September 13: Today is singer-songwriter Fiona Apple's 34th birthday.

Born in New York City, Fiona Apple McAfee Maggart gained popularity through her 1996 debut album Tidal, especially with the Grammy Award-winning single "Criminal." Her music is influenced by early jazz, pop, to alt-rock. It is also characterized by Apple's candid personal lyrics and imaginative productions, often featuring idiosyncratic arrangements with instruments as varied as the French horn and optigan.

In 1994, Apple gave a demo tape of 3 songs to the babysitter of music publicist Kathryn Schenker. Schenker then passed the tape along to a Sony Music executive. Her voice, piano skills and lyrics captured his attention, and She was signed to a record deal.

Apple's debut album, Tidal, went platinum three times, with 2.7 million copies sold. The single "Criminal" from the album became Apple's breakthrough hit. The song reached the top forty on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.

(Press an album cover for direct link to the entire Amazon Website):

Fiona Apple: Extraordinary MachineTidal