Paula Julie Abdul was born on June 19, 1963, in San Fernando, California. This 5'2" Brazilian/French Canadian singer/actress/choregrapher/dancer was once a member of the Los Angeles Lakers cheerleaders.In 1984 she choreographed their "Torture" video and then was hired as assistant dance director for their "Victory Tour". Paula was then introduced to Janet Jackson in New York. She went on to choreograph videos for Janet's debut album "Control."In 1986, Paula won an MTV Video Music Award for Best Choreography for Janet's video "Nasty." She also won herself an Emmy for Best Choreography of a TV series for The Tracy Ulman Show. She also choreographed the movie "Coming To America" starring Eddie Murphy.Paula then tried singing her way to the top.In June 1988, her debut album Forever Your Girl was released. Forever Your Girl broke more records than we can even count. It was the first debut album in history to capture four number one singles ("Straight Up," "Cold Hearted," "Opposites Attract" and "Forever Your Girl"), it sold upwards up seven million copies in the USA (ten million worldwide) and remains Virgin Record's best selling record worldwide to this date. Of course, it also launched ex-Laker Girl Paula Abdul into the national consciousness and made her a superstar overnight.
May 1990, a dance remix album was released entitled "Shut Up And Dance". As the title implies, Shut Up And Dance is a slamming collection of dance remixes of her hits. All of the hits from Forever Your Girl are collected here, and most of the remixes were commissioned specifically for this project. Once again, another smash hit for Paula, the compilation sold over three million copies in the US.May 1991, Paula's second album "Spellbound" was released. Her first single "Rush Rush" hit number 1, as so did "The Promise Of A New Day." While this album wasn't as successful as Forever Your Girl, it still sold over 3 million copies and spent 2 weeks at number 1.
In 1992, Paula spent her time defending herself in court. A lawsuit for $3 million dollars was filed against Virgin Records by backup singer Yvette Marine. She stated that it was her, not Paula, who had sung lead vocals on a number of tracks on the Forever Your Girl album. Paula was not amused. Paula eventually won the court case. It was also around this time when she married actor Emilio Estevez in a hushed wedding in Santa Monica and finally, she confessed to a 15 year battle with the eating disorder bulimia. She checked herself into a psychiatric center in Tulsa, Oklahoma.May 1994, Paula divorced Emilio Estevez. She also released a dance home video entitled "Get Up And Dance".June 1995, her third album "Head Over Heels" was released. With Head Over Heels, Paula has really grown up. Whether it's the Indian overtones of "My Love Is For Real", the lush pop of "Crazy Cool" or the smooth soul of "Ain't Never Gonna Give You Up", Head Over Heels proves that Paula's success has been no fluke. Head Over Heels also features a slew of first-rate guest performers, including Color Me Badd and the incomparable Ofra Haza.
October 1996, Paula married Brad Beckerman. Also, Paula began an acting career with appearances on "Cybil" and "The Single Guy" and in January 1997 she played in ABC's TV movie "Touched By Evil". She then went on to make guest appearances on a lot of other shows.In 1998, Paula divorced Brad Beckerman and released her aerobic exercise video entitled "Cardio Dance".In November 1999, Paula won $100,000 in court over a pubic appearance dispute.
In March 2000, the movie "American Beauty" won an Oscar for Best Movie Of The Year. Paula choreographed the dance scenes in that movie.September 2000, her Greatest Hits album was released and in October, Paula appeared on a VH1 special called "VH1's 100 Greatest Dance Songs," which aired on VH1 from Oct. 9- Oct 13. Paula's 'Straight Up' hit #81 on the countdown and she came in at #5 on the Viewers Poll for the Top 5 Greatest Rock Star Dancers.