Lil Mama On Her Style Evolution; Nicki Minaj & Being A Curse-Free Rapper (Pg. 2)

Interesting thing is that leftfield style is actually becoming more of the norm. How do you react to folks saying your biting Nicki Minaj and Lady Gaga?
Come on, let's be real okay. You have all these people wearing different colored hair. At the end of the day I'm a bombshell, so I'm going to do me. If I want to go platinum, I'm going platinum. Let's not forget that we have had people doing these things way before the people who are doing it now and let's also not forget that the black community sometimes we really hang ourselves because every time another black female gets up there and does something that may be current, we criticize each other and try to put each other down, but when Katy Perry and Lady Gaga do it, they all eat. But I'm not going to be a part of that. I'm going to do me, regardless.

Very valid point… I think the biggest style criticism was thrown at you this past MTV Movie Awards. Bunch of people thought you jacked Nicki’s haircut.
But my cut is blunt and futuristic and Nicki Minaj started wearing that bob on her head after she came to my show, so at the end of the day I know what I do and I know what I possess and I know who I am. I'm a trendsetter. The biggest form of flattery is imitation so I'm flattered. I understand the universal law. I'm not confused, I don't feel like a follower. I started so many things that new artists are doing now anyway –my style, the way I'm aggressive on a track, the way I come through, the way my beat bangs. There are so many things that were borrowed, that I influenced that's happening in music right, so I'm far from discouraged.

Well there you go. Wait, Nicki through to one went to one of your shows?
Yeah, she was a guest on America's Best Dance Crew and immediately afterwards, everywhere she went, she was wearing the haircut, the same exact way. But that doesn't make me feel like ‘Oh she's trying to be down’ like how I said about our culture. I'm actually flattered because she imitated me and it felt like something that I was doing was cute and in time for the fashion and for the season, so it's like let's live, let's do it.

When I first interviewed you back in the day, you mentioned how other female rappers didn’t embrace you much. Has that changed or stayed the same?
It hasn't really changed. You know what, let me catch myself. MC Lyte definitely embraces me. Jada Pinkett Smith embraces me. Those are two people that I can call and get advice. Those are two people that will call me to see what I'm doing. I think that everybody else that's still on the radar like Missy and [Lil] Kim, feel so challenged right now. The root of female rap now is all about your swag and doing things independently. Everything is just boosted up to where these females who created the platform for us feel imitated. The kind of in that position right now where they feel like ‘Don't get it twisted because I will drag you…’

Ha! Were you and Nicki at least able to chop it up after her episode of ABDC?
We didn't really get a chance to vibe out like that after the show. It was just business. It was a level of respect though. Despite of what anybody might hear or have to say through the web, internet, music, subliminals, or whatever, when people see me in this industry I am respected and I will be respected. Anything else goes under the rug so I don't see it. Whoever it may be, it's always a level of respect because I respect myself and I will be respected.

Word. I know your thing back in the day was being very mindful of your younger fans. Should we expect to hear some 21+ lyrics now?
I guess my sound has changed a little bit; I'm evolving. Lauryn Hill might have cursed a couple of times in her music and Missy Elliot definitely just doesn't care. I'm really more inspired by their creativity more so than just the cursing. I’m really impressed by clean music. I have a thing for it, but if I have to go there, I think I'm going to go there. It has to be something that you want to do. It can't be peer pressure. You have to be yourself… and that’s what I do best. 

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Dr. Dre Released From Hospital, Will Receive 24-Hour Home Care

Dr. Dre was released from L.A. Cedars Sinai Medical Center on Friday (Jan. 15), nearly two weeks after he suffered a reported brain aneurysm. Ice T confirmed the news tweeting, “Just FaceTimed with @drdre. He just made it home. Safe and looking good.”

The 55-year-old music mogul will remain under 24-hour care for the next few weeks as medical professionals continue to monitor his progress. Doctors are still unclear on what caused the aneurysm.

Dre’s hospital release comes days after new details were revealed in his divorce from estranged wife, Nicole Young. According to court documents publicized this week, Nicole accuses Dre, birth name Andre Young, of putting a gun to her head in 2000 and 2001. She also details other alleged abuse incidents in 1995 (before they were married) and in 2016, when he allegedly punched her in the face and kicked down her door.

The Grammy winner has denied Nicole’s abuse claims.

Nicole and Dre tied the knot in 1996. The pair share two adult children, Truice and Truly. Nicole filed for divorce last summer.

In addition to demanding that Dre cover her legal fees, Nicole wants the court to take the abuse allegations into account when “awarding support and fees.” Dre has already agreed to pay $500,000 of Nicole’s legal bills and $2 million in temporary spousal support.

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Cardi B Lands Leading Role In Comedy ‘Assisted Living’

Cardi B is making her way back to the big screen. The Bronx native officially landed her first leading role in the upcoming Paramount comedy, Assisted Living.

According to Variety, Cardi will play a small time crook struggling to find a hiding place after her latest heist fails. Her character, “Amber,” disguises herself as an elderly woman and hides out at her grandmother's nursing home. The film is described as a “raucous comedy” similar to Mrs. Doubtfire and Sister Act.

Paramount acquired the rights to Assisted Living in 2019. The film’s script was penned by This Is Us writer, Kay Oyegun.

Cardi, 28, made her film debut in the 2019 celeb-heavy stripper flick, Hustlers. The “WAP” rapper appears to have hinted at her Assisted Living role in a recent interview with Billboard where she dished on filming scenes for Fast & Furious 9.

“After ‘Hustlers’ I filmed a little bit for 'Fast & Furious' so I felt like ‘I’m ready for this,’ I knew what to expect,” she explained. “But the characters were a little different so I was like ‘Oh wow, I’m going to need more acting classes.’ I’m planning on doing a movie this year and I’m going to be the lead role so I’m like ‘I need to execute this flawlessly.’”

Besides film, Cardi was a judge on the Netflix completion show, Rhythm & Flow, and landed her own Facebook Watch series, Cardi Tries.

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Wendy Williams Reveals She Was Date Raped By ‘80s R&B Singer

Wendy Williams revealed that she was date raped by  ‘80s R&B singer, Sherrick, early in her radio career. The talk show host shared the story with reporters while promoting her Lifetime biopic Wendy Williams: The Movie on Tuesday (Jan. 12).

“He mesmerized me with his twinkling eyes,” she recalled. “He flipped the interview around to where he was interviewing me — I was just gaga over this man and he asked me to go to an album release party with him that night.

“Before the party, I was date raped by him,” said Williams.

Sherrick, born Lamotte Smith, was a member of the group Kagny, whose song is featured on The Last Dragon soundtrack. He signed to Warner Bros. Records in 1987 and scored a marginal hit with the single “Just Call” off his debut self-titled album. Sherrick struggled with sobriety but declared himself “drug-free” before dying of unknown causes in 1999.

Williams says that she was raped in Sherrick’s Washington D.C. hotel room and it, unfortunately, wasn’t her first time being sexually assaulted. The New Jersey native had been date raped in college. “Those types of things happen to girls all the time and they’ve been happening a lot, to a lot of our mothers, grandmothers, great-grandmothers, and their great-great-grandmothers too.”

From the sounds of it, Sherrick's widow doesn't exactly believe Williams' story. She not only questioned Williams' account but wondered why she waited so long to go public, and why she didn't call police at the time of the incident.

“As I will never minimize or dismiss the horrid actions of sexual assault, I am saddened that Ms. Williams feels the need to publicly make these allegations when the man she is accusing is no longer on this earth to defend himself,” Lynne Conner Smith said in a statement to Page Six.  “Our family does not know Ms. Williams and are not aware of any relationship or encounter they may have had.”

The sexual assault will be chronicled in the film, as well as other details from Williams' life -- like her rise to talk show fame, her battle with drug addiction, and marriage to ex-husband Kevin Hunter.

Wendy Williams: The Movie premieres on Lifetime on Jan. 30.

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