YONKERS, N.Y. -- Happy Birthday to Yonkers’ Mary Jane Blige!
Mary Jane Blige, who was born in Yonkers, turns 43 on Saturday.
Blige, a singer-songwriter, record producer, and occasional rapper and actress, professionally known as Mary J. Blige, was born Jan. 11, 1971.
Starting her career as a background singer on Uptown Records in 1989, Blige released her first album, "What's the 411?", in 1992, and has released 10 studio albums since and made more than 150 guest appearances on other albums and soundtracks.
A recipient of nine Grammy Awards, eight of Blige's albums have reached multi-platinum status in the U.S. "My Life," in particular, is considered among the greatest albums ever recorded according to Rolling Stone, Time, and Vibe. For her part in combining hip-hop and soul in the early-1990s and its subsequent commercial success, Blige received the Legends Award at the World Music Awards. Blige also received the Voice of Music Award from music publishing company ASCAP. Blige made Time magazine's "Time 100" list of influential individuals around the world in 2007. She is a recipient of two Golden Globe Awards for her musical contributions to the films "Bobby" and "The Help."
In 2008, The Mary J. Blige and Steve Stoute Foundation for the Advancement of Women Now, Inc. (FFAWN) was inaugurated at Roosevelt High School in Yonkers. Its purpose is to inspire women "to reach their individual potential".