Brenda K. Starr
Brenda K. Starr
|Also known as:||Brenda Joy Kaplan, Brenda Starr|
|Born:||October 15, 1966|
New York City, New York
Brenda K. Starr (born Brenda Kaplan on October 15 1966 in New York City) is an American singer originally in dance-pop , but now mostly in salsa-based music. She is also well known for her 1980s work with Freestyle music.
Starr was born to a Jewish American father, organist, Harvey Kaplan, and a Puerto Rican Roman Catholic mother. Her only album to make the U.S. Billboard 200 albums chart was her self-titled second album (her major-label debut), which peaked at fifty-eight. She has had two top forty hits on the Billboard Hot 100: "I Still Believe" (which peaked at #13) and "What You See is What You Get" (which peaked at #24 and at #6 on the Hot Dance Music/Club Play). She also sang the song "Sweet Surrender" for the 1988 teen film License to Drive soundtrack, starring Corey Haim. During the late 1980s, Mariah Carey sang background vocals for Starr, and Starr helped Carey secure a recording contract by giving a demo tape of hers to Columbia Records executive Tommy Mottola at a party. By 1991, Mariah Carey had become Sony/Columbia's star attraction, which caused Starr's career to shrink in terms of commercial success. After being dropped from Sony/Columbia Records for lackluster sales of her second album, By Heart, Starr worked odd jobs to support herself and her family for several years, including one at a shopping mall in New Jersey.
In a wise decision, Starr learned Spanish in order to rejuvenate her career, instead of chasing trends of the English language pop music market. From there, Starr became mostly a Salsa/Tropical and Latin Pop artist. After the release of her cover of Herida, which peaked at #16 on the Latin Pop Airplay and at #1 on the Latin Tropical/Salsa Airplay chart, her music career became successful again. From then, she released a string of popular, successful albums with many chart hits.
Brenda was also a disc jockey at MIX 102.7, WNEW-FM, where she presented a request program "Under the Stars", from 9 p.m. to midnight on Sunday nights before it changed formats. It appeared to have helped her music career since her concerts have begun to sell even stronger than before. The lead single from her seventh album, Atrevete a Olvidarme, titled, "Tu Eres" earned her a nomination by the Billboard Latin Music Awards in 2006.
Starr has starred in several films, most notably in the 1980s urban film Beat Street, which had her portraying herself as a singer at an open-microphone audition.