Paula Abdul

Paula Abdul

Infobox musical artist
Background = solo_singer

Birth_name = Paula Julie Abdul
Born = birth date and age|1962|6|19
Origin = New York, New York
Occupation = Singer, choreographer, dancer, television personality, actress
Voice_type = Mezzo-soprano
Years_active = 1986-present
Spouse = Emilio Estevez(1992-1994) (divorced)
Label = Virgin Records (1988-1999)
Concord (2007-present)|
URL = [ Official Site of Paula Abdul]

Paula Julie Abdul (pron-en|ˈæbduːl "AB-dool"; born June 19, 1962) [ [ Paula Abdul - LoveToKnow Celebrity ] ] is a Grammy Award-winning American pop singer, dancer, two-time Emmy Award-winning choreographer, actress and television personality. Married to Emilio Estevez between 1992-1994, she is the former daughter-in-law of actor Martin Sheen. [ [ - Ancestry of Charlie Sheen: Second Generation ] ]

In the 1980s, Abdul rose from being a cheerleader for the Los Angeles Lakers NBA basketball team to being a sought-after choreographer at the height of the music video era, then to being a Pop-R&B singer with a string of hits in the late-1980s and early-1990s. According to Abdul, she has sold over 53 million records to date. [ Paula Abdul dishes on Antonella Barba, 'Idol,' and her media portrayal] , "", 2007-03-14. Retrieved on 2007-04-11] She has scored six number one singles on the Billboard Hot 100, placing her in a tie for fifth among the female solo performers who have reached #1 there. [] After her initial period of success, she suffered a series of setbacks in her professional and personal life, until she found renewed fame and success in the 2000s as a judge on the television series, "American Idol". Abdul was most recently featured in the seventh season of American Idol. She has also been featured as a judge on the UK talent show "The X Factor". [cite web |url= |title=Paula Abdul |accessdate=2008-09-09 |publisher=The Internet Movie Database ]

Abdul is working on a new album with her first single set to be released in mid-2008, and she hopes to have the album out by the end of 2008. [cite web |url= |title=Paula Abdul Confirms New Album, Tour Are in the Works |accessdate=2008-06-11 |publisher=Rolling Stone |date=2008-02-21 ] [cite web |url= |title= Paula Abdul Plotting Comeback Album |accessdate=2008-06-11 | |date=2008-03-07 ] Her voice range is mezzo-soprano.


Early life

Abdul was born June 19, 1962, in the San Fernando Valley, to Harry Abdul, a former livestock trader and owner of a sand and gravel business, and Lorraine Rykiss, a concert pianist who once worked as film director Billy Wilder's assistant. Her father is a Syrian Jew who was born in Syria, raised in Brazil, and subsequently emigrated to the U.S.cite news | author=Itamar Eichner| title=Israeli minister, American Idol| publisher| date =2006-11-17 | url =,7340,L-3328923,00.html| accessdate =2006-11-17 ] Abdul's mother is also Jewish and originally from Saint Boniface, Manitoba, Canada. Her maternal grandfather was named William Rykiss and was a proprietor of the general store in Minnedosa, Manitoba.

She and her sister, Wendy, grew up with their mother in the San Fernando Valley. An avid dancer and fan of music, Abdul was inspired towards a show business career by Gene Kelly in the classic film "Singin' in the Rain" as well as Debbie Allen, Fred Astaire, and Bob Fosse.Fact|date=March 2008

Abdul began taking dance lessons around the age of eight and showed a natural talent. She attended Van Nuys High School where she was a cheerleader and an honor student. At 15, she received a scholarship to a dance camp near Palm Springs, and in 1978 appeared in a low-budget Independent musical film, "Junior High School".

Abdul studied broadcasting at California State University, Northridge. During her first year, she was selected from a pool of 700 candidates for the cheerleading squad of the Los Angeles Lakers — the famed Laker Girls. Within three months, she became head choreographer. Six months later, she left school to focus on her choreography career.

Dance and choreography

Abdul choreographed videos for several singers throughout the 1980s, including many videos for Janet Jackson during her "Control" era. In 1995, Abdul released a dance workout video entitled "Paula Abdul's Get Up and Dance!" (re-released on DVD in 2003), a fast-paced, hip-hop style workout. In 1998 she released a second video called "Cardio Dance" (re-released on DVD in 2000). In December 2005, Abdul launched a cheerleading/fitness/dance DVD series called "Cardio Cheer", which is marketed to children and teenage girls involved with cheerleading and dance.

In film, Abdul choreographed sequences for the giant keyboard scene involving Tom Hanks’s character in "Big". Further credits include "Coming to America", "Jerry McGuire", "The Running Man", "American Beauty (1999 film)", and Oliver Stone's, "The Doors". [ The Official Website of Paula Abdul] . "". Retrieved on February 24, 2008] Television credits include "The Tracey Ullman Show", American Music Awards, the Academy Awards, and several commercials, such as The King's touchdown celebration, as seen in a string of popular Burger King television commercials that aired during the 2005-2006 NFL season.

1987-1990: "Forever Your Girl" era

In 1987, Abdul used her savings to make a singing demo. Although her voice was relatively untrained, her exceptional dancing proved marketable to the visually-oriented, MTV-driven, pop music industry.

In 1988, Abdul released her pop debut album, "Forever Your Girl". The album took 62 weeks to hit #1 on the Billboard 200 album sales chart — the longest an album has been on the market before hitting #1 — and spent 10 weeks there. The album eventually became multi-platinum in the spring and summer of 1989, and it spawned five American Top Three singles, four of them #1s (three in 1989 and one in 1990): "Straight Up", "Forever Your Girl", "Cold Hearted", "(It's Just) The Way That You Love Me", and "Opposites Attract". A remix album, "Shut Up and Dance", was also released and reached #7 on Billboard's album chart, becoming one of the most successful remix albums to date. The Grammy award-winning video for "Opposites Attract" featured an animated cat named MC Skat Kat.Abdul also went on a "Club MTV" tour where she performed songs from her album. Several other acts were also on the tour.

1991-1992: "Spellbound" era

Abdul's follow-up album, 1991's "Spellbound", contained another string of hits, and sold 13 million copies worldwide. The first single from "Spellbound" was the ballad, "Rush, Rush", which topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for five consecutive weeks, and was noted for its music video and "Rebel Without a Cause" motif featuring Keanu Reeves in the James Dean role. "Promise of a New Day," the second release from the album, also hit No. 1, and it was followed by the Top 10 hit "Blowing Kisses in the Wind" and two Top 20 hits: "Vibeology" and "Will You Marry Me?." Fact|date=March 2008 The album, "Spellbound", retained much of the dance-oriented formula heard on her debut album. The track "U" was written for Paula by Prince. "U" was supposed to be the final single from the album, but was never actually released.Fact|date=March 2008

Abdul promoted the album through the "Under My Spell Tour." This tour was nearly cancelled due to an accident during rehearsals. The tour began on schedule and ran from October 1991 to the summer of 1992, playing to low attendance at many of the venues. In 1991, Abdul embraced advertising and starred in a popular Diet Coke commercial in which she danced with a digital image of her idol, a young Gene Kelly.

1995-1996: "Head Over Heels" era

By 1995 Paula Abdul had recovered from her battle with the eating disorder bulimia Nervosa and prepared to return to the spotlight with her new album "Head Over Heels". The album received mixed reviews, and its singles became modest radio hits. The first single off the album, "My Love Is for Real" featured a fusion of R&B and traditional Middle Eastern instruments, and was performed with Yemeni-Israeli singer Ofra Haza. Its accompanying "Lawrence of Arabia"-inspired music video was played in theaters across the world as a preface to the film "Clueless". It was a hit in the clubs (peaking at #1 on Billboard's Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart), but the single stalled at #28 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart. Despite the lack of mainstream chart success, the single was nominated for several MTV Video Music Awards.

The second single, "Crazy Cool" became a minor hit in the U.S. yet managed to peak at #13 on the dance charts. "Ain't Never Gonna Give You Up" served as the third and final single but failed to chart in the Hot 100. To date "Head Over Heels" has sold 3 million copies worldwide, Abdul's lowest selling studio album.

2000s: Musical hiatus, controversy, and "American Idol"

After the low sales of "Head Over Heels" and conquering her personal problems, Abdul took a hiatus from the music industry. In 2000, Abdul’s "" CD was released by Virgin Records (with whom Abdul was already no longer affiliated). It featured all of her hit singles as well as other noteworthy tracks. The song "Bend Time Back 'Round" had previously been heard only on the 1992 soundtrack for the hit television series "Beverly Hills 90210". The album was not a commercial success; however, it managed to sell more than one million copies worldwide.

In 2000, Abdul co-wrote "Spinning Around", a dance-pop track intended to be the lead single off her new album. The album never materialized and "Spinning Around" was given to Kylie Minogue as a single. The song became highly successful and re-launched Minogue's career, as it was intended to do for Abdul, and reached #1 in numerous countries.

In 2002, Abdul appeared as one of three judges for the reality television music competition show "American Idol". Abdul, along with fellow judges Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson, were to evaluate the talent of a large group of young amateur singers, eliminate most of them in various audition rounds, and then judge the finalists as American television viewers voted on which finalists would continue to each successive round, until all but the winner were eliminated. Abdul won praise as a sympathetic and compassionate judge. She seemed especially kind compared to fellow judge Simon Cowell, who was often very blunt in his appraisals of the contestants' performances. When she realized that Cowell's over-the-top judging style was heartbreaking for many young contestants, Abdul was so horrified, she considered leaving the show. Although their differences often resulted in extremely heated on-air exchanges and confrontations, Cowell says he played a major role in convincing Abdul not to leave the show. [Cowell, S (2003): "I don't mean to be rude, but...", page 116-117, Random House. ISBN 978-0-7679-1741-4] Now a "bona fide" television celebrity, Abdul accepted a second assignment as reporter for "Entertainment Tonight". Her knack for finding something positive in almost every performance, her emotion-laden praise for contestants whose style she really likes, and her unique fingers-bent-outwards handclapping style have fueled the belief among some that she is drunk during auditions. This rumor has been the subject of satire, especially by Amy Poehler during "Saturday Night Live" sketches. This ability to give positive feedback to every performance has also led some people to say she is a poor judge incapable of constructive criticism.Who|date=February 2008

Abdul has been criticized for falling back on the same cliches and pat phrases when praising or critiquing "Idol" contestants.Who|date=February 2008 The comments include:

*"America loves you!"
*"You own the stage!"
*"You're authentic!"
*"You made it your own!"
*"You're unique!"
*"It wasn't your best performance."

Several American comedy shows, including Saturday Night Live, The Simpsons, and Mad TV, have capitalized on these catch-phrases when doing sketches involving an Abdul impersonator. They also imitate Abdul's unusual "arm-flapping" style of clapping her hands.Fact|date=February 2008Paula was referenced in an episode of the hit animated series "Family Guy", titled "The Father, the Son, and the Holy Fonz". During a routine 'cutaway gag', a clip from Paula's video for her earlier hit Opposites Attract is shown, with Peter Griffin replacing MC Skat Cat in both image and voice. According to the "Family Guy: Volume 4" DVD commentary, the vocals of Skat Cat on the track could not be separated from Paula's, so she came in and re-recorded the chorus of the song for the show. This would be her first "Family Guy" guest star credit.

In May 2005, ABC's news magazine "Primetime Live" reported claims by Season 2 "Idol" contestant Corey Clark that he and Abdul had an affair during that season, and that she had coached him on how to succeed in the competition. The fact that Clark came forward at a time when he was marketing a CD and trying to get a book deal was seen as suspicious by some, but Clark maintains that his career was being prejudiced because of his relationship with Abdul and that is why he came forward with the information to clear his name. For the most part, Abdul refused to comment on Clark's allegations. At the height of the debacle, Abdul appeared in a "Saturday Night Live" skit, making light of the situation. [AP., [ Abdul pokes fun at sex scandal on ‘SNL’] , "" (2005-05-11), Retrieved on 2007-02-12] While Fox launched an investigation, Abdul received numerous calls of support from celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey; Barbara Walters even addressed the camera during an episode of ABC's "The View" to say she was ashamed to be part of an operation that would report Clark's flimsy tabloid claims under the guise of a news story. In August 2005 the Fox network confirmed that she would be returning to the show, as the investigation had found "insufficient evidence that the communications between Mr. Clark and Ms. Abdul in any way aided his performance". [AP., [ After probe, Paula Abdul to remain on ‘Idol’] , "" (2005-08-24), Retrieved on 2007-02-12.]

On March 28, 2006 FOX announced that Abdul had signed to stay on "American Idol" as a judge for at least three more years. Later that year, fellow American Idol judge Simon Cowell invited her to be a guest judge at some of the early auditions for the third series of his similar UK talent show "The X Factor". Abdul was present at the initial audition of the eventual winner, Leona Lewis.

The week of May 14 to May 18, 2007 (the week before the season 6 finale), Abdul broke her nose and her arm when she tried to "avoid tripping over her pet chihuahua". She was present at the May 22 performance and the May 23 finale.

Her second greatest-hits CD, entitled "", was released by Virgin on May 8, 2007. This album was put together by Virgin Records who no longer employs Abdul. At this time, they also released the music videos to all her six #1 singles to iTunes.

Bravo announced a reality television series following Abdul through her day-to-day life, called "Hey Paula". The series is produced by Scott Sternberg Productions and debuted on June 28, 2007. [ News] ] Paula's behavior as depicted on the show has been described as 'erratic' by comedian Rosie O'Donnell. []

Abdul's "American Idol" wardrobe often includes a number of necklaces, rings, bracelets, and earrings that she designs, and she often gives show contestants custom-designed jewelry. In 2007, Paula Abdul Jewelry launched its nationwide consumer debut on QVC, with the tagline "fashion jewelry designed with heart and soul". [|jw|jw_paula_shop,html/left.html.file.|jw|view_all,html/walk.yah.1001?ref=GJE&cm_ven=GOOGLEPAID&cm_cat=JEWELRY&cm_pla=PAULAJEWELRY&cm_ite=PAULA_ABDUL_JEWELRY Paula Abdul Jewelry homepage on QVC] , retrieved May 13, 2007.] Paula's first QVC appearance resulted in 15 sellouts of her first jewelry collection involving more than 34,000 pieces. [ [ Jewelry Industry News] ] Paula is currently about to release her own perfume entitled "Sexy Thoughts."Fact|date=March 2008

Abdul has also said that she is planning on competing on Season 7 of Dancing With the Stars in the Fall, despite that being American Idol's competitive show and her being a choreographer.

Personal life

* Abdul was married to Emilio Estevez from April 29, 1992 to May 1994. She later married sportswear designer Brad Beckerman in 1996. They divorced in 1998.
* Valentine's Day 2006, Abdul appeared on "Dr. Phil" as part of a prime time special on love and relationships. She was set up on two dates and Phil McGraw gave her advice.
* In mid July, 2007, Abdul announced that she had begun dating J.T. Torregiani, [ [ Paula Abdul Finally Restores Her Love Life] , "All Headline News", 2007-07-19. Retrieved on 2007-07-19] a restaurant owner 12 years her junior. [The View, episode airing July 19, 2007] She told Access Hollywood: "He is a good guy. Things are looking upwards. It's looking good right now. I wasn't even looking for someone and that's what usually happens." [Access Hollywood, episode airing July 18, 2007] Paula and JT broke up recently.Fact|date=May 2008
* Having recovered from her eating disorder after treatment in 1994, she later became a spokeswoman for NEDA, and was presented with the Profiles In Living Award in late 2005. She then continued her work by recording Public Service Announcements in 2006.
* In April 2005, she revealed that she suffers from a rare neurological disorder called complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) that causes chronic pain. [ Paula Abdul Falls Straight Down] , "E Online News", 2007-05-21. Retrieved on 2007-05-21]

On Judaism and Israel

Paula is a practicing Jew [ [ YouTube - Paula Abdul... "a good Jewish girl." ] ] and is proud of her heritage. She has said, "Not many people know, but both my parents are Jewish, I am very excited about telling you this." Her dad is from Syria, an Arab-ruled country, and Abdul has stated that it was her dream to visit neighboring Israel and said, "My father is a Syrian Jew whose family emigrated to Brazil. My mother is Canadian with Jewish roots. My dream is to come to Israel for a real holiday." Israeli Tourist Minister Isaac Herzog invited her to Israel during a Hanukkah festival, to which Abdul responded with a hug, adding, "I will come; you have helped me make my dream come true."

Court and legal

* On December 20, 2004, Abdul was driving her Mercedes on an L.A.-area freeway when she changed lanes and hit another vehicle. The driver and passenger snapped a photograph with a cell phone camera and wrote down the license plate number of the car, which was traced to Abdul. On March 24, 2005, Abdul was fined USD $900 and given 24 months of informal probation after pleading no contest to misdemeanor hit-and-run driving in Los Angeles. In addition to the fines she was ordered to pay USD $775 for damage to the other car. [AP., [ 'Idol' Judge Fined For Hit-And-Run] , "", 2005-03-24, Retrieved on 2007-02-10.]
* April 4, 2006, Abdul filed a report at a Hollywood police station claiming she had been a victim of battery at a private party at about 1 a.m. April 2, according to L.A.P.D. spokesman police Lt. Paul Vernon. "According to Abdul, the man at the party argued with her, grabbed her by the arm and threw her against a wall", Vernon said. "She said she had sustained a concussion and spinal injuries." [AP, [ Paula Abdul Tells Police She Was Assaulted] , "", 2006-04-06, Retrieved on 2007-02-10.]

ubstance abuse allegations

Substance abuse allegations arose as the result of what some described as "erratic behavior" [ Abdul says odd behavior not drug-related] , "USA Today", 2005-04-20. Retrieved on 2007-04-09] by Abdul during episodes of "American Idol". After reading these allegations on message boards, Abdul told "People" magazine in April 2005 that she suffered from chronic pain for years following a "cheerleading accident" at age 17 and was diagnosed with reflex sympathetic dystrophy in November 2004. Abdul says she is now pain-free following treatment, including the anti-inflammatory medication Enbrel.

Allegations arose again in January 2007 when videos circulated on the Internet of Abdul appearing to sway in her chair and slur her speech during a set of interviews. [ Paula Abdul seen slurring in TV interview] , "Reuters" via "", 2007-01-15, Retrieved on 2007-04-09.] Abdul's publicist attributed this to fatigue and technical difficulties during the recording of the interviews. It was revealed on the Bravo show "Hey Paula", which had followed Abdul with a video camera prior to the interviews, that Abdul had not been sleeping, perhaps suffering from some mild form of insomnia.

In February 2007, Abdul told "Us Weekly" that she had never been drunk or used illegal drugs and called the allegations "lies." [ [ Paula Abdul claims she’s ‘squeaky clean’] , "Associated Press" via "", 2007-02-13, Retrieved on 2007-02-15] In a March 2007 appearance on the "Late Show with David Letterman", Abdul joked that her scrutinized behavior was caused by her being "abducted by aliens." Abdul appeared on the Oprah Winfrey show to "clear the air" on that situation.


* The Club MTV Tour
* Under My Spell Tour


tudio albums


Film and Television

As choreographer

ee also

* List of Jews from the Arab World
* List of number-one hits (United States)
* List of artists who reached number one on the Hot 100 (U.S.)
* List of Number 1 Dance Hits (United States)
* List of artists by total number of USA number one singles
* List of artists who reached number one on the U.S. Adult Contemporary chart
* List of artists who reached number one on the U.S. Dance chart
* List of artists who reached number one on the Australian singles chart


External links

*imdb name|0000716
*amg name|2:78920
* [ Paula Abdul official Site for her New Album]
* [ A Direct Interview with Paula Abdul]

NAME= Abdul, Paula
SHORT DESCRIPTION= Singer, Choreographer, Dancer, Television personality, Actress
DATE OF BIRTH= 1962-6-19
PLACE OF BIRTH= San Fernando, California

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