Carmen Electra was born Tara Leigh Patrick on April 20, 1972 in Cincinnati, Ohio. Tara lived in White Oaks,
Ohio with her parents. With a strong background from a musical family, Tara always knew that she wanted a singing and
dancing career. She started dance lessons at the age of 5. At 9, Tara was chosen for the School for Creative and
Performing Arts. She took singing lessons in her teens, and displayed further talent by choreographing and performing
in muscials for the school's theatrical troupe.
Tara began doing "rap" and said that her goal was to go to Los Angeles and get a record deal. To start working on
that goal, in 1987, at 15, Tara moved to Minneapolis where her half-sister lived. To earn money, she modeled for Target
department stores. She also workied for, as she later described as "a sleazy carnival with a fake magician." Besides singing
and dancing there, she worked as his assistant. She later admitted that she disliked the job. She saved all of the money she
earned so that she could go to Los Angeles against the wishes of her parents. They had feared that something terrible would
happen to her in such a big city.
With enough saved in 1991, Tara moved to Los Angeles California and in less than a week, managed to meet Prince
(he was known as then. He later changed his name to a symbol and was known as The Artist. But he changed his name
back to Prince). Prince later gave Tara the name Carmen Electra. A week had passed and Carmen went to a
club called Spice. She joined a "rap" all-girl band that Prince was producing after being approached and
propositioned because she had the look that they wanted.
They went to Prince's house in Los Angeles. She then auditioned for him around 2:00 am. He played the piano and she sang
Do Re Mi from the movie, The Sound of Music. She also danced. When he didn't show any expression, the experience
made her think that she wasn't good enough and about taking more classes to improve. So, two months later when she was contacted,
Carmen got in touch with Prince's bodyguard. She had recorded some demos on her own and wanted Prince to give her some
advice. He did get in contact with her around 4:00 am and told her that he had written a song for her called Carmen on
Top, and could sing it provided she liked it. Carmen loved the song, and went on to Minneapolis to record it. She then
lived in Minneapolis for two-and-a-half years.
In 1992, she signed on to his Pailey Park Record label. He took her under his wing and showed her the ropes.
Her first album conicided with her opening slot on the European leg of Prince's Diamond and Pearls tour. Carmen was
promoted with ads in Rolling Stone magazine and on MTV. Despite the huge publicity campaign, the magic just
wasn't there. She couldn't connect on a large scale with the public. The video for the single, Go-Go Dancer was shot
in March 1992. It received very little airtime on MTV, and only Small Video Network played the song. A 12"
single of Go-Go Dancer hit the stores in June. It didn't sell very well. Her first album was finished, and promo-advanced
cassette copies and bios were sent out to members of the press for their review.
Everyone has their day in the spotlight, and it wasn't the right time for Carmen to have stardom. At least not in this
particular media. The album was delayed and Warner Bros.' top executive, Benny Medina decided that it needed additional tracks
and remixing before it's release. Medina had seen Carmen on the Diamonds and Pearls Tour shows and hadn't liked what
he had seen. He later approached Prince about his concerns. He had doubts about Carmen's qualities. When the album Carmen
Electra was released, it didn't meet up to expectations.
Carmen dropped out of the public's view during 1993-1995. In 1995 Carmen appeared on the Nickelodeon show All That. Carmen
got breast enhancement surgery and posed for Playboy in May 1996. She appeared in the Playboy video, Playboy
Cheeerleaders. In the video, she sang 2-4-6-8. Carmen co-hosted MTV's Loveline and occasionally appeared
as a dancer at Prince's Glam Slam clubs.
Carmen's big break came on October 4, 1996, when MTV's senior Vice-President, Lisa Berger announced that Carmen would
replace Jenny McCarthy as Chris Hardwick's co-host on Singled Out. Carmen joined Jenny on the show for one week in
February. Jenny was leaving the show as she had landed her own series on MTV.
Carmen had a recurring role on the syndicated television series, Baywatch Nights, and was a lead dancer in Saturday
Night Special. In 1997, Carmen had signed a five year contract to join the cast of Baywatch starting in its
8th season. Pamela Anderson, who had appeared on the show for five years as C. J. Parker was leaving. Yasmine Bleeth, who
portrayed Calroline Holden was leaving as well, but had 5 guest appearances to phase out her character. At the time Carmen
was currently doing both Baywatch and Singled Out. Carmen had her own comic book called London Night's Embrace.
She also had a second album entitled Carmen Electra II, which came out in the winter of 1997.
Carmen had a busy schedule in 1997, as she had appeared in the Summer issue of Maxim magazine in a small article
about fruit and then on the cover of of the 1997 September/October issue of Maxim magazine for an interview. She
also appeared on the cover and was featured in an interview for the 2nd anniversary issue of Smoke (Winter). Carmen
made Maxim's 1998 calendar, a pullout feature in the November/December issue, which had a cast-mate Gena Lee Nolin
on the cover. That issue of the magazine also featured an article with the other Baywatch women.
Carmen was featured on the cover of Porthole travel magazine with other cast-mates, which centered on the story
of the 2-part wedding episode set in Alaska. Carmen had her own 1998 calendar. Her other credits include appearances on Conan
O'Brien/NBC; as her own Baywatch character on Pacific Blue, a cop show endorsing an attractive cast
with form-fitting uniforms. Carmen has also appeared as a Cable Ace Awards presenter, and was featured in
People magazine.In 1998, she appeared as herself on Just Shoot Me/NBC.
Carmen has appeared on the 1998 June cover of Inside Sports magazine. Kelly Packard also appeared on the inside
portion of the folding cover. Carmen and Kelly modeled swimwear.
Baywatch Poducers all agreed that they needed changes for the show and it would return to the athletic format
when it received its highest ratings from seasons 2-6. They decided to go with 6 core characters and 4 recurring ones. Carmen
did not return for the 9th season, securing a deal with the WB for a sitcom. The original plan for the show was a
sitcom based on her life and father/daughter relationship. If the comedy show didn't work out, the WB had planned to place
Carmen in a drama series. She was added to the cast of the night soap, Hyperion Bay/WB.
She lead a wild, confusing life after her mother died of a brain tumor. She was in a great amount of pain from the loss. She
met Chicago Bulls basketball star Dennis Rodman. His wild life seemed to be the perfect distraction to ease her
pain. It, however also attracted a lot of bad press. Her marriage to him was a total shock to his management staff
and Carmen was accused of being a "gold-digger" while Dennis Rodman was portrayed as the innocent taken advantage of while
intoxicated. It was huge news and it ended in an annullment.
After the annullment, they still dated. Later while they were in a hotel, Rodman physically abused her during
an argument. Some of the hotel's guests reportedly stated that they heard a woman screaming for her life. Hotel
staff called the police. The two were cuffed and arrested and the judge sentenced them both. Later they married
again, stating that they would do it right. Unfortunately, it ended in divorce. She finally let go of Dennis Rodman.
After the split, she needed the time to find herself. Carmen didn't date for a year. She didn't even want to look at
another man. She had to admit that the fast life wasn't for her. She had to get out of that scene. She found
herself and was much happier.
Carmen met her fiance Dave Navarro of band fame, Jane's Addiction on November 10th, 2001 on
a blind date and later started dating regularly until he proposed. The couple celebrates the 10th of every month by going
out and making a big event of it. David even proposed on the 10th! They haven't set a date yet. The couple appeared
on the cover of Jane magazine and were included in an article on how they met. She noted that they never argued,
they liked staying at home watching movies, ordering out and cuddling.
Carmen was co-host of Livin' Large, a syndicated show formatted like Lifestyles of the Rich
& Famous, and has appeared in the reunion movie, Baywatch
Hawaii Wedding/FOX which aired on February 28, 2003. She has also appeared on the March 2003 issue of FHM
magazine's great-looking fold-out cover and inside for a photoshoot with eight other beautiful Baywatch
ladies who appeared in the movie (Carmen Electra, Pamela Anderson, Angelica Bridges, Brandi Roderick, Stacy Kamano, Gena
Lee Nolin, Alexandra Paul and Nicole Eggert) as well as the romantic comedies, My Boss's Daughter (2003), Uptown
Girls (2003), Lil' Pimp (2004), Starsky & Hutch (2004) and Searching for Bobby
Upcoming projects include the Carmen Electra 2005 Calendar, the cover of the 2005 Guitar World Buyer's
Guide from Guitar World. Dirty Love (2005/Movie); Getting Played (2005/Movie); Max Havoc:
Curse of the Dragon (2004/Movie); Searching for Bobby DeNiro (2004/Movie).
Carmen has her first tatoo. She and Dave got matching tatoos of their wedding date Eleven XXII. Dave's is
located on his collarbone and Carmen preferred her lower left wrist.