2018 MTV Video Music Awards - Show
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Nicki Minaj Takes Over The Oculus For 2018 MTV VMAs Performance

Giving the Barbz a taste of what’s to come for her possible tour, the Queens native transported viewers from Radio City Music Hall to the eye-capturing space.

Nicki Minaj transformed downtown Manhattan’s Oculus into a palace for her MTV Video Music Awards performance (Aug. 20). Giving the Barbz a taste of what’s to come for her possible tour, the Queens native transported viewers from Radio City Music Hall to the eye-capturing space to perform “Majesty," “Barbie Dreams," an a cappella version of “Ganja Burn,” and “Fefe” that features 6ix9ine.

Before her performance, the “Bed” rapper took home the Best Hip Hop Video award for “Chun-Li” which is featured on her fourth studio album, Queen. In an interview with Genius, Minaj shared her process behind a few songs on the album. “Recently, I’ve switched the approach to doing a reference type of mumble track on the beat,” she said. “To me, whatever I do the first time is usually the dopest flow, and I just like to kind of keep that flow and then add words to that flow.”

Although she’s currently promoting the album, Minaj has made headlines for calling to attention stats and respect within the music industry. Through her Queen Radio show on Beats 1, she's had the opportunity to address controversial moments, which she might continue on Tuesday’s episode (Aug. 21).

On Queen’s album stats, Minaj pinned Spotify for trying to “teach me a lesson but rewarded the man who has had an Apple radio show the longest; inadvertently helping the Apple platform the most.” That man she’s referring to is her Young Money cohort Drake. “They took away my promotion they had promised for the 1st cpl days b/c of this,” she concluded. She also name-dropped Travis Scott

Watch her performance below.

READ MORE: ‘Queen’ And The Hypocrisy Of Nicki Minaj’s Feminism

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Ashanti Douglas attends "It's a Wonderful Lifetime” first holiday party of the year at STK Los Angeles on October 22, 2019 in Los Angeles, California
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Ashanti Joins Omarion's Millennium Tour

Our prayers for a female presence on Omarion's Millenium Tour have been answered with one of the most talented singers in R&B.

On Thursday (Dec. 5), Omarion announced singer-songwriter Ashanti as a special guest for the upcoming tour. "So excited to announce that Ashanti will be joining The Millennium Tour lineup!" he said in an Instagram post. The singer announced the follow-up show last week to what was perceived as a B2K reunion tour featuring Mario, Lloyd, Pretty Ricky, Chingy, Bobby Valentino and the Ying Yang Twins earlier this year.

Hailed as The "Millenium Tour 2020," the new bill features Soulja Boy and Sammie, with the Ying Yang Twins, Pretty Ricky and Lloyd returning to the mix. The tour will also include Bow Wow, who has several jams (and an album) with Omarion like "Let Me Hold You" and "Girlfriend."

Before joining the tour, Ashanti was a special guest during Lloyd's performances of their 2004 hit, "Southside." With such a large and memorable discography, fans will be thrilled to hear some of the Grammy-winner's biggest hits like "Foolish," "Only U," and recent releases like "Say Less" featuring Ty Dolla $ign and "Pretty Little Thing" featuring Afro B.

This will more than likely be a another big financial boost to the tour. The inaugural Millennium Tour grossed $6.7 million from its first eight reports, according to Billboard and set a career-high for B2K. They also went on to earn $5 million from three additional dates at The Forum in Inglewood, Calif. (April 13-14), State Farm Arena in Atlanta (April 4-5), and Oracle Arena in Oakland, Calif. (April 12).

 

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Fabolous Clarifies Comments About Shiggy And Paid Promotional Posts

Fabolous is all about his friends–including Shiggy–making their bread. The rapper cleared up an assumed incident between himself and the comedian during an interview with Ebro in The Morning after he was criticized for slamming Shiggy for demanding a check for promoted social posts.

Earlier this week, an exchange between Fab, Casanova and Shiggy about the matter was seen on Instagram Live after Shiggy explained why he doesn't create "challenge" dances for free. In light of his new single "Choosy," he asked his pal for a #ChoosyChallenge dance post to support it. Shiggy said he would be down to do it–but had to receive a check first.

Shiggy's profile has skyrocketed since he created the #InMyFeelings challenge in 2018. The challenge helped boost Drake's single and led to the comedian going on tour with him. He's also found himself in some awkward situations with rappers nearly bullying him into providing his influence for their music. During Shiggy's exchange with Casanova and Fab, it seemed that Shiggy's request was frowned upon.

Speaking to Ebro, Laura Stylez and Peter Rosenberg, Fab says his criticism of Shiggy was a joke and he's well aware that the comedian should receive a check for his services.

"It was all a play to play with Shiggy," he said. "Shiggy is a joking person, so you joke back with him. So my joke to him was, this first time I'm seeing him, he was at my show, and just like, 'Wow, look at Shiggy.' So I hit Shiggy just because we was starting the challenge of it and just because I know him personally. We have a cool relationship.  So I was just like, 'Yo man, it'd be cool if you do something for the new joint, for 'Choosy.'' And he's like, 'Yeah, yeah, see if you get me a check or something.' And even when he said it, I didn't take no offense to it, because I even see now, social media and the social media influencers, record labels do that. But me personally, I don't personally pay people, you know what I'm saying? I even told him like, 'I'mma see if Def Jam can get you a check. Let me figure it out.'"

Shiggy hasn't responded to the drama but he did say in his Instagram stories, "I didn't change, I just learned my lesson."

Check out the rest of Fab's interview below.

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Andre Harrell attends Premiere Of Netflix's "The Black Godfather" at Paramount Theater on the Paramount Studios lot on June 03, 2019 in Hollywood, California.
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Miniseries Based On Uptown Records Heads To BET

In the age of documenting some of music's most pivotal entities, BET is stepping into that ring again with its latest series addition. The network gave the green light to a three-part miniseries that'll tell the story of Uptown Records.

Founded in the late 80s by longstanding music industry executive Andre Harrell, the label helped shape and promote the careers of Mary J. Blige, Al B. Sure, Heavy D & the Boyz, Jodeci, The Notorious B.I.G., and served as a springboard for Diddy to launch his own imprint, Bad Boy Records. The program will be executive produced by Jesse Collins who worked behind-the-scenes on the network's hit biopics The New Edition Story, and The Bobby Brown Story.

"I am thrilled to partner with BET Networks and Jesse Collins Entertainment to share my story, the rise of Uptown Records and successful black entrepreneurship, and the management and cultivation of some of the most iconic artists to come out of the late '80s and '90s hip-hop, R&B and soul music era," Harrell said in a statement.

In a 2012 interview with Mega Diversities, Harrell shared what encouraged him to embark on a journey in the music business.

In 1985, I was the road manager for LL Cool J.  We did a show in New Jersey.  At the time, his first album Radio was released and had critical acclaim with its hip-hop ballads and hybrid sounds.  It appealed to a younger music audience who were instrumental in the LP’s success.  I thought it was interesting that he became one of the first rappers to crossover.  The album went platinum. The record helped establish both with Def Jam as a label (with a distribution deal with Columbia Records the following year) and LL Cool J as a rapper.  Seeing the commercial success of the LP made me realize the benefits of being in the business side of the industry.  In addition, Radio contributed to the displacement of the old school hip-hop by the new school genre (where artists tended to compose shorter with a self-assertive style). This pivotal moment in the history and the culture of rap made me see that it was time to go behind the camera and find a new style for my future artists.

Uptown will premiere in 2020.

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