With 4 Non Blondes Perry scored one of the 1990’s most memorable hits, the Alternative Rock anthem “What’s Up”
The talented singer-songwriter Linda Perry turns 54
She rose to fame during the 1990’s with one of the decade’s most memorable songs, “What’s Up”, Linda Perry, songwriter, producer, singer, still remembered by many as the lead singer for the short lived San Francisco Alternative Rock band 4 Non Blondes, was born on April 15, 1965 in Springfield, Massachusetts. She moved to San Francisco at age 21, which marks the beginning of a career in music. After some time spent performing solo, Perry wrote her first professional song, “Down On Your Face,” and was recruited into the band 4 Non Blondes by its founder Christa Hillhouse in 1989. In 1992, the band released their debut (and only) album “Bigger, Better, Faster, More!” featuring Perry as lead singer and dominated by her compositions. The album became a best selling worldwide, with songs like “What’s Up”, “Spaceman” or “Mr. President” rotating heavily on MTV and radio stations. By 1994, despite the huge success they had achieved, the band struggled to come up with a followup to “Bigger”, and Perry left the band during the attempt to pursue a solo career, not before recording one last video, for a cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Misty Mountain Hop” with Dave Navarro on guitar. Perry’s solo career first started slow, but by the end of the decade, she had found a new career direction as a songwriter and producer for other artists, beginning in 2000 with Pink, for whom she wrote several hit songs. Her unique songwriting talent, led her to write and produce songs for artists as diverse as Jewel, Courtney Love, Gwen Stefani, Alicia Keys, Celine Dion, Robbie Williams, Melissa Etheridge, Juliette and the Licks, Lisa Marie Presley, Kelly Osbourne, James Blunt, Cheap Trick and even Enrique Iglesias, being inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame at a ceremony in New York in 2015. Openly lesbian, Perry famously displayed the slang word “dyke” on her guitar for a performance with 4 Non Blondes at the 1994 Billboard Music Awards. Perry began a relationship with actress Sara Gilbert in 2011 and married in 2014. Gilbert gave birth to their son Rhodes in 2015. Linda Perry turns 54 today.
Look back at the 1993 4 Non Blondes music video “What’s Up”
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