ARTIST PROFILE

Ameriie

Name: Amerie Mi Marie Rogers

Birthday: January 12, 1980

Fav Dish: Cereals

Amerie Mi Marie Rogers (born January 12, 1980), known professionally Ameriie, is a multiracial (African American & Korean) American singer, songwriter, actress and record producer.

She debuted in 2002 with her highly acclaimed debut album All I Have.

Amerie was born to a South Korean mother, artist Mi Suk and African American father, Charles. A few months after she was born, the Rogers family moved to South Korea, where Amerie lived for three years. Her father, Charles, was a chief warrant officer in the U.S. military, so the family lived in many different places, including Alaska, Texas, Virginia and Germany.

She has a younger sister, Angela, who is now her lawyer. Amerie describes her parents as conservative, protective, traditional Christians. Growing up, she and her sister were forbidden to leave the house or use the phone on school days. The singer enrolled at Georgetown University to study literature, and was in Navy ROTC: “My dad didn’t force me into it or anything. I joined so I could afford an education.” She quit ROTC after her sophomore year, and graduated with a B.A. in English and a Fine Arts minor in design.

While studying at Georgetown, Amerie befriended a Washington, D.C. club promoter who eventually put her in touch with producer Rich Harrison.

During an interview with Maxim, Amerie said she met up with Harrison at a McDonald’s parking lot, and performed a song for him in her car. Harrison, who had just worked on Mary J. Blige’s albums Mary and No More Drama, began recording and developing demos with Amerie. This led to her first record deal with Columbia Records.

According to Amerie, she and Harrison immediately hit it off. In a 2002 interview, she said: “For some reason we had a very special chemistry. When we would work together something great would happen.”

As a young girl she lived in a variety of places, including South Korea, Germany, Texas and Alaska due to her father’s US military career. Having to constantly adapt to new environments, she developed a very strong sense of self early on. She excelled in school, but also found a creative outlet in writing fiction and music.

Ameriie went on to Georgetown University, where she earned a bachelors degree in English and Fine Arts/Design. After securing a record deal shortly after graduation, she released her debut album “All I Have” and, together with Richard A. Harrison, helped steer contemporary R&B away from synthetic sounds through the use of live, aggressive instrumentation and vocalization. Three years later she turned out “Touch”, which solidified her as one of music’s most exciting artists, thanks to the overwhelming success of the go-go-inspired track “1 Thing.”

In 2007 she released “Because I Love It”, which featured the hip-hop electro sound that is still prevalent in pop music today.

After releasing three critically acclaimed albums, Ameriie decided it was time to reposition herself. In 2008 she parted ways with Sony and co-founded entertainment company Feeniix Rising Entertainment with business partner Lennie Nicholson. “In Love & War”, an aggressive mix of trunk rattling hip-hop, raw soul reminiscent of James Brown and classic Led Zeppelin-era rock-‘n-roll, quickly followed.

The singer managed to turn the tumultuous times of past relationships into a moving collection of songs which resonate with anyone who has ever been on the wrong side of love.

Ameriie is in the process of recording her latest project, “Cymatika”, which she describes as an album that speaks to “the things that drive us.” Always fusing different musical elements, this time she picks up where 2007’s “Because I Love It” left off, and adds a heavier dose of New Wave, trance and electronica.

Ameriie is also working on three books: her first fiction novel, a guide book for young girls and teens, and a wedding planning book with celebrity wedding planner Tiffany Nieves-Cook, with whom she’s been planning her wedding for the past year.

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