CeCe Peniston is a singer whose 1991 dance hit “Finally” made her a superstar. Appearing on her debut album of the same name, “Finally,” reached No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100. She’s since gone on to release a string of albums and singles. Although her last proper album, “I’m Movin’ On,” came in 1996, CeCe Peniston continues to perform live, and she’s also segued into acting, appearing on stage and screen.
Missed Cece Peniston on the “Unsung” season finale? Watch the full episode below.
Who is CeCe Peniston? Peniston was born Sept. 6, 1969, in Dayton, Ohio, and grew up in Phoenix, where her family moved when she was nine. Initially known more for her looks than for her voice, Peniston won Miss Black Arizona in 1989 and signed a record deal with A&M in the early part of the following decade. Released in 1991, the album “Finally” peaked at No. 36 on the Billboard 200, and while the title track remains its best known song—as well as one of the most enduring dance-pop tracks of the ‘90s—the disc also spawned the hits “We Got a Love Thang” and “Keep On Walking,” both Top 20 singles.
If you’d asked, “Who is CeCe Peniston?” in the ‘90s, most music fans would have been ready with a quick answer, as the singer kept busy through the middle of
the decade, dropping “Thought ‘Ya Knew” in 1994, “Good News in Hard Times”—a record made with Sisters of Glory—in 1995, and “I’m Movin’ On” in 1996. Following that album, CeCe Peniston toured with several plays, including “The Wiz” and “Treat Her Like a Lady.” Her most recent singles, “Celebrate” and “Dance With Me,” arrived in 2012.
Who is CeCe Peniston, other than a ‘90s hitmaker with a sideline in acting? She’s a popular performer who’s still making the rounds, and according ton AllMusic writer Ron Wynn, she’s an artist who’s made her mark. “Not entirely part of the mainstream that brought her success in the early ’90s, Peniston’s work is remixed and remains a favorite in dance clubs around the world,” Wynn writes. Who is CeCe Peniston? She’s a dance icon who’s performed for such luminaries as Pop John Paul II, President Bill Clinton, and Aretha Franklin, and her signature song, “Finally,” should keep her in the limelight for decades to come.