Debra Antney On Waka's Breakdown, Rap Beginnings & Tupac Comparisons [Pg. 2]

On how the death of her youngest son, Caodes, affected Waka:
My son was killed in 2000 and Waka was like 13 years old, going on 14. And it was hard. Since my son died,that’s when [Waka] flipped. He hated everything dealing with school because my son, his death was a sneak out the house to go help a kid with his homework before his father came home so the kid wouldn’t get a beating. Waka told him to go, he’ll cover for him. So [when he was biking home and killed by a car] Waka blamed hisself. He feels very responsible for my son’s death—that’s what flipped him out.

It wasn’t until recently [that I realized.] One night he just bust into my room and he was crying so hard and I jumped out the bed and I automatically started crying. I thought it was Gucci, ‘cause at that time Gucci was running so wild. I immediately started crying, like “Oh my God, what the hell happened?”—that time of the night somebody coming in the room. He just dropped to his knees and [was] like, “Ma, please forgive me.” I’m like, “What do you mean forgive you? What did you do?” I’m crying and I’m like “Where is Gucci?” Just yelling ‘cause I used to make him go to watch Gooch, like, ”Make sure Gucci’s okay,” ‘cause Gucci was going so wild. I’m still thinking something happened to Gucci and he’s not telling me ‘cause, like, where is he? Them two, you never seen one without [the other]—they were so inseparable it was pathetic. And then that’s when he told me: “I’m the one that told him he could go. I covered for him.” So all this time this kid walked around holding this stuff inside of him.

On the Birth of Waka’s Music Career:
That’s the day he also told me: “I promise you, I didn’t give it to you in ball, I’ma give it to you in music.” I automatically started laughing. Like: he’s coming with a joke on top of telling me this stuff, you know. Like, Okay, Wak. I could see him being a comedian, because from a kid, Waka was a little practical joker. But, my girlfriend said to me, “Didn’t Waka used to get on my nerves walking around the house singing? I used to say, ‘Boy would you shut up?’” All them was telling me and I didn’t remember that part of him, like him walking around the house singing. And she said, “Look at this: he turns out to be a damned rapper.”

I didn’t think he was gonna do it. He ain’t know what the heck he was doing and what happened is he learnt a way. I told him, “If you could channel your energy, your anger there on that mic, then do it.” We did it in a way of thinking it would be some rehabilitation shit, like, “go in there and just dump your anger.” When all that stuff was going on with Gucci, he was so angry. Gooch was in jail; he was a gone and [Waka] was mad. He just started going off. People always used to send him like tracks. He’d be out on the shows with Gooch, hyping up and doing stuff for Gooch. Gooch was like, “Man you need to go ahead and rap.”  Gooch was just talking to him and training him with different things. Waka was like, “I ain’t getting this.” And he was like “Ma, Gucci want me to go ahead and rap.” I was laughing. I didn’t think Waka was gonna do that. I never in a million years thought that was what that boy was gonna do.
 
On Her Advice to Waka:
When he gets a little dumbfounded sometimes—not sometimes, all the time—he pisses me off. If I’m not there, I’m pissed. He knows he’s getting that call from me. I’m cursing him out like, “Why did you do this? People are having a field day on you because you wanna be stupid.” I could just tell you books that he goes in the store like when we doing his tour and we in the stores, he’s buying books—investments and political stuff he buys. He’s so into the Nostradamus thing. He read that whole thing. I remember having a conversation and him telling me about so much of this stuff. He’s a reader, he loves to read. If you go to his house, you go to his room, he has books galore. He’s always reading. As a matter of fact, last night we just really, really had a long talk and I’m like, “You know babe, the one thing you have to understand there’s some sacrificing that you have to do. In order for you to get fame, in order for to you to really get this and this to be really given to you, there’s things you have to sacrifice. And that means that you have to sacrifice your pride and being worried about how people look at you. It doesn’t matter. People are gonna look at you any way they wanna look at you. People are gonna have good and bad to say about you. It don’t matter. As long as you know who and what you are, it’s beautiful. But if you up there make yourself look so illiterate and so stupid, of course you leave no choice but for people to say whatever they say.”

On Comparisons Between Waka and Tupac:
When people took [his album title] like he’s comparing hisself to Tupac. Never that. He know he’s not Tupac. You have people that want to be other people, like it’s not that. When people are so limited, they stay stuck. l just told him yesterday. “Why you staying stuck?” He did grow up around guns and drugs but he’s still a fun person. You have to learn how to channel all of that energy into having fun. It doesn’t have to be about shooting and killing. In the hood these are things that you do experience, but he wasn’t raised in the projects or some real hard places. He chose to hang out in stuff like that. Those are the places that he wanted to be at. That’s where he felt comfortable, where he belonged.

On Hooking Up with Gucci:
It was supposed to have been for charity. When he came home [from jail] and he wanted me to do a bunch of stuff for him and he was going through some other stuff and he just asked me to get him out of it like, “Auntie please.” It was hard for me because at that time, I was so full force with [The Ludacris Foundation] and it’s like, “I don’t know.” It was hard for me to leave Luda with the Foundation stuff because that’s what I really love. But Gucci was like, “Auntie please. Please.” And we just went from there.

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Viola Davis transforms into Ma Rainey in the Denzel Washington-produced film, centered around a 1927 Chicago recording sessions of “Mother of the Blues.”

Speaking during Monday’s press preview, Davis praised Boseman’s passion and commitment to his art. “Not to compete with Chadwick’s mother, but he was my baby. Chadwick was an artist. That is just what he was… he loved it, he demanded it in every single way. For someone so young it was incredible to watch,” said Davis.

“We are in the business, that a lot of times people have business conversations that masquerade themselves as artistic conversations. They don’t understand the difference between getting on set and demanding their vegan food being brought to them or their vegetarian dishes, or the dietary concerns, having that car ready,” she added. “ They don’t know the difference between that and making choices as an actor and getting down and dirty and doing the work and leaving your ego and your vanity at the door. He [Boseman] loved it. He demanded it. He demanded it in every single way.”

The film, Davis said, gives a window into “what Black life was like” in the '20s and ”how it was informing our relationships.”

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom debuts on Netflix on Dec. 18.Check above for the trailer.

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Rihanna, Big Sean, Jidenna And More Speak Out Against Violence In Nigeria

Rihanna, Big Sean, Jidenna and more recording artists are using their social media platforms to speak out against the ongoing violence in Nigeria in wake of the #EndSARS movement.

“I can’t bare to see this torture and brutalization that is continuing to affect nations across our planets! It’s such a betrayal to the citizens, the very people put in place to protect are the ones we are most afraid of being murdered by,” Rihanna wrote on Tuesday (Oct. 20). “My heart is broken for Nigeria man!!! It is unbearable to watch! I’m so proud of your strength and not letting up on the fight for what’s rights!”

#ENDSARS 🇳🇬 pic.twitter.com/59lrs8JnDA

— Rihanna (@rihanna) October 20, 2020

Several demonstrators were killed protesting against police brutality, while others were left injured after soldiers opened fire at a protest site in the Lekki district of Lagos on Tuesday (Oct. 20). One witness said that soldiers “started firing ammunition toward the crowd.”

Thousands of demonstrators, many of them young people, have taken to the streets of Lagos and surrounding areas to call for an end to the Special Anti-Robber Squad (SARS). The squad was disbanded in early October but the violence against demonstrators and other innocent victims has continued. The civilian death tole is believed to be in the thousands.

A 24-hour curfew is being put in place for Lagos, the BBC reports. Nigeria’s most populous city is home to approximately 20 million residents.

Read more reactions to the massacre below.

Nigeria!!! Y’all on my heart! It’s horrific over there! So many people being murdered for peaceful protesting about being murdered! #EndSARS

— Sean Don (@BigSean) October 21, 2020

THEYRE KILLING OUR PEOPLEEEEEEEEE pic.twitter.com/1iGmoTIllf

— Davido (@davido) October 20, 2020

THEY ARE KILLING OUR PEOPLE. OUR HEARTS ARE HEAVY. #EndSARS

— SANTAN (@Santandave1) October 21, 2020

I’ll be making calls, sending texts, and praying for everyone affected by the #LekkiMassacre #EndSARS These clips are horrific and terrifying to watch. Bless everyone on the ground. I can only imagine what you feel rn.

— Jidenna (@Jidenna) October 21, 2020

people are loosing their lives man, this violence is evil and extremely corrupt #EndSARS

— Aminé (@heyamine) October 21, 2020

#EndSARS is global now, the world is watching, the leaders must listen before it's too late

— Malik Ofori (@malikofori) October 21, 2020

There is a massacre happening in Lekki. Firing squads mass murdering young people in Nigeria. The world needs to engage #endSARS

— Chance The Rapper (@chancetherapper) October 20, 2020

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The Black Panther star thanked Ledward during his acceptance speech at the Screen Actors Guild last year. “Simone, you're with me every day,” he said at the time. “I have to acknowledge you right now. Love you.”

 

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