Diana Ross (born March 26, 1944) is an American singer and actress. Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, she rose to fame as the lead singer of the vocal group The Supremes, who became Motown‘s most successful act during the 1960s and one of the world’s best-selling girl groups of all time. They remain the best-charting female group in US history, with a total of twelve number-one hit singles on the US Billboard Hot 100, including “Where Did Our Love Go“, “Baby Love“, “Come See About Me“, and “Love Child“.
Following departure from the Supremes in 1970, Ross embarked on a highly successful, globally ground-breaking solo career in music, television, film and stage. Ross’ eponymous debut solo album that same year, featured the US number-one hit “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” and music anthem “Reach Out and Touch (Somebody’s Hand)”. It was followed with her second solo album, Everything Is Everything, which spawned her first UK number-one single “I’m Still Waiting“. She continued her successful solo career by mounting elaborate record-setting world-wide concert tours, starring in a number of highly-watched prime-time television specials and releasing hit albums like Touch Me in the Morning (1973), Mahogany (1975) and Diana Ross (1976) and their number-one hit singles, “Touch Me in the Morning“, “Theme from Mahogany” and “Love Hangover“, respectively. Ross further released numerous top-ten hits into the 1970s, 80s and 90s. She achieved two more US number-one singles, “Upside Down” (1980) and “Endless Love” (1981), as well as UK number-one hit “Chain Reaction” (1986) and UK number-two hit “When You Tell Me You Love Me” (1991). In 2019, Ross made history by charting four more number-ones on the US Billboard Dance Chart in just two years with remixes ‘Ain’t No Mountain High Enough 2017’ in January 2018, ‘I’m Coming Out/Upside Down 2018’ in August that year and ‘The Boss 2019’ in April 2019.
Ross has also ventured into acting, with a Golden Globe Award-winning and Academy Award-nominated performance in the film Lady Sings the Blues (1972); she recorded its soundtrack, which became a number one hit on the US album chart. She also starred in two other feature films, Mahogany (1975) and The Wiz (1978), later acting in the television films Out of Darkness (1994), for which she also was nominated for a Golden Globe Award, and Double Platinum (1999).
Ross was named the “Female Entertainer of the Century” by Billboard in 1976. She is the only female artist to have number-one singles on the Billboard Hot 100 as a solo artist, as the other half of a duet, as a member of a trio, and as an ensemble member. Billboard ranked her as 28th greatest Hot 100 artist of all time. According to Joel Whitburn, Diana Ross ranks among the Top 5 artists on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart from 1955 to 2018 when combining her solo and Supremes’ hits. She had a top 10 UK hit in every one of the last five decades, and sang lead on a top 75 hit single at least once every year from 1964 to 1996 in the UK, a period of 33 consecutive years and a record for any performer. In 1988, Ross was inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Supremes. In 1990s, Guinness Book of World Records recognized her success in the United States and United Kingdom for having more hits than any female artist in the charts, with a career total of 70 hit singles with her work with the Supremes and as a solo artist. She was the recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors in 2007, the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2016.