Katy Perry was born Katheryn Elizabeth Hudson in Santa Barbara, California, to Christian pastor parents, Keith and Mary Hudson. In 2001, she released a self-titled gospel album under her real name, Katy Hudson. Katy changed her surname to "Perry," her mother Mary's maiden name, as to avoid confusion with the actress, Kate Hudson.
Perry had a strong religious upbringing. She grew up listening to gospel music, sang in a church choir between the ages of nine and seventeen, and was even banned by her parents from listening to secular (non-religious) music.
Katy Perry had vocal lessons between the ages of nine and sixteen. She also took lessons at the Music Academy of the West, where she studied Italian opera.
Perry was dropped by both Island and Columbia before going on to sign with Capitol Music Group, who released her major-label debut album, One of the Boys
, on June 17, 2008. The album's lead single, "I Kissed a Girl
," was released May 6, 2009 and topped the US chart for seven consecutive weeks. Perry revealed to Q Magazine
that the track's lyrics are inspired by an old friend: "The song was inspired by a friendship I had with a girl when I was 15, but I didn't kiss her. I was totally obsessed with her. She was beautiful-porcelain skin, perfect lips - and I still talk to her, but I've never told her the song is about her."
Katy Perry fell out with Lily Allen in 2008 after branding herself "a skinnier version" of the British singer. Perry later apologized for the remark.
In 2008, Katy filmed a cameo appearance in Get Him to the Greek, during which she kissed Aldous Snow, a character played by her future husband, Russell Brand. The scene was cut and does not appear in the final movie.
Katy Perry and Russell Brand began dating after meeting again in September 2009 at the MTV Video Music Awards, which Brand was hosting. The couple got engaged in December 2009 and married on October 23, 2010 during a traditional Hindu ceremony in Rajasthan, India.
Brand announced on December 30, 2011, that they were divorcing after 14 months of marriage.
Perry released her second major-label album, Teenage Dream, on August 24th, 2010. The record topped the Australian, Austrian, Canadian, Irish, New Zealand, Scottish, UK and US album charts. A limited number of physical copies of Teenage Dream were doused in a cotton candy scent.
In 2010, Katy Perry appeared as a guest judge on American Idol and the UK version of The X Factor.
Perry released a fragrance called "Purr" in November 2010, which she followed up with a scent called "Miaow." Katy loves cats and named one "Kitty Purry." Various forms of feline show up in her artwork and stage presentation.
In September 2010, Perry performed "Hot n Cold
" on the children's show, Sesame Street
. Four days before the scheduled airing, the performance was pulled as Perry was judged to be showing an unsuitable amount of cleavage.
In December 2010, she appeared in a live action Christmas special of The Simpsons, playing Moe the Bartender's girlfriend.
Perry voiced the character of Smurfette in 2011 3D family film, The Smurfs.
In August 2011, her single, "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)
," charted at #1 in the US, making Perry the first woman with five #1 singles from the same album on the Billboard Hot 100.
Perry has several tattoos including: The word "Jesus" on her left wrist, a strawberry on her left ankle, and "Go with the flow" written in Sanskrit on the inside of her right bicep. Perry's husband, Russell Brand, also has the latter tattoo.
Katy Perry overtook Justin Bieber in early November 2013 as having the most popular celebrity Twitter account with over 46 million followers.
Perry admitted some of her domestic failings to the German magazine, Joy. "The first thing you should know about me is that I can't even boil an egg," she laughed. "Secondly, I'm always late. I can't help it; I get it from my mother. Also I find it hard to turn down sweets if there are some in the studio."
Perry told GQ magazine that she sees "everything through a spiritual lens." She explained: "I believe in a lot of astrology. I believe in aliens. I look up into the stars and I imagine: How self-important are we to think that we are the only life-form."
Perry turned emergency midwife when a friend went into labor at her house. "Finally, you can add 'Helps deliver babies in living rooms' to my resume," she tweeted.
Both Dr. Luke and Max Martin are part of Perry's core songwriting team. "My strengths are melodies and lyrics," Perry told Billboard magazine. "Max is the king of melodies and Luke is the king of sounds. When we get together we make the biggest songs."
Katy Perry sang a medley of her hits during a halftime performance at the 2015 Super Bowl when she was joined by Lenny Kravitz and Missy Ellott. Her 13-minute extravaganza was watched by a record 118.5 million viewers, surpassing Bruno Mars' efforts in 2014 by 3.2 million.
Katy Perry spent a record 69 consecutive weeks in the Hot 100's Top 10 with her first five singles from Teenage Dream. The second longest run in the Top 10 was the 48 weeks that Ace of Base spent in 1993-94.
She supported Hillary Clinton in her 2016 run for President of the United States when she ran against Donald Trump. With Trump pulling support from conservative and less educated voters, Perry used her platform at the Democratic National Convention to explain that although she fit those categories when she was younger, she was going in a different direction. "Both of my parents are pastors and staunch Republicans," she said. "I didn't finish high school, and unfortunately I don't have a formal education. But I do have an open mind and I have a voice. I'm asking you to have an open mind and to use your voice."
Katy Perry has the bizarre ability of being able to puff out her neck like a frog. Watch her here
demonstrate this on American Idol