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Born in Atlanta, Georgia, Normani Kordei Hamilton was raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, until 2005, when Hurricane Katrina prompted her family to move to Houston, Texas. Normani had been performing for several years when, in 2012, she competed on the second season of The X Factor USA, which led to the formation of Fifth Harmony. The group's albums Reflection (2015), 7/27 (2016), and Fifth Harmony (2017) all debuted within the Top Ten, and the first two went platinum, making them one of the biggest pop acts of the 2010s. The year the self-titled album was released, Normani also appeared in the video for Khalid's "Young Dumb & Broke." Shortly thereafter, Khalid and Normani co-wrote and recorded the pop-R&B ballad "Love Lies" for the soundtrack of Love, Simon. Released on RCA in February 2018, the song peaked on the Billboard Hot 100 four months later at number nine. She rounded out the year appearing on tracks by Quavo ("Swing") and Jessie Reyez (the "Body Count" remix), as well as issuing a collaborative EP with Calvin Harris, simply titled Normani x Calvin Harris. In the midst of preparing her solo debut album, she released another hit duet, this time with Sam Smith. Produced by Jimmy Napes and Stargate, "Dancing with a Stranger" rose into the Top Three in the U.K. A standalone single, "Motivation," arrived in August 2019 and cracked the U.K. Top 30. ~ Andy Kellman