Photo Credit: Dennis Leupold
Normani Hamilton was born on May 31, 1996 in Atlanta, Georgia. When she was young, her family moved to New Orleans, Louisiana. After Hurricane Katrina in 2005, her family relocated to Houston, Texas. Normani loved dancing and beauty pageants and she started signing gospel music and recorded her first song when she was 13. In 2012, Normani auditioned on the TV show The X Factor USA. Normani was eliminated in the second round of the show. Later into the season, she was brought back on the show. For her second time around, she was placed in a women’s group with four other contestants. Normani joined with Ally Brooke, Camila Cabello, Dinah Jane, and Lauren Jauregui to form Fifth Harmony. By the end of the season, Fifth Harmony placed third.
Fifth Harmony released their first EP, Better Together on October 19, 2013 through Epic Records. The five-tracks focused on love and heartbreak. Better Together was the group’s attempt at mainstream pop music. “Miss Movin’ On” was the lead single and charted the US Billboard Hot 100. On January 20, 2015, Fifth Harmony released Reflection. With 11-tracks, the debut album drew off previous notions and focused and centered on empowerment. Popular musicians like Tyga, Meghan Trainor, and Kid Ink made guest appearances on the album. Reflection made it to the number five spot on Billboard 200 Chart. Normani toured with the group for a year to promote their new music in America, Europe, and parts of Asia.
Normani also appeared in dance videos with other artists for songs like “F*ck Up Some Commas” by Future and “Do Not Disturb” by Teyana Taylor, which garnered more fans for the artist. In the following year, Normani released several cover songs that became popular. Fifth Harmony released 7/27 on May 27, 2016 and their second studio album blended the likeness of pop and R&B. Missy Elliott, Ty Dolla Sign, and Fetty Wap were featured on the album. 7/27 made it to number four on the US Billboard 200. “Work From Home” was the lead single and the highest charting single from the album. Normani continued to create a buzz around herself in 2017 when she competed on Dancing with the Stars season 24. Normani and dance partner Valentin Chmerkovskiy placed in third on the finale.
Camila Cabello decided to leave Fifth Harmony to pursue her own solo career, and it was later announced Normani signed to S10 Entertainment as a solo artist. The move left fans wondering what would happen to the group. Down to four members, the group released Fifth Harmony as their third studio album on August 25, 2017. Fifth Harmony debuted at number four on the Billboard 200 Chart. Lead singles from the album included “Down” featuring Gucci Mane, “He Like That”, and “Don’t Say You Love Me”.
In February 2018, Khalid released the song “Love Lies” which featured Normani. The single reached number nine on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart. In March, Fifth Harmony announced the four-member group would go on an indefinite hiatus to pursue solo careers. Normani signed to Keep Cool/RCA Records in April to start working on her solo album. She then secured a modeling contract with Wilhelmina in May.
Normani worked with musician Calvin Harris to release two songs, “Checklist” and “Slow Down”. She was also featured on 6lack’s “Waves” and Sam Smith’s “Dancing with a Stranger”. As a new solo artist, Normani is topping charts and creating a larger base of creative work for people to discover her. Fans are anxiously waiting for the release date of her upcoming solo album. Normani is currently opening for Ariana Grande on Grande’s 2019 ‘Sweetener’ world tour.
Written by: Carlton Rolle