Bruno Mars, whose real name is Peter Gene Hernandez, was born in Hawaii in 1985. His early life in Hawaii was interesting and very unusual, and it provided the foundation for the singer and entertainer he would become.
His entire family was involved in the music business. His mother was a singer and a dancer, his father did Little Richard impersonations, and his uncle was an Elvis impersonator. They all encouraged little Peter’s talents. He regularly impersonated Elvis, Michael Jackson, The Temptations and others, and at the age of four joined the family band, The Love Notes.
In the early 90s he began establishing a reputation for himself – even making a movie appearance as “Little Elvis” in the movie “Honeymoon in Vegas”.
But his parents divorced when he was 12 (1997), and the family band broke up leaving Peter (Bruno) without a regular gig to showcase his growing talents. He lived with his now unemployed father for a few long, tough years. They lived out of his father’s car, on rooftops, and in an abandoned bird zoo called Paradise Park, where Mars’ father worked before it was shut down.
When he was 18, (2003) Mars moved to Los Angeles to renew his musical career and was signed fairly quickly with Motown Records. After an unsuccessful run in his first few years he was dropped by Motown. Then, in 2009 he signed with Atlantic Records and formed a production company called The Smeezingtons. That is when the talents he had developed as a child started to pay dividends and his career rocketed upwards.
His debut studio album Doo-Wops & Hooligans (2010) included the hit singles Just the Way You Are, Grenade, and The Lazy Song and peaked at number three on the Billboard 200 chart in the U.S. It rose to number one in Canada, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom and Just the Way You Are won the Grammy Award for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.
What an amazing turn around! Continued success over the next few years made Mars one of the best selling musical artists of all time. Mars has sold over 180 million singles and 26 million albums worldwide. He has had 7 number one singles on the Billboard Hot 100, and had 5 of those faster than any solo artist other than Elvis.