American singer and television host Carnie Wilson became famous as a part of the popular singing group Wilson Phillips (1989-1992) that had an extremely popular self-titled debut album as well as a hit song, “Hold On.” Her most recent albums are 2004’s California, a reunion project with her group, and a solo album of lullabies, A Mother’s Gift: Lullabies from the Heart (2005). Carnie also achieved a degree of fame as the host of the short-lived talk show “Carnie!” (1995).
Outside the limelight, Carnie is a strict vegetarian and health food activist. Before, she had an enduring struggle with obesity that led to a radical stomach surgery to help her lose weight in August 1999. About 50,000 people watched the operation when it broadcast live on the internet. Her weight is now under control because of the surgery and regular exercise. She has toured TV talk shows publicizing her achievement with the procedure.
On a more personal note, the 5’ 3” tall vocalist is married to guitarist Rob Bonfiglio. The couple welcomed a 7 pounds 2 ounces baby girl named Lola Sophia Bonfiglio in 2005.
Childhood and Family:
In Bel Air, California, Carnie Wilson was born on April 29, 1968. Her father is Brian Wilson, a songwriter and singer with the Beach Boys, and her mother is Marilyn Rovell, a Jewish American singer from a girl group named “The Honeys.” After her parents’ divorce (when Carnie was 11), Carnie and her younger sister Wendy lived away from their father until he made peace with them in 2004. She is the niece of musicians Carl and Dennis Wilson, members of the Beach Boys.
During the Vet Rock show in 1999, Carnie, known by family and close friends as Cran, met and fell in love with ex-Blush guitarist Rob Bonfiglio, and they got married on June 23, 2000. Their first child, daughter Lola Sophia Bonfiglio, was born on April 22, 2005.
A Mother’s Gift
Daughter of American 1960s pop icon Brian Wilson, Carnie Wilson cracked the music industry by founding a trio singing group named “Wilson Phillips” in 1989, along with her sister Wendy and her childhood pal, Chynna Phillips, daughter of the co-founders of popular group “The Mamas and the Papas” John and Michelle Phillips. Wilson Phillips was an immediate hit, receiving a number of recognition with their enormously popular self-titled debut album, Wilson Phillips. The group went on to score a victory with their hit single,”Hold On.”
Wilson Phillips then released a follow-up album, but it received particularly less success than its predecessor. The members eventually decided to call it quits in 1992.
After the break up, Carnie and her sister, Wendy, continued to perform together. The two launched a moderately well-liked Christmas album as well as an album with their father, The Wilsons (1997). Additionally, they went to tour with Al Jardine’s band after the split-up of their father’s pop band, the Beach Boys. In the mid-90s, Carnie emerged as a fruitful television talk show host with a gig in her own show, “Carnie!”
By late 1990s, the singer had added acting to her endeavors. She made her debut by taking on the small role of Mama Earth in the made-for-television film The ‘60s (1999), starring Josh Hamilton, Julia Stiles, Jerry O’Connell, Jeremy Sisto and Jordana Brewster. She continued with guest appearance in episodes of “That ‘70s Show” (2001) and “Sabrina, the Teenage Witch” (2002).
In 2004, Carnie, along with former band mates Wendy Wilson and Chynna Phillips, launched their reunion album titled California. Under Sony Music’s record label, the album contains a compilation of covers mainly from the 1960s and 1970s. It was followed by the release of Carnie’s solo debut album, A Mother’s Gift: Lullabies from the Heart, the next year. The album, created shortly after she gave birth to her daughter Lola, includes several classic singles that are recreated in a more contemplative tone.
Recently, Carnie, who had problem with fatness at the majority of her adult life, resurfaced on the small screen as the host of the show “101 Incredible Celebrity Slimdowns.”