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Famous Like Me > Singer > M > Stephanie Mills

Profile of Stephanie Mills on Famous Like Me

Name: Stephanie Mills  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 22nd March 1957
Place of Birth: Harlem, New York
Profession: Singer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia
Stephanie Mills, cover of 2003 album Born For This

Stephanie Mills (born March 22, 1957 in Harlem, New York) is an African American R&B and soul singer and former Broadway star. Mills began her journey as an actress-singer-entertainer appearing in her first play at the age of 9. Two years later, Mills won Amateur Night at the world-famous Apollo Theater where she won over a record six times.

In 1972, Mills' career took a rise when she first played Dorothy in an African American adaptation of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz called The Wiz on Broadway. Filled with a more urban style of music and scenery, The Wiz made Mills a star particularly because of her stellar performance of the song, "Home". It would become her signature tune for years and would be covered later by Diana Ross for the big-screen adaptation six years later and by Whitney Houston for her dramatic musical performance debut on TV in the early 1980s.

In 1973, Mills' musical career began as she opened for the Isley Brothers. A year later, after being discovered by Jackson 5 singer Jermaine Jackson, she signed with Motown Records in 1974. Her first two albums fail to generate a buzz as the label couldn't find Mills' sound. In 1976, she left the label and continued on with her tenure on The Wiz.

Musical success was eluded until 1979, when signed under the 20th Century Fox record label, Mills found her breakthrough in disco music, recording now-classic danceable songs such as "Put Your Body In It", "You Can Get Over" and "What Cha Gonna Do With My Lovin'". The resulting album, What Cha Gonna Do With My Lovin, was Mills' first gold record.

She quickly followed the success with 1980's Sweet Sensation, which featured Mills' biggest hit to date, the Reggie Lucas-produced "I Never Knew Love Like This Before". The single became a #1 R&B and Top 5 Pop hit in 1980. 1981's Stephanie featured a top hit for her and soul legend Teddy Pendergrass titled "Two Hearts", while her 1983 album, Merciless, featured her hit cover of Prince's "How Come You Don't Call Me Anymore?"

Success for Mills had peaked until 1985 when her version of the Angela Winbush-penned "I've Learned to Respect the Power of Love", hit #1 on the R&B singles chart. Mills truly returned, though, with her next release, If I Were Your Woman in 1987 under MCA Records, which she was now signed with. The hits coming off the album include the title track, originally a hit for Gladys Knight & the Pips in 1971, "I Feel Good All Over" (a song her label mate Patti Labelle didn't want to cover), and "You're Puttin' a Rush on Me", to name a few of the songs released. The album reached platinum status.

Mills' success continued...and peaked with 1989's Home album. The hits off that album include "The Comfort of a Man", the title track, a cover of her old standard from The Wiz and another song penned by Winbush titled "Something in the Way You Make Me Feel". It became another platinum record for Mills.

Mills would record one more album and a Christmas album before being let go from her contract with MCA in 1992. Mills released her first gospel record in 1995, and then took a break from recording to care for her son.

Mills returned to musical theatre in 1997, playing the lead in a major production of Stephen Schwartz's Children of Eden in New Jersey, which Schwartz has called "the definitive production" of the show. Mills was heavily featured in the soundtrack CD that resulted from this production.

In 2000, Mills began a comeback with singles recorded with Be Be Winans and rapper DMX to name a few. She truly made her comeback, however, about four years later with the independently released Born For This, which has become a hit album for her longtime fans. She still tours all around the world performing classics as well as newer tracks from her latest album.



  • 1974 Nominated for Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress - Musical ("The Wiz").


  • 1979 Nominated for American Music Award: Favorite Female Artist - Soul / Rhythm & Blues .


  • 1980 Won Grammy Award: Best Rhythm & Blues Vocal Performance - Female ("Never Knew Love Like This Before").
  • 1980 Nominated for an American Music Award: Favorite Female Artist - Soul / Rhythm & Blues
  • 1980 Nominated for Young Artist Awards: Best Young Musical Recording Artist - Female ("Two Hearts").


  • 1981 Nominated for a Grammy Award: Best Rhythm & Blues Vocal Performance - Female (Stephanie).
  • 1981 Won American Music Award for Favorite Female Artist - Soul / Rhythm & Blues


  • 1983 Nominated for a Grammy Award: Best Rhythm & Blues Vocal Performance - Female ("Merciless").


  • 1989 Nominated for American Music Award: Favorite Female Artist - Soul / Rhythm & Blues

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Stephanie Mills