Born Joshua Winslow "Josh" Groban was born in Los Angeles. His four solo albums have been certified at least multi-platinum, and in 2007, he was charted as the number one best selling artist in the U.S. with over 21 million records sold. To date, he has sold over 24 million albums worldwide.
Groban first sang in public in the seventh grade when his music teacher asked him to sing a solo of "S'wonderful" at the school's Cabaret Night. At this time, he was more focused on theatrical arts.
In the summers of 1997 and 1998, he also attended the Interlochen Center for the Arts Camp in Michigan, majoring in music theatre, and began taking vocal lessons. Groban went on to attend the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts as a theatre major and graduated in 1999. He was admitted to the prestigious Carnegie Mellon University, intending to study drama, but he left four months into his first semester.
The event that propelled him into singing happened when his vocal coach, Seth Riggs, submitted a tape of Josh singing, "All I Ask of You," from The Phantom of the Opera, to producer, composer and arranger David Foster. Foster called him to stand in for an ailing Andrea Bocelli to rehearse a duet, "The Prayer," with Celine Dion at the rehearsal for the Grammy Awards in 1998. Groban reluctantly agreed.
Rosie O'Donnell was so impressed that she immediately invited him to appear on her daytime talk show. He got another big break when Foster asked him to sing at the California Governor's Gray Davis' 1999 inauguration.
His name and career soared with the public recognition he received, after being cast on Ally McBeal by the show's creator David E. Kelley, who asked him to perform "You're Still You" for the show's 2001 season finale.
Groban was offered a recording contract at Warner Bros. Records through Foster's 143 Records imprint. Under Foster's influence, Groban's first album focused more on classics such as "Gira Con Me Questa Notte" and "Alla Luce Del Sole."
Groban performed "There For Me" with Sarah Brightman on her 2000–01 La Luna World Tour, and was featured on her "La Luna" concert DVD. He recorded "For Always" with Lara Fabian on the movie soundtrack to A.I.: Artificial Intelligence in 2001.
The singer's self-titled debut album Josh Groban was released on November 20, 2001. Over the next year, it went from gold to double-platinum.
On February 24, 2002, Groban performed "The Prayer" with Charlotte Church at the closing ceremonies of the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, and by November, he had his own PBS special, "Josh Groban In Concert."
Groban's second album Closer, produced and written by Foster, was released on November 11, 2003. Groban said that he believed that this second album was a better reflection of him, and that his audience would be able to get a better idea of his personality from listening to it.
Two months after Closer was released, it rose on the Billboard charts from number 11 to number one. His cover of "You Raise Me Up" became very popular on the adult contemporary charts. Groban also performed the song "Remember" with Tanja Tzarovska on the Troy soundtrack, "Believe" on the soundtrack to the 2004 animated film The Polar Express, and a cover of Linkin Park's "My December."
In 2004 , Groban performed "Remember When It Rained," backed by a full orchestra, at the American Music Awards, where he was nominated for Favorite Male Artist in the pop category. Groban and his recordings were nominated for more than a dozen awards in 2004, including the American Music Award, a World Music Award, an Academy Award, and a Grammy.
Groban's third studio album Awake was officially released on November 7, 2006. His latest studio album, entitled Illuminations and the album was released on November 15, 2010. Most of the songs on the album are about "specific situations that I've had where love has existed and ultimately failed," Groban told The New York Times. Groban wrote 11 of the 13 songs on the album.
In a comedy called Crazy, Stupid, Love, an upcoming film starring Emma Stone and Steve Carell, scheduled for released in July 2011, Groban plays a character named Richard, a caddish lawyer.