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Jhene Aiko

Born:  March 16, 1988

Birthplace:   Los Angeles, CA

Zodiac Sign:  Pisces

Jhené Aiko Efuru Chilombo is an American recording artist who embarked on her music career contributing vocals and appearing in several music videos for R&B group B2K. At the time, she was known as B2K member Lil' Fizz's "cousin", though she is not actually related to him. It was used as a marketing tool, suggested by Sony and Epic Records, to promote Aiko through B2K and attract an audience. In 2003, Aiko was set to release her debut album, My Name Is Jhené, through her labels Sony, The Ultimate Group and Epic, however the album was never released, with Aiko eventually asking to be released from the label in order to continue her education.

In March 2011, Aiko made her return to music with the release of her first full-length project, a mixtape titled Sailing Soul(s). On December 16, 2011, Aiko signed a recording contract with American record producer No I.D.'s record label ARTium, distributed through Def Jam Recordings. In 2013, Aiko appeared on Big Sean's single "Beware", also featuring Lil Wayne, which became her first top 40 single on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. In November 2013, she released her first project for Artium and Def Jam, an extended play (EP), titled Sail Out. The EP was supported by the singles "3:16AM", "Bed Peace" and "The Worst", the latter of which went on to become certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Aiko released her major-label debut album, Souled Out, on September 9, 2014. On September 22, 2017, she released her second studio album Trip.

Aiko embarked on her musical career contributing vocals to several B2K releases, as well a song on The Master of Disguise soundtrack in 2002, while signed to The Ultimate Group and managed by Chris Stokes. During this time she was known as the cousin of B2K's rapper, Lil' Fizz, though she is not actually related to him. It was used as a marketing tool, suggested by her labels Sony, The Ultimate Group and Epic Records, to promote Aiko through B2K and attract an audience; nonetheless Aiko affirms that she and Lil' Fizz grew up together and were close like family. She featured on tracks five through eight of the R&B group's remix album B2K: The Remixes – Volume 1. "Santa Baby", a cover she recorded, was also featured on their album Santa Hooked Me Up and she appeared as a guest vocalist on the song "Tease" from Pandemonium!. Her song "Dog" appeared as a bonus track.

Aiko also appeared in numerous music videos including O'Ryan's debut video, "Take It Slow", B2K's debut video "Uh Huh" and "Why I Love You", P.Y.T.'s "Same Ol' Same Ol' (Remix)" featuring Sarai, Play's "M.A.S.T.E.R. (Part 2)" featuring Lil' Fizz video and Morgan Smith's 2004 video "Blow Ya Whistle". Jhené also has songs featured on the soundtracks of Barbershop, The Master of Disguise, You Got Served, The Proud Family and Byou. She released a video for her single "NO L.O.V.E" (re-recorded from Tha' Rayne version in 2002), which debuted on BET's 106 & Park when she was 15 years old. Aiko was set to release her debut album, then-titled My Name Is Jhené in 2003 through Sony, The Ultimate Group, Epic, however the album was never released due to tension at the record label Epic, which ultimately led to Aiko asking to be released from the label. Aiko later left the aforementioned labels in order to continue her education.

In 2007, she made a return to music, in an interview she spoke on the choice saying "Shortly before I conceived my daughter, I stepped back into the field and took a meeting with a label head. In this meeting, I was innocently told, to 'sell' myself when walking into these meetings. "That's when I decided I would 'sail' myself rather than sell myself." Aiko released a mixtape on March 16, 2011 entitled Sailing Soul(s) via her official website, JheneAiko.com. All the songs on the mixtape were written by her, except "July". The mixtape featured collaborations from Miguel, Drake and Kanye West as well as others. To promote the mixtape Aiko was joined by R&B singer Miguel on a one off free secret tour on Sunday, July 15. On October 21, 2012 Aiko released a music video for the song "My Mine". Jhene also released a video for the mixtape's second track, "Stranger". In 2011, she also began working closely with artists from Carson-based independent record label Top Dawg Entertainment such as Schoolboy Q and Ab-Soul who was featured on her EP released November 12, 2013 titled "Sail Out".

In 2012, Aiko met with No I.D., record producer and vice president of A&R at Def Jam, who ended up signing Aiko to his Artium Records imprint through Def Jam. Aiko released the track "3:16AM", which was made available for digital download on iTunes September 4, 2012. The song was released as the first single from Sail Out. In 2012, Aiko was also the opening act on the highly anticipated "Life Is Good/Black Rage" concert tour headlined by fellow American artists, rapper Nas and singer-songwriter Lauryn Hill. In June 2013, Aiko was featured on the Big Sean song "Beware", which became her first song to chart on the US Billboard Hot 100. In October 2013, it was revealed Jhené Aiko would open for Canadian rapper Drake on his Would You like a Tour? concert tour.

Aiko then released her debut EP Sail Out, on November 12, 2013. The EP debuted at number eight on the US Billboard 200 chart, with first-week sales of 34,000 copies. On January 14, 2014, "The Worst" was serviced to rhythmic contemporary radio in the United States as the album's third single. On May 2, 2014 "The Worst" rose from three to one on the airplay Mainstream R&B/Hip-Hop, in doing so she became the first female artist to top the chart as a lead with a debut single since Jazmine Sullivan in 2008. The song peaked on the US Billboard Hot 100 at forty-three, becoming Aiko's first solo release to chart in the region, the song also peaked at number eleven on the US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs.

After three years of recording Aiko released her debut album Souled Out on September 8, 2014. An anticipated release, the album was released to commercial and critical success. The album debuted at number three on the US Billboard 200, selling 70,000 copies in its opening week, in doing so the album became that weeks second highest debut and doubled the first week sales of Aiko's debut extended play Sail Out (2013). The album also debuted at number one on the US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and US R&B Albums and has sold 121,012 units in the US. The album produced a further three singles: the album's second single, "The Pressure", was released on iTunes on July 18, 2014. The Pressure debuted at number twenty five on the US Hot R&B Songs chart, and peaked the following week, at number twenty three. "Wading" was released as the album's third single on December 12, 2014 along with an accompanying video, followed by the release of Spotless Mind Her debut album was included on numerous critics' year end lists and was described by Gail Mitchell of Billboard as one of the albums to breakthrough and "make some noise" in the R&B genre. Following the release of the song "Post to Be", a collaboration with Omarion, the line "I might let your boy chauffeur me, but he gotta eat the booty like groceries" was described as a standout lyric and "the lyric of the summer, or the lyric of the year," by Rob Markman, editor for MTV News.

In February, 2015, Aiko was nominated for three Grammy Awards at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards, including Best R&B Song for "The Worst" and Best Urban Contemporary Album for Sail Out. The same month it was announced that Aiko would join rapper J. Cole on his tour entitled, Forest Hills Drive Tour. On March 19, 2015 Aiko released the free song “Living Room Flow.” Aiko covered "In a World of My Own / Very Good Advice" from the Disney film Alice in Wonderland, the cover was included on the "We Love Disney" compilation album which was released in October 2015.

In March 2016, Aiko announced a collaboration album with rapper Big Sean, under the name Twenty88, their self-titled debut album was made available to stream exclusively on TIDAL for four days, and was made available for download on April 1. According to the duo, “TWENTY88 tells the story of the highs and lows of a relationship, with insights into conflict, memories, love, sex, and more and features production from Key Wane, Detail, and Tommy Brown.” From late 2016 to mid-2017, Aiko released numerous non-album singles such as "Maniac", "First Fuck" with 6lack and "Hello Ego" featuring Chris Brown. The lead single to her second studio album, "While We're Young', was released in June 2016. Aiko's sophomore album, Trip, was released without a prior announcement on September 22, 2017. The lead single, "While We're Young", was released on June 9, 2017, for streaming and digital download. A 23-minute autobiographical film titled after the album was also released a day before Trip on September 21, 2017, co-directed by Aiko. On September 27, 2017, American singer Lana Del Rey revealed that Aiko would be opening for her on select dates of her concert tour entitled the LA to the Moon Tour during January 2018. Aiko toured with Del Rey from January 5 to 13.

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