b. Kenneth Edmonds, 10th April 1959, Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.A.
Kenneth ‘Babyface’ Edmonds is a singer, musician and songwriter from Indiana.
He is, generally perceived, as being one of the most prominent songwriters in R&B over the last 25 years.
Kenneth was born in Indianapolis in 1959.
His parents are Marvin and Barbara Edmonds (a pharmaceutical plant manager), and Kenneth is the fifth of six brothers.
Kenneth attended North Central High School in Indianapolis.
When he was at school his father died of lung cancer.
He concentrated on his future career in music.
Kenneth began performing with some established artists, including Bootsy Collins.
It was Bootsy, who nicknamed Kenneth ‘Babyface’, as he was still a teenager when working with the artist.
He then worked with the group the group Manchild, as a session guitarist around 1976.
Kenneth later played keyboards for the group, The Deele.
The Deele had Antonio ‘L.A.’ Reid, in their line-up, with whom Kenneth forged a close friendship.
Kenneth penned the song ‘Slow-Jam’ for Midnight Star in 1983, which featured on their ‘No Parking on the Dance Floor’ album.
He departed The Deele in 1988, along with L.A. Reid.
lovers - 1986 / tender lover - 1989 / re-fresh lovers - 1990 / a closer look - 1991
Kenneth had released his debut album some two years earlier, entitled ‘Lovers’ for the Solar Records imprint.
He switched to Epic Records for ‘Tender Lover’ in 1989, which led to a series of solo albums, interspersed with a hectic schedule of writing and production chores for many of the biggest artists on the R&B and Pop scene.
for the cool in you - 1993 / the day - 1996 / christmas with babyface - 1998 / face to face - 2001
Kenneth switched back to Solar Records for ‘A Closer Look’ in 1991, followed by the albums ‘For The Cool In You’ (on Epic in 1993), ‘The Day’ (on Epic in 1996), ‘Christmas With Babyface’ (on Epic in 1998), ‘Face2Face’ (on Arista in 2001), ‘Grown And Sexy’ (on Sony in 2005), ‘Playlist’ (on Mercury in 2007), and ‘Love, Marriage & Divorce’ (with Toni Braxton, on Motown in 2014).
grown and sexy - 2005 / playlist - 2007
As a writer and producer, Kenneth has worked with Bobby Brown, Karyn White, Carole King, Patti LaBelle, Chaka Khan, Aretha Franklin, Madonna, Janet Jackson, Faith Evans, Al Green, Beyoncé, Diana Ross, Sheena Easton, Toni Braxton, Michael Jackson, Michael Bolton, Eric Clapton, Pebbles, Tevin Campbell, Whitney Houston, Brandy, Mary J. Blige, Tamia, Mariah Carey, Vanessa L. Williams, Chanté Moore, En Vogue, Kenny G, Marc Nelson, and TLC, amongst others.
In 1989, Kenneth co-founded LaFace Records with L.A. Reid.
His work with the late Whitney Houston realized ‘I’m Your Baby Tonight’, which became his first No. 1 Top 40 hit in the U.S.
He also penned and produced Boyz II Men's ‘End of the Road’.
love, marriage & divorce - 2014
In early 2014, he released a duets album with the singer Toni Braxton, entitled ‘Love, Marriage & Divorce’ on Motown Records.
His wife was the singer, Tracey Edmonds, the couple getting married in 1992 and having two sons, Brandon and Dylan Michael.
Their marriage lasted 15 years, however, they were divorced in 2005.
Kenneth has received three consecutive Grammy Awards for Producer of the Year between 1995 and 1997.
Lovers (Solar Records 1986)
Tender Lover (Solar Records 1989)
A Closer Look (Solar Records 1991)
For The Cool In You (Epic Records 1993)
The Day (Epic Records 1996)
MTV Unplugged NYG 1997 (Epic Records 1998)
Christmas With Babyface (Epic Records 1998)
Face 2 Face (Epic Records 2001)
Love Story (Epic Records 2004)
Grown and Sexy (Epic Records 2005)
Playlist (Epic Records 2007)
Love, Marriage & Divorce (with Toni Braxton) (Epic Records 2014)