Akon, born Alioune BadaraThiam on (April 16,1973), is an American singer, songwriter from Senegalese origin.
Akon, born Alioune Thiam, grew up in Senegal before he and his family (including his father, jazz percussionist Momar Thiam) eventually settled in the USA, in the state of New Jersey. There he discovered hip-hop and R&B music as well as crime. He was eventually jailed, but he used the time to work on his musical ideas. Upon release, Akon began writing and recording tracks in a home studio. The tapes found their way to SRC/Universal, which eventually released "Trouble," Akon's debut LP, in June 2004. The album was an interesting hybrid of Akon's hip-hop-influenced sung lyrics and silky, West African-styled vocals with East Coast- and Southern-styled beats. The success of the song "Locked Up" raised Akon's profile, and he followed up in the fall of 2006 with Konvicted. Soon enough, two of the album's singles, "I Wanna Love You" and "Smack That," had made their way to the upper regions of the Billboard charts. ~