Jesse McCartney (born April 9, 1987) is an American singer-songwriter, actor and voice actor. McCartney achieved fame in the late 1990s on the daytime drama All My Children as JR Chandler. He later joined boy band Dream Street, and eventually branched out into a solo musical career. Additionally, McCartney has appeared on shows such as Summerland and Greek. He also appears in the video game Kingdom Hearts II as Roxas.
McCartney was born to Ginger and Scott McCartney in Westchester, New York. He began performing in local community musicals at the age of seven, before joining the national tour of The King and I at age ten along with Phil of the Future star Ricky Ullman. Here he played the character of Louis. In 1998 he sang with the group Sugar Beats and can be heard on their 1998, 1999, and 2000 CD releases.
1999–2002: Dream Street
In 1999, McCartney joined the American pop boy band Dream Street, and was a member until 2002. Jesse McCartney has described the experience as a good "stepping stone" for his solo career. The group earned a gold record with their debut CD. At fifteen, he began work on a solo career with a local band, featuring musicians Dillon Kondor (guitar), Peter Chema (bass), Katie Spencer (keyboards), Alex Russeku (drums), Karina LaGravinese (background vocals), Sharisse Francisco (background vocals), and under the management of Ginger McCartney and Sherry Goffin Kondor, who co-produced his first album, Beautiful Soul.
McCartney released his first solo EP in July 2003. The album featured three songs: "Beautiful Soul", "Don't You", "Why Don't You Kiss Her". In 2004, he performed a duet with Anne Hathaway, "Don't Go Breaking My Heart", which is featured on the Ella Enchanted soundtrack.
2004–2006: Beautiful Soul and Right Where You Want Me
McCartney's debut solo album, Beautiful Soul, which was two years in the making, was released on September 28, 2004 in the United States and over a year later in Europe. He categorized it as a "pop record" with twists of urban. The album featured four songs that he co-wrote. Beautiful Soul reached number 15 on the Billboard 200. The album has been certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America, denoting over one million units of shipment to US retailers; it is his highest-certified album as of early 2009. As of mid-2006, the album had sold more than 1.5 million copies. The album's lead single of the same name reached number 16 on the Billboard Hot 100. McCartney was one of the artist with multiple awards at the 2005 Teen Choice Awards, winning Choice Crossover Artist, Choice Male Artist and Choice Breakout, Male. The following year, he won Favorite Male Singer at the Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards.
His first headlining tour, also named Beautiful Soul, began on May 2, 2005 at the Crest Theatre in Sacramento, California. The United States portion of the tour spanned 56 stops, ending on September 10, 2005 at the Madera District County Fair in Madera, California. In the fall of 2005, McCartney toured Australia, and opened for the Backstreet Boys in Europe in the summer of 2005. His July 9 performance at California's Great America in Santa Clara, California was recorded, released as Live: The Beautiful Soul Tour in November 2005.
After the filming of Keith wrapped, McCartney began working on his second album, Right Where You Want Me, co-writing all but one of the songs featured in it. Right Where You Want Me is more mature than his debut, reflecting his musical and personal growth since he recorded his debut album at age 15. Released by Hollywood Records on September 19, 2006, the album reached number 14 on the Billboard 200. The lead single of the album, "Right Where You Want Me", began receiving airplay on July 11, 2006. Although he did not launch a full tour, he did various promotional shows in Italy and the United States.
Relationship with Disney
He has contributed to numerous Disney soundtracks including Disneymania 2, Radio Disney Jingle Jams, A Cinderella Story, That's So Raven, Stuck in the Suburbs, Lizzie McGuire Total Party! Disneymania 3, Sydney White, Radio Disney Jams, Vol. 7, Radio Disney Jams, Vol. 8, DisneyMania 4, Hannah Montana, Radio Disney: Party Jams, That's So Raven Too!, Radio Disney Jams, Vol. 9, and Radio Disney Jams, Vol. 11.
McCartney also appeared on the Disney Channel teen sitcoms The Suite Life Of Zack and Cody and Hannah Montana.
2007–2009: Songwriting and Departure
In the fall of 2007, McCartney co-wrote the hit song "Bleeding Love" with Ryan Tedder of OneRepublic, produced by McCartney and Tedder for McCartney's third album, but gave it away to English singer Leona Lewis for her debut album, Spirit. The song was nominated for Record of the Year at the 2009 Grammy Awards. McCartney recorded his own version, which was released on some editions of his Departure album.
McCartney released his third album, Departure, on May 20, 2008 in the United States and Canada. Musically, it is a departure from his early works, showcasing more mature themes. The album has reached number 14 on the Billboard 200.
The album's lead single, "Leavin'", was released in March 2008, and reached number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100, giving McCartney his highest-charting single to date. The single was certified platinum by the RIAA, selling over two million downloads on iTunes, becoming McCartney's highest-certified single as of early 2009. The second single, "It's Over", was released on August 26, 2008, and reached #62 on the Hot 100. McCartney promoted Departure on a co-headlining tour with Jordin Sparks, which began in August 2008 and ended in September. He also did solo shows at theaters and small venues to support the album while on tour with Sparks. McCartney's 2008 summer tourmate, American Idol season six winner Jordin Sparks, approached him to write some material for her.
McCartney re-released Departure on April 7, 2009. The re-release, Departure: Recharged, featured four new songs: "Body Language", "Oxygen", "Crash & Burn" and "In My Veins". The re-release also features a remix of "How Do You Sleep?" with rapper-actor Ludacris. The third single from the album was released from the re-release and was the remix of "How Do You Sleep?". It was much more successful than the second single, reaching #26 on the Hot 100, The fourth and final single from the album was also released from the re-release and was a new version of "Body Language" featuring T-Pain. The single peaked at #10 on the Billboard Dance/Club Songs in its 13th week and rose up.
2010–present: Have It All
McCartney stated that his fourth album will have a similar sound to Departure but will be more R&B and urban-influenced than his third album. It was confirmed through McCartney's Twitter account that the album finished recording and production on August 13, 2010. He also confirmed August 16, 2010 that the first single is titled "Shake", which is playable on Tap Tap Revenge for iPhone & iPod Touch since September 6, 2010. The single was released through Digital Download on September 21, 2010 and debuted at #90 on the Billboard Hot 100. 'Have It All' was set to be released on December 28, 2010, but it will now be released in 2011. On December 3, McCartney said in an interview with Crash from Kiss 95.1, "I’ve been in the studio for the last three or four weeks and came up with some stuff that people are kind of excited about, so we're gonna hold off and wait till the new year and hopefully give the fans some extra material since they have to wait".