SARAH MCLACHLAN FACTS:
Hometown: Halifax, Nova Scotia
Awards: 8 Juno Awards, 3 Grammys; 1 Billboard Music Award
Albums: Touch (1988); Solace (1991); Fumbling Towards Ecstasy (1993), Surfacing (1997), Afterglow (2003), Wintersong (2006), Laws of Illusion (2010);
Hits: "Building a Mystery", "Adia", "Angel", "I Will Remember You"
Other: Founded the Lilith Fair tour
Sarah McLachlan rose to fame in the early '90s thanks to her angelic voice and soothing lyrics. In the years since her breakout, she has continued to be one of the most popular female musicians across the globe, and remains one of the best selling Canadian-born musicians of all time.
McLachlan got her start as the singer for a small band when she was in high school. At the band's first concert, she was approached by an independent record label and offered a contract. After she finished high school and attended one year at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, she moved to Vancouver to begin her recording career.
McLachlan first gained notoriety with her first album, Touch, which was released in 1988. The record, which was produced when she was just 20-years-old, was both a critical and commercial success. While her debut was certainly popular, her follow-up would be even more so. Solace, which was released in 1991, was wildly successful in Canada, and featured the hit singles "The Path of Thorns (Terms)" and "Into the Fire."
Despite being certified double platinum in Canada, it would not be until her third release that McLachlan experienced widespread fame. 1993's Fumbling Towards Ecstasy was a big hit in Canada, and over the next couple years it would spread throughout the rest of the world. By 2003, it had sold 2.8 million copies in the United States.
Riding the success of Fumbling Towards Ecstasy, McLachlan released Surfacing in 1997, which would eventually become her highest-selling album. The record included some of her most famous songs such as "Building a Mystery," "Adia," and "Sweet Surrender." At the peak of her popularity, McLachlan launched Lilith Fair in 1997 as a way to showcase the talents of female musicians. The inaugural festival grossed more than $16 million that year, making it the highest grossing touring festival of 1997.
It would be six years before McLachlan released another album with 2003's Afterglow, which included the hits "World on Fire" and "Fallen." Her most recent endeavor, 2010's Laws of Illusion, coincided with the renewing of the Lilith Fair, which toured throughout the summer of 2010 for the first time since 1999. She has also been a fierce advocate of the ASPCA, and frequently appeals for donations to the organization.