Just one short year ago, Ariana Grande -- then on the cusp of releasing her debut album, Yours Truly -- performed at the 2013 VMA pre-show. Most people had probably heard her name, but to anyone else but "Victorious" or "Sam and Cat" fans or music blog die-hards, Ariana was still a relative unknown, flying under the radar while occasionally earning fans on YouTube, where she posted covers of pop, R&B and even Motown and American standards.
Well, what a difference a year makes. Since her VMA performance, Ariana's added the kind of career highlights to her resume that even some of her superstar peers haven't achieved. And when you look back at her VMA performance, it's clear that Ariana's vocal domination hints at the worldwide phenomenon she'd become over the next year.
In the 2013 VMA pre-show performance, Ariana -- in a signature sparkly dress and sky-high heels -- sang her heart out in a medley of "The Way" and "Baby I." She was flanked by two backup singers and dancers. During "The Way" Ariana appeared a little nervous (and wouldn't you be if you were wailing in front of all of America in a sweetheart dress, dimples, and heels?).
But that all changed in an instant when she broke into "Baby I." Her stunning, unstoppable belt proved she could handle the spotlight all on her own. And the powerhouse performance suggested that her biggest moments were -- as you'll see -- yet to come.
The 2013 VMAs were held on August 25th. And just recently, Ariana announced the details of sophomore album My Everything, set for release on August 25th, 2014 (a day after the 2014 VMAs!). So, a year to the date after her first VMA performance, she's already got her second album ready to go. So, what's Ariana achieved since her 2013 VMA performance to her "Total Ariana Live" special tonight at 7pm, to My Everything? Oh you know...
* "The Way," the lead single off her Yours Truly debut, became a Top 10 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 in March of 2013 even before the album was released.
* The Way was eventually certified double platinum by the RIAA.
* As for the album itself, when Yours Truly was released in August 2013, it debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 200. Ariana was the first female artist to have her debut record enter the charts at that number one position since Kesha's Animal in January 2010.
* She won an American Music Award for New Artist of The Year.
* Ariana became the fifteenth female artist overall to have an initial record debut at number one on the Billboard 200.
* Oh, and Ariana Grande became the first artist to bring back "TRL." (Trust me, we don't do that for just anyone.)
So, to recap, Ariana's gone from 2013 VMA pre-show performer to the star of her own revamped version of "TRL." What's next? You'll just have to see when Ariana appears on "Total Ariana Live" tonight at 7pm ET!