Bleta “Bebe” Rexha (born August 30, 1989) is an American singer, songwriter, and record producer. After signing with Warner Bros. Records in 2013, Rexha received songwriting credits on Eminem and Rihanna’s single “The Monster” (which later received the Grammy Award for Best Rap/Sung Performance) and has also contributed songwriting to songs recorded by Selena Gomez and Nick Jonas. Rexha released her debut extended play in 2015, I Don’t Wanna Grow Up, which saw the moderate commercial success of the single “I’m Gonna Show You Crazy”.
Rexha released two additional extended plays in 2017, All Your Fault: Pt. 1 and All Your Fault: Pt. 2, which again saw the moderate success of the singles “I Got You” and “The Way I Are (Dance With Somebody)”. Rexha has also seen success with several collaborations including “Me, Myself & I” with G-Eazy, “In the Name of Love” with Martin Garrix, and “Meant to Be” with Florida Georgia Line, the latter of which seeing large success as a country crossover single, peaking at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States. Rexha’s debut studio album Expectations (2018) reached number 13 on the Billboard 200 chart in the United States and saw the success of its lead single “I’m a Mess”, and brought Rexha a nomination for the Grammy Award for Best New Artist.
Rexha was born on August 30, 1989, in Brooklyn, New York, to ethnic Albanian parents. Her father, Flamur Rexha, is an Albanian born in Debar, when it was part of Yugoslavia. He immigrated to the U.S. at the age of 21, and her mother, Bukurije Rexha, was born in the U.S. to an Albanian family with roots in Gostivar (which, like Debar, is now part of the Republic of Macedonia). In the Albanian language, bletë means “bee”; and she explained “My parents are Albanian, and people started calling me ‘Bebe’ for short.” Bleta and her family moved to nearby Staten Island when she was six.
Rexha played trumpet and taught herself to play guitar and piano. Rexha attended Tottenville High School on Staten Island, where she took part in a variety of musicals. She also joined the choir, while still in high school. After joining the choir, she discovered that her voice was a coloratura soprano. Rexha lists Coldplay, the Cranberries, Lauryn Hill, Alanis Morissette, and Kanye West as musical influences.
As a teenager, Rexha submitted a song to be performed at the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences’ annual “Grammy Day” event. Rexha earned the “Best Teen Songwriter” award, beating around 700 other entrants. As a result, she signed a contract with talent scout Samantha Cox, who encouraged Rexha to enroll in songwriting classes in Manhattan.
Rexha is a vocal supporter of the Lgbtq+ community, and has described her own sexuality as “fluid”.
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