NEW YORK, Nov. 13 — The season’s most eagerly anticipated new album will arrive in stores on December 12th, as award-winning 22-year old J/19 recording artist Fantasia completes her second album FANTASIA. The long-awaited new album follows-up her RIAA platinum debut of November 2004, Free Yourself, containing “I Believe” — the first time in the history of the Billboard Hot 100 that an artist debuted at #1 with her first solo record — which forever solidified the former American Idol champion’s career. FANTASIA is already shaping up as a major best-seller for 2007, with its first single pick, “Hood Boy” featuring Big Boi from OutKast, logging nearly 100,000 plays at Fantasia’s MySpace site (http://www.myspace.com/fantasiabarrino). “Hood Boy” written by Johnta Austin and produced by Tone Mason, was #3 most added at Urban Mainstream radio out of the box on November 6th. Fantasia will launch a major Yahoo! Music promotion in December around “Hood Boy” as she becomes their “Get Your Freak On” (Fans’ Only) artist. It is their premiere video program taking user generated content and editing it together uniting fans with superstar artists. Fantasia’s list of top collaborators on FANTASIA begins with Missy Elliott, who co-wrote and produced three tracks on Free Yourself, including the title tune crossover hit (#3 R&B and Top 40 pop), and who now returns for another round. For the new album, Missy co-wrote and produced “Turn This Party Up!,” “Two Weeks Notice,” and “No Stopppin’.” Also on board are producers Dre & Vidal (“I Nominate U,” “Baby Makin Hips”); Midi Mafia (“When I See U,” “Broke”); Swizz Beatz (“Surround U”); Kwame (“Not The Way It Is,” written by Sean Garrett); and three tracks written by Candice & Bulewa and produced by Danja (“Bore Me (Yawn),” “Uneligible,” “Girl Like Me”). A special treat is the album’s closing track, “I Feel Beautiful,” a superstar collaboration with hit songwriter Diane Warren and hitmaking producer Babyface. “The lyrics on that song are very emotional for me,” Fantasia says, “and when I recorded it, I just broke down at the end. It’s my song for my Mom.” A truly down-to-earth star from High Point, North Carolina, Fantasia first entered the pop music record books in June 2004 with her #1 debut single, “I Believe,” which also set a one-week 2004 Soundscan sales record in the process. The Free Yourself album ultimately spent 10 weeks in the Top 10 on the R&B Albums chart. Her second single, “Truth Is” spent an astounding 13 consecutive weeks at #1 on the Urban Adult chart in the spring 2005, and had the most one-week airplay totals ever on an adult record in Billboard and Monitor history, with a total of 1558 spins. For all her accomplishments, Fantasia gathered award nominations from every corner of the entertainment industry — the Grammy Awards, American Music Awards, Vibe Awards, Soul Train Awards and Soul Train “Lady of Soul” Awards, Billboard Music Awards and R&B & Hip Hop Awards, BET Awards, NAACP Image Awards, Teen Choice Awards — more than 20 nominations in all. Among the honors she took home were Outstanding Female Artist at the NAACP Image Awards; and Top-Selling R&B/Hip-Hop Single of the Year and Top-Selling Single of the Year for “I Believe” at the year-end Billboard Music Awards. Fantasia kicked off 2006 with her first acting gig in the compelling original Lifetime movie, “The Fantasia Barrino Story: Life is Not a Fairy Tale,” which was watched by more than 19 million viewers during the August 19-20 weekend. The movie became Lifetime’s second most-watched movie in its 22 year history. The movie will re-air on Thanksgiving night, November 23rd from 9PM-11PM. There’ll be no crying when FANTASIA hits the streets and the next exciting chapter in Fantasia’s career begins. The songs, many of them written especially for her, reflect where she is at in life today. “I’ve let go of things from the past and I’m having a good time,” she says. “I was able to let go of the past with the Lifetime movie and now I’m on a whole different level. I worked with some really great people on this album like Missy Elliott, Dre & Vidal, Midi Mafia, and Swizz Beatz, and I let everyone know that I’ve moved on from where I was.”
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