Multi-platinum R&B and pop singer Mario Dewar Barrett was born August 27, 1986 in Baltimore, Maryland. Mario's single mother had problems with drug addiction so it was his grandmother who took care of him. They lived in different areas of Baltimore including Pikesville, Randallstown and Gwynn Oak. At the age of four, Mario made up his mind to be a singer. His mother showed support by buying a karaoke machine for him. At a Coppin State College talent show, his rendition of “I'll Make Love to You” impressed producer Troy Patterson. He was just 11-years-old when he got discovered. Mario went to Millford Mill Academy and was offered a record deal by Clive Davis' J. Records when he was just 14.
In 2001, when he was 15, he contributed to Dr. Dolittle 2's soundtrack. The following year he launched his self-titled debut album containing the hit singles “Just a Friend,” “Braid My Hair” and “C'mon.” His second album was released in 2004, titled Turning Point, and produced the singles “Let Me Love You,” “How Could You,” “Here I Go Again” and “Boom.” His third album Go was released in 2007 and included the songs “How Do I Breathe” and “Crying Out for Me.”
Mario has appeared in several films including Step Up and Freedom Writers. In 2007, MTV aired a documentary special that focused on his mother's addiction, titled I Won't Love You to Death: The Story of Mario and His Mom.
Mario is a celebrity contestant on season 6 of ABC's reality series Dancing with the Stars. He is paired with professional dancer Karina Smirnoff
(Photo courtesy of ABC)