Usher Raymond IV (born October 14, 1978), who performs under the name Usher, is an American recording artist and actor.
In 1994, Usher released his self-titled debut album in North America. The album peaked at #167 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart and reached #25 on the R&B Albums chart. It produced three singles "Can U Get wit It," "Think of You" and “The Many Ways” that attained moderate chart success.
His follow-up album, “My Way,” achieved international success selling seven million copies worldwide, becoming his break-through album. It was certified 6x platinum, and produced three successful singles, including his first #1 single on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, "Nice and Slow."
His success continued in 2001 with his third studio album, “8701” which debuted at #4 on the Billboard 200. The album extended his portfolio of #1 hits, with platinum selling singles "U Remind Me" and "U Got It Bad." The album received a 4x platinum certification from the RIAA. It exceeded its predecessors' worldwide success, selling eight million copies.
Usher's success was bolstered with the release of his fourth studio album, “Confessions.” It was his first #1 album on the Billboard 200, selling over 1.1 million copies in its first week setting a recordfor highest first week sales for an R&B artist in history. It spawned a record breaking four consecutive Billboard Hot 100 #1 hits, "Yeah!," "Burn," "Confessions Part II" and "My Boo." Each single accumulated to a total of 28 weeks on top, making Usher the first act to have achieved such an extended chart run atop the Hot 100. The albums' first two singles, "Yeah!" and "Burn" replaced each other at top on the Billboard Hot 100, stayed at the top for a combined total of 20 weeks and became the best-selling singles of 2004. With the commercial success the album garnered, it received a diamond certification from the RIAA, and sold over 20 million copies worldwide. It was ranked as the top solo album and second most successful overall album of the 2000-10 decade.
After a four year absence, Usher's highly anticipated fifth studio album, “Here I Stand” was released in 2008, and debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200. Its lead single "Love in This Club" peaked at #1 on the Hot 100, marking Usher's eighth #1 hit in the U.S. Follow-up singles did not receive the same success as lead single did with "Love in This Club, Part II" becoming a Top 20 hit, while the singles "Trading Places" and "Moving Mountains" failed to reach the Top 40. “Here I Stand” has been certified platinum by the RIAA.
In 2010, Usher released “Raymond v. Raymond,” and it became his third consecutive #1 album on the Billboard 200. Its three US singles, "Hey Daddy (Daddy's Home) ," "There Goes My Baby" and Lil Freak" outperformed the latter albums' singles on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking in the Top 25 and Top 40 respectively. The international single "OMG," was a worldwide hit, reaching #1 in several countries including the U.S., becoming Usher's ninth #1 hit on the Hot 100. “Raymond v. Raymond” was certified platinum by the RIAA, and sold over one million copies.
During the same year, Usher released a follow-up EP entitled “Versus” which debuted at #4 on the Billboard 200, becoming his sixth Top 10 album. The EP's lead single, "DJ Got Us Fallin' in Love" was an international success, reaching the Top 10 in several countries, while the second single "Hot Tottie" became a Top 30 hit on the Billboard Hot 100.
To date, Usher has certified sales of over 65 million records worldwide. He has won numerous awards including seven Grammy Awards, four World Music Awards, six American Music Awards, and nineteen Billboard Music Awards. In 2008, Usher was ranked as the 21st most successful Hot 100 Singles Artist of all-time by Billboard magazine. The RIAA ranks Usher as one of the best-selling artists in American music history, having sold over 23 million copies in the United States alone. Billboard Magazine ranked Usher the #1 Hot 100 artist of the 2000s decade. They also named him the second most successful artist of the 2000s decade, and his 2004 album “Confessions” was ranked as the top solo album and second most successful overall album of the last decade. Usher has attained nine Hot 100 #1 hits (all as a lead artist) and has attained 16 hot 100 Top 10 hits.