Born in Cleveland, singer/songwriter Myron Avant is known simply as Avant and has been making R&B music since 2000. He honed his vocal talent at a young age by participating in his church's choir and then later attending the Cleveland School of the Arts. After he grabbed basketball legend Magic Johnson's attention with his debut single "Separated," which peaked at number one on the Billboard's R&B/Hip-Hop chart, Avant became the first artist signed to the Magic Johnson Music label. His debut album, My Thoughts, released in 2000, was the first of his three platinum albums. His 2002 and 2003 releases, Ecstasy and Private Room, were also platinum certified and demonstrated Avant's mastery of combining introspect and radio-friendly lyrics about love and reality. He released his 2010 album The Letter, as an open letter to his fans about his personal thoughts and struggles.