Pandora’s Box: Mashonda Talks To Somaya Reece [Pg. 2]

I heard that you were in gangs. Did you really get shot? 
For some reason people seem to think it’s cool to get shot or be involved in gangs. For me it isn’t. It’s emotionally painful, more than physical. It hurt at the time, and still does. I’m not proud of it at all. I’m just happy I wised up and chose a path towards a positive road. Gangs only lead to a few things. Jail or death! That lifestyle isn’t for me.  I now tell my story and publicly speak to kids all around California with the Los Angeles Unified School district, and the Mayor of Los Angeles, in order to prevent them from joining gangs.

Tell me a little bit about your issues with breast cancer?
This isn’t something I’m ready to get into detail with.  However I found a lump, it was removed. It was really scary finding this at such a young age.  I urge women at all ages after puberty to get checked thoroughly.

What’s your life been like financially these past 5 years?
Prior to mastering the in’s and out’s of the social network, and getting into acting and music, it was extremely tough. My first job growing up was working as a maid in Beverly Hill hotels with my mother and sisters. My goal was to make enough to get health benefits. I was raised to work for my money, verses taking the easy road for money. I moved on to intern for a well known director’s firm. I started doing make up on music videos, then went to being an extra on big movie sets. I finally got a chance to go out on my first acting audition. From that moment, I witnessed everything changing financially. My name became relevant over the last 5 years, so the online endorsements and acting gigs came pouring in. However, I refused to live beyond my means. I invest alot.  After working with a lot of celebrities, I learned advice to re-invest into my brand. I got smart and invested a percentage of my TV earnings into myself, into the tools necessary for my craft such as; acting class, clothes for auditions, make up, and a publicist. My sister and I started a real estate venture. Now we own four homes, and closing on one shortly. I keep my finances quiet, secure and don’t overspend my money. I’d rather spend it on investments that return in portfolio terms, than to spend it on an expensive purse. But I do like to treat myself once in a while.

What has your move to New York been like?
Moving here to New York is an entirely different story, it was a tough journey. I didn’t plan to be here a long time. So I came here with one credit card, a calculated plan, but nowhere to live. My living conditions were crazy when I first got here. I left a nice home to pursue my dream to the fullest. I never complained, I just kept it moving. I’m just thankful I wasn’t on the streets again.

What’s the best and worst thing about dating a rapper?
Male rappers aren’t the only ones in the game. I’m a female and a rapper. I wonder if a guy would be able to deal with my lifestyle of never being home and having countless beautiful men and women throwing themselves at me? The majority of my guy rapper friends are pigs, so pretty much there is nothing good about it. Most men have become a joke to me. With the exception of my gay fans, my personal friends, and the very few straight men that can handle my bossiness. Me and guys don’t get along. I am a strong, goal oriented career woman. I’m a threat to them and their egos.

Are you into women? 

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