Eric Benet is an award-winning American R&B singer, songwriter, and actor who started singing professionally from the time he was in his 20s. His musical work has earned him four Grammy Award nominations in different categories and has also won him one Black Reel Awards and one NAACP Image Award.
Being a public figure, several questions have been asked about his upbringing, family, and what have you. From his age to his net worth and other facts of his life, below are answers to some of the inquiries often made about this Eric.
Eric Benet’s Age and Life Before the Fame
The youngest among his four siblings, Eric Benet was born as Eric Benét Jordan on October 15, 1966, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he attended the Milwaukee Trade and Technical High School.
Eric’s professional music career began in the late 1980s when he started singing with a group known as Gerard. He also formed a self-named group with his sister Lisa, and his cousin George Nash Jr. at the age of 24, and together, they released an album in 1992 titled Benet. After a two-year hiatus, Eric Benét began his solo career, signed with Warner Bros. Records, and released his solo debut album titled True to Myself in 1996.
In 1999, his second album, A Day in the Life, which won a Soul Train Music Award for Best R&B/Soul Album (Male) was released. While its first single “Georgy Porgy” (featuring Faith Evans) was played significantly on air, the second, “Spend My Life With You” (featuring the Canadian artist, Tamia) turned out to be a hit as it occupied the number one spot on the American R&B charts for three weeks. Also, it was certified gold and was nominated for Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group in the year 2000.
Eric Benet’s third album, Better and Better, was recorded in 2001, but because it was outside the R&B genre which Warner Bros. wanted him to remain in, the label refused to release it. As a result of the controversy which revolved around music style and creative freedom, Eric Benet signed a new record deal with Reprise Records and released his next and third studio album, Hurricane, on June 21, 2005, in the US.
On September 9, 2008, the singer released his fourth album titled Love & Life and it debuted at the 11th spot on the Billboard 200 and number two on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart. This was followed two years later by the release of his fifth studio album, Lost in Time. It included the single “Sometimes I Cry” which rose to the first position on the Hot Adult R&B Songs Chart.
In partnership with EMI, Eric Benet eventually formed his own independent record label named Jordan House Records and under the label, he released his sixth and seventh albums titled The One (2012) and Eric Benét (2016).
Meanwhile, in April 2014, the singer signed Calvin Richardson and Goapele to his label alongside BMG/Primary Wave Music to release their then-upcoming albums in the United States. In the same year, he collaborated with The Afropeans to revisit his 2012 album The One and this gave rise to an international album, The Other One, which was also released in 2014. He subsequently released an album of classic cover songs later that year titled From E to U, Vol. 1.
His Acting Career
Within the period he released his second album, Eric Benet kicked off his acting career guest-starring on the television series For Your Love in 1999. He appeared in his first film together with Mariah Carey in the 2001 movie, Glitter. He also had a recurring role as a music producer in the MTV series, Kaya (2007), which was canceled after the end of its first season.
In 2005, Eric Benet played the role of Reece Wilcox on the series Half & Half and on July 9, 2011, his second feature film, Trinity Goodheart, debuted at the American Black Film Festival. A few years later (in 2013), the entertainer made a guest appearance on the second season of The Real Husbands of Hollywood.
From the time Eric Benet got into the music industry, he has remained very active with many albums and commercially successful singles to his credit. Apart from the huge amount of money he has made from his music career, he has also made some money from acting and this combined brings his net worth to about $5 million.
What To Know About His Wife and Daughters
The super-talented singer has been married twice. His first marriage, which was to the popular actress Halle Berry, was contracted in January 2001 after they dated for two years. Sadly, their union survived barely two years as the couple got separated in October 2003. Subsequently, their divorce was finalized in January 2005.
Moving forward, Eric Benet found love again in the arms of a philanthropist, Manuela Testolini, a native of Toronto. They met at a Los Angeles Fashion Week party more than ten years ago and immediately fell in love over a bar conversation about her charity work and her life.
They had already been together for a couple of months before Eric realized that her then-soon-to-be-ex-husband was the legendary musician Prince. They eventually tied the knot in July 2011 and welcomed their first child, a daughter named Lucia Bella, on 21 December 2011. Their second child, another daughter named Amoura Luna also arrived in July 2014.
Meanwhile, Eric had a daughter named India in 1991, with his girlfriend named Tami Marie Stauff, who died on the 24th of April 1993 following an automobile accident that left her with severe injuries.
Facts About Eric Benet
1. Benet lost his father to cancer.
2. His first daughter, India, was only a year old when her mother died.
3. The singer is of African-American ancestry and is 5 feet 11 inches tall.
4. Eric Benet is a part of a number of charitable organizations, including ‘Mission Save Her’ and ‘In a Perfect World’.