Christina María Aguilera (born December 18, 1980) is an American singer-songwriter, record producer and actress. Born in Staten IslandNew York and raised inWexford, Pennsylvania, she made appearances on the television series Star Search and The Mickey Mouse Club in her childhood. In 1999, Aguilera came to prominence with her debut studio albumChristina Aguilera, which spawned the number-one singles "Genie in a Bottle", "What a Girl Wants" and "Come On Over Baby (All I Want Is You)". Her follow-up records, Mi Reflejo and My Kind of Christmas (2000), were certified triple platinum and achieved moderate success worldwide. Displeased with her lack of input in her image and music, Aguilera assumed creative control for her fourth album, Stripped (2002), which yielded the international chart-toppers "Dirrty" and "Beautiful".

After collaborating with several artists, Aguilera incorporated 1930s and 1940s bluessoul and jazz influences to her fifth album, Back to Basics (2006). The record spawned the top-ten singles "Ain't No Other Man", "Hurt", and "Candyman". However, her electronica-inspired sixth album, Bionic (2010), made little commercial impact. That year, Aguilera starred alongside Cher in the film Burlesque, and served as the executive producer of its successful soundtrack. Her seventh record, Lotus (2012), incorporated electropopdance-pop elements and became her lowest-selling release to date. Aguilera is an original coach on The Voice, having appeared in three of its four seasons since 2011.

Aguilera has become a prominent figure in mainstream popular music and culture, and has been recognized as a pop icon,[1] "Princess of Pop",[2] and "Voice of Generation".[3] She has earned numerous awards and accolades, including four Grammy Awards, one Latin Grammy Award, two Billboard Music Awards, two MTV Music Video Awards, a Golden Globe Award nomination, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. To date, Aguilera has sold over 50 million albums worldwide,[4]with 14.5 million units certified in the United States alone.[5] Rolling Stone ranked her 58th on their list of the 100 Greatest Singers of All Time, becoming its youngest and only artist under the age of thirty. During the 2000s, Billboard recognized her as the 20th Artist of the Decade and its second top-selling single artist, behindMadonna. Aguilera was ranked number eight in VH1's 100 Greatest Women in Music and was one of Time's 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2013. Outside of her work in the entertainment industry, Aguilera is involved in charitable activities through human rights, world issues, and her work as a UN ambassador for the World Food Programme.

Life and career[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Early life and career beginnings[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Christina María Aguilera was born in Staten Island, New York, in December 18, 1980[6] to parents Fausto Xavier Aguilera and Shelly Loraine (née Fidler), a soldier in the United States Army and a violinist and pianist, respectively.[7] Her father is Ecuadorian,[8] while her American mother has German, English, Irish, Scots-Irish, and French ancestry.[9][10][11] Throughout her father's service in the Army, her family moved to various locations, including New Jersey, Texas, New York, and Japan.[12] Her parents divorced when Aguilera was six years old. She, her mother, and her younger sister Rachel then lived at her grandmother's home in Rochester, Pennsylvania, a town outside Pittsburgh;[8] her mother later remarried.[13] According to both Aguilera and her mother, her father was very controlling, as well as physically and emotionallyabusive, while she used music as an escape from the abuses.[14] Even though he has made several attempts to reconnect with her, Aguilera ruled out any chance of a reunion.[15] Since then, her mother has married again and has changed her name.[13]

As a child, Aguilera aspired to be a singer. She was known locally as "the little girl with the big voice",[15] singing in local talent shows and competitions. At the age of 8, Aguilera won her first talent show performingWhitney Houston's "I Wanna Dance With Somebody".[12] On March 15, 1990, she appeared on Star Search singing "A Sunday Kind of Love", but lost the competition at number 2. Soon after losing on Star Search, she returned home and appeared on Pittsburgh's KDKA-TV's Wake Up With Larry Richert to perform the same song. Throughout her youth in Pittsburgh, Aguilera sang "The Star-Spangled Banner" beforePittsburgh Penguins hockey, Pittsburgh Steelers football and Pittsburgh Pirates baseball games, including during the 1992 Stanley Cup Finals.[16] She attended Rochester Area School District and Marshall Middle School near Wexford.[15] Her talent was kept a secret to avoid bullying from other children. Following her television appearances Aguilera experienced resentment and bullying including an incident in which her peers slashed the tires on her family's car.[17] She attended North Allegheny Intermediate High School briefly until she was home schooled following several incidents.[15] Aguilera recalls, "doing what I did and maybe being a little smaller, I was definitely picked on and bullied for the attention that I got. It was definitely unwanted attention and there was a lot of unfairness about it."[18]

In 1991, Aguilera auditioned for a role on The Mickey Mouse Club; however, she did not meet the age requirements. Two years later, she joined the cast, performing musical numbers and sketch comedy, until the show's cancellation in 1994.[19] Her co-stars included Justin TimberlakeBritney SpearsRyan Gosling and Keri Russell where they nicknamed her "the Diva"[20] for her performance style and voice. At the age of fourteen, Aguilera recorded her first song, "All I Wanna Do", a hit duet with Japanese singer Keizo Nakanishi.[21] In 1997, she represented the United States at the international Golden Stag Festival with a two-song set.[22] Aguilera entered talent contests on "teen night" at the Pegasus Lounge, a gay and lesbian nightclub in Pittsburgh.[23] In 1998, Aguilera sent in a demo of her cover of Whitney Houston's "Run to You" to Disney, who were looking for a singer to record the song "Reflection" for their animated feature film Mulan (1998).[24] The demo caught the attention of producer and label executive Ron Fair who would later mentor her throughout her career and led to Aguilera earning a contract with RCA Records the same week.[25] "Reflection" peaked within the top twenty on the Adult Contemporary Singles Chart, and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song.[26][27]

1999–2001: Christina AguileraMi Reflejo, and new management[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Aguilera's self-titled debut album was released on August 24, 1999. It was met with a favorable critical response, with Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic opining that the album "remains firmly within the teen-oriented dance-pop genre, but done right" and was "lightweight in the best possible sense – breezy, fun, engaging, and enjoyable on each repeated listen."[28] It debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200and Canadian Albums Chart; it went on to ship eight million copies in the United States[29] and over seventeen million copies worldwide.[30][31][32] The album is included in the Top 100 Albums of All Time list of TheRecording Industry Association of America (RIAA) based on US sales.[33] Aguilera's debut single, "Genie in a Bottle", was an international success, reaching number one of the US Billboard Hot 100 and several countries worldwide.[34][35] It became the top-selling debut single of 1999, selling over 1.4 million units in the United States.[36] Follow-up singles "What a Girl Wants" and "Come On Over Baby (All I Want Is You)" also topped the Hot 100 during 1999 and 2000, while "I Turn to You" reached number three. Consequentially, Aguilera became one of few artists to have multiple number one successes from a debut album inBillboard history.[37] Additionally, "What a Girl Wants" was the first number one hit of the millennium.[38] Aguilera made a cameo appearance on Beverly Hills, 90210,[39] appeared at 1999's Lilith Fair, and performed during the Super Bowl XXXIV halftime show alongside Enrique Iglesias. In an effort to display the range of her voice, Aguilera performed piano-accompanied sets on television shows and private concerts.[40] At the 2000 Grammy Awards, Aguilera won the Grammy Award for Best New Artist, commenting that she was "was not expecting it at all" and that it felt "amazing".[41]

On September 12, 2000, Aguilera released her second album and first Spanish-language album, Mi Reflejo, containing five Spanish versions of songs from her previous album and new Spanish material. According to producer Rudy Pérez, with whom Aguilera recorded the album in Miami, Aguilera was only semi-fluent while recording, but understood the language, having grown up with her Ecuadorian father.[42][43]The album peaked at number twenty-seven on the Billboard 200 and topped the Billboard Latin charts for a record nineteen weeks, making her the highest female debut of all time.[44][45] Additionally, it made Aguilera the only artist in history to have back-to-back number one debuts with an English language album followed by a Spanish language album.[45] The album sold over 3 million copies worldwide,[46][47] and was certified 6× Platinum (Latin field) in the US selling over 480,000 copies.[48][49] Aguilera won the World Music Award and Billboard award as the best selling Latin artist that year.[50] In 2001, it won Aguilera aLatin Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Album.[51] She also released a Christmas album, My Kind of Christmas, on October 24, 2000, and performed its only single, "The Christmas Song", at the White House that year.[29] The song made Aguilera one of three artists to take the song into the top twenty on the Billboard Hot 100.[52] The album was certified platinum in the US[53] and sold over 3 million copies worldwide.[47] Her first concert tour, Christina Aguilera in Concert, began in the summer of 2000 in the United States and ended early 2001, where she toured South America and Asia.[54] An ABC concert special,My Reflection, was released to DVD and certified Gold in the US.[55] Aguilera was Billboard's top selling female artist of 2000.[50]

Aguilera was rumored to have dated MTV VJ Carson Daly.[56] Rumors of their relationship were fueled after the release of Eminem's song, "The Real Slim Shady", in which he also insinuated a romance between her and rocker Fred Durst. Aguilera responded saying the lyrics were "disgusting, offensive and, above all, not true."[57] Their feud ended two years later backstage at the Video Music Awards after Aguilera presented the rapper an award onstage.[58] Aguilera dated Puerto Rican dancer Jorge Santos, who appeared on her tour and music videos throughout 2000. They dated for nearly two years until the relationship ended on September 11, 2001.[59] He remained her dancer into 2002.[60]

Ricky Martin asked Aguilera to duet with him on "Nobody Wants to Be Lonely" from his album Sound Loaded, released in 2001 as the album's second single. The song reached number thirteen in the United States.[61] In 2001, Aguilera, Lil' KimMýa, and Pink remade Labelle's 1975 single "Lady Marmalade" for the film Moulin Rouge! and its accompanying soundtrack. The song ultimately peaked at number one on theBillboard Hot 100 for five weeks[62] and became the first airplay-only track in history to stay number one for more than one week.[63] It was the year's top selling single worldwide, reaching number one in eleven other countries with over 5.2 million copies sold making it one of the best-selling singles of all time.[64] "Lady Marmalade" earned all four performers a Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals. The video won two MTV Video Music Awards, including Video of the Year in 2001.[65] Later in 2001, "Just Be Free", a song from one of Aguilera's demos recorded when she was fifteen years old, appeared in record stores. When RCA Records discovered the single, they advised fans not to purchase it.[66] Months later, Warlock Records was set to release Just Be Free, an album containing demo material. Aguilera filed abreach of contract and unfair competition suit against Warlock and the album's producers to block the release.[67] The two parties came to a confidential settlement to release the album, where Aguilera lent out her name, likeness, and image for an unspecified amount of damages.[68]

Despite her international success, Aguilera was dissatisfied with the music and image her management had created for her, having been marketed as a bubblegum pop singer because of the genre's upward financial trend.[69] She mentioned plans for her next album to have more musical and lyrical depth.[70] Aguilera's views of Steve Kurtz's influence in matters of the her creative direction, the role of being her exclusive personal manager, and over-scheduling had in part caused her to seek legal means of terminating their management contract. In October 2000, Aguilera filed a breach of fiduciary duty lawsuit against her manager Kurtz for improper, undue and inappropriate influence over her professional activities, as well as fraud. According to legal documents, Kurtz did not protect her rights and interests. Instead, he took action that was for his own interest, at the cost of hers. She petitioned the California State Labor Commission to nullify the contract.[71][72] Aguilera revealed while recording her then upcoming album, "I was being overworked. You find out that someone you thought was a friend is stealing money behind your back, and it's heartbreaking. I put faith in the people around me, and unfortunately, it bit me in the butt."[70] After terminating Kurtz's services, Irving Azoff was hired as her new manager.

2002–05: Stripped, new image, and marriage[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Aguilera's fourth studio album, Stripped, was released on October 26, 2002. It peaked at number two on the Billboard 200, with first-week sales of 330,000 copies.[73] Unlike her previous work, the album showcased Aguilera's raunchier side. She co-wrote much of the album, as Aguilera had recently signed a global music publishing contract with BMG Music Publishing, and was influenced by many different subjects and music styles, including R&Bsoulpop rock and hip hop, a contrast to her teen pop and dance-pop influenced debut.[74] The majority of the album was produced by Scott Storch and singer-songwriter Linda Perry, who produced her more personal records. Rockwilder and singer Alicia Keys also contributed a track each. The album was generally well received by critics, although Aguilera's vocals were overlooked as she began to cultivate a more sexually provocative image,[75] having taken part in nude and semi-nude photoshoots, notably her cover for Rolling Stone,[76] featuring Aguilera wearing only boots and an electric guitar. She denied that the change was a matter of publicity, claiming that it better reflected her true personality than her previous image. She dyed her hair black, began referring to herself as "Xtina", got a tattoo of the nickname on the back of her neck, as well as several piercings.[77]

[1][2]Aguilera performing duringStripped Live... on Tour in 2003

Initially, the raunchy image had a negative effect on Aguilera in the United States, especially after the release of her controversial "Dirrty" music video.[78][79] She defended the video, stating it was about power and control, adding, "I'm also at the forefront. I'm in the power position, in complete command of everything around me."[29] While the video became popular on MTV, it disappointed on the US singles chart;[80] however, the single was a hit worldwide, reaching number one in the UK and Ireland. The second single,classically-influenced ballad "Beautiful", received critical praise, reaching number one in several countries and peaking at number two in the US.[80] The song earned Aguilera the Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. Three more singles: "Fighter", "Can't Hold Us Down" featuring Lil' Kim, and "The Voice Within", were released in the following two years, helping the album stay on the charts for the next two years. Stripped stayed on the US and UK album charts into 2004, and went on to be certified four-times platinum in the US[48] with over ten million copies sold worldwide.[46] It appeared at number ten on Billboard's year-end album chart and Aguilera was the top female artist for 2003.[81]Kelly Clarkson's debut single, "Miss Independent", was co-written by Aguilera, having been half-finished for Stripped.[82]

[3][4]Aguilera performing during Stripped Live... on Tour in 2003

Aguilera joined Justin Timberlake that June on the final leg of his international Justified tour in the United States, becoming the Justified & Stripped Tour. In August, an overhead lighting grid collapsed from the ceiling of the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey, causing major damage to the sound and video equipment below hours before a show. Few stagehands were injured, though some shows were canceled or postponed.[83] In the fourth quarter of the year, Aguilera continued to tour internationally without Timberlake on the Stripped Live... on Tour. It was one of the top-grossing tours of that year, and sold out most of its venues. Rolling Stone readers named it the best tour of the year.[84]That same year, Aguilera hosted the 2003 MTV Europe Music Awards and was a special guest performer with the Pussycat Dolls' dance troupe performing at the Roxy Theatre and The Viper Room in Los Angeles. She also appeared on a Maxim spread alongside them, her secondMaxim cover that year set record sales making it the top selling issue to date. By the end of the year, she topped the annual Hot 100 list, saying, "we had fun working with certain clothes, or the lack thereof."[85][86][87]

Aguilera's first DVD live-recording, Stripped Live in the U.K., was released in November 2004. In light of the tour's success, another U.S. tour was scheduled to begin in mid-2004 with a new theme, though it was scrapped due to vocal cord injuries Aguilera suffered shortly before the opening date.[88] In a tribute to Madonna's performance at the inaugural 2003 MTV Video Music Awards, Aguilera and singer Britney Spears kissed the singer-actress during the ceremony in August, during the opening performance of Madonna's songs "Like a Virgin" and "Hollywood".[29] Also in 2004, she hosted a Saturday Night Live episode, which included a Sex and the City skit where she portrayed Samantha Jonesrevealing to everyone she was a man the entire time.[89]

Aguilera later decided to embrace a more mature, Marilyn Monroe-like image, dying her hair flaxen blonde and cutting it short. She is one of the main proponents (along with Dita Von TeeseGwen Stefani, and Ashley Judd) in bringing back the 1920s–1940s Hollywood glamour look.[90][91] Aguilera later dyed her hair cherry blonde and recorded a jingle, "Hello", for a Mercedes-Benz ad. In late 2004, Aguilera released "Car Wash", a remake of the Rose Royce disco song as a collaboration with rapper Missy Elliott for the soundtrack to the film Shark Tale. She voiced a small singing part in the film, playing a Rastafarian jellyfish in the film's closing musical number. She was featured in Nelly's "Tilt Ya Head Back", from his album Sweat. Both singles failed commercially in the US, but did considerably better in other parts of the world. Aguilera collaborated with jazz artist Herbie Hancock on a cover of Leon Russell's "A Song for You", recorded for Hancock's album Possibilities, released in August 2005. They were later nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals. She helped open the 50th Anniversary for Disneyland performing "When You Wish upon a Star", and also collaborated with Andrea Bocellion the song "Somos Novios" for his album Amore. Aguilera began dating music marketing executive Jordan Bratman in 2002. Their engagement was announced in February 2005,[92] and they married on November 19, 2005, in a Napa Valley estate.[93]

2006–09: Back to Basics, motherhood, and hiatus[edit source | editbeta]Edit

[5][6]Aguilera performing during the Sanremo Story festival in 2006

Aguilera's fifth studio album, Back to Basics, was released on August 15, 2006. It debuted at number one in the US, the UK, and eleven other countries. It has since sold 4.5 million units worldwide,[94] with over 1.7 million sold in the US.[95] She described the double CD as "a throwback to the 20s, 30s, and 40s-style jazz, blues, and feel-good soul music, but with a modern twist."[96] It received positive reviews,[97] although many critics commented on the album's length saying, "At one disc, this would have been nothing short of masterful."[98] A review in Allmusic adds, "Back to Basics also makes clear that Stripped was a necessary artistic move for Christina: she needed to get that out of her system in order to create her own style, one that is self-consciously stylized, stylish, and sexy."[99] The critically acclaimed lead single, "Ain't No Other Man", was a substantial success, reaching number two on the World Chart, number six in the US, and number two in the UK. Producers on the album included DJ PremierKwamé, Linda Perry, and Mark Ronson. The follow-up singles did well in various regions, "Hurt" in Europe and "Candyman" in the Pacific. She co-directed both music videos, the former with Floria Sigismondiwho directed her "Fighter" video, and the latter, "Candyman", with director/photographer Matthew Rolston. "Slow Down Baby" was released as the fourth single in Australia only, while "Oh Mother" was released as the fourth single in selected European countries.

In late 2006, Aguilera collaborated with Diddy on "Tell Me", from his album Press Play. She also began the Back to Basics Tour in Europe,[100] followed by a 41-date North American tour in early 2007.[101] After this, she toured Asia and Australia, where it was supposed to end on August 3, however she canceled her dates in Melbourne and her final two in Auckland due to an illness.[102] Her extravagant arena tour included cabaret, three-ring circus and juke joint sets and 10 piece costumes designed by Roberto Cavalli.[103]She released her concert DVD Back to Basics: Live and Down Under the following year. The tour grossed nearly 50 million by the end of the year in North America and an additional 40 million worldwide in her Europe and Australia dates, grossing almost 90 million by the end of the tour.[104][105] It was the most successful US tour by a female in 2007.[106]

At the 2007 Grammy Awards, Aguilera again won the Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for "Ain't No Other Man". She made a noteworthy performance at the ceremony paying tribute to James Brown with her rendition of his song "It's a Man's Man's Man's World".[107] In January 2007, she was named the 19th richest woman in entertainment by Forbes, with a net worth of US$60 million.[108] Aguilera performed "Steppin' Out with My Baby" with Tony Bennett on his NBC special Tony Bennett: An American Classic and on Saturday Night Live. They performed at the 59th Primetime Emmy Awards where both specials received Emmys. "Steppin' Out" was nominated for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals at the 2008 Grammy Awards. Aguilera confirmed she was pregnant on November 4, 2007,[109] though Paris Hilton accidentally revealed her pregnancy several weeks prior during a party Aguilera hosted.[110] She gave birth to her son, Max Liron Bratman, in Los Angeles on January 12, 2008, and held a bris for him with Bratman, who is of Jewish descent, where the baby was circumcised in accordance with Jewish practice.[111] Aguilera was reportedly paid $1.5 million by People for her son's baby pictures—the ninth most expensive celebrity baby photos ever taken.[112]

In 2008, Aguilera appeared in the Martin Scorsese documentary Shine a Light which chronicles a two-day Rolling Stones concert in New York City's Beacon Theatre. The film features Aguilera performing "Live with Me" alongside Mick JaggerShine a Light premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival and was released worldwide on April 4, 2008. She also had a brief cameo in the comedy film Get Him to the Greek,[113]and appeared as a guest judge on the sixth season of Project Runway on Lifetime. She and designer Bob Mackie were the inspiration for the challenge in which they had to design a stage outfit for Aguilera. To commemorate Aguilera's ten years in the music industry, RCA Records released Keeps Gettin' Better: A Decade of Hits on November 11, 2008, exclusively at Target stores in the US. The greatest hits included her first three number one singles, and other songs released from her previous three albums. "Lady Marmalade" and several Spanish singles from Mi Reflejo were included in the worldwide releases. The album's only single, "Keeps Gettin' Better", was premiered at the 2008 MTV Video Music Awards, which debuted and peaked at number seven on the Billboard Hot 100, her highest debut on the chart. Following the greatest hits, Aguilera took over a year hiatus in 2009 to work on her then-upcoming album and film. She was one of Billboard's Top 20 Artists of the Decade in their year-end charts.[114]

2010–11: BionicBurlesque, divorce, and The Voice[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Aguilera's sixth studio album, Bionic, was released on June 8, 2010. The album's producers included Tricky StewartSamuel DixonPolow da DonLe TigreSwitchEster Dean, songwriters Sam EndicottSia FurlerClaude Kelly, Linda Perry and collaborations with M.I.A.SantigoldNicki Minaj, and PeachesBionic's material consisted of many mainstream and pop records along with electronic and dance music. The album's singles, "Not Myself Tonight" and "You Lost Me" peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play Charts[115] but were unsuccessful elsewhere. Bionic marked her foray into the electropopgenre,[116][117] and received mixed reviews from critics. Jon Pareles of The New York Times wrote that Aguilera's new music direction "makes her sound as peer-pressured as a pop singer can be."[118] Allison Stewart of The Washington Post described the album as being "noisy, robotic and overstuffed" adding that the disc's "greatest disappointments" is its "virtual abandonment" of Aguilera's voice.[119] She concluded that Aguilera attempts "to do it all," which was to try to "revel in her newfound domesticity, to wrest her crown from Gaga and to reestablish her sex kitten bona fides."[119] Sales of Bionic were underwhelming in the US compared to her previous releases, selling 110,000 copies in its first week and landing at No.3.[120][121] It has since sold 310,000 copies in the US.[122] Shortly after the album's release, further promotion ended and a scheduled summer tour for the album was canceled due to "inadequate rehearsal time".[123] Responding to the album's performance, Aguilera says, "I was really proud of that record. I think there was a lot of promotion issues, coming from a standpoint of how everything resulted. Nothing is ever a setback. If anything, it just motivates you for what’s next."[124]

[7][8]Aguilera's star on theHollywood Walk of Fame, which she received in 2010

In November 2010, Aguilera appeared in her first feature film, the musical Burlesque and received a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.[125] Aguilera portrayed a small town girl, Ali Rose, who finds love and success in a Los Angeles neo-burlesque club.[126] The film was written and directed by Steve Antin who wrote the part of Ali specifically with Aguilera in mind.[127] Aguilera performed eight of the musical numbers on the film's soundtrack released on November 22, 2010, and co-wrote a number of the tracks working with producers and writers including Tricky Stewart, Sia Furler, Samuel Dixon, Linda Perry, Claude Kelly, Danja, and Ron Fair. The remaining two tracks were sung by Cher, who co-starred alongside Aguilera. The soundtrack debuted in the top 20 and was certified Gold selling over 600,000 copies in the US.[128][129][130] Aguilera's co-stars also included Cam GigandetEric DaneKristen Bell and Stanley Tucci. Several critics praised Aguilera's performance. A review in Time states, "Aguilera might not be to your taste, or mine, but in terms of sheer power, she's impressive. If Ali were real, she'd have already been discovered on American Idol."[131] While Variety wrote, "Aguilera, while undeniably entertaining when her character is onstage, cannot spin the slight backstory into anything resembling a full-blooded person."[132] Though Burlesque was released to mixed reviews from critics,[133][134] the film received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Picture – Musical or Comedy and earned Aguilera, writer/producer Sia Furler and Samuel Dixon, a nomination for Best Original Song for the track "Bound to You". The soundtrack also earned Aguilera a Grammy nomination for Best Compilation SoundtrackBurlesque grossed $90 million worldwide.[135]

Aguilera collaborated with rapper T.I. on the track "Castle Walls" from his album No Mercy and appeared as herself on an episode of Entourage. Having separated on September 14,[136] Aguilera filed for divorce from Bratman on October 14, 2010, requesting joint legal and physical custody of their son.[137][138] They later reached a private settlement agreement and custody deal,[139] and the divorce was finalized on April 15, 2011.[140] Aguilera began dating musician and production assistant Matt Rutler, whom she met during the filming of Burlesque. Her appearance[141] and personal life were the subject of scrutiny;[142] with reports over out of control behavior, excessive drinking,[143][144] and a reported confrontation with her co-star Julianne Hough.[145][146] On March 1, 2011, Aguilera was arrested for public intoxication in West Hollywood as her boyfriend was arrested for driving while intoxicated.[147] She was later released on bail and no charges were filed.[148][149] Rutler's DWI charge was dismissed due to insufficient evidence, after his BAC was determined as below the legal limit.[150] During Super Bowl XLV, Aguilera performed the U.S. national anthem, "The Star-Spangled Banner", and created embarrassment when she omitted a line of the anthem and messed up the song's lyrics.[151] She later apologized saying, "I got so caught up in the moment of the song that I lost my place. I can only hope that everyone could feel my love for this country and that the true spirit of its anthem still came through."[152] The following week, Aguilera, alongside Jennifer HudsonMartina McBrideYolanda Adams, and Florence Welch opened the 2011 Grammy Awards paying tribute to Aretha Franklin.[153]

Aguilera signed to be a judge on The Voice, which debuted on NBC in April 2011. Aguilera serves as a judge and coach, alongside fellow musicians Adam LevineBlake Shelton and Cee Lo Green, with Carson Daly as the show's host. The show's first episode was well-received, and delivered the strongest ratings for a series premiere on a major network since Undercover Boss debuted after the Super Bowl in February 2010.[154][155] The show's first season was a ratings success for NBC following its debut.[156][157] Aguilera performed "Moves like Jagger" on The Voice – the single with Maroon 5 on which she is featured, from their album Hands All Over. The song was an instant hit reaching number two in the UK, and earned Aguilera her fifth number one single on the Billboard Hot 100, a decade after her last number one single, "Lady Marmalade".[158] It also made Aguilera the second female artist to achieve number one hits in the 1990s, 2000s and 2010s.[citation needed] The song sold over 8 million copies worldwide, establishing itself among the best-selling singles of all time.[159][160] "Moves like Jagger" marks the first time two former Best New Artist Grammy Award winners have collaborated on a Hot 100 hit.[52] It was nominated for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance at the 2012 Grammy Awards.

2012–present: Lotus[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Aguilera's seventh studio album, Lotus, was released on November 13, 2012. Producers on the album included Alex da KidMax MartinLucas SeconSteve Robson and Shellback, among others and incorporated elements of electropop that Aguilera experimented with on Bionic.[116][117] The album received mixed reviews from critics. MTV News commented that Lotus "was supposed to signify her return to prominence, a high-powered collection of songs penned by the biggest hitmakers in the business", adding, "it wasn't a triumphant comeback album".[161] The New York Times called the album's direction its "biggest crime, more than its musical unadventurousness or its emphasis on bland self-help lyrics or its reluctance to lean on Ms. Aguilera’s voice, the thing that makes her special."[162] The album debuted at number seven on theBillboard 200 selling just under on 73,000 copies making it her lowest first-week sales in the US[161] and was less successful worldwide.[163] Lotus has since sold 182,000 copies in the US and less worldwide making it her lowest selling album to date.[164] The lead single, "Your Body", debuted and peaked at number 34 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was a moderate hit worldwide. "Just a Fool", a country pop duet with Blake Shelton, was released as the second single and was less successful due to lack of promotion.

At the 2012 ALMA Awards, Aguilera was honored with a Special Achievement Award for her career and charity work. She also recorded her first Spanish-language track in over a decade titled "Casa de Mi Padre", which was released as the title song for the soundtrack and film of the same name.[165] Aguilera collaborated with Cee Lo Green on the classic Christmas song "Baby, It's Cold Outside" from his album Cee Lo's Magic Moment, and with rapper Pitbull on the track "Feel This Moment" from his album Global Warming. "Feel This Moment" reached the top ten in several countries and peaked at number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming Aguilera's tenth top ten in the US. Aguilera collaborated with Mexican singer Alejandro Fernández on a cover of the song "Hoy Tengo Ganas de Ti", released as main theme song for the soap operaLa tempestad. Upon the conclusion of the third season of The Voice, Aguilera and Green looked to promote their albums, and were replaced by Shakira and Usher during the fourth season. Aguilera and Green both returned for the fifth season.[166]

Artistry[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Vocal ability[edit source | editbeta]Edit

[9][10]Aguilera performing during her Back to Basics Tour in 2006

Aguilera, a soprano,[167][168] has been referred to as the "Voice of her Generation", a blue-eyed soul singer and one of the greatest singers of all time.[169][170] She possesses afour octave vocal range[171] and a whistle register.[172] Aguilera also topped Cove's list of the 100 Best Pop Vocalists with a score of 50/50,[173][174] and came fifth in MTV's 22 Greatest Voices in Music.[175] Her rendition of "It's A Man's Man's Man's World" at the 2007 Grammy Awards ranked third in the Grammy's Greatest Moments List behind Celine Dion's performance of "My Heart Will Go On" and Green Day's performance of "American Idiot". In an interview, Dion described Aguilera as "probably the best vocalist in the world."[176] Dion wrote an article on Aguilera for Time magazine's 2013 list of their 100 Most Influential People in World, saying, "The first time I heard Christina sing, I was totally blown away. Her voice has got so much power, yet so much sensitivity and technically, I think, she’s flawless."[177] Aguilera's distinct style of singing has been praised by critics and noted as influential.[178] Sasha Frere-Jones of The New Yorker writes, "Aguilera doesn't need to reincarnate Sarah Vaughan to be a serious singer. She already is one, in the tradition of nineteen-nineties pop and R&B, skillfully deploying melisma for razzle-dazzle, riding the bouncy syncopation of samples with the coordination of a rapper, and timing the phrases to imply her athletic dance moves".[179] The People's Choice Awards honored Aguilera with the People's Voice award, recognizing her vocals and "ability to reach millions of people across a number of genres including pop, soul and R&B".[180] Rolling Stone ranked Aguilera at 58 as their 100 Greatest Singers of All Time, the youngest singer on the list.[178]

Since her debut in 1999, Aguilera has been compared to Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston.[181] David Browne of The New York Times writes, "Aguilera has been one of the foremost practitioners of the overpowering, Category 5 vocal style known as melisma. Ms. Carey, Ms. Houston and Ms. Aguilera, to name its three main champions, are most associated with the period from the late ’80s through the late ’90s."[182] A review in the Los Angeles Times compared Aguilera's vocal style to Barbra StreisandGladys Knight, and Aretha Franklin adding, "Aguilera's Streisand-esque tendencies are a good thing; they're helping her figure out how to become the "great singer" she's been dubbed since she released her first single, the wise-beyond-its-years "Genie in a Bottle", at 18."[183] Vocal coach Cari Cole, called Aguilera the "Queen of riffing", adding that her vocals are rooted in soul music.[184] Although praised for her vocals, Aguilera has been labeled for oversinging in her songs and concerts.[185] The Huffington Post named Aguilera a main proponent for "oversouling", described as the "gratuitous and confected melisma." The term was coined by producer Jerry Wexler who said, "I have found that flagrantly artificial attempts at melisma are either a substitute for real fire and passion or a cover-up for not knowing the melody."[186] The majority of Aguilera's songs are characterized by her loud vocals, though she has used breathy and soft vocals.[187] Aguilera co-wrote "Sing For Me" from her album Lotus, a response to critics who labeled her for oversinging. In the song, Aguilera explains why she sings the way she does, saying "I don’t even care what the world thinks about how I sound."[188]Aguilera admits to oversinging in her early years adding, "Before, to make up for the kind of music I didn't want to be doing, I would over-riff, to prove that I have talent. It was too much".[189] Longtime producer and writer, Linda Perry, commented on working on the track "Beautiful", saying, "I tried to keep it straight. I told her to get rid of the finger waves. Every time she'd start going into "hoo-ha", I'd stop the tape. I'm like, 'You're doing it again.'" Perry ended up using the first take saying, "She had a hard time accepting that as the final track. It's not a perfect vocal – it's very raw. She knows her voice really well, and she knows what's going on. She can hear things that nobody else would catch."[190]

Themes and musical style[edit source | editbeta]Edit

The constant theme in Aguilera's music and lyrics is love, although she has written on other subjects including spirituality, motherhood, and grief. Aguilera has also written about her childhood in two of her records which dealt with domestic abuse. In an interview, Aguilera admitted she feels responsible to reveal her most vulnerable feelings and to share the darker sides of her life, adding that "people that can relate might not feel as alone in the circumstance."[191] Originally marketed as a teen pop singer on late 1990s, Aguilera received commercial success but was displeased with her debut album's musical content.[70] She wrote the hook for "Genie in a Bottle", but did not receive a writing credit,[10] and had no input during the album's production. Her fourth single, "Come On Over Baby (All I Want Is You)", was re-recorded with elements of R&B and hip-hop from its original dance pop version. Aguilera was given credit writing the song's sexually suggestive "rap".[192] Wanting to showcase her vocals, Aguilera went on a small venue tour performingacoustic sets for music critics and industry executives across the country. She turned down offers to tour with Backstreet Boys and 'N Sync in order to appear at 1999's Lilith Fair.[40] After leaving her management, Aguilera took creative control of her music and lyrical content; departing into a broad range of musical genres for her follow-up album Stripped such as soul, pop rock, R&B, and hip-hop. After recording Stripped, Aguilera said, "You get signed to a label, people decide what you're going to be, but you're so excited to be doing it, period. Then you realize, 'Man, I don't know if this is what I really want.' Now I'm getting to do my own material and let people know that there's an artist behind the singer".[189] A review in Billboard called the album a "creative breakthrough",[74] and was noted as helping distance Aguilera from her then pop contemporaries.[193] Jancee Dunn of Rolling Stone writes, "With its lack of gimmickry and a surplus of sweet Seventies soul, Stripped is almost an album for grown-ups."[194] Aguilera co-wrote the majority of the songs on the album and released while the teen pop genre was still prominent on the charts. Music industry executive Clive Davis has praised Aguilera saying, "She has turned into one of today's most cutting-edge artists. She brings a whole fresh look to Top 40 and expands the horizon of what a pop artist can do. Everything from the video to the performance is coming from her."[195]

[11][12]Marilyn Monroe performing "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" in the filmGentlemen Prefer Blondes. Aguilera has referenced Monroe in her music, image and performed the song in Burlesque[196]

Aguilera has often said that she prefers working with producers that are not in popular demand, saying "I don't necessarily go to the main people that are the No.1 chart-toppers in music."[197] Her 2006 release, Back to Basics included producer DJ PremierThe New York Times exclaims, "Her decision to work with the low-key DJ Premier was also a decision to snub some of the big-name producers on whom pop stars often rely."[198] The album included live instrumentation and samples of past jazz and soul records. Some tracks on the album included non-traditional forms of pop music such as swing jazz and big band, drawing comparisons to Madonna's I'm Breathlessand the musical film Cabaret.[199] Her first feature film, Burlesque, influenced by Cabaret, featured several established songs that were updated and worked into dance numbers, a style similar to 2001's Moulin Rouge!. The film included renditions of "A Guy What Takes His Time" introduced by Mae West in 1933 and featured Marilyn Monroe's performance of "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" from the film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. Aguilera was the soundtrack's executive producer working with well-known producers Tricky Stewart and Danja. Critics praised the soundtrack and compared the film's music to her previous album Back to Basics.[200] Additionally, Aguilera's recent albums Bionic and Lotus, featured mainstream producers including Shellback and Max Martin. On working with Martin, Aguilera added, "He's known about me but we haven't crossed paths. Those records were the kind I wanted to stray apart from. If you look at what I did in the past (after my debut), I always try to do things that will challenge me and challenge the listener, too. Could this have worked 10 years ago? I'm not sure. It's taken us a decade in the same business for us to come together, respect each other's work ethic and how we like to be heard and making a marriage out of it."[193] Both albums however received mixed reviews, criticizing Aguilera for the album's content[161] and lack of vocals which were viewed as secondary to the album's predominantly electropop production.[119] MTV writes, "Aguilera is no longer a pop star; she's a niche artist. As far as niche artists go, Aguilera's got it pretty good. But I really think that it's time for her to stop trying to compete with her contemporaries and embrace the uniqueness of her situation."[161] A review in The Tampa Bay Times adds, "Aguilera is too talented, and hopefully too smart, to continue down this wasteful path. And yet, it's troubling that she wants to compete with the unworthy Ke$has of the world. Drop the grudges and the desperate party cuts, Christina, and let's get back to basics."[201]

Female empowerment is a constant theme in Aguilera's music. The fourth single from Stripped, "Can't Hold Us Down", was written as a female anthem referencing the double standards placed upon women. The Guardian states that the track, "rewrites feminism to a hip-hop beat."[202] Coincidentally, the music video was censored by MTV and other networks for being sexually suggestive. Aguilera responded saying, "It's funny. There are all those hip-hop videos where women are objectified, but when a woman does it, it's a shock."[203] Aguilera has used themes of sexuality in her music, in which she says, "I feel sexuality to be very empowering. Men love to believe that they own our sexuality, but men don't. If I want to be sexual, it's for my own appreciation and enjoyment. That's why I like to talk about the fact that sometimes I am attracted to women. I appreciate their femininity and beauty."[204] Though Aguilera doesn't consider her music to be focused on feminism adding that she's fighting for, "women's rights in the sense that we shouldn't be ashamed of ourselves or our bodies."[204] The song "I Hate Boys", released from Bionic, is considered a male-bashing anthem.[205] The Guardian describes Bionic as a "post-feminist party album",[206] adding, "she incites more of a sisterly spirit of collaboration, including riot grrrl feminists Le Tigre. Aguilera's not shy of the odd feministic declaration herself."[207] She has often mixed R&B and pop resulting in her own musical style. New York Post writer Dan Aquilante, credits Aguilera's signature sound adding that it's a, "crisp and unique R&B styling."[208] Aguilera co-wrote "Miss Independent" for Stripped, and was scrapped and later recorded by Kelly Clarkson as the lead single for her debut album. Clarkson noted Aguilera's style in the song adding, "You can hear a lot of her influence, especially the hook. And once you hear the song, it's constantly in your head."[82] Ann Powers of the Los Angeles Times writes, "More than any other mainstream pop artist of her generation, Aguilera cares about her cultural progenitors, not only music genres such as blues and soul, but also visual motifs. It's one successful trick she's picked up from Madonna: Instead of merely trading in moves now recognized as hot or cute, she presents her own performance as a sex symbol within hallowed traditions of female spectacle."[209]

Influences[edit source | editbeta]Edit

[13] [14]
Aguilera has named Etta James (left) and Whitney Houston (right) her biggest influences[210]

Aguilera's major influence and idol is blues singer Etta James, whose classic song "At Last" has been covered by Aguilera throughout her career. Aguilera says, "Etta is my all-time favorite singer. I've said it for the last seven years – since I had my first debut record out – in every interview. I mean, all of Etta's old songs, countless songs I could name, I grew up listening to."[211] Following James' death in 2012, Aguilera was asked to perform "At Last" at her funeral.[212] Prior to performing Aguilera stated, "There's a line in this song that says 'I found a dream that I could speak to.' And for me that dream, all my life, has been Etta James."[213] The two met in 2006 during an article and interview with InStyle, in which James said to Aguilera, "It's like you were here many years ago. You don't look exactly like them, but there's something about you that's like Dinah WashingtonBillie Holiday, those kinds of chicks. I've never seen a girl sing as tough as you sing. It's like you're an old soul."[211] The majority of her album, Back to Basics, pays tribute to James and other pop standard singers who many originated from the 1950s. In her early years she listened to vintage jazz, blues, and soul music.[214] The album includes the song, "Slow Down Baby", which sampled a Gladys Knight & the Pipssong. A review in The Guardian declared, "Practically everything recorded before Aguilera was born blurs into one amorphous genre, which she categorises, somewhat inadequately, as 'fun music'".[215]

Aguilera has also mentioned Whitney Houston as another major influence, having performed many of her songs in her early years during talent shows[12] and adopting her vocal style. Critics have noted Houston's influence on Aguilera comparing her tone and style of singing to Houston's.[181] Aguilera paid tribute to Houston performing "Run to You" during the 2001 BET Awards. The track was sung by Aguilera and submitted to RCA Records in 1998, which eventually helped in earning her recording contract.[216] Aguilera said early in her career that Mariah Carey was another influence.[217] According to author Pier Dominguez, Aguilera stated that it was Carey and her debut single, "Vision of Love", who had the biggest influence on her vocal style.[218] Aguilera has also named Madonna and Janet Jackson as two of her biggest influences "for being re-inventive and being brave as strong females, to explore whatever, even if they do get bad press. It's just like they were fearless."[210] Her other musical influences include Aretha Franklin,[219] Donna Summer,[220] and Nina Simone.[221]

Aguilera cites the musical The Sound of Music and its lead actress, Julie Andrews as her first inspiration for singing and performing.[222] At the age of six, the film helped Aguilera cope with her violent childhood adding, "Bad things happened in my home; there was violence. The Sound of Music looked like a form of release. I would open my bedroom window to sing out like Maria. In my own way, I’d be in those hills."[223]Aguilera performed the film's song, "Climb Ev'ry Mountain", during her concert special, My Reflection. She mentioned the "Golden age of Hollywood" as another inspiration in which she says, "I'm referencingMarlene DietrichMarilyn MonroeCarole LombardGreta GarboVeronica Lake".[196] Her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is located near that of Julie Andrews and is next to Greta Garbo's.[224] In her music video for "Ain't No Other Man" she plays her alter ego, "Baby Jane" in reference to the film Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?.[225] The film's stars included actresses Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. The third single from Back to Basics, "Candyman" was inspired by the 1941 song, "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" by The Andrews Sisters which was played during World War II. She was also inspired by pin-up girls and several paintings by Alberto Vargas.[226] Aguilera has expressed interest in cultural icons NicoBlondie and artists Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol.[227] She has often worked with photographer and close friend, David LaChapelle who once worked with Warhol. Chapelle has shot many of Aguilera's music videos, magazine shoots and advertisements. She is also a fan of graffiti artists Banksy and D*Face. In 2006, she purchased three of Banksy's works during a private art exhibition; one of them included a pornographic picture of Queen Victoria in a lesbian pose with a prostitute.[228] She has mentioned in several interviews that she is a fan of actress Angelina Jolie,[229] Lucille Ball;[230] and her Burlesque co-star, Cher.[124] Fashion has also been a part of Aguilera's music career and image which she has used as a form of expression during performances and music videos. In 2003, she became the muse and inspiration for Donatella Versace's 2003 fall line. Versace also designed pieces for her tour the following year. Aguilera is also a fan of Roberto Cavalli, John GallianoMarc Jacobs and Alexander McQueen, whose designs she has worn throughout her career.[231][232]

Legacy[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Main article: List of awards and nominations received by Christina Aguilera[15][16]Aguilera performing during her Back to Basics Tour

Aguilera has been given several pop culture titles, including, "Queen of Reinvention", "Princess of Pop" and the "Voice of her Generation" becoming an international pop culture icon following her debut.[233][234][235] She has been named one of the best vocalists in the world and one of the greatest singers of all time. Various publications have ranked her as the youngest and greatest singer over the past decade.[173][177][178][235] She was named the Best Latino Singer of All Time by Latina magazine.[236] Aguilera has sold over 50 million albums worldwide,[237] and her singles "Genie in a Bottle", "Lady Marmalade" and "Moves Like Jagger" are found among the best-selling singles of all time worldwide. "Genie in a Bottle" was listed at number 38 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of the 90s[238] and was the top selling debut single of 1999.[36] Allmusic critic, Ed Hogan writes, "Throughout the summer of 1999, the funky pop hit topped the pop charts for weeks, racking up multi-platinum sales. What makes the song's initial success even more astounding is the fact that it topped the charts weeks before an accompanying music video was made. That such unusual success came about through what could be called a casual act makes the song's beginning even more awe-inspiring."[239] "Beautiful" was listed at number 52 on Rolling Stone's top 100 songs of the 2000s and number 18 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of '00s list.[240][241] "Lady Marmalade" was listed at number 47 on the same ranking.[242] In 2011, Aguilera became the second female to achieve a number-one single in the 1990s,2000s, and 2010s, the fourth female artist to top the Hot 100 in three consecutive decades, and eighth overall.[citation needed] Her debut album ranks fifth for female albums with most number-ones on the US Billboard Hot 100. Aguilera was regarded as a teen idol[243] and became one of the most successful teenage singers of the late 1990s and early 2000s. She continued her success becoming one of the top selling artists of the decade and the top selling female artist of 2000 and 2003.[50][81] She was ranked the 20th Artist of the 2000–09 decade by Billboard[244] and became the second top selling single artist of the 2000s, behind Madonna.[245] Additionally, she appears on the Billboard Hot 100 50th Anniversary Charts top Latin songs with four singles. Her only Latin album, Mi Reflejo, is one of the best selling Latin albums of all time in the United States[46] and worldwide.[48][50]The album topped the Latin Charts for 20 weeks holding the record for longest stay at number one for a debut album by a female artist. She remains the first and only artist in history to have number one debuts with an English and Spanish album.[45]

[17][18]Wax figure of Aguilera atMadame Tussauds museum in London

Aguilera's television and music video impact has also been acknowledged in pop culture. In a 2012 article by The New York Times, critic Jon Caramanica says, "Aguilera will be remembered for her glamour, her scandalous take on femme-pop and her Brobdingnagian voice. But she will also be remembered as the person who almost single-handedly reshaped music-competition reality programming".[246] The Michigan Daily considers Aguilera one of the most successful artists of all time in her late teens and early twenties, adding, "Does Aguilera deserve to be known as one of the greatest artists to ever hit the pop industry? The answer is yes, absolutely. Her self-titled debut, had more chart-topping, iconic singles than almost any other artist to date. Charts aren’t everything though. The thing that makes Aguilera a package deal is her combination of skills, success and iconic work. By comparison, Britney Spears was unable to achieve the ranks that Aguilera’s singles received. Aguilera managed to do both by generating songs that topped charts and became the most memorable tunes of a generation. Her voice and musical content had qualities exceeding the maturity of an average 19-year-old. Her demographic expanded outside children and young adults and her songs became timeless to her younger fans as they aged."[233] Kelefa Sanneh of The New York Times writes that Aguilera and her music videos, "Helped usher in the current era of female pop stars"[247] adding, "She seems intent on establishing herself as a modern anomaly, a pop singer who really — really sings. With every statement of purpose and every expression of pique, with every ostentatious ad-lib and show-stopping high note. She is fighting for the powerless, the voiceless, the prideless; all the downtrodden drudges who are tired of being told what to do. Perhaps you’re familiar with these pitiable creatures. They used to be known as pop stars."[198]Aguilera was ranked number eight in VH1's 100 Greatest Women in Music and was one of Time's 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2013.[248][249][177]

Amongst Aguilera's music videos, "Dirrty" has been noted as one of the most influential videos in pop culture,[247] which MTV, VH1, MSNFHM and several publications voted and named as the sexiest female music video of all time.[250][251] MTV named "Dirrty" the sexiest video ever made and was listed second on VH1's 25 Most Scandalously Sexy Music Videos of All Time.[250] She has won two Video Music Awards including Video of the Year and has been nominated eighteen times including Best Director making her one of the few artists to ever be nominated for this award. Aguilera was listed at number 14 on VH1's "50 Greatest Women of the Video Era".[252] Various publications including The New Yorker,The New York TimesThe Los Angeles Times, and Maxim have regarded Aguilera as a sex symbol.[179][209][253][254] VH1 listed her at number 19 on its 100 Sexiest Artists list.[255] Consistently, she is ranked on the Maxim and FHM Hot 100 list, in 2003 was voted as the Sexiest Woman of the Year by Maxim, and her second cover became, and remains, the biggest-selling issue to date.[87][254] Aguilera was featured several times in People and People en Español lists of Most Beautiful People in the World.[256][257] Aguilera has also been regarded as a gay and fashion icon.[91][258][259][260] She was the first honoree on The Abbey's Gay Walk of Fame for her contributions to gay culture.[260] The music video for "Beautiful" earned Aguilera a GLAAD Media Award for its positive portrayal of the LGBT Community. The UK LGBT rightscharity Stonewall named "Beautiful" the most empowering song of the decade.[261] Many designers have been influenced by Aguilera including Donatella Versace[258] and Marc Jacobs who featured Aguilera in his "Women We Love" campaign.[262] Aguilera's costume from the film Burlesque, is featured in the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising's Art of Motion Picture Costume Design exhibition.[263]

Aguilera has won four Grammy Awards, amongst seventeen nominations. At the age of 19, she received her first, the Grammy Award for Best New Artist, making her the second youngest recipient behind LeAnn Rimes and fourth overall. Aguilera was also the youngest artist to win her first and only Latin Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Album. Her performance at the 2007 Grammy Awards ceremony was named the 3rd Greatest Grammy Moment and is featured in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.[264] During the opening of the 2003 MTV Video Music Awards Aguilera joined Madonna, Britney Spears, and Missy Elliott. MTV listed the performance as the number-one opening moment in the history of the ceremonies.[265] Aguilera was honored with a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and is included on the "Women Who Rock" exhibition by the National Museum of Women in the Arts.[266] A wax figure of Aguilera can be found at Madame Tussauds wax museum in London and New York City.[267] Aguilera's songs have been covered and performed on the television programs Glee and Smash.[268][269][270] Various contestants and winners from The VoiceThe X Factor and American Idol have been influenced by Aguilera including Cassadee Pope,[271] Chris Mann,[272] Leona Lewis,[273] Alexandra Burke,[274] Kelly Clarkson,[275] Jordin Sparks,[276] Candice Glover,[277] Jennifer Hudson,[278] Jessica Sanchez,[279] Adam Lambert[280] and Katharine McPhee.[281] Her work has influenced many artists including Demi Lovato,[282] JoJo,[283] Miley Cyrus,[284] Lady Gaga,[285] Inna,[286] Ariana Grande,[287] Ashley Tisdale,[288] Jessie James,[289] Charice,[290] former girl groups Danity Kane,[178] The Pussycat Dolls,[247] American figure skater Johnny Weir,[291] American swimmer Dana Vollmer[292] and more. Aguilera has been praised by artists Celine Dion,[177] Etta James,[211] Whitney Houston,[216] Aretha Franklin,[293] Cher,[294] Justin Timberlake,[295] Adele,[296] Patti Smith,[178] Patti LaBelle,[297] Tony Bennett,[298] and The Rolling Stones and its frontman Mick Jagger.[299]

Other ventures[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Philanthropy[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Aguilera has been involved with numerous charities throughout her career. In 2001, she signed a letter from PETA to the South Korean government asking that the country stop its alleged killing of dogs for food.[300] During her Back to Basics Tour in 2007, Aguilera wore a stole designed by Roberto Cavalli, unaware that it was made of fur. After receiving a video about the treatment of foxes from PETA vice presidentDan Mathews, she replaced the stole with synthetic fur for the remainder of the tour, adding "I only ever wear fake fur".[301] In 2010, Aguilera auctioned tickets for her planned tour for Christie's A Bid to Save the Earth; proceeds benefited the nonprofit environmental groups Conservation InternationalOceanaNatural Resources Defense Council, and The Central Park Conservancy.[302] Aguilera also supports Defenders of Wildlife, Missing Kids, National Alliance of Breast Cancer Organizations,[303] Women's Cancer Research Fund,[304] and Cedars-Sinai Women's Cancer Research Institute.[305] She has also worked alongside nonprofit organization Do Something saying, "Every individual has the power to inspire young people across the country."[306] In 2010, Aguilera was nominated for a VH1 Do Something Award for her work with the organization and her efforts in the response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake.[307] Aguilera is still a major contributor in her hometown of Pittsburgh contributing regularly to the Women's Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh. According to her official website, she toured the center and donated $200,000 to the shelter. She also has auctioned off front row seats and back stage passes for the Pittsburgh-based charity.[308]She has continued her donations and visits to the shelter, and plans to open an additional one.[309] She also supports the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Refuge UK.[303] Since then she has worked with Lifetime Television's 'End violence against women' campaign. Her work there included a public service announcement which aired on the network and during her Back to Basics Tour.[310][311]

[19][20]Aguilera on a promotional poster forWorld Hunger Relief

Regarded as a gay icon, Aguilera was honored at the GLAAD Awards for using gay and transgender images in her music video for "Beautiful". When accepting the award Aguilera said, "My video captures the reality that gay and transgender people are beautiful, even though prejudice and discrimination against them still exists."[312]In 2005, she appeared on a compilation album, Love Rocks, proceeds benefit the Human Rights Campaign, an organization dedicated to promoting equal rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people. In 2008, she spoke out against California's California Proposition 8 which eliminates same-sex marriage in California saying, "Why you would put so much money behind something [aimed at] stopping people from loving each other and bonding together? I just don't understand it. It's hard for me to grasp. But I would've been out there with my rally sign as well."[313] In 2011, Aguilera was honored at The Abbey, a gay club in West Hollywood, for her contributions to the gay community as the first honoree on their Gay Walk of Fame joining Elizabeth Taylor in being immortalized forever.[314] Aguilera contributes in the fight against AIDS, by participating in AIDS Project Los Angeles' Artists Against AIDS "What's Going On?" cover project. In 2004, Aguilera became the new face for cosmetic company M•A•C and spokesperson for M•A•C AIDS Fund. Aguilera appeared in advertisements of the M•A•C's Viva Glam V lipstick and lipgloss, and was featured on Vanity Fair in recognition of her campaign work. In addition, Aguilera contributed to YouthAIDS by posing for a joint YouthAIDS and Aldo Shoes campaign for "Empowerment Tags" in Canada, the U.S. and the UK. She was featured with one of three ubiquitous slogans, "Speak No Evil?" and stated, "HIV is something that people don’t want to talk about, hear about, or face."[315][316] Singer Elton John featured Aguilera in his charity book titled 4 Inches benefiting the Elton John AIDS Foundation.[317] John also picked Aguilera, for his annual "Fashion Rocks" charity concert which accompanies music and fashion to benefit the fight against AIDS/HIV.[318]

[21][22]Hillary Clinton (center) and David Novak(right) presented Aguilera (left) with the George McGovern Leadership Award in October 2012 for her outstanding contributions to the United Nations World Hunger Relief effort[319][320]

In the run-up to the 2004 United States presidential election, Aguilera was featured on billboards for the "Only You Can Silence Yourself" online voter registration drive run by the nonpartisan, non-profit campaign "Declare Yourself". In these political advertisements, shot by David LaChapelle, Aguilera was shown with her mouth sewn shut to symbolize the effects of not voting. She appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show to discuss the importance of voting. In late 2007, Aguilera became the spokesperson for "Rock the Vote" where she urged young people to vote in the 2008 presidential election.[321] In partnership with "Rock the Vote", she appeared in a public service announcement which aired in mid-2008. The advert showed Aguilera with her son, Max Bratman, wrapped in an American flag, while singing "America the Beautiful". In November 2005, all of her wedding gifts were submitted to various charities around the nation in support of Hurricane Katrinavictims.[322] That year she also performed at "Unite of the Stars" concert in aid of Unite Against Hunger in Johannesburg, South Africa and at the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund at the Coca-Cola Dome.[323] In March 2007, Aguilera took part in a charity album (remaking Lennon's "Mother"), proceeds benefit Amnesty International's efforts to end genocide in Darfur. The album, Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur, was released June 12, 2007, and featured various artists.[324] In 2008, she headlined London's Africa Rising charity concert at the Royal Albert Hall, which raises awareness for finding substantial issues facing the continent.[325] Later that year she appeared on the Turkish version of Deal or No DealVar mısın? Yok musun?, where proceeds were donated to a charity program for orphans.[326]

In 2009, Aguilera became the global spokesperson for World Hunger Relief appearing in advertisements, online campaigns and a public service announcement.[327] Aguilera and her then-husband traveled to Guatemala with the World Food Programme to bring awareness to issues such as the highmalnutrition rate in that country. She met with families of the villages and some of the beneficiaries of WFP's nutrition programs. Aguilera adds, "The people of WFP do such a great job helping hungry children and mothers. I'm thankful for the opportunity to be part of such a wonderful project."[328] Since becoming a global spokeswoman Aguilera has helped raise over $22 million which helped provide over 90 million meals.[329] She was honored at Variety's annual "Power of Women" luncheon in late 2009 alongside other women in entertainment for her contribution to philanthropic and charitable causes.[330] In response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake, Aguilera donated a signed Chrysler 300 which was auctioned for relief efforts.[331] She was one of the many artists who appeared on the Hope for Haiti telethon on January 22, 2010, donations directly benefited Oxfam AmericaPartners In HealthRed Cross and UNICEF. She later appeared on a second public service announcement alongside former boxer Muhammad Ali to raise funds for the World Food Programme's efforts to bring food to survivors of the earthquake.[332] Later that year Aguilera made her first visit to Haiti as an ambassador against hunger where she visited two schools in the town of Léogâne. During her time there she assisted in the ongoing efforts to help the badly damaged town where she served meals and highlighted reconstruction efforts in the country.[333] That year, Aguilera was appointed UN ambassador for the WFP.[142] At the 2012 ALMA Awards, Aguilera was awarded the Special Achievement Award for her career and humanitarian efforts.[334] That year, Hillary Clinton also awarded Aguilera the George McGovern Leadership Award, making her the first singer to receive the award.[335] In 2012, after Hurricane Sandyripped through New Jersey, New York and other parts of the Northeast, Aguilera performed "Beautiful" to open the Hurricane Sandy: Coming Together benefit telethon. She introduced the song by saying that she had been born in the devastated borough of Staten Island; all proceeds went to the American Red Cross.[336] In 2013, Aguilera visited Rwanda where she toured several Congolese refugee camps alongside theUnited Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. She plans to launch several charity projects to help the cause.[337][338]

Product and endorsements[edit source | editbeta]Edit

In 2000, Aguilera was the face for make-up line Fetish, where she worked in choosing colors and packaging for the line; she ended her contract the following year.[339] Throughout her career, Aguilera has endorsed several brands, including SkechersMercedes-BenzVerizon WirelessVersace,[258] and soft drink giants Coca-Cola and Pepsi in 2001 and 2006, respectively.[340] In 2004, Aguilera earned £200,000 (about $300,000) for opening the summer sale at London's Harrods store.[341] In 2005, she was reportedly paid $3.6 million[342] to sing a three song set for Russian billionaire Andrey Melnichenko's wedding. Aguilera signed a contract with European cell phone operator Orange to promote the new Sony Ericsson Walkman phone during the 2006 World Cup. In 2010, Aguilera was paid $1 million by investor Charles Brandes to perform at a private party.[343] In 2011, she was paid €2.4 million (around $3.2 million) by a Spanish multi-millionaire for a private four-song concert.[344] In 2008, jewelry designer Stephen Webster and close friend of Aguilera released "Shattered", a collection of sterling silver pieces, through Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman. Aguilera, who inspired the collection, was featured as a Hitchcockheroine.[345][346] They reprised their work together for Webster's 2009 spring line.[347] In 2011, Aguilera attended São Paulo Fashion Week to premiere her new line of clothing for Brazilian department store C&A, which launched in April.[348]

Aguilera released two fragrances throughout Europe; the first one, Xpose, was released in late 2004 and sold relatively well.[349][350] Through Procter & Gamble, Aguilera released her signature fragrance, Simply Christina, in 2007.[351] In Christmas 2007, the fragrance became the number one perfume in the UK,[352] and later in 2009 it became the 4th best selling perfume in the UK,[353] and Germany where it topped sales for the year.[354] The perfume won as the people's choice for favorite celebrity fragrance at the annual UK Fifi Awards 2008.[355] She released her third fragrance, Inspire, accompanied with a body care collection, on September 1, 2008.[356] The perfume hit shelves in the US, Canada, Latin America, Asia and Northern and Eastern Europe. It was Aguilera's first fragrance released outside of Europe.[357] Her worldwide ad campaign included a television ad shot by David LaChapelle and was released in the US through Macy's department stores. The release coincided with Macy's 150th anniversary which featured Aguilera in commemorative photos.[358] She released her fourth fragrance By Night in October,[359] which became the third best selling fragrance in the UK in 2009.[353] Both “By Day“ and “By Night“ were nominated for Best Perfume of the Year at the FIFI Awards 2011.[360] The range was further augmented by Royal Desire in 2010,[361] Secret Potion in 2011 and Red Sin in 2012.[362] Since 2007, Aguilera's perfumes have earned several awards worldwide making her the number one awarded celebrity brand.[363]

Discography[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Filmography[edit source | editbeta]Edit

Year Title Role Notes
2004 Shark Tale Herself (voice/animated) Cameo appearance[364]
2008 Shine a Light Herself Documentary
2010 Get Him to the Greek Herself Cameo appearance
Burlesque Alice Marilyn "Ali" Rose Nominated—Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song

Nominated—ALMA Award for Favorite Film Leading Actress – Comedy or Musical Nominated—Grammy Award for Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media Also executive music producer

2012 Casa de Mi Padre Herself Cameo appearance[365]
1993—95 The Mickey Mouse Club Herself

Various Roles

Season 6–7
1999 Beverly Hills, 90210 Herself "Let's Eat Cake" (Season 10, Episode 2)
2000 Al salir de clase Herself "El día que no existe" (Season 5, Episode 42)

"Augurios" (Season 8, Episode 72)

2000—06 Saturday Night Live Herself

Various Roles Host Musical Guest

"Christopher Walken/Christina Aguilera" (Season 25, Episode 16)

"Salma Hayek/Christina Aguilera" (Season 28, Episode 15) "Christina Aguilera/Maroon 5" (Season 29, Episode 13) "Alec Baldwin/Christina Aguilera" (Season 32, Episode 5)

2003 Player$ Herself "Hulk" (Season 2, Episode 10)
Punk'd Herself "Ryan Pinkston – VH1 Big in 2002 Awards" (Season 1, Episode 1)
2009 Project Runway Herself / Guest Judge "Sequins, Feathers and Fur, Oh My!" (Season 6, Episode 9)
2010 Conan Herself "A Prayer for Dick Butkus" (Season 1, Episode 9)
Entourage Herself "Lose Yourself" (Season 7, Episode 10)
2011—12; 2013 The Voice Herself (Coach and Judge) Seasons 1—3; 5

Won—ALMA Award for Favorite TV Reality, Variety, or Comedy Personality or Act(2012) Nominated—ALMA Award for Favorite TV Reality, Variety, or Comedy Personality or Act (2011) Nominated—Teen Choice Award for Choice TV: Female Personality(2011, 2012)

Concert tours[edit source | editbeta]Edit

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