Avril Ramona Lavigne (pronunciation: /ˈævrɨl ləˈviːn/; AV-ril lə-VEEN; born 27 September 1984) is a Canadian singer-songwriter. She was born in Belleville, Ontario, but spent most of her youth in the small town of Napanee. By the age of 15, she had appeared on stage with Shania Twain; by 16, she had signed a two-album recording contract with Arista Records worth more than $2 million. In 2002, when she was 17 years old, Lavigne broke onto the music scene with her debut album Let Go. Since her professional debut, she has become one of the most successful artists in the world, selling more than 30 million albums and over 50 million singles worldwide.
Let Go made Lavigne the youngest female soloist to reach number 1 in the UK. As of 2013, it has sold nearly 7 million copies in the United States and over 17 million copies worldwide. Her breakthrough single, "Complicated", peaked at number 1 in many countries around the world, as did the album Let Go. Her second album, Under My Skin, was released in 2004 and was her first album to peak at number 1 on the U.S. Billboard 200, eventually selling more than 10 million copies worldwide. The Best Damn Thing, Lavigne’s third album, was released in 2007, becoming her third number 1 album in the UK Albums Chart and featuring her first U.S. Billboard Hot 100 number 1 single, "Girlfriend". Lavigne has scored six number-one singles worldwide, including "Complicated", "Sk8er Boi", "I'm with You", "My Happy Ending", "Nobody's Home", and "Girlfriend". Lavigne is one of the top-selling artists releasing albums in the U.S., with over 11 million copies certified by the RIAA. Her fourth studio album, Goodbye Lullaby, was released in March 2011. Goodbye Lullaby gave Lavigne her fourth top 10 album on the U.S. Billboard 200 and the UK Albums Chart and her third number 1 album in both Japan and Australia. Three months after the release of Goodbye Lullaby, Lavigne began work on her fifth album, which will be released on Epic Records following her departure from RCA Records.