R+B singer Amerie was horrified when her record bosses suggested her university education may put potential fans off her music.
The 1 Thing beauty graduated from Washington D.C.'s prestigious Georgetown University in 2000 before pursuing her music career and refuses to hide her educated background from fans.
She says, "Some people at my label thought my record sales might suffer because I went to college. But you don't have to live in your car to feel an emotion strongly. I had a middle-class upbringing, but we all have our own perspective.
"When I'm singing, I'm in a different zone. I let my hair down and play up my sexuality. I don't like performing in jeans, so I perform in a short skirt or shorts."