Mary J. Blige    

Abstract:

Mary J. Blige is an artist from Bronx, New York. Mary has made a successful career for herself. She has 13 albums, of which more than half of them went multi-platinum. She has sold 100 million records worldwide. Several number 1 billboard hits and has won 9 grammys. Mary J. Blige has moved many people with her music. She expresses real life pain that others can relate to. This post will show Mary J. Blige behind the scenes. Mary J. Blige is a success because of her life struggles. 

 

Backstory:

 Mary J. Blige grew up with a rough childhood. She witnessed her dad constantly abuse her mother. To escape the abuse from her father, her mother moved them to public housing in New York. This was actually worse for her. She saw every woman being abused.Then sexual abuse started happening towards. That’s why she enjoyed going to church. It was an outlet. She could sing and knew she could not be hurt. However, by the age of 16 she dropped out and became addicted to drugs, drinking, and sex. She became a product of her environment. But her voice saved her again. Uptown Records CEO Andre Harrell loved her voice once he got a hold of her cassette. At age 18 she was the youngest person on the label. He signed her to an up-and-coming record producer named Sean Combs. She then released her debut album “What’s the 411?”. Her life spiraled out of control again when the people she was working with kept supplying her with drugs and alcohol so they could continue taking advantage of her and stealing her money. She turned her life around again when she met a music executive named Kendu Isaacs. He was the first man in her life to ever show love so she instantly fell in love with him. Mary J Blige kept making music and she also starred in a couple of movies.

Timeline of Success:

What’s the 411?

Real Love- single 

1992

My Life- album

1994

Share My World- album

1997

Mary-album

1991

Prison Song-movie

2001

No More Drama-album

2001

Love & Life -album

2003

The Breakthrough- album

2005

Growing Pains- album

2007

Stronger with Eachother – album

Tyler Perry’s I Can do Bad All by Myself– Movie 

2009

My Life 2 -album

Rock of Ages-Movie

2011

A Mary Christmas -album

Betty and Coretta– Movie 

2013

The London Sessions- album

2014

Strength of a Woman -album

Mudbound– Movie

2017

Black and Blue– Movie

Respect-Movie

2020 & 2021

 

Relevance & Impact:

Mary’s early life was quite horrendous. Yet, it helped her create music that made her one of the best RnB singers in the country. At every point Mary was down, she used music to pick her back up. Also, Mary shared her struggles not just through music, but through documentaries and interviews. People feel like they can relate to her and use her music to also get through hard times. They also use her as an inspiration. She was able to escape a very difficult situation multiple times and be strong. In 2018 she got a divorce from Kendu Isaac. She has been ordered to pay him 30,000 a month in spousal support. Still she played lead actress in a movie “Body Cam” in 2020 and starred in “Respect” in 2020. To this day, Mary J. Blige is still booked and busy. Her net worth is 20 million.

 

Influences

Mary was influenced by Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan, and Gladys Knight.