Alicia Keys was born in Hell's Kitchen, Manhattan, to Teresa (Augello), a paralegal who was also an occasional actress, and Craig Cook, a flight attendant.Her father is African-American, and her mother, who is caucasian, is of Italian and English/Irish/Scottish ancestry.
Not only her musical talent but also her grades proved to be so exceptional that she was allowed to graduate, as valedictorian, at age 16.
In 1998, she signed with Arista Records, and wrote, produced and recorded her own albums.
In 1999, she left Arista to join J Records, headed by legendary music impresario Clive Davis, and her success has been meteoric.
Her 2001 debut album, "Songs in A Minor," sold six million copies and garnered five Grammys.
There is such a fear of termination of one's career if they have any intelligent thought about politics and that's messed up.
Even when I'm singing on record there's a lot of times when I'll fight for a bit of imperfection.
I might not have quite hit the note to the perfect pitch, but there was a soul in there and feeling that,to me, delivers the emotion of that moment.
Her album "Diary" won her four more Grammys in 2005. The best thing I can say about it is that sometimes you have to see that kind of stuff so as to have a more balanced view about why it's so bad.
[on the use of women, sex and sleaze in rap/hip-hop videos] Oh my God, the [hip-hop] videos! I think music and socialism and politics have always gone hand in hand.