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Destiny's Child – Biography

Beyoncé, Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams formed one of the biggest girlbands in history

Michelle Williams, Beyonce Knowles and Kelly Rowland of Destiny's Child perform onstage during the 2018 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival at the Empire Polo Field on April 21, 2018
Francesca Shillcock
Senior Features Writer
Updated: November 15, 2023
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Destiny's Child has been through a series of band names, record companies and two very high-profile line-up changes, but with their aptly titled third disc Survivor in 2001, the trio shifted the focus back to the music.

Yet after turning up just about everywhere, the girls announced it was time to take a break to work on solo projects. Bandmate Kelly Rowland explained previously: "You know how The Beatles broke off, they all did their solo projects, and then they came back together, and they were even stronger?" Well, something like that…

Destiny's Child Early Formation

The legend of Destiny's Child, named from a passage in the Book of Isaiah, begins in the late Eighties with a seven-year-old Beyoncé, a Houston, Texas native with stars in her eyes. "I knew from the age of four that I wanted to be a singer," she previously said. "I could have done it on my own, but I always felt more comfortable on stage with other people." Enter Kelly. Before her tenth birthday Kelly ended up moving into the Knowles family home to devote every spare moment to the girls' goal: to become the next Supremes. LaTavia Roberson and LeToya Luckett rounded out the quartet, and Destiny's Child was born.

Beyoncé's mum became their stylist, while her dad Matthew quit his job with a medical supplies firm to manage the girls full-time. It proved to be a smart move. In 1997 the youngsters scored with Killing Time from the Men In Black soundtrack, and Fugees star Wyclef Jean re-mixed the single No, No, No, boosting sales of their self-titled debut. Destiny's Child joined the likes of Blaque, 702 and countless other look-alike girl groups on the MTV radar. And then… a slight bump in the road. In late 1999, while their follow-up The Writing's On The Wall spawned a series of hit singles which finally set them apart from their peers, LaTavia and LeToya fired off a lawsuit against manager Matthew Knowles. The girls claimed he favoured daughter Beyoncé and distributed the groups' earnings somewhat creatively.

In seeking new management, the two found themselves out of a job. (They settled out of court for an undisclosed sum). They were then replaced by Farrah Franklin and Michelle Williams. However, Farrah then left and the girls were a trio consisting of Beyoncé, Kelly and Michelle. "The good thing about us being a trio is all of us can really sing," said Beyoncé. "All of us are potential lead singers, which has never been the case. So, we can do things vocally that we could never do before."

Grammy glory, worldwide acclaim and upwards of ten million albums sold led to a rather "Bootylicious" 2001 for the group. Within two years, they'd each released solo albums, with Beyoncé, who began stepping out with rapper Jay-Z, seeing the most success with her solo debut, Dangerously In Love. All three singers also enjoyed acting careers. Kelly scored roles in horror flick Freddy Vs Jason as well as 2004's The Seat Filler. Michelle got her big break on Broadway, cast as Toni Braxton's replacement in Aida. Beyoncé, meanwhile, has portrayed Etta James in Cadillac Records and appeared in the 2006 Oscar-nominated film, Dreamgirls, to name a few.

While focused on their individual careers, the ladies never forgot they were a solid trio. In 2004, they reunited with Destiny Fulfilled, which headed to the top of the charts. For Destinys Child fans, however, the thrill was short-lived. In June, 2005, in the midst of their Destiny Fulfilled... And Lovin' It tour, the group announced that they were splitting for good.

"After a lot of discussion and some deep soul searching, we realized that our current tour has given us the opportunity to leave Destiny's Child on a high note, united in our friendship and filled with an overwhelming gratitude for our music, our fans and each other," read a statement from the girl band. "No matter what happens, we will always love each other as friends and sisters and will always support each other as artists. We want to thank all of our fans for their incredible love and support and hope to see you all again as we continue fulfilling our destinies."

Destiny's Child – The Comeback

Although the group haven't officially released music as a trio since the hugely successful Destiny Fulfilled – excluding their Greatest Hits compilation – the fans have been treated to a few reunions in recent years.

The most memorable reunions occurred in 2013 and in 2018. In 2013, Beyoncé headlined the Superbowl Half-Time Show (the 13-minute set went down in history as one of the best the NFL had ever seen) but the moment Kelly and Michelle jumped out from under the stage to perform alongside Queen Bey, the crowd went wild.

And who could forget Beyoncé's iconic headline set at Coachella in 2018? Now known as Beychella, the superstar once again welcomed Kelly and Michelle to perform a medley of hits including Say My Name, Lose My Breath and Soldier. 

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