Katy Perry achieved star status with her first Capitol Records album, 2008’s “One of the Boys,” but the success of 2010’s follow-up, “Teenage Dream,” turned her into a supernova.
Starting with last year’s undeniable summer anthem, “California Gurls,” featuring Snoop Dogg, Perry sent five singles from “Teenage Dream” to the top of Billboard
’s Hot 100 chart over the next 14 months. She is the first female artist in the history of the 53-year chart to achieve the feat, and only the second act, following Michael Jackson with “Bad,” to accomplish the goal.
She tops the King of Pop for weeks spent at No. 1 with those titles: Jackson’s quintet spent a cumulative seven weeks at No. 1, Perry’s fivesome — “California Gurls,” “Teenage Dream,” “E.T.” featuring Kanye West, “Firework” and “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)” — logged 19.
How total is her dominance? So far, she has registered a Top 10 song for an unprecedented 69 consecutive weeks. “California Gurls” was also the top-selling single of 2010, surpassing more than 4.4 million copies by year’s end.
Hitting No. 1 is always a great moment, but when it turns into a small piece of history, you’re reminded of how many millions of people are connected to each other by even one tiny event,” she told Billboard upon reaching the milestone.
With her Betty Page hair, dazzling blue eyes and Candyland fashion sense, Perry has captivated fans with her visual appeal as well as musical. This year, Perry designed a multi-media feast for the senses with her first worldwide headlining arena tour. The “California Dreams” outing, which started in Europe in February, comes to a stop, appropriately enough, Nov. 22 at Los Angeles’ Staples Center.
She credits her time on the 2008 Warped Tour with molding her live show. “I had to win (the crowd) over every single day,” she said earlier this year. “I’ll never forget that tour … it’s continually helped me for where I am today.”
Not content to rule the charts, for a short time, Perry also topped the box office: She voiced Smurfette in “The Smurfs,” which outgrossed all other movies during its July opening frame.
Role models: Freddie Mercury, Gwen Stefani, Elizabeth Taylor
Career mantra: “Balance.”
Leisure pursuits: Road trips, music fests, adopting kittens, “Ancient Aliens” (the series)
Philanthropic passions: Red Cross, Make-A-Wish, Generosity Water, Humane Society, Children’s Health Fund
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