The group Chloe x Halle has only been on the music scene for a few years, yet the music duo has already left a big mark. Discovered by one of music’s biggest stars when they were youngsters, in just a few short years, sisters Chloe and Halle Bailey racked up a string of accomplishments that belie their youth. From taking to the stage at the famed Coachella music festival to writing and performing the themes for a hit TV series and a star-studded feature film, the artists behind Chloe x Halle are singers, songwriters, actors, musicians, and fashion influencers. They’ve won critical acclaim for their debut album, The Kids Are Alright, and one of the sisters made headlines when she landed the sought-after role playing one of Disney’s most iconic characters in a live-action remake of an animated classic.
As Chloe x Halle continues to win fans and accolades with their inventive, eclectic approach to music, there is much about the pair that even their biggest fans may not realize. These talented young women have achieved a lot in a relatively brief period of time. This is the untold truth of Chloe x Halle.
Chloe x Halle got its start on YouTube
According to a profile in Rolling Stone, Chloe and Halle Bailey were just 13 and 10, respectively, when they launched their own YouTube channel. One of the first videos the siblings posted featured them singing Beyoncé’s “Best Thing I Never Had.” In addition to being downright adorable, the 2011 video showcased the duo’s stunning harmonies.
More videos followed, and while the sisters — who began calling themselves Chloe x Halle — typically performed cover versions of other peoples’ songs, they were also hard at work writing their own. As Rolling Stone pointed out, Chloe was 10 and Halle was just 8 when their father started teaching them about how songs are structured, giving them the basic skills of songwriting and encouraging them to compose their own. “The first few songs we wrote were horrible,” Halle told the magazine. “But as time went on, they turned into something beautiful.”
Thanks to their YouTube videos, Chloe x Halle began to attract a growing online fanbase.
This famous star signed Chloe x Halle after seeing a YouTube cover
One of the earliest songs that Chloe and Halle Bailey performed on YouTube was a cover of a Beyoncé song, and it was their performance of another Beyoncé track that would change their lives forever. In late 2013, they posted a video in which they lent their harmonies to Queen Bey’s “Pretty Hurts” from her eponymous fifth studio album. Beyoncé herself came across the video, and she enjoyed it enough to repost it on Facebook, writing in the caption, “So amazingly talented!!”
Earning the Beyoncé seal of approval is one thing, but they received something far better when the star offered them a record deal with her Parkwood Entertainment label. Even more importantly, Beyoncé took the girls under her wing, providing Chloe x Halle with the kind of mentorship most aspiring singers can only dream of.
“Two weeks after we posted it, we got this email from Parkwood, her company, and we were freaking out,” Chloe told People. She continued, “Then we found out Beyoncé wanted to sign us [to her record label]; we couldn’t believe it. That was Jan. 2 , and we were like, ‘This is a great start to the year!'”
This was the advice Beyonce gave Chloe x Halle for their debut album
Signed to Beyoncé’s label, Chloe x Halle began work on a debut album, which was titled The Kids Are Alright. “It was three years in the making,” Halle Bailey revealed during an interview with Today. “It was a really fun process and we were also discovering ourselves in the midst of our creativity,” added sister Chloe.
The siblings also shared the advice that Beyoncé gave them. “We love Beyoncé so much,” declared Chloe, revealing that “she has continued to encourage us to stay true to ourselves, and she’s always like, ‘You girls are so ahead of your time, let the world catch up to you.'”
As Halle told People, Beyoncé encouraged them to experiment with their music, recalling how the former Destiny’s Child star would tell them not to “dumb down” their work for others. She shared another important Beyoncé-learned lesson in an interview with Glamour. “One big thing we’ve learned from Beyoncé is how to go back on songs over and over again,” said Halle. “There’s always something that can get better.”
Chloe x Halle's first mixtape made a Rolling Stone best-of list
Chloe x Halle’s first mixtape, The Two of Us, was an auspicious debut for the sisters. The project received rave reviews, and it wound up on Rolling Stone‘s list of the 20 Best R&B albums of 2017. In its review, Rolling Stone praised the duo for flipping through different R&B styles “like they’re Instagram filters” and for their “spectral harmonies and boundless curiosity.” The magazine further noted that the duo was “pulling soul in exciting new directions.”
Despite the acclaim The Two of Us received, Chloe x Halle’s first studio album The Kids Are Alright was made under ridiculously modest circumstances. “Pretty much the whole album we did in our living room,” Halle told BBC News. “It’s so funny because that’s the family area where we watch TV, then our studio’s off in a little corner of the room. So whenever we’re recording it’s like a game where we’re like, ‘OK everybody, be quiet!'”
That DIY attitude wound up creating the ideal atmosphere where their creativity could flow unchecked. “So we were like, ‘Instead of getting a big-time producer and having to wait four weeks for a meeting, why don’t we just try to create it ourselves?'” Halle explained.
Chloe x Halle wrote and performed the theme for this TV show
When ABC wanted to spin off Yara Shahidi’s character from the sitcom Black-ish in the new series Grown-ish, following Zoey Johnson’s adventures as a college freshman, the singers behind Chloe x Halle were tapped to create the theme song for the show. The resulting track was “Grown.”
Writing and performing the theme song wasn’t the duo’s only association with the series. As Billboard reported ahead of Grown-ish‘s premiere in 2017, Chloe and Halle Bailey also landed acting gigs in the series, cast in the recurring roles of students Jazz and Sky, twin sisters and aspiring track stars.
While the Bailey siblings were becoming primarily known for their music, they were already experienced child actors long before their discovery by Beyoncé. Both sisters appeared in the Queen Latifah-starring feature Last Holiday, while Halle also had a role on the TV series House of Payne. Older sister Chloe had an even longer list of credits, including roles in three features: Gospel Hill, Meet the Browns, and The Fighting Temptations. “We started very young,” Halle told Glamour. “First we were acting around Atlanta, where we’re from. From there it grew into singing.”
Chloe x Halle's recurring roles on Grown-ish led the singers to becoming series regulars
Chloe and Halle Bailey’s Grown-ish characters proved to be a hit with viewers. When the show returned for its second season, reported Billboard, the Chloe x Halle singers weren’t just recurring — they had been upgraded to series regulars.
“Grown-ish [has] been so much fun! Every time we’re on set, we’re just with our best friends,” Halle told Glamour, noting that she and her sister would spend time with Yara Shahidi even before they started filming Grown-ish. She further noted, “[Grown-ish creator] Kenya [Barris] actually told us that when we accepted Beyoncé’s award at the  BET awards, with Yara onstage, he said that once he saw the three of us together he was like, ‘Oh that’s magical — I have to put them all in something!'”
Despite Grown-ish‘s academic setting, the sisters admitted they were looking forward to being done with school after years of juggling their studies with their acting and music. “I can feel Chloe and myself in the promised land of just doing music and acting,” Halle eagerly told Teen Vogue.
These are Chloe x Halle's Coachella survival tips
Chloe x Halle sisters Chloe and Halle Bailey made their Coachella debut in April 2018, and, ahead of the performance, they were interviewed by iHeartRadio about their Coachella survival tips. Noting it was their first time playing the iconic California music festival, Halle declared that “our outfits have to be on point,” with her sister adding, “So pack really cute outfits.” Along with their suggestions to bring comfy shoes, a fanny pack, and hand sanitizer, Chloe singled out the most important thing required of any Coachella attendee when she advised people to “bring yourself, and your confidence!”
The sisters also detailed which acts playing Coachella 2018 they were most looking forward to seeing. Chloe was “definitely excited to see the Queen Bey,” pointing to Beyoncé’s headlining set. Halle mentioned their “beautiful friend” Princess Nokia, adding, “Many of our peers are performing as well, so we just can’t wait to go to their shows and be inspired, and just soak up the goodness.”
The duo’s Coachella performance was generally well received, although opinions did differ. While the Desert Sun wrote that Chloe x Halle demonstrated they could become “the next Beyoncé,” Vice snarked that their performance resembled “a Disney Channel Original Movie.”
Chloe x Halle opened for big names on this tour
Chloe x Halle’s association with Beyoncé continued when the superstar brought the sisters into her Lemonade project, a music-filled long-form video that debuted on HBO. Chloe and Halle Bailey were among the many celebrities to make cameos in Lemonade, as reported by Entertainment Tonight, joining the likes of tennis great Serena Williams, Canadian model Winnie Harlow, actress-singer Zendaya, and Hunger Games star Amandla Stenberg.
In 2018, the sisters shared a big announcement with their fans. “We will be opening for the North American leg of On the Run II. That’s right, the kids are on the run, too,” said Chloe in a brief video they shared on Twitter to reveal they’d be opening for Beyoncé and her husband, rapper/mogul Jay-Z, on their tour later that year.
Chatting with Entertainment Tonight, Chloe admitted the siblings were “just super-duper excited.” She added that she was thrilled as a fan of Beyoncé and Jay-Z and that they were also excited to “perform in front of all their fans” and to be seen by a “broader audience.”
Chloe x Halle play all their own instruments thanks to YouTube
Recording their debut album in a corner of their living room, Chloe x Halle not only wrote, sang, and produced their music, but they also played every single instrument. As the talented Bailey sisters told Saint Heron, they’re both multi-instrumentalists who taught themselves how play. Halle shared, “We taught ourselves on YouTube with our instruments. Just looking up simple chords to our favorite songs, that really gave us a great foundation for making our own songs.”
Halle’s signature instrument is guitar, and she told Rolling Stone in 2016 that she derived inspiration from such guitarists as Lenny Kravitz and Jimi Hendrix, two of her favorites. “I still consider myself an amateur guitar player because I’m always trying to grow and I’m always trying to learn,” she admitted, having played the instrument for about four years at that time.
While Halle was humble about her guitar skills, her sister was not. “In rehearsals I’ll just see her freestyling and doing all these incredible acrobatics on the guitar, and I’m like, ‘Whoa, that’s my sister,'” Chloe told Rolling Stone. “I’m so proud of her.”
This is how Chloe x Halle's performance at the Super Bowl was received
Chloe x Halle performed in front of a huge audience of over 98 million when they sang “America the Beautiful” at Super Bowl LIII in 2019.
Reviews of the duo’s Super Bowl performance were downright super, with Atlanta’s 11 Alive praising the sisters’ “stellar performance” that got the proceedings off to “a flawless start.” The New York Times praised Chloe x Halle’s “taut, controlled reading” of the patriotic classic, while ABC News declared Chloe x Halle to be in “top-notch form” as they “harmonized like a veteran girl group.”
Perhaps the most important review of all came not from a media outlet, but from the sisters’ boss and mentor. “I’m so proud of Chloe x Halle,” wrote Beyoncé on Instagram alongside a video of the girls’ performance that she shared with her 142 million followers. By March 2020, the Beyoncé-posted video of their “America the Beautiful” performance has been viewed nearly 15 million times.
This is what the singers behind Chloe x Halle really think of Michelle Obama
Beyoncé isn’t the only powerful, influential figure to be enamored by Chloe x Halle. Another of their celebrity fans is former first lady Michelle Obama. In fact, Obama selected the Bailey sisters to appear with her twice, when they served as her opening act at the South by Southwest festival in March 2016 and then the following month when were invited to perform at the White House Easter Egg Roll.
“I feel like it was straight out of a dream. I was excited and happy that I was in a place where I could feel celebrated because of who was in office,” Chloe told ABC Radio of being invited to the White House event. “To just have someone like Mrs. Obama introduce us in that way was super cool.” And, as if that wasn’t enough, Chloe noted that Beyoncé and her loved ones had shown up, too.
Speaking to Fader of their first meeting with Obama at SXSW, Halle described her as “the most gracious person ever.” She went on, “She’s literally a queen. We were in awe of her. She’s so nice.”
The inspiration behind Chloe x Halle's song from A Wrinkle in Time
In 2018, Chloe x Halle wrote and performed an original song for the soundtrack to A Wrinkle in Time, a big-budget Disney movie with an all-star cast including Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, and Chris Pine. The resulting song was “Warrior.” The Bailey Sisters also featured in a music video for the track, with scenes from the film interspersed with footage of the sisters and A Wrinkle in Time star Storm Reid.
The song held very deep personal meaning to both Halle and Chloe Bailey, who shared the surprising inspiration behind the track in an interview with Tiger Beat. According to Chloe, the song is a tribute to “the incredible women in our life,” and she listed such important female figures as her mother, sister, and grandmothers. “They inspire us to keep going as strong women who paved the way for us,” she continued. “We’re warriors and we just wanted to articulate how they have inspired us to look inside ourselves and see the warrior inside us.”
Added Halle, “It’s a mantra! I can be a warrior! Yes, I am a warrior.”
How Chloe x Halle's Halle Bailey responded to backlash over her casting in The Little Mermaid
Chloe x Halle’s star has been on the rise since the duo’s discovery by Beyoncé, but, in 2019, Halle Bailey made solo headlines when Variety reported she was cast as Ariel in Disney’s live-action remake of its animated classic The Little Mermaid.
While there was much celebration from Chloe x Halle fans, the casting was met with racism-tinged backlash by those who balked at a black actress playing the mermaid. The Freeform network, home of the Bailey sisters’ series Grown-ish, responded with an Instagram post addressed to the “Poor Unfortunate Souls” behind the criticism. After pointing out that The Little Mermaid is “a work of fiction,” the post concluded by noting that if people still couldn’t get past the casting because Bailey doesn’t resemble the red-haired cartoon version of Ariel, then, “Oh boy, do I have some news for you… about you.”
Bailey briefly addressed the backlash in an interview with Variety. “I feel like I’m dreaming and I’m just grateful, and I don’t pay attention to the negativity,” she said. “I just feel like this role was something bigger than me, and greater.”
The singers behind Chloe x Halle are serious fashionistas
Fans have watched the women of Chloe x Halle grow up under the spotlight, from not-so-shy girls to confident young women. Along the way, the pair developed an ever-evolving sense of style that’s grown to become as iconoclastic and inventive as their music.
In an interview with InStyle, the Bailey sisters shared the fashion philosophy and style secrets that have guided them, whether onstage at Coachella or walking the red carpet at a hot premiere. “Comfort is key, but sometimes I’ll sacrifice that for an awesome shoe,” admitted Chloe, pointing out that, even when that shoe is covered by a long gown, “I love anything that makes me feel confident.” For Halle, moving from their hometown of Atlanta to entertainment epicenter Los Angeles had been game-changing in terms of her look. “I’m not afraid to experiment,” she said. “Living in Los Angeles has inspired me to throw on whatever I want to wear without caring what anyone thinks.”
As Chloe told the Los Angeles Times, “It’s been pretty cool evolving our style. It’s been so much fun experimenting with clothes that are comfortable but speak to what we feel inside.“
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