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Melanie Fiona: A Grammy Winner Gets Personal

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The MF Life is the second album by R&B singer Melanie Fiona, released this past week. The two-time Grammy winner says the title has sparked a lot of discussion.

"It gets people talking to each other," Fiona says. "I wanted it to be a collection of music and songs that make people think about the things that we actually go through and feel, and to acknowledge that — to know that there's someone out there singing their story, as well."

Born and raised in Toronto, with Caribbean roots, Fiona says she inherited her parents' musical tastes — artists such as Sam Cooke, Bob Marley, Patsy Cline, Otis Redding and Ben E. King.

"But I'm an '80s baby, so at the time I was born, Whitney Houston was 'the voice,'" Fiona says. "It was just so soothing to me to hear her inflection, her emotion and her control. It is just so magnificent, and it's incomparable, in my opinion, to any other voice that's ever existed. ... I think that had a lot of influence on me, and on why I feel I need to make music that should make people feel passionate about it."

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