From an early age Willow Smith, often professionally credited simply as Willow, attempted to follow in the creative footpaths of her celebrity parents, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith. Born October 31, 2000, in Los Angeles, California, Willow Smith made her first film appearance in 2007 in her father’s film I Am Legend and followed that up as a voice alongside her mother in the animated feature Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa. At the age of 9, she signed with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation and issued her first single, the poppy dance tune "Whip My Hair." The hit song reached number 11 on the Billboard Hot 100 and an accompanying video garnered over 2 million views. The song won her a YoungStar award at the BET Awards that she shared with her older brother, Jaden. Her debut album, Ardipithecus, arrived in 2005 with a selection of songs that she wrote and produced herself, and a less overtly pop sound than her famous single. She again produced and wrote most of the material on her follow-up, 2007’s The 1st. 2009’s Willow featured a duet with her brother Jaden, "U Know." She teamed with rapper and Roc Nation labelmate Tyler Cole for the 2020 album The Anxiety. Preceded by the pop-punk-tinged single "Transparent Soul" featuring Blink-182's Travis Barker, her fourth studio LP Lately I Feel Everything arrived in 2021 and included collaborations with Tierra Whack and Avril Lavigne. Willow continued experimenting with emo, grunge, and hard rock on her fifth outing Coping Mechanism, which spawned the single "Maybe It's My Fault" and featured Yves Tumor on the track "Perfectly Not Close to Me." She followed up in 2023 with the non-album single "Alone," and later in 2024 with the jazz-influenced "Symptom of Life," the first teaser from her sixth full-length album, < e m p a t h o g e n >.

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