Paris BennettView in iTunes
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One of the most skilled and likable contestants on the fifth season of American Idol, Paris Bennett is, respectively, the daughter and granddaughter of Sounds of Blackness members Jamecia Bennett and Ann Nesby. Though she sang throughout her childhood and performed the lead role of Dorothy in her high school's production of The Wiz, she did not plan on taking the same career path as her mother and grandmother. However, after encouragement from her grandfather, she performed for the American Idol judges at the Greensboro, NC, auditions for season five of the program and wowed them with a classic-sounding voice that belied her young age. Renditions of songs like "Cowboy Take Me Away," "Midnight Train to Georgia," "These Foolish Things," and "The Way We Were" saw her through to round five, when she was ousted from the contest. Signed to the TVT-affiliated 306 Entertainment label, she issued her debut, the pop-oriented R&B album Princess P, in 2007. The holiday release A Royal Christmas followed the next year. ~ Andy Kellman