Michelle Wright. Singer, b Merlin, Ont, 1 July 1962. Wright left her Chatham, Ont, home at age 19 for a career in country music. She performed extensively across Canada and the US before finally securing a recording contract in Nashville. Her Do Right by Me debut album was released in 1988 and met with modest success. But the husky-voiced singer's self-titled second album produced four hits, was certified gold in Canada, and made Wright a major country music star. Her 1992 effort, Now & Then, was a huge success in the US and earned her the title of best new female vocalist from the Academy of Country Music. Now & Then has sold more than 200,000 copies in Canada.
The Reasons Why followed in 1994 and shipped gold (pre-release sales of 50,000 copies) in Canada. It was the first time a Canadian country artist had ever accomplished that and the album later reached double-platinum. For Me It's You was released in 1996 and went gold. Wright celebrated her first 10 years as an international recording artist with the 1999 release of Michelle Wright: The Greatest Hits Collection. It included such favourites as "Take It Like A Man" and "He Would Be Sixteen" and earned the artist another gold album. Wright's 2002 release, Shut Up and Kiss Me, was her first album of all-new material since 1996.
Wright had a very busy 2004, as she worked on a new country album as well as a holiday release called A Wright Christmas. The Nashville resident published her first book, A Year in the Life: The Journals of Michelle Wright, and launched a one-hour weekly Canadian syndicated radio show called The Women of Country with Michelle Wright. She also continued to tour and stayed active with a number of charities. Savannah Music released Everything and More in 2006 and Wright's first live album, The Wright Songs: An Acoustic Evening With Michelle Wright, in 2011. A new studio album is expected in early 2013 following the release of two singles.
Over the years, Wright won two Juno Awards, 15 Canadian Country Music Awards (see Canadian Country Music Association), 11 Big Country Awards, one MuchMusic Video Award and one SOCAN Award. She was also inducted into the Canadian Country Music Association Hall of Fame in 2011. That recognition, combined with 24 top 10 hits (including seven that reached #1), made her one of Canada's biggest country music stars ever. Wright was inducted into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame in 2011.