- Jul 11, 2022
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What is Kelis' Net Worth?
Kelis is an American singer-songwriter who has a net worth of $4 million. As an artist, Kelis has worked with producers like will.i.am and Pharrell Williams to produce popular tracks like "Milkshake" and "Bossy." During her singing career Kelis sold over six million albums worldwide and was nominated for two Grammy Awards. Kelis is also notable for being married to rapper/entrepreneur Nas from 2005 to 2010.
Kelis left her parents' home at the age of sixteen, and four years later she landed a deal with Virgin Records. In the mid-1998, she had already started to record her debut album "Kaleidoscope," which was completed and released within a year. The album spawned few sizable hits, like "Caught out There," which enjoyed enormous popularity across Europe.
In 2001, Kelis released her second album, "Wanderland," exclusively in Europe, Asia and Latin America. It was her third release "Tasty" (2003) via Arista that brought Kelis mainstream success. Subsequently, several more albums were released, notably, "Kelis Was Here" (2006) and "Flesh Tone" (2010).
Kelis was born on August 21, 1979 in New York City. Her father, Kenneth, was a jazz musician and Pentecostal minister who had formerly worked as a professor at Wesleyan University. Her mother, Eveliss, is a fashion designer. Kelis is of African American and Chinese-Puerto Rican descent. She grew up with her three sisters and often sang in choir at church, in addition to learning how to play the violin, piano, and saxophone. She attended the Manhattan Country School and then Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts. She also worked as a bartender and sales associate while in high school.
While in high school, Kelis formed the R&B trio, BLU. She met The Neptunes, a duo composed of Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo, after graduating high school. They were impressed with her artistry and helped her land a record deal with Virgin Records in 1998. Kelis then began working on her debut album, "Kaleidoscope," which she finished and released in 1999. The album peaked at number 144 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and reached the top five on the Top Heatseekers chart. Her most notable single off the album was "Caught Out There," which became a top ten Hot R&B/Hip-Hop song. The album generally performed better in Europe, reaching number 43 on the UK Albums chart.
In 2001, Kelis won the BRIT Award for International Breakthrough Act and the NME Award for Best R&B/Soul Act. She joined Moby and then U2 on their tours, helping further solidify her stardom in Europe.
Kelis released her second album, "Wanderland," in 2001 in Europe, Asia, an Latin America, but not in the United States. Virgin Records had dropped her from the label around this time. While the record was not commercially successful, it was praised in publications like "The Guardian" and "NME."
She began working on singles for her upcoming third album, "Tasty." She achieved mainstream success in the U.S. with the release of the single, "Milkshake," which climbed to the number one spot on the Hot Dance Club Play chart and the third spot on the Billboard Hot 100. The album eventually achieved gold status in the United States. "Milkshake" earned Kelis a Grammy Award nomination in 2004 in the Best Urban/Alternative Performance category. The album went platinum in the United Kingdom.
Kelis released her fourth studio album, "Kelis Was Here," in August of 2006 on Jive Records. The album debuted and peaked at number ten on the Billboard 200. Its lead single, "Bossy," received frequent airplay on radio and went multi-platinum. The album was nominated for Best Contemporary R&B Album at the 2007 Grammy Awards.
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She then released her fifth album, "Flesh Tone," in 2010 under Interscope Records. She worked with producer will.i.am, as well as others like Diplo, David Guetta, and Benny Benassi. After its release, she embarked on her first U.S. tour and also played large festivals like Glastonbury and Good Vibrations Festival. A few years later, she began working with producer David Sitek. She released her next album, "Food," in April of 2014. In 2019, Kelis rereleased her second studio album, "Wanderland," finally making it available in the United States. She then embarked on a 20th anniversary tour for her first album, "Kaleidoscope," in 2020.
Outside of music, Kelis has also pursued a career in food. Between 2006 and 2010, she trained as a part-time saucier and graduated from Le Cordon Bleu cooking school. She wrote and released a cook book with Lauren Pesavento in 2006. In 2013, Kelis debuted a line of sauces she had created called "Feast" at the Beverly Hills Food & Wine Festival. She rebranded the line as "Bounty & Full" and released it for general sale in 2015. She also had her own cooking series on the Cooking Channel in 2014 called "Saucy & Sweet" and created a food truck at the SXSW music festival in Austin, Texas. In September of 2015, she released her first solo cookbook entitled, "My Life on a Plate," which explores Kelis' experiences with motherhood, marriage, and music though food.
In 2002, Kelis met rapper Nas at an MTV Video Music Awards party. They dated for a year before getting engaged in 2004. They married in January of 2005 and remained together before filing for divorce in April of 2009, citing irreconcilable divorces. At the time, Kelis was seven months pregnant and gave birth to the couple's son a few months later. Kelis has stated that her relationship with Nas was physically and mentally abusive and she decided she must leave the marriage before giving birth for the sake of her future son. The couple have been involved in an ongoing custody dispute over their son.
In 2014, Kelis married photographer Mike Mora. The two had a son together in November of 2015. Since January 2020, Kelis and Mora have been living on a farm outside of Los Angeles. She gave birth to a daughter in September of 2020. Mora announced in September of 2021 that he was battling advanced stomach cancer.
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