19 September 2012 2:25 PM, PDT | TheInsider.com | See recent The Insider news »

This Grammy winner and mother of twins is gearing up for her new judging duties on American Idol. Here are five things you probably don't know about the music superstar and wife of America's Got Talent host Nick Cannon

1. Her dad was a Venezuelan aeronautical engineer and her mom was a voice coach and opera singer.

Related: Mariah & Nicki Talk Idol Strategies

2. Was named after the song They Call the Wind Maria, from the 1951 Broadway musical Paint Your Wagon.

3. Her distinctive voice has tremendous range, spanning more than five octaves.

Related: Final American Idol Judges Panel Announced

4. In her 20-year career, she's sold a whopping 160 million albums and is second only to the Beatles for the most No. 1 hit singles.

5. Her godmother is R&B star Patti Labelle.

Video: Cannon: Jesus Wouldn't Help Idol Top Agt »

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