Love & Hip Hop Episode 1 Recap: Joe Budden and Tahiry Reunite, Raqi Gets Booted

In the first episode of Love & Hip Hop, "The Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth," rapper Joe Budden struggles to make amends with his ex-girl of five years, urban vixen/model/waitress Tahiry. "He wasn't handling his business five years in...I was heartbroken when I walked out," says Tahiry. Joe, who admits he's way too open with his relationships, says that he misses her friendship and that their story is still being written. The two sit down (after Tahiry gives Joey and the audience a full 360-view of her ample assets) to talk about their relationship. "I need me and you to be in a better place," says Joe in a hilariously seductive voice. Mind you, Joe has a new girlfriend but we'll get to that later. "I've kept it moving," says Tahiry to which the rapper says that she's jealous. Tahiry gets pissed off and starts bucking. "How fucking dare you?!" she screams. She then pushes the table and the first drink of the night is thrown.

Adding to the drama, we meet Joe's homegirl, Raqi Thunda (a radio personality who refers to herself as a "Hip-Hop Confidante." What that's a euphemism for we don't even want to know...). Rumor on the streets is that Raqi and Joe Budden have smashed. Raqi seems shocked that Tahiry isn't feeling her and their friendship is non-existent. Yeah; three's a crowd.

Yandy Smith has moved on after her falling out with Jim Jones last season. She reveals that she and her longtime man, Mandeecees, are pregnant and by episode end, their son is born. Mandeecees seems committed enough to Yandy but he may not be ready just yet to give up his party boy ways and settle into the family life Yandy wants.

Erica Mena returns and shows off her new modeling gig for 'Maxim.' Her new manager and love interest Rich Dollaz is working on a new single (Yes, homegirl is still trying to sing). Rich conveniently fails to tell his bff/other client Olivia about any of this. When Olivia finds out, she demands a sit down with the three of them to discuss this new smash buddy/working situation. We've seen Olivia be territorial in seasons past, so this ain't ending well kiddos.

Tired of the bickering over him, Joe finally invites Tahiry and Raqi to sit down at his pool party and discuss their dislike for one another. Joe's real current girl Kaylin is also invited but apparently not permitted to talk. Joe suggests that Tahiry and Raqi play a game called Truth Or Truth so as to clear the air. Tahiry pointedly asks Joe if he and Raqi have ever been together and he denies it. Instead of leaving it at that, Tahiry and the "Hip-Hop Confidante" start yelling and each other and Tahiry throws a drink (Someone keep this woman away from drinks.) A full-on fight breaks out and Joe has to make a decision. Does he throw out one of the great loves of his life or his supposed platonic homegirl? Yep. Joe kicks Raqi out. Ouch!

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21 Savage Unveils Free Online Financial Literacy Program For Young People

In continuing his efforts to help young people access financial literacy, 21 Savage announced  the launch of his Bank Account at Home Financial Literary Project on Wednesday (July 1). The campaign includes a partnership with Atlanta Mayor Keisha Bottoms to offer free Wi-Fi and tablets to those in need.

“I felt like it’s important more than ever to give our next generation the tools to succeed in life,” the rapper said in a statement to the Associated Press.


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I’m making financial literacy available to kids and families across the country this summer with #BankAccount At Home- a free online program to give you the tools you need to learn to save and make money. @chime @everfi @keishabottoms

A post shared by Saint Laurent Don (@21savage) on Jul 1, 2020 at 12:21pm PDT

21 Savage and his charity, Leading by Example, partnered with mobile banking service Chime, Juma Ventures and EverFi to “connect our youth with financial education and work opportunities to teach them how to manage and earn money.”

The Grammy winner launched the Bank Account Program in 2018.

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California, Arizona And More States Tighten Lockdown Restrictions As COVID-19 Cases Surge

Coronavirus cases are surging around the country with several states changing quarantine guidelines as 4th of July weekend approaches. The U.S. reached a grim milestone of more than 80,000 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 since Tuesday (June 30).

In total, at least 2.7 million people in the U.S. have contracted COVID-19 since March. Over 1.1 million people have recovered, while more than 100,000 have died.

California, Texas, Arizona, and several other states announced new restrictions this week including the temporary closure of bars, beaches, gyms and other business in hopes of flattening the curve after easing lockdown restrictions in May.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that travelers from over a dozen states with surging cases including Florida, Texas, Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Utah, must self-quarantine for 14 days.

If you're traveling to New York from the following states you must self-quarantine for 14 days.

The states are: AL, AR, AZ, CA, FL, GA, IA, ID, LA, MS, NC, NV, SC, TN, TX, UT.

— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) June 30, 2020

The traveling restriction don't just apply to the states. The European Union has closed its bordered to U.S. travelers until further notice.As of Wednesday (July 1), Florida reported an additional 6,500 new cases, pushing the state total above 100,000. But despite the surge in cases, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis refused to reinstate social distancing restrictions.

Meanwhile, Texas reported over 8,000 cases in just 24 hours, the highest one-day total for the state since the pandemic began. California saw record-breaking numbers as well, prompting Gov. Gavin Newsom to order the closure of beaches, bars, restaurants, and other businesses. The Golden State has surpassed 233,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, many of which are centered in Los Angeles County.

Arizona added 4,682 cases to its total of nearly 85,000 confirmed cases on Tuesday. North Carolina also hit a record high of 1,843 cases, bringing the state’s total of 66,513 following slight dip in the number of infections last weekend.

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50 Cent Offers To Help Virgil Abloh Amid Backlash Over Pop Smoke Album Cover

50 Cent wants to assist Virgil Abloh with the cover of Pop Smoke’s debut studio album, Shoot for the Stars Aim for the Moon. The fashion designer caught criticism after the album artwork hit the web earlier in the week, and fans felt the creation was disrespectful to the late rapper.

Fif initially criticized the creation on Instagram writing, “f**k Virgil he’s [out] of here,” after he learned that Abloh was behind the cover.

Taking to Twitter on Tuesday (June 30), the G-Unit honcho offered Abloh a helping hand. “Hey Virgil we need new album art. They ain’t going for that bulls**t. Love ya work let’s get to it.”

Hey Virgil we need new album art, they ain’t going for this bullshit. Love ya work let’s get to it. 🤔Steven i told you this shit was 😡eww let’s get it right! #bransoncognac #lecheminduroi

— 50cent (@50cent) June 30, 2020

Abloh later explained that the cover was inspired by his final conversation with Pop Smoke. “This album cover was one of like 5 things we talked about,” Virgil wrote in a deleted Instagram post. “He mentioned his story felt like the metaphor of a rose & thorns growing from the concrete of his hood in Canarsie, Brooklyn. In your memory, I just finished it yesterday.” Pop Smoke's manager reportedly decided to change the cover of the album, which is slated for release on Friday (July 3).

UPDATE: Pop Smoke’s manager says they will change the album cover after listening to the fans.

— Hot Freestyle (@HotFreestyle) June 30, 2020

In March, Fif announced that he was working on Pop Smoke’s posthumous LP. “I’m on the move listening to Pop Smoke. I deduced I’m gonna executive produce and finish his album for him,” he revealed on Instagram.

Pop Smoke was shot and killed inside his Southern California rental home in February. His murder remains unsolved.

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