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Gwen Renée Stefani ( /stɛˈfɑːni/; born October 3, 1969) is an American singer-songwriter and fashion designer. Stefani is the lead vocalist for the rock and ska band No Doubt. Stefani recorded Love. Angel. Music. Baby., her first solo album, in 2004. The album was inspired by music of the 1980s[2] and was a success with sales of over seven million copies.[3] The album's third single, "Hollaback Girl", was the first US digital download to sell one million copies.[4] Stefani's second solo album, The Sweet Escape (2006), yielded "Wind It Up", "4 in the Morning", and the highest-selling single "The Sweet Escape". Including her work with No Doubt, Stefani has sold more than forty million albums worldwide.[5] She won the World's Best-Selling New Female Artist at the World Music Awards 2005.

In 2003, she debuted her clothing line L.A.M.B. and expanded her collection with the 2005 Harajuku Lovers line, drawing inspiration from Japanese culture and fashion. Stefani performs and makes public appearances with four back-up dancers known as the Harajuku Girls

Birth name Gwen Renée Stefani
Born October 3, 1969 (age 42)

Fullerton, California, United States

Genres Pop, dance, rock, electronic, R&B
Occupations Singer-songwriter, record producer, fashion designer, dancer, actress
Instruments Vocals, guitar[1]
Years active 1986–present
Labels Interscope
Associated acts No Doubt, Eve, The Neptunes, Sublime, Dr. Dre, Akon, Outkast
Website www.gwenstefani.com

dancers. She married British grunge musician Gavin Rossdale in 2002 and they have two sons: Kingston James McGregor Rossdale, born May 26, 2006, and Zuma Nesta Rock Rossdale, born August 20, 2008. Billboard magazine named Stefani the fifty-fourth artist and thirty-seventh Hot 100 artist of the 2000–09 decade.[6][7]


BiographyEdit

As a child, Stefani's musical interests consisted of musical films such as The Sound of Music and Evita.

After making a demo tape for her father, she was encouraged to take music lessons to train her "loopy, unpredictable" voice.

Stefani made her onstage debut during a talent show at Loara High School, where she sang "I Have Confidence", from The Sound of Music, in a self-made tweed dress inspired by one from the film.[1][3]

Stefani was on the Loara swim team in an attempt to lose weight.[13]

She first worked at a Dairy Queen and later manned the MAC makeup counter of a department store.[14]

After graduating from high school in 1987,[1] she began attending Fullerton College before transferring to California State University, Fullerton.[15]

CareerEdit

No Doubt (1986-2004)Edit

For full article info on the Band Stefani was in, see also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gwen_Stefani#1986-2004:_No_Doubt

Solo Career (2004-2006; 2006-2008)Edit

For full article info, see also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gwen_Stefani#2004.E2.80.9306:_Love._Angel._Music._Baby. and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gwen_Stefani#2006-08:_The_Sweet_Escape

Following No Doubt's hiatus, Stefani sought out her former bandmate Tony Kanal to discuss the possibility of a solo career. The idea was to make a quick dance record, but this became a large collaboration with other artists, producers and various non-ska influences. The result was two successful albums. Currently, Stefani has two solo albums, Love. Angel. Music. Baby. (2004), and The Sweet Escape (2006), with combined sales of nearly twenty million copies.[36]

No Doubt Reunion (2008-present)Edit

  • With Stefani promoting her second solo album, No Doubt began initial work on a new album without her[78] and planned to complete it after Stefani's The Sweet Escape Tour was finished.[79]
  • In March 2008, the band started making posts concerning the progression of the album on their official fan forum.
  • Stefani made a post on March 28, 2008 stating that songwriting had commenced but was slow on her end because she was, at the time, pregnant with her second child.[80]
  • Manager Jim Guerinot said the yet-untitled album is being produced by Mark "Spike" Stent, who helped produce and mix Rock Steady.

Between Stefani's pregnancy and recording, No Doubt did not tour in 2008, but Guerinot promised they plan to hit the road hard in 2009 for their first full-fledged band tour in nearly five years.[81]

  • The Singles 1992–2003 became available on December 9, 2008 for the video game Rock Band 2.[82]

All members of No Doubt except for Stefani served as Scott Weiland's backing band on the album "Happy" in Galoshes.

No Doubt announced on their official website they wanted to tour in 2009[83] while finishing their upcoming album, which was set for release 2010.[84]

On November 24, 2008, it was announced that No Doubt would be headlining the Bamboozle 2009 festival in May, along with Fall Out Boy.

The band completed a national tour in the summer of 2009.[85]

On August 21, 2008, Stefani gave birth via cesarean section to her second son, Zuma Nesta Rock Rossdale, weighing 3.85 kg (8 lb 8 oz).

A representative for Stefani said, "Mother, baby and family are all happy and healthy."[86]

ArtistryEdit

Vocal Ability and InfluencesEdit

  • Stefani's unusual and dynamic vocals have been noted for their "deep vibrato"[88] and Stefani has been described as having a "unique vocal prowess".[89]
  • In the single "Cool", her vocal range covers close to two octaves.[90]
  • Kelefa Sanneh of The New York Times joked that as Stefani grew as a musician, she kicked her "addiction" to vibrato.[91]
  • Stefani received five nominations at the 2006 Grammy Awards, including Best Female Pop Vocal Performance and Best Pop Vocal Album.[44]
  • Stefani has been influenced by and compared to pop singer Madonna.

In 2007, she told Elle magazine, "A lot of my influence came from her early work, like directly, like a Xerox."[92] However, Madonna told a reporter that Stefani was a copycat and said that "[s]he ripped me off", to which Stefani responded, "Some people say that I copy her. But show me one girl my age who was not influenced by her."[93] She has been referred to as "the new Madonna" by publications such as The Hollywood Reporter and People.[94] Some critics also saw the 1980s music style of Love. Angel. Music. Baby. as another way which Stefani was imitating the singer.[94]

Image and Harajuku GirlsEdit

  • Stefani began wearing a bindi in the mid-1990s after attending several family gatherings for Tony Kanal, who is of Indian heritage.[95] During No Doubt's breakthrough, Stefani wore the forehead decoration in several of the band's music videos and briefly popularized the accessory in 1997.[96] First attracting attention in the 1995 music video for "Just a Girl", Stefani is known for her midriff and frequently wears shirts that expose it.[97]

Stefani's makeup design generally includes light face powder, bright red lipstick, and arched eyebrows; she wrote about the subject in a song titled "Magic's in the Makeup" for No Doubt's Return of Saturn, asking "If the magic's in the makeup/Then who am I?".[9]

  • Stefani is a natural brunette, though her hair has not been its natural color since she was in ninth grade.[98]

Since late 1994, she has had platinum blonde hair. Stefani discussed this in the song "Platinum Blonde Life" on Rock Steady and played original blonde bombshell Jean Harlow in the 2004 biopic The Aviator.[99]

Stefani also dyed her hair blue in 1998[96] and pink in 2000,[100] appearing on the cover of Return of Saturn with pink hair.

The reinvented image included a symbol consisting of two back-to-back G's, which appears on a diamond-encrusted key she wears on a necklace and which became a motif in the promotion of The Sweet Escape.[32]

Stefani raised concerns in January 2007 about her rapid weight loss following her pregnancy. She stated she lost the weight through diet and exercise but admitted to obsessing over her weight due to the size zero trend.[101] She later stated that she had been on a diet since the sixth grade to fit in size 4 clothing, commenting, "It's an ongoing battle and it's a nightmare. But I like clothes too much, and I always wanted to wear the outfits I would make."[102]

A wax figure of Stefani was unveiled at Madame Tussauds Las Vegas at The Venetian on September 22, 2010.[103]

  • The release of Stefani's first solo album brought attention to her entourage of four Harajuku Girls, named for the area around the Harajuku Station of Tokyo, Japan. Stefani treats the back-up dancers, who appear in outfits influenced by Gothic Lolita fashion,[104] as a figment of her imagination. Stefani's clothing also took influence from Japanese fashion, in a style described as a combination between Christian Dior and Japan.[48] The dancers are featured in her music videos, press coverage, and on the album cover for Love. Angel. Music. Baby., with a song named for and dedicated to them on the album. They were also featured in, and the namesake for, Stefani's Harajuku Lovers Tour 2005.

PhilanthropyEdit

Following the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, Stefani donated $1 million to Save the Children's Japan Earthquake–Tsunami Children in Emergency Fund.[105] Stefani also ran an auction on eBay from April 11 to April 25, 2011, allowing participants to bid on vintage clothing items from her personal wardrobe and custom T-shirts designed and signed by her, as well as on admission to a private Harajuku-themed tea party hosted by her on June 7, 2011 at Los Angeles' first-ever Japanese-style maid café and pop art space, Royal/T, with proceeds from the auction going to Save the Children's relief effort.[106][107]

At the amfAR gala during the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, Stefani auctioned off the lacy black dress she wore at the event for charity, raising over $125,000.[108] The dress sparked controversy after a representative for designer Michael Angel—who helped Stefani with the design and worked as a stylist—alleged that it was Angel who created the gown, not Stefani.[108][109][110] In response, Angel released an statement confirming that the dress was designed by Stefani for L.A.M.B. to wear and be auctioned off at the amfAR gala, adding,

"I'm disappointed that the focus has shifted away from what Gwen and I originally intended, which was to create a custom outfit for a great cause. We both were thrilled with the outcome and enjoyed the process. I have nothing but respect for her and look forward to working with her on more projects in the future."[111]


DiscographyEdit

Main article: Gwen Stefani discography*Love. Angel. Music. Baby. (2004)
GWEN STEFANI

ToursEdit

Acting and ModelingEdit

| |Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture. |}


See AlsoEdit

External LinksEdit

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