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Stars That Died

Monday, September 14, 2009

Who is Tatyana Marisol Ali?

Who is Tatyana Marisol Ali? The Acting world knows her as Tatyana Ali, she is an American actress and R&B singer, best known for her role as Ashley Banks in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

Ali was born January 24, 1979 in Brooklyn, New York on January 24, 1979. Her mother Sonia was a nurse and is of Afro-Panamanian descent, while her father, Sheriff Ali, was a retired police officer of Indo-Trinidadian descent. She has two younger sisters, Anastasia and Kimberly. She attended Saw Mill Road Elementary School and Grand Avenue Junior High School in Bellmore, New York, Marymount High School in West Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, and The Buckley School in Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles, California. In 2002, she graduated with a bachelor's degree in Government and African American Studies from Harvard University.[2]

By the age of six, Ali had begun her acting career. She was a regular child performer on Sesame Street starting in 1985, even appearing with Herbie Hancock in a musical number. She also appeared on Star Search two times. She made her breakthrough when she was cast as Ashley Banks for the popular television sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air in 1990. She sang on various episodes of the show, including Aretha Franklin's "Respect" and the original song "Make Up Your Mind" produced by Rob Jay of Nspyre Music Productions. Will Smith asked her if she seriously considered pursuing a musical career. Despite her singing ability, she concentrated on her acting career on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air the next few years.

In the final season of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air in 1995–1996, Ali began preparing herself for her musical debut. The result was the album Kiss The Sky, which was certified gold in early 1999. The album spawned the hit song "Daydreamin'", produced by Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, which peaked at #6 on the Billboard Hot 100 and on the UK Singles Chart. The album spawned two further UK hits, "Boy You Knock Me Out", featuring Will Smith, which peaked at #3 and is her biggest hit to date; and "Everytime", which was her third top 20 hit in the UK, peaking at #20. She made an appearance in Smith's album Willennium for the track "Who Am I" with MC Lyte.

In 2005, she completed work on the film Glory Road and starred in the music video for Nick Cannon and Anthony Hamilton's "Can I Live?" as Cannon's mother.

She ranked #74 on VH1's "100 Greatest Kid Stars".

In early 2008, she lent her vocal talents to the song “Yes We Can,” a project supporting Barack Obama’s presidential campaign. She also appeared in the subsequent music video which gained coverage on the "What the Buzz" segment of ABC’s World News Now.

She is currently preparing to release her second album, which she describes as "an independent effort".[3] The album is titled "The Light". Much of the album's production was being handled by famed Tupac Shakur's producer Johnny "J".[4]

She is also producing and starring in the web show, BUPPIES.[5]

She is currently on recurring status on the CBS soap opera The Young and the Restless as Roxanne.[6]

Ali dated late American actor Jonathan Brandis from 1995 to 1998,[2] with whom she co-starred in the TV movie Fall into Darkness.

Ali traveled the United States as a spokesperson for Barack Obama's 2008 Presidential Campaign. Ali headed voter registration drives at college campuses, including many historically black colleges and universities.


Television Work

In Season 3 of the Are You Afraid of the Dark Series, a popular Nickelodeon TV show, Tatyana co-starred in "The Tale Of The Quick Silver".



Chart Performance

Year Song U.S. U.S. R&B UK NZ[7] FRA[8] NET[9] Album
1998 "Day Dreamin'" 6 5 6 3 Kiss The Sky
"Boy You Knock Me Out" (featuring Will Smith) 68 3 12 32 77
1999 "Everytime" 118 73 20
"Kiss The Sky" (featuring Marion) 9
2008 "It's All Right" The Light

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