nominations. Katy is also famous for her theatricality.

She was quoted in Esquire magazine describing her style as` Lucille Ball meets Bob Mackie. It’s all about innuendo’ she would say, `I want everybody to get the joke, but I want them to think about it for a minute’.  In 2004, the Blender magazine named her as the Next Big Thing. In that same year, she worked with Kaya Jones on the song, Old Habits Die Hard, which scooped a Golden Globe Award for the Best Original Song in 2005. Despite being dropped by Columbia records, she went on to take several roles in television series such as Wildlife, Life’s Too Short and Young And The Restless.

She also embarked on the annual Warped Tour music festival which her management used to confirm that she had not lost her touch. Apart from music, she has starred in a number of films and television shows including, Get Him to the Greek, Muppets, Katy Perry: Part of Me, The Smurffs, The Simpsons, How I Met Your Mother, Sesame street, Saturday Night Live among many others.

Katy has been quoted to say `I want Katy Perry to be as mush a household name as Madonna’. She has continued to keep her fans and the industry entertained with her hit albums such as `Teenage Dreams’ and `California Girls’. She also has a signature perfume coming out.

Katy is also involved in a number of charitable events such as the Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity and MusicCare.