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Pharrell

Pharrell Williams didn't only help change the face of pop music beginning in the late '90s. He also was one of the faces of pop music -- as a charismatic star who often stole the show when producing and/or guesting on other artists' hit singles. His presence was unfading, whether he was the one billed at the top or the one behind a beat.

To trace the beginning of his ascent, you have to go back to 1992, when Teddy Riley tapped him to write a verse for Wreckx-n-Effect's "Rump Shaker." Since the late '90s, Williams and longtime friend Chad Hugo -- known together as the Neptunes -- began scoring songwriting and production assignments that slowly but steadily infiltrated mainstream music, whether it was via dance-pop (Britney Spears' "I'm a Slave 4 U"), hardcore rap (Clipse's "Grindin'"), or contemporary R&B (Babyface's "There She Goes"). Williams and Hugo were relatively obscure during the mid-'90s, doing spare work for the likes of SWV, Total, and Mase, but they would eventually develop a style that would become as recognized and as mimicked as that of fellow Virginia Beach native Timbaland. (Prior to stardom, all three producers were in a band together called Surrounded by Idiots.)

As the duo took on more work, Williams' voice became increasingly familiar. He was now more likely to provide the chorus and the background vocals of the same song, in addition to appearing in the video. (Check out Jay-Z's "Excuse Me Miss" and Snoop Dogg's "Beautiful" for two examples.) It wasn't until the summer of 2003 that he truly stepped out on his own. He released his first solo single, "Frontin'." Produced with Hugo and featuring a guest verse from Jay-Z, the song built anticipation for The Neptunes Present... Clones, a compilation of all-new tracks from artists produced by the duo. "Frontin'" was a ubiquitous summer hit and kept Williams' momentum running up to the release of Hugo and Williams' second funk/rock-oriented N.E.R.D. album, released in March 2004. Williams' first solo album, In My Mind, survived a number of delays and was finally issued in July 2006. The set, produced by Williams alone, debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 chart.

Although Williams didn't release another solo album for eight years, his name, as well as that of the Neptunes, continued to carry much weight. The remainder of the 2000s was filled with commercially successful collaborations with the likes of Clipse, Britney Spears, Jay-Z, Solange, and Madonna. There was a handful of Grammy nominations, as well as a surprising 2007 win for Ludacris' "Money Maker" in the Best Rap Song category. N.E.R.D., who released their third album, Seeing Sounds, in 2008, remained an an occasional diversion.

The following decade began with a steady stream of activity. Williams was responsible for much of the music for the animated comedy Despicable Me. Along with outside production and songwriting work, Williams and Hugo put together Nothing, the fourth N.E.R.D. album. During 2011 and 2012, Williams produced most of Gloria Estefan's Miss Little Havana, dozens of cuts for R&B, rap, and pop artists, and tracks for two of the most praised albums of the early 2010s: Kendrick Lamar's Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City and Frank Ocean's Channel Orange. (Williams won a Grammy for his role in the latter.)

The roll continued through 2013. "Blurred Lines," a Hot 100 chart-topper from Robin Thicke, featured Williams as producer, co-songwriter, and featured artist. He co-wrote and fronted "Get Lucky" and "Lose Yourself to Dance," two songs from Daft Punk's number one Billboard 200 album Random Access Memories. The soundtrack for Despicable Me 2 contained several Williams songs, led by the worldwide smash hit "Happy," for which he conceived a 24-hour music video. When the nominees for the 2014 Grammy Awards were announced, Williams' name appeared in seven categories. "Get Lucky" won Record of the Year, Random Access Memories won Album of the Year, and, most notably, Williams won the award for Producer of the Year, Non-Classical. Williams signed to Columbia, home of Daft Punk, and released his second album, G I R L, in March 2014. It reached number two on the pop charts, by which time "Happy" had achieved yet more success, becoming one of the top-selling digital singles of all time with sales of more than five million. ~ Andy Kellman, Rovi
full bio

Comments

I love the song happy it's my favorite song in the world!!!!! Kaylin
Say iPhone 5 three times say a color post on five other songs look under your pillow
I'm happy!
selenamj420
My grandma can't even speak English and she loves this song
drhowell13
H͞͞a͞͞p͞͞p͞͞ y ͞ ͞
drhowell13
H͞͞i͞͞ u͞͞s͞͞e͞͞ a͞͞w͞͞e͞͞s͞͞ o ͞ ͞ m ͞ ͞ e ͞ ͞ ! !
tandt_ruggs
I'm havin a bad bad day it's about time that I get my way. NO! NO! NO, OH GOD! NOOO!
I love this song
djwindle3
3 2 1 fun, fun, fun,!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! 1 2 3 ME2,ME2,ME2
OGM love this song
jab13796
D
De
Des
Desp
Despi
Despic
Despica
Despicab
Despicabl
Despicable
M
Me
Me!
jab13796
Aww...Despic a b l e Me...
ava0062
My name is ava hendrie I live with thu hendries
LOVE YOUR SONG HAPPY SO DOES MY DAD!!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
jjunco8
Hello I love your song happy even
jab13796
I'm clapping because I'm HAPPYYYYYYYY Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y
For all u people that "draw with silver but it comes out red" stop doing it u r too beautiful to damage
autumn112105 7
My brother Hunter loves this song
a lot!
I'm listening to your music
This song make me smile :):):):):)
claudiaperez 9 1 4 4
I'm happy
I
I l
I lo
I lov
I love
I love t
I love th
I love thi
I love this
I love this s
I love this so
I love this son
I love this song
You are so awesome my fav singer������
I'm going to sing this at the D-pac
kayla_robbin s 1
BECAUSE IM HAPPY
leahjrobinso n 3
Smile more roman Atwood love :)
King uo
hoopshooter0 3 4
He is a good singer like Happy I losten to that song when i'm sad.Then i'm happier!!!!! # P h a r r e l l : )
Just a cloud away is such a relaxing song!
jason.white3 9 7 4
Yeah it might seem CRAZY what I'm bout' to say "I hate this song!"

Sorry I'm being a hater I just don't think it is good
Wdfghh cgjmkjlkjhk n vxbmnn, .vvnsfgjmmmm nmg,ghjljkkk i h j r g h x f s a w 1 a d g g j j k k k l l l v m , ,
Awsome i love it.

This is one of my favorite song!
Hello love your song just a cloud away
laloaguila52 4
Come to destin florida
Hkgknpyj you. Sarah Sears kphkhmhkn. Hjyuhjhjjhu. Love
Micheal.
Jordon Ludtke me and my BFF Linzi Leavins love this song and so does my ex boyfriend Cody Crowley
I'm happy when I get to hear this song:))))))) ) ) )
I so love this song
Like it just happy again
Now I'm happy :)
Bc im happy
I love the music
Great songs
Because I'm happy aaaaaaaaaaaa I love this song
bearycrl
Say iPhone 5 times
Pick a color
Repost this on two other songs
Look under ur pillow
I love Happy.������
H
A
P
P
Y
!
I like the song because im happy
Pharrell makes me happy all the time
Show more

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