Kara DioGuardi's Education and Early Career:
Kara DioGuardi was born December 9, 1970, the daughter of former Republican congressman from New York, Joseph J. DioGuardi. She received a degree in political science from Duke University. However, it was during her years there that she began writing songs. Following graduation, she secured a position working for Billboard magazine where she learned much of the business side of the music industry.
Top Songwriting and Production Hits:
- 2001 - Enrique Iglesias - "Escape" #12
- 2004 - Gwen Stefani - "Rich Girl" #3
- 2004 - Ashlee Simpson - "Pieces of Me" #5
- 2005 - Lindsay Lohan - "Confessions of a Broken Heart" #41
- 2005 - Ashlee Simpson - "Boyfriend" #13
- 2006 - Christina Aguilera - "Ain't No Other Man" #4
- 2006 - Kelly Clarkson - "Walk Away" #6
- 2006 - Pussycat Dolls - "Beep" #13
- 2007 - Celine Dion - "Taking Chances" #35
- 2008 - Pink - "Sober" #21
Kara DioGuardi experienced her share of efforts as a performer that didn't pan out. However, she was hired to work with Paula Abdul in the late 1990s to write songs for a comeback effort. The effort by Abdul did not materialize, but one of the songs, "Spinning Around," was given to Kylie Minogue to record. Released in the summer of 2000, the song became a #1 hit around the world. Kara DioGuardi made her US chart breakthrough co-writing Enrique Iglesias' hit single "Escape."
Kara DioGuardi a Top Pop Songwriter and Producer:
In 2004, the top 10 pop success of Gwen Stefani's "Rich Girl" and Ashlee Simpson's "Pieces of Me" made Kara DioGuardi one of the most in-demand pop songwriters in the business. She claims to have songs that have appeared on over 100 million records sold around the world. In 2007, BMI named DioGuardi the top pop songwriter of the year.
Kara DioGuardi is a co-owner of Arthouse Entertainment. It is an organization that develops and mentors rising songwriters, producers, and artists. Among the hit singles that have emerged from Arthouse are Mika's "Grace Kelly," Nick Lachey's "What's Left Of Me," and David Archuleta's "Crush."
American Idol Judge:
In the summer of 2008, Kara DioGuardi began a new project. She was named the 4th judge on the world's most successful talent show, American Idol. Bringing a significant amount of music industry experience to the new job, DioGuardi was identified by the show's producers as someone who would help "turn the heat up." She made her televised debut as judge January 13, 2009.