The third single off Teenage Dream became an anthem among millennials, reminding us that we should never, ever feel like a plastic bag. Thought to be inspirational and encouraging listeners to embrace their differences, Perry dedicated the music video to the It Gets Better Project. The song has gone six times platinum in the United States, won Video of the Year at the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards, and was nominated for Record of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance at the 2012 Grammy Awards.
G: Gospel Rock
Raised in a Christian home by two Pentacostal pastors, Perry started out in the Christian music scene. Blond at the time, her first album, Katy Hudson, was released in 2001 by Red Hill Records. Perry was heralded for her songwriting on the album (which includes songs called “Trust In Me” and “Faith Won’t Fail”) and is the lone writer on four of the album’s 10 tracks.
H: Hudson, Katheryn
The birth name of the woman we call Katy Perry. After the release of her debut album, Perry assumed her mother’s maiden name as her stage name and has never looked back. Seeing her run around with actress Kate Hudson years later, we can only assume these two women bonded over having the same name.
I: Island Records
Now known as the Island Def Jam Music Group, Island Records signed Perry after she made the move away from Christian rock. Despite hooking up with Glen Ballard and aspiring to record in the style of her idol, Alanis Morissette, Perry was dropped by the label. She signed with Colubmia in 2004, but was dropped in 2006 after nearly completing a full album.
J: Jackson, Michael
Teenage Dream would quickly become the gift that kept on giving. With five No. 1 singles, Perry tied the King of Pop’s legendary record and became the first female artist to achieve such a feat on the Billboard Hot 100. Sixth single “The One That Got Away” peaked at No. 3 on the charts, making Perry the third artist to release six Top Five songs from the same album.