Macy Gray, was born to Laura McIntyre, a math teacher, and Otis Jones; Laura later remarried Richard McIntyre, who adopted Macy and fathered her brother Nathon and sister Nehlia. Gray was born in Canton, Ohio, where she briefly worked at age 12, before being fired for lateness. She decided to pursue a career in music after being expelled from Western Reserve Academy in Hudson, which she had attended from the age of 14. However, Gray's initial success came as a surprise. While attending the University of Southern California she agreed to write songs for a friend, and a demo session was scheduled for the songs to be recorded by another singer When the vocalist failed to turn up, Gray recorded them herself. She then met writer/producer Joe Solo while working as a cashier in Beverly Hills. Together, they wrote a large collection of songs and recorded them in Solo's studio. The demo tape landed Gray the opportunity to sing at jazz cafés in Los Angeles, California.Despite Gray's dislike of her own voice, Atlantic Records signed her. She began recording her debut record but was dropped from the label upon the departure of her A&R man Tom Carolan, who signed her to the label. In 1998, she landed a record deal with Epic Records.She was on one of the songs from The Black Eyed Peas' debut album, "Love Won't Wait".
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