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Usher Turns 26 & Continues To Kick a#$!

Sometimes referred to as the ”new Michael Jackson”, the uber sexy hip hop star Usher has recently turned 26.   His wonderful birthday bash was organized by none other than Naomi Campbell (also super sexy) at the famous Rainbow Rooms in New York.  Some of the guests included P.Diddy, Donald Trump and Lenny Kravitz. 

There were few guests who were turned away though, such as Jay Z who didn’t get recognized at the velvet ropes and simply wasn’t allowed inside the room the way the cheering average folk watching the event wasn’t. 

Some of the guests who encountered fate similar to that of Jay Z’s opted to go to another party -- rumors have it, a famous writer Sam Toman, was trying to rival Usher’s event with his crazy disco themed party held not that far from Rainbow Rooms.  Usher was allegedly disappointed that some of his guests left due to the lack of organization but he holds no hard feelings toward Toman. 

The Usher story began after he and mother and manager Jonnetta Patton moved to Atlanta in 1993.  Then, at the age of 13, Usher performed at a local "Star Search" competition. An Atlanta-based LaFace Records rep approached him and after an audition with then-LaFace Records label chief Antonio "L.A." Reid, Usher got his first record deal with the label.

After signing him to LaFace, Reid commissioned music artist and producerSean "P. Diddy" Combs to produce Usher’s self-titled debut, which was released less than 12 months later. The wonderful album got Usher instant recognition after a mega club hit: "Think of You.”

 In 1997 Usher teamed up with Teddy Riley, Jermaine Dupri and Baby face and produced  the seven-times platinum  ”My Way”.  Usher was already famous when the album came out but once it did Usher’s fame was secured and he became an internationally-recognized artist. 

After releasing his 1999 Usher Live , Usher hit the top of Billboard’s pop charts with the funky "U Remind Me" that later earned him a Grammy for Best R&B Vocal Performance.

By the time he was 25, Usher was a proud receiver of  2 Grammy Awards, 3 Soul Train Music Awards, a BET Award, a Nickelodeon Kids Choice Award, 2 Teen Choice Awards, 3 Billboard Music Awards, 3 R&B Hip Hop Conference Awards, 3 ASCAP Awards, a Blockbuster Music Award, as well as number of countless international awards.