Azealia Amanda Banks is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, and actress. She was born and raised in New York City. She used to release her music through MySpace before she signed with XL Recordings at the age of 12. She found success in 2011 with her single ‘212’ which entered various charts in different countries, such as the UK Singles chart where it stood at the 12th position. The next year, she released her first mixtape ‘Fantasea’ which was met with highly favorable reviews from the critics. She released her studio album ‘Broke with Expensive Taste’ two years later. The album was a huge success, reaching the 30th position on the US Billboard 200. It also entered the charts of various other countries. It received highly positive reviews as well. Since then, she has released one EP and another studio album. Banks has stated that she has been inspired by artists such as Beyonce and Aaliyah. For her contribution to music, she was honored with one NME Award and one Urban Music Award. Also an actress, she played the lead role in the musical drama film ‘Love Beats Rhymes’. It has been met with mixed reviews.
Azealia Banks began her acting career with musicals such as ‘City of Angels’. She later auditioned for various TV shows though she was unable to find success. Thus, she decided to pursue a career as a recording artist instead.
She initially released some of her tracks online, after which she signed with XL Records. However, she left them soon due to conflicting ideas. She next used YouTube to upload several of her works.
She released her debut single ‘212’ in September 2011. It proved to be a success, reaching several charts. It peaked at the 14th position in the Netherlands, the 12th position in the UK, and the 7th position in Ireland. The same year, she was also featured in ‘Shady Love,’ a track from the album ‘Magic Hour’ by the American band Scissor Sisters.
Her first mixtape ‘Fantasea’ was released in 2012. Though it failed to impact any charts, it was met with positive reviews. Her first EP ‘1991’ was released in May 2012. It stood at the 133rd position on the US Billboard 200 and entered various other charts as well.
She eventually released her debut studio album ‘Broke with Expensive Taste’ in 2014. It found commercial success and entered various charts including the US Billboard 200, where it stood at the 30th position and the UK Albums chart, where it stood at the 62nd position. The album was met with mostly positive reviews.
Her second mixtape ‘Slay-Z’ was released in 2016; it was also received favorably by critics.
In 2017, she was seen in the film ‘Love Beats Rhymes’. Directed by Robert Fitzgerald Diggs, the film also starred Lorraine Toussaint, Hana Mae Lee, Jill Scott and Common. It was met with mixed reviews from the critics. She released her second album ‘Fantasea II: The Second Wave’ in June 2018.
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Azealia Banks was born on 31st May 1991 in New York City in New York. Her father passed away from pancreatic cancer when she was only two years of age. She, along with her two sisters, was raised by her mother. Her mother was physically and verbally abuse, as stated by Banks later, and would hit Banks and her sisters with baseball bats and bang their heads against walls. She moved out of her mother’s home when she was only 14 and started living with her older sister.
She developed an interest in music and acting at a very young age. She never finished high school and decided to become a musical artiste.
Banks is bisexual. Not much is known regarding her dating life, though she was said to be dating Jesse Bradford in 2015.
She has developed a reputation for getting into confrontations with public figures on social media. A controversial figure, she was arrested in New York in 2016, after she attacked a female security guard.