Tamar Mardirossian, better known by her artist name Tamar Kaprelian, was born in Scottsdale, Arizona to Armenian parents, but she grew up in Georgia and California. Kaprelian is her mother’s maiden name and she chose it in honor of her grandfather who died a few years before her career began. Tamar is incredibly proud of her heritage and she wants people to know that she is an Armenian. Her great-grandparents are from Old Armenia. On her mother's side of the family, her grandfather Girair Kaprelian was born in Kharpert and her grandmother Hasmik Kaprelian was born in Mousel. They met in Iraq, where her grandfather owned a successful textile manufacturing business in the Middle East. On her father's side, her grandfather George Mardirossian was born in Jerusalem and her grandmother Victoria Ewin was born in Liverpool. They met in Egypt and moved to Manchester where they started an Armenian hotel/restaurant. Her parents, Avedis and Silva Mardirossian, met in Manchester and moved to the United States (Scottsdale, Arizona), where they raised her brother and her.
Her interest in music began when she discovered the works of Billy Joel and Paul McCartney, although she also cites classic Disney film songs as an early influence.