In 2005, at the age of sixteen, Chris Brown released his debut album Chris Brown. It went double platinum and featured the hit single “Run It!” which made Brown the first male artist to have a debut single top the charts in ten years. In 2007, his second album, Exclusive, certified platinum and spawning two hit singles. In just a few years, while still in his teens, he had eight singles in the top 20, dance routines that have been compared to Michael Jackson (who also achieved great success in his teens), and, to put it mildly, a very promising career. In 2009, Brown pled guilty to felony assault charges that involved beating up his then-girlfriend, fellow R&B singer Rihanna, and was sentenced to five years’ probation and six months of community service. Since then, his career has suffered and has not yet gotten back on track. This biography, written for young readers, takes a sympathetic view of his life and career.
A rise to success and a tragic fall
Born in Tapahannock, Virginia, Chris Brown was a small-town boy who listened to R&B music and wanted to be a rapper. His voice, though, was more suited to singing than rapping, and he moved into the more melodic side of R&B. It was a good choice and led to a lot of success and fame. Chris Brown concentrates on the story of Brown’s rise rather more than the problems that emerged from the violent side of his nature and the legal troubles that resulted. It’s a remarkable story of musical success, an example of lightning striking for a multiply-talented teenage boy who struck a chord with the public. Inspired by the likes of Usher and Michael Jackson, Brown had the talent to compare with them and was willing to put in the hard work necessary to develop that talent and achieve success. At this point in his career, he has a hard task ahead of him to overcome past mistakes and realize his potential.