Eric Benét

Eric Benét (Courtesy Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

Eric Bent Jordan (born October 15, 1966), known professionally as Eric Benet is an American R&B and neo soul singer-songwriter, who has received a total of four Grammy nominations to date for his musical work.


Bent was his mother's maiden name, and he was born in Mobile, Alabama and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and is the youngest of five siblings.

Bent sang with a Top 100-style group called Gerard in the late 1980s. Bent, his sister Lisa, and his cousin George Nash Jr. formed a band called Bent and released a self-titled album in 1992, and it went on to sell over 100,000 copies. Two years later, Eric Bent broke onto the music scene with his solo career and signed with Warner Bros. Records, releasing his debut solo album, True to Myself in 1996. His sophomore album, A Day in the Life, was released in 1999 and featured his smash hit "Spend My Life With You (featuring Tamia)", which rose to #1 on the US Billboard R&B charts (for 3 weeks), was certified gold, and nominated for a 2000 Grammy Award for "Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group". The album also won a Soul Train Music Award for "Best R&B/Soul Album, Male".

Bent's career, however, was interrupted by a series of personal tragedies. His father died of cancer. His girlfriend Tami Marie Stauff died on April 24, 1993 from injuries suffered in an automobile accident; their daughter, India, was born in 1991 leaving Eric a single father to a one year old.

He married actress Halle Berry in January 2001, but by early October 2003 they had separated, with the divorce finalized in January 2005. On July 31, 2011, he married Prince's ex-wife, Manuela Testolini, who gave birth to their first child, a baby girl Lucia Bella, in December 2011.


In 1994, Bent signed with Warner Bros. Records, releasing his solo debut album, True to Myself in 1996. Individual songs from the album were successful, including the top-ten R&B hits "Spiritual Thang", "Femininity" and "Let's Stay Together", which appeared on the soundtrack of the film A Thin Line Between Love and Hate.

In between albums, Eric collaborated with Something For The People on their 1997 album This Time It's Personal singing leads on the single "Act Like You Want It". His next album, A Day in the Life, was released in 1999. Its first single, "Georgy Porgy (featuring Faith Evans)" received significant airplay, but the second single, "Spend My Life With You (featuring Tamia)", became a smash hit. "Spend My Life With You" rose to number one on the American R&B charts, was certified gold, and nominated for a 2000 Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group. The album, A Day in the Life also won a Soul Train Music Award for Best R&B/Soul Album, Male.

Bent also recorded for Earth, Wind, and Fire's 30th anniversary CD. He contributed vocals to the post-Katrina charity single, "Heart of America" along with Michael McDonald, Wynonna Judd, and Terry Dexter. He has also lent his vocals to many jazz albums for such artists as Wayman Tisdale, George Duke, Chris Botti, Jeff Lorber, Boney James, etc.

Bent recorded his following album Better and Better in 2001, but Warner Bros. rejected to release this album and forced him to stay in R&B genre. Due to the controversy about music style and creative freedom, Bent changed to Reprise-distributed label Friday Records and recorded his next album, Hurricane. Thus Hurricane became his third (released) studio album on June 21, 2005 in the US. "I Wanna Be Loved" was the song that received the most airplay. The single reached number two on the Urban Adult Contemporary chart.

His fourth album Love & Life was released on September 9, 2008. It debuted at number eleven on the Billboard 200 and number two on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, making this his own highest peak position since A Day in the Life in 1999. The first single "You're the Only One" is also his first top 20 hit on the R&B chart in two years.

Lost in Time was Bent's fifth studio album which was released in the US on November 30, 2010. The first single "Sometimes I Cry" reached number one on the Hot Adult R&B Songs Chart. With its musical direction representing Benet's homage to the sweet soul sound of the early to mid-1970s, the album featured duets with Faith Evans; Chrisette Michelle; Ledisi; and Eddie Levert of The O'Jays.

On June 5th, 2012 Eric then released his latest album The One (available on iTunes). The One marks a moment of positive transition in his life and lyrically speaks to the many new beginnings developing in his career and family. The One will also be the first album released on Bent's newly formed record label Jordan House Records, which he created in partnership with EMI. "Real Love" was the first single off The One and was the #1 added song to Urban AC when shipped to radio in October 2011. This new single is a taste of what to expect on Bent's new album, which he describes as a "very contemporary approach to old-school songwriting integrity". The One also features his signature mid-70s soul groote, a 6ariety of instruments from strings to horns to featured artists and even a duet with his first daughter India.

Acting career

Bent has also been active as an actor; he had a recurring role on the television program For Your Love (1998"2002). He made his film debut alongside Mariah Carey in Glitter (2001). He has a recurring role on the MTV scripted show Kaya (2007) where he plays a music producer. Benet appeared on Half & Half in which he portrayed Reece Wilcox in 2005.

His second feature film`role Trinity Goodheart premiered at the American Black Film Festival on July 9, 2011 and is set to premiere on GMC on August 20, 2011.

Awards and nominations

  • Black Reel Awards
    • 2002, winner, Best Song "Love Don't Love Me" (The Brothers)
    • 2012, nominee, Best Actor: Television Movie or Mini-Series (Trinity Goodheart)
  • Grammy Awards
    • 2000, Nominee (Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group) "Spend My Life with You" (with Tamia)
    • 2009, Nominee (Best R&B Male Performance) "You're the Only One"
    • 2009, Nominee (Best R&B Album) Love & Life
    • 2012, Nominee (Best Traditional R&B Performance) "Sometimes I Cry"
  • NAACP Image Awards
    • 1997, Nominee (Outstanding New Artists) "True To Myself"
    • 2000, Nominee (Outstanding Male Artist) "A Day In The Life"
    • 2000, Winner (Outstanding Song) "Spend My Life With You" - Songwriter: Eric Benet
    • 2000, Nominee (Outstanding Album) "A Day In The Life"
    • 2001, Nominee (Outstanding Male Artist) "When You Think of Me" (featuring Roy Ayers)
    • 2001, Nominee (Outstanding Music Video) "When You Think of Me" (Directed by Prentice Smith)



Year Album details Chart positions Certifications
(sales threshold)
1996 True to Myself

  • First studio album
  • Release date: September 24, 1996
  • Label: Warner Bros.
174 38
1999 A Day in the Life

  • Second studio album
  • Release date: April 27, 1999
  • Label: Warner Bros.
25 6
  • RIAA: Gold
2001 Better and Better

  • Unreleased studio album
  • Label: Warner Bros.
"? "?
2005 Hurricane

  • Third studio album
  • Release date: June 21, 2005
  • Label: Friday / Reprise
133 27
2008 Love & Life

  • Fourth studio album
  • Release date: September 9, 2008
  • Label: Friday / Reprise
11 2
2010 Lost in Time

  • Fifth studio album
  • Release date: November 30, 2010
  • Label: Reprise
33 8
2012 The One

  • Sixth studio album
  • Release date: June 5, 2012
  • Label: Jordan House / EMI
32 5
""?" denotes releases that did not chart


Year Single Peak chart positions Album
U.S. U.S.
1996 "Let's Stay Together" "? 45 True to Myself
"Spiritual Thang" "? 41
1997 "Femininity" "? 24
"True to Myself" "? 43
1999 "Georgy Porgy" (featuring Faith Evans) 56 15 A Day in the Life
"Spend My Life with You" (featuring Tamia) 22 1
2000 "When You Think of Me" "? 46
2001 "Love Don't Love Me" "? 38 Better & Better (Unreleased)
2005 "I Wanna Be Loved" "? 28 Hurricane
"Hurricane" "? "?
2006 "Where Does the Love Go" (with Yvonne Catterfeld) "? "?
"Pretty Baby" "? 44
2008 "You're the Only One" 106 17 Love & Life
"The Hunger" "? 49
2009 "Chocolate Legs" "? 36
2010 "Sometimes I Cry" 107 16 Lost in Time
"Never Want to Live Without You" "? 43
2012 "Real Love" "? 37 The One
"Harriett Jones" "? 46
2013 "News For You" "? "?


Year Artist Title Chart positions Album
Gaon Chart Korea K-Pop Hot 100
2013 JeA (Brown Eyed Girls) "Days & Nights (Feat. Eric Bent)" - - Just JeA

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