Macy Gray

Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Macy Gray visited the top of the charts on several occasions, but found steadier success contributing to film and television soundtracks and taking the occasional supporting film role. Born on Sept. 6, 1967 as Natalie McIntyre, Gray was raised in Canton, OH but headed out for Los Angeles right after high school to pursue her love of writing at the University of Southern California. She began writing songs and eventually warmed to the idea of showcasing her distinctive, smoky voice at jazz clubs and coffeehouses around town. In 1999, Epic Records released Gray's debut album, On How Life Is, and the jazzy, feel-good stylings of the single "I Try" earned Gray a Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. Her flamboyant fashion sense and six-foot stage presence seemed a natural fit for a screen career, so the following year, Gray was cast in a small supporting role in the police drama "Training Day" (2000) starring Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke. Gray's second album The Id was released in the fall of 2001. She was tapped to sing the theme song of Nickelodeon's animated tween series "As Told By Ginger" (2000-03), and recorded songs for the soundtracks of "Baby Boy" (2001), "Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood" (2002) and "Spider-Man" (2002), in which she also had a cameo as herself.