Corey Latif Williams, sometimes known as simply LATIF, is an R&B singer and Grammy nominated songwriter. He was the winner of Teen People's Who's Next contest. He is a mentee of Teddy Pendergrass. He was once signed to Motown Records.
LATIF was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His early passion for music came mainly from his parents, who, ironically, were not musically-inclined. This passion for music developed into an interest in singing. A close friend of LATIF's family, Teddy Pendergrass, served as a mentor for the young budding artist. It was this mentorship that taught LATIF how to "deliver" songs. This relationship was nurtured by LATIF being taken along with Teddy to various interviews and appearances. It was this that led to LATIF being noticed by the daughter of a label executive. Which brought about his first recording contract with Sony/550.
LATIF was given a demo deal, which helped him hone his writing skills, and gave him knowledge about the recording process. LATIF's vocals were featured in a highly popular commercial for a local bank.
In 2001, the buzz from winning the competition was enough to draw the eye of Kedar Massenburg. This actually worked out well for LATIF, because the "taste of spotlight" from the performance convinced him to tell his parents that he did not want to go back to school. He wanted work on his music fulltime. His mother gave him one semester to prove himself, or he had to go back to school. Massenburg became interested in LATIF, and signed him to Motown Records.
LATIF's debut album on Motown was called Love in the First. Only one single, "I Don't Wanna Hurt You" was released. It was mainly written by LATIF, with production by Ryan Leslie, Bryan-Michael Cox, Adonis Shropshire, Greg Charley, Andy C, Teddy Bishop, Mechalie Jamison, D "French" Spencer, and Sean Garrett. Due to poor promotion, the album did not do well.
LATIF is no longer signed to Motown. He is currently in the studio working on his second album. He has garnered a large fanbase in Europe. One song that may be attributed to his international popularity is "U Think U Know". He has also continued to write for other artists, such as JoJo, Cassie, The Roots, Jim Jones, Lil Scrappy, Tiffany Evans, Frankie J, Chris Brown, Cheri Dennis, and Musiq Soulchild.