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Macy Gray Biography

Home > Music > G > Gray, Macy > Biography

Birth Name: Natalie Renee McIntyre
Born: 1967/09/06
Birth Place: Canton, Ohio, U.S.
Years Active: 1998–present
Genres: R&B, Soul, Neo Soul, Funk Rock, Hip Hop

Macy Gray (born Natalie McIntyre, September 6, 1967 in Canton, Ohio) is a Grammy Award-winning American R&B and soul singer-songwriter, record producer, and actress, famed for her distinctive raspy voice. As an actress she has appeared in a number of films including “Training Day,” “Spider-Man,” “Scary Movie 3,” “Lackawanna Blues,” “Idlewild” and “For Colored Girls.”

Released in the summer of 1999, her debut album, “On How Life Is,” became a worldwide smash, peaking at #4 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart. Despite the first single “Do Something” stalling on the charts, the release of the second single “I Try” made the album a success for Gray. “I Try” was one of the biggest singles of 1999, and subsequent singles “Still” and “Why Didn't You Call Me” ensured the album becoming triple platinum in the U.S., and quadruple platinum in the U.K. In 2001, Gray won the Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for “I Try,” which was also nominated for Song of the Year and Record of the Year.

Gray's second album, “The Id” was released in 2001 and featured appearances by John Frusciante and Erykah Badu on the single “Sweet Baby.” The album peaked at #11 on the Billboard 200 and it reached #1 on the U.K. Albums Chart and was certified gold by the BPI.[28]

In 2002, she appeared on the Red Hot Organization's compilation in tribute to Nigerian afropop pioneer, Fela Kuti, “Red Hot and Riot.” She appeared on a remake track of Kuti's classic, “Water No Get Enemy” alongside prominent hip hop and R&B artists, D'Angelo, The Soultronics, Nile Rodgers, Roy Hargrove, and Kuti's son, Femi Kuti.

In 2003, Gray released her third studio album, “The Trouble with Being Myself.” The lead single “When I See You” became a radio hit in the U.S. and a Top 40 hit in the UK, although the album was not as well received by fans. Nevertheless, it became Gray's third Top 20 album in the U.K. The album peaked at #44 on the Billboard 200.

A greatest hits collection, “The Very Best of Macy” was issued in 2004 and a live album, “Live in Las Vegas” was subsequently released in 2005. In 2007, Gray released her fourth studio album, entitled “Big.” Two singles, “Finally Made Me Happy” and “Shoo Be Doo,” were released from the album. The album was critically acclaimed and seen by some as her best work to date. It featured collaborations with Natalie Cole, Fergie, Justin Timberlake, and, who co-executive produced the album with Gray. The album was moderately successful in the U.S., where it debuted and peaked at #39 on the Billboard 200. “Big” reached #62 on the U.K. Albums chart.

The first two singles from Gray's fifth studio album “The Sellout,” titled, “Beauty in the World,” and “Lately” became Top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs chart. Upon its 2010 release, “The Sellout” debuted at number #38 on the Billboard 200.

In 2011, Gray signed a deal with 429 Records and started recording a series of covers for her next studio album “Covered,” released in 2012. The album's first single was “Here Comes The Rain Again” which was originally performed by Eurythmics.