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Frenemies Iggy Azalea & Azealia Banks May Be Ready For A Clean Slate

Is their six-year feud really over? 

Iggy Azalea and Azealia Banks may share a similar moniker, but that's about all they have in common. Over the past six years, the two femcees have been at odds with one another, usually hashing out their differences over social media. But it looks like both ladies are just about ready to wave the white flag. After Banks entertained the idea of the two reaching a reconciliation, Azalea issued a formal statement on Snapchat, suggesting she was all for the new girl power movement.

"I just want to say FYI; re A. Banks. Call me crazy but girl; I don’t hate you. I don’t know you to hate you," the "Fancy" artist wrote in a statement addressed to her former rival. "I believe you may want to meet me in person so you can steal a lock of my hair and cast a spell hoping I die (lol). I don’t agree with many of your opinions, but honestly, at times I empathize with you as a creative Gemini woman."

She also attempted to explain her side of the battle, which originally stemmed from a war of words over Iggy's comments in her 2012 XXL Freshman cover story. "I wish you had spoken to me before deciding I was out to get you when we first came on the scene, but that’s also typical Gemini reaction shit (I get it). As a 27 year old adult woman just know: I wish you well from one human to another and joke collaboration or not as adults we should move past trivial beef with strangers," she added.

Shortly after Azalea made her feelings public, the "Chi Chi" artist reached out to XXL, showing the same sentiment, but on one, small condition.  "I think a true reconciliation can happen once there is some acknowledgment of what hip-hop has been trying to tell her," the Harlem rapper said. "I still don’t think she quite understands the effect her racial privilege and the socio-economic leverage that comes with it has on a marginalized group of women’s culture."

The rapper went on to discuss the complexities of women's issues, saying, "I hope that there will be a chance for us to have an open discussion about this, as I feel America and the world could really benefit from some candid discourse between two public figures about the world’s biggest sickness: racism." "I wish for women of the future to be able to refer to this moment in women’s culture as an example of what can happen when people take time to understand," her statement concluded.

Iggy and Azealia may not be all the way ready to make amends, but if they're both willing to have a conversation, that's a huge step in the right direction. Maybe they could teach Nicki Minaj and Remy Ma a thing or two about that.

 

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Lil Kim and Lil Cease reunite at the first annual B.I.G. Family Dinner at Nomo Kitchen on Tuesday, May 21, 2019.
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Lil Kim And Lil Cease Reunite, Resolve Differences At Biggie Birthday Dinner

Brooklyn rap legend and fashion icon Lil Kim started her career with The Notorious B.I.G. in the early ‘90s, and on what would’ve been the latter’s 47th birthday, Kim honored his life and reunited with her Junior M.A.F.I.A. cohorts.

On Tuesday (May 21), Kim hosted the first annual B.I.G. Family Dinner at Nomo Kitchen, in the swanky Soho neighborhood of New York City. In a gorgeous, candle and chandelier-lit room, artists, friends, and family of Biggie laughed, ate and celebrated the career of the artist they love and who welcomed them into the music industry. Attendees included Bad Boy labelmates Styles P and Jadakiss of The LOX, Bronx lyricist and Biggie’s friend Fat Joe, fellow Brooklyn MC Fabolous, business partner and record exec Lance “Un” Rivera, Biggie’s daughter T’yanna Wallace, and all of the members of Junior M.A.F.I.A. Revered Hot 97 DJ Mister Cee, known for discovering Big, proudly hosted the evening, introducing speakers and directing traffic.

Kim and Junior M.A.F.I.A. cohort Lil Cease entered the building on the red carpet: Kim wearing a splendid, shimmering, chest-baring silver dress with a black belt on her waist, and Cease wearing a gray suit, white tee and his signature Jesus piece chain with crisp white Air Force Ones. Artist wardrobes varied: Mister Cee wore a painted Biggie tee and Styles P wore a casual linen outfit, while Jadakiss donned a white suit and Fabolous wore a black tux.

Attendees were stunned at the sight of Kim and Cease together: they were once inseparable, but Cease said that night was the first time they had seen each other in person in 13 years. But they began planning the dinner earlier this year on March 9, the anniversary of when Biggie died after being shot in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles.

“It’s been a long time since we’ve been together on his birthday or doing any event together at all. For me, it was a spiritual awakening,” Kim told VIBE. “This was his heart. So it’s sort of for me, mending Big’s broken heart. All of us were Big, head to toe. Putting him back together is putting all of us back together.”

“I’ve been waiting on this day for years. This is somebody that held me down since B.I. passed, and somebody I knew before B.I. passed,” Cease said. “She always acted in my best interests … This was God’s timing. I’ve been trying to reach out to her for years but when God was ready for us to make it happen, He made it happen. No questions asked, no old rehashing, let’s start over from here and keep it traditional.”

“...We’d see each other, but it’d be eyes, and we’d keep it moving and do our separate things,” Cease continued. “This is the first time we’re literally face to face. We’ve been speaking since March, but this is the energy of back in the 90s.

Kim and Cease had a strained relationship since the mid-2000s, when Kim served a one-year prison sentence after being convicted of perjury and conspiracy for lying to a federal grand jury about her and her fellow Junior M.A.F.I.A. members’ involvement in a shooting outside of the Hot 97 studios. Kim testified that she didn’t know that Damion “D-Roc” Butler and Suif “Gutta” Jackson were at the scene, but both of them still served prison time as a result of the shooting. Butler and Jackson were both seats away from Kim and Cease at the dinner table on Tuesday.

During Cease’s speech at the dinner table, he explained how he moved in with Kim after Biggie died and apologized for the falling out of their friendship.

“I apologize for things I may have done that may have hurt you or affected you or made you feel bad,” he said. “I genuinely apologize, and I love you from the bottom of my heart. I thank you for bringing this energy here.”

“...This lets you know God is real. Sometimes you may not expect it to come but when it does, embrace it, be ready for it, and make sure your energy is right for it,” Cease told the crowd. “My energy was right for it. She read that from me, and that’s why she spoke to me. I hit her randomly one day, and she texted me back, I’m like ‘oh sh*t.’”

Kim was mum to VIBE on the details of a potential Junior M.A.F.I.A. reunion. “Just wait and see. I’ve got some special things planned, don’t worry. I can’t tell you nothing right now,” she said. But Lance “Un” Rivera gave the members a mission when he was given the mic.

“This is the beginning. Junior M.A.F.I.A. in one room. Everybody who was a part of it,” Rivera said. “What I want you guys to do is make this the official day that you all take back. ...You guys have to claim your rightful spot.”

Kim and Cease also spoke to VIBE about a long-lasting hip-hop debate: what’s the better album, Ready To Die or Life After Death? Cease chose the former.

“I have a personal thing for Ready To Die. That was the birth. It was him at his prime, raw, still young and fresh. That’s what opened the gate. I grasp that more because aside from him being my friend, for me to be a fan and be young, I was super high and excited.

Kim chose his double disc classic.

“Life After Death is the one where we all knew it was going solidified everybody. We were so proud of that album, that was special because we knew that was going to be the one who solidified who we were because it solidified who he was. … It was a double disc, and the more music I get from him, the better.

When asked about Biggie’s most slept on verses, Kim chose “You Can’t Stop The Reign” with Shaquille O’Neal - “I feel like not too many people know about that verse,” she said - and his verse with Michael Jackson on "This Time Around." Cease chose the second verse on “Everyday Struggle” and the third verse on “Niggas Bleed” as his favs.

The event also included a live painting, dueling violinists and a flutist playing over Biggie instrumentals, and comments by the aforementioned artists. The night ended with a reveal of the cover of 9, Lil Kim’s long-awaited upcoming solo album and her first since 2005's The Naked Truth.

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Jamaican Artist Shenseea Signs With Interscope, Drops New Song With Tyga

Jamaican-bred dancehall artist Shenseea is now an Interscope Records signee. The 22-year-old Kingston transplant, who has worked with artists such as Vybz Kartel and Shaggy, has been making waves with her infectious dancehall tunes, and with a debut album in the works, it looks like nothing is slowing her down.

“Interscope always strives to work with artists that can move culture on a global scale. Shenseea is already doing that,” Interscope’s EVP Joie Manda says of the fireball artist. “She represents Jamaica in a loud and truly authentic voice. We couldn’t be any more pleased to partner with her and Rvssian. Many artists go to Jamaica to learn culture, Shenseea teaches it.”

Today (May 22), Shenseea released her new single “Blessed” featuring Tyga. The bass-heavy track was produced by Rvssian, and is dripping with energy as the rising star oozes self-confidence from start to finish.

“Look in the mirror say ‘b**ch I’m the best,’” she urges her listeners to tell themselves. The video itself (directed by Arrad) is as vibrant as the song, featuring fast cars, people dancing and celebrating their beautiful lives.

“I’ve always shared my gratitude to God and my supporters, I am blessed and grateful for them; and I think this song expresses that, not only for me but for others too,” Shenseea says of the song. “It’s an empowering and confident song for everybody, I hope my fans will hear this and learn to love themselves for who they are and reflect more on their blessings all while enjoying the sound of good music.”

Watch the video below.

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City Girls' Yung Miami Blasts Hazel-E Over Diss Track: "I'm Beating Your A**"

City Girl's Yung Miami recently blasted former Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood star-turned-rapper, Hazel-E online after Hazel released a diss track called "Add It Up."

On the record (in reference to City Girl's girls' anthem, "Act Up"), Hazel-E takes shots at the Miami duo for having Lil Yachty write most of their lyrics. "I’m a real boss, I truly signed checks/You just got signed, you truly signed into debt/QC quit capping, quit comparing, you got bodied/Point blank bi**h, period...Lil Boat wrote your shit, are you serious?" Hazel raps, frequently referring to the duo as "little girls."

After catching wind of Hazel-E's track, Yung Miami delivered a heated response on her personal Instagram account. "Just know when I see you, sir, I’m beating your a** on sight for speaking on my mom and my son you lame a** h*e!"

The post also addressed Love & Hip Hop star, Joseline Hernandez, who co-signed Hazel-E's diss track.

"[And] @joseline what’s up with you coke head a** h*e ?!" she wrote in an IG post.

Listen to Hazel-E's single in the video above, and see Yung Miami's response below.

 

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#Joseline is here for #HazelE’s diss track, #YungMiami wants all the shmoke, & #GHerbo & #Masika say the track is trash 😩😩👀

A post shared by The Shade Room (@theshaderoom) on May 21, 2019 at 3:31pm PDT

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