Kelis Rogers-Jones (née Rogers, born August 21, 1979), better known as Kelis (pronounced kuh-LEECE), is a Grammy Award-nominated American R&B singer-songwriter and since her debut, she has had nine top-40 singles in the UK as a solo artist and, as a featured artist, has had six top-40 singles to date.
Kelis was born and raised in the Harlem neighborhood of New York City, New York. Her first name, pronounced /kəˈlis/ (she can be heard singing her own name in the song Blindfold me), is a combination of her father's name, Kenneth, and her mother's name, Eveliss. Kenneth is a Jamaican jazz musician, Pentecostal minister, and professor at Wesleyan University. Eveliss is a Chinese-Puerto Rican fashion designer who inspired Kelis to pursue her singing career.