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V Exclusive: Meagan Good Talks Her 'Damn Good' Rap Skills, Being A Jesus Lover, Punk Rock Girl Group & Missing Her Long Hair

Whether you'd like to admit it or not, Meagan Good is way more than a pretty face. The 29-year-old thespian is done playing the ornamental seductress. She's chopped the jezebel mane, edited her plans for marriage, stepped her show-biz game up and wants to make hipster mosh music Christians would find dope. Yeah, don't expect any upcoming back shots from this one.

VIBE caught up with Meagan for details of her new girl group, H.E.L.L.O Girls, what it's like to be friends with Natalie Nunn and why she has no problem recycling her outfits. —Tracy Garraud

 


 

A lot of people were surprised to hear that you're in a girl group now. I know your sister's in it as well. How did that come about?
When me and my sisters were kids, I was about 14 or 16, we had been in a singing group together for a long time and I went away to do Eve's Bayou and she decided to pursue the music route. So my acting career did what it did and then she joined the group Isyss and she did what she did. And then once the group fell apart, she went to another group for a while. I went into a group with the two twins that were in ATL, we were signed with Lil' Kim's label.

Oh damn, so this girl group game is far from new to you. What was the name of that last group?
So embarrassing. I was 19. It was 10 years ago. It was called Phyne. It was back in the day when it was kind of okay to have names like that. Our producer was Damon Elliott who did "Love" on Keyshia Cole's first album. That's kind of a crazy story because I met Keyshia when she first came from Oakland and was just trying to figure out how to get started with her singing career and I was doing Biker Boyz at the time and I had just dropped out of the group and Damon was very upset with me and I had met Keyshia and I said, "Look this girl's amazing, you need to work with her, see if you can help her out." And they got together and did "Love" and five other songs on her first [album]. That's actually how Keyshia Cole started doing her thing.

Ah, so you had a hand in Keyshia's beginning?
[Yeah] that's my girl; I love her to death. So besides that, I still had the music bug, but I wanted to be a very serious actor. I still do. I want the Oscar. But the music thing just kept coming up and then by best friend Amy and her girlfriend Sterling started a kind of punk band and I kept coming to their performances and my sister was doing her solo thing and one day [Sterling] and Amy came to me and said what do you think if we do a band? I thought it was a good idea but was like, "What kind of music will we do?" So we sat down and were like, "Alright our favorite type of music is rock n roll, kind of punkish." And so we decided to do the band and met up with producer Rob Bolt, who's done a lot with Fergie, Radiohead, Puddle of Mudd –a lot of great rock bands. He helped us develop a sound.

Are you guys signed with a label or independent at the moment?
At the moment we're independent. The plan is to have our own label underneath someone else's label, possibly like Akon or Cee-Lo. Someone who doesn't just do R&B music, We all have different flares for music. So we want to be with someone who's on the artsy-fartsy side, but still mainstream.

Are you going to do choreography, too?
We do do a lot of choreography, but if you went to one of our shows, it would be more of a rock show –more like us rocking out. A lot of jumping. A lot of high energy.

Like a Fefe Dobson type thing?
You can say that. Somewhere in the realm of old school Axel Rose mixed with Fefe Dobson, mixed with Beastie Boys, with a hint of Vanity 6.

We know that the name Hello Girls came from a New Edition song, but where the hell does your nickname Cheeba mean?
Cheeba was a cartoon a long time ago. She was an Egyptian-ish, lion-ish queen. And I'm a Leo and I'm very much a Leo by personality, so that's how that one came up. 

I know everyone else has tag names to, is that like a Spice Girls thing?
You can say that. We're definitely open to Spice Girl status.

Girl groups are notorious for their break ups. What made you want to join one instead of going solo?

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Naya Rivera’s Body Recovered From California Lake After 5-Day Search

Naya Rivera’s body has been found following a five-day search for the 33-year-old mother and actress. Rivera’s remains were recovered from Lake Piru, authorities in Ventura County California confirmed at a news conference on Monday (July 13).

According to the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department, Rivera's body was floating near the surface of the water without a life jacket, and looked as though it had been in the water for “several days.” An autopsy is pending.

The news conference has concluded. Sheriff Ayub has confirmed the body recovered at Lake Piru today was Naya Rivera. Our hearts go out to her family, friends and fans during this difficult time. An autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of her death.

— Ventura Co. Sheriff (@VENTURASHERIFF) July 13, 2020

Rivera went missing last week after taking her 4-year-old son, Josey, out on a boat. The boy was found on the boat unharmed, and told authorities that he saw his mother disappear under the water. Rivera's loved ones, including her parents and brother, were seen at the location over the weekend and had been there every day holding out hope, authorities said.

Rivera started out as a child actress and model appearing in the '90s sitcom, The Royal Family, alongside Della Reese, Redd Foxx, Lorenz Tate, and Jackée Harry. She also booked guest spots on several hit shows including, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Family Matters, Girlfriends, Smart Guy, Baywatch, The Bernie Mac Show, and more.

Rivera starred on Glee from 2009 to 2015, before joining the cast of Devious Maids. Her last acting credit was on the drama series, Step Up, which originally aired on YouTube but was picked up by Starz.

The role as Santana Lopez on Glee allowed Rivera  to show off her singing talents. She signed a record deal in 2011 and released her debut single, “Sorry” in 2013, featuring former fiance Big Sean. Rivera married actor Ryan Dorsey in 2014, with whom she welcomed her son, Josey, the following year. The former couple’s divorce was finalized in 2018.

A native of Southern California native, Rivera reportedly grew up about 20 miles from near Lake Piru and had been familiar with the area. Her body was discovered on the 7-year anniversary of the death of Glee cast mate, Cory Monteith, who passed away from a drug overdose in 2013.

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Pop Smoke: 5 Suspects Arrested In Connection With Rapper’s Murder

Five people have been arrested in connection with the murder of Pop Smoke, the Los Angeles Police Department's  Robbery-Homicide Division revealed on Friday (July 10). According to an LAPD news release, the suspects include two teenagers and three adults, the latter of whom were identified as Corey Walker, 19, Jaquan Murphy, 21, and Keandre D. Rodgers, 18.

The LAPD claims that the suspects are gang members who were involved in Jackson’s murder in February, and in the murder of an 18-year-old victim who was gunned down last year in the parking lot of the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.

No other details were released as both investigations are ongoing.

Pop Smoke, whose birth name was Bashar Jackson, was gunned down at a temporary rental home in the Hollywood Hills while visiting Los Angeles. The 20-year-old Brooklyn native was the victim of an armed robbery, per the LAPD.

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Jada Pinkett Smith Confirms Past Relationship With August Alsina

As promised, Jada Pinkett Smith brought herself to the infamous red table but she wasn’t alone. Will Smith joined his wife to address August Alsina’s claims in a special mini-episode of Red Table Talk that premiered on Friday (July 10).

Jada confirmed that she was once in a relationship with the 27-year-old singer while “separated” from Will. According to Jada, things with Alsina started out as a platonic friendship before turning into something more.

“As time went on, I got into a different kind of entanglement with August,” she admitted.

The actress went on to clarify that Will never August “permission” to date her. “The only person that can give permission in that particular circumstance is myself,” she said. “I could see how he would perceive it as ‘permission' because we were separated amicably and I think he also wanted to make it clear that he’s not a home wrecker — which he’s not.

“I was in a lot of pain. I was broken. I definitely realized that you can’t find happiness outside of yourself, and luckily enough, you and I were going through a process of healing in a much different manner,” Jada told Will. “I would definitely say we did everything we could to get away from each other only to realize that that wasn’t possible.”

Later in the talk, Will asked Jada what she was looking for in August. “I just wanted to feel good,” she said. “And it was really a joy just to heal somebody.”

The couple, who have been together for 25 years, also revealed their relationship mantra: “We ride together. We die together. Bad marriage for life.”

Watch the full episode below.

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