Britney Jean Spears is an American pop singer. Spears began performing as a child, landing acting roles in stage productions and television shows. She signed with Jive Records in 1997 and released her first album ...Baby One More Time in 1998. During her first decade in the music industry, she became a prominent figure in mainstream popular music and popular culture, followed by a much-publicized personal life. Her first two albums established her as a pop icon and broke sales records, while title tracks "...Baby One More Time" and "Oops!... I Did It Again" became international number-one hits. Spears was credited with influencing the revival of teen pop during the late 1990s.
In 2001, she released her third studio album Britney and expanded her brand, playing the starring role in the film Crossroads. She assumed creative control of her fourth studio album, In the Zone, which yielded chart-topping singles "Me Against the Music", "Toxic" and "Everytime". After the release of two compilation albums, Spears experienced personal struggles and her career went into hiatus.
Her fifth studio album, Blackout, was released in 2007 and despite receiving little promotion, it spawned hits "Gimme More" and "Piece of Me". In 2008, her erratic behavior and hospitalizations caused her to be placed in a conservatorship. The same year, her sixth studio album Circus was released, with the global chart-topping lead single "Womanizer". She embarked on her highest-grossing global concert tour in 2009. Her seventh studio album Femme Fatale, released in 2011, has become the first of her albums to yield three top ten singles in the United States, including her fourth US number one single, "Hold It Against Me".
Spears has sold over 100 million records worldwide. According to the Recording Industry Association of America, she is the eighth top-selling female artist in the United States, with 33 million certified albums. Spears is also recognized as the best-selling female artist of the first decade of the 21st century, as well as the fifth overall.