Cheryl Bridget 'Pepsii' Riley was born on October 18, 1961 in Brooklyn, New York.
She began work as a nurse after high school, but didn't take long to get into music. Before beginning her solo career, she was the lead singer for a band Stargaze in the early 1980s. While part of the band, she married her bandmate David Jones, who she was married two for fifteen years.
In 1988, Riley began her solo career, releasing the album Me, Myself & I which reached #9 on the R&B charts. The album is well-known for its hit single "Thanks for My Child" which was written by Full Force. The song was written from Bowlegged Lou's experience with complications during his wife's first pregnancy, and resonated with audiences. The single reached #1 on the R&B charts and #32 on the Hot 100. The album featured two additional singles, the title track Me, Myself & I which reached #18 on the R&B charts and Every Little THing About You which reached #55.
In 1991, Cheryl Pepsii Riley put out a second album, Chapters. Powered by the momentum of first album's success, the album reached #62 on the R&B charts. t had two singles, How Can You Hurt The One You Love, and Ain't No Way which was a cover of the Aretha Franklin track.
Riley's third album, All That! came out in 1993 and featured two more singles. Gimme and Guess I'm In Love both were released off of the album, but neither made significant headway.
Riley stepped away from music for a fair amount of time, until 2005 when she appeared on several tracks on the Diary of a Mad Black Woman soundtrack. This work helped launch her back into the music industry and resulted in a new album, Let Me Be Me which came out in 2006.
It was another nine years before Cheryl Pepsii Riley released her fifth album, Still Believe, which came out in 2015.
In the time between, Riley became actively involved in theatre. She worked closely with Tyler Perry, appearing in many of his plays, including Madea's Class Reunion, Madea Goes to Jail, Why Did I Get Married? and more. With this relationship, she also appeared in the film versions of several of Tyler Perry's works.