Butt Implants: The Search For Perfection!

Check out this good read from MTV\’s Wrap Up:

I’m sure most of you are aware of the young British girl who flew to Philadelphia recently for butt implants. 20-year-old Claudia Seye Aderotimi flew to America for the surgery, which was performed in a hotel. It turns out that Claudia found the procedure online and opted to travel to the States as it was a cheaper option in comparison to getting the cosmetic injections here in the UK. The fact that Claudia would agree to the procedure being completed in a hotel tells a sad story of how some women would go to such lengths to search for perfection…

Claudia described herself as a “*Model* Actress* Singer* Dancer* Doctor* that’s about it*” on her Twitter page. I looked at her feed and it was clear to see that she wanted to be involved in the entertainment world as a tweet on January 12 read, “I wanna be Famous.”

This case has further highlighted the lengths that young women will go to in order to gain fame. It’s even sadder when a tweet that the 20-year-old typed, said: “G.R.O.D.T. GET RICH OR DIE TRYING.” Sometimes you can’t blame young girls who chase the dream of the perfect image; because they see people they look up to in the entertainment world having surgeries of their own.

You only have to look at one of the most successful female rappers in hip-hop, Lil Kim. It would appear the rapper has had a number of surgeries, ranging from skin lightening to cheek implants. When looking at before and after pictures, you wouldn’t be blamed for thinking she is a totally different person to the Kim that we were introduced to back in the early 90s.

Lil Kim’s last album came in 2005 and since then the rap world hasn’t seen another queen of hip-hop, but all has changed thanks to Nicki Minaj, some would say. Born Onika Tanya Maraj, the femcee is said to have had butt implants of her own, as well as a nose job and breast implants. So with such big stars in the mainstream media going under the knife in order for them to find perfection, it’s not hard to see why some women lean towards surgeries of their own.

As well as Nicki and Kim, there are many other artists who have had plastic surgeries and most have been well documented in the media. There are also the hip-hop music videos, which seem to cast a certain type of female – the women known as ‘video vixens’. One of the most successful vixens is Vida Guerra, who has had a very successful career due to being cast in various hip-hop videos and has gone on to be a model. Vida is said to have had plastic surgery, with breast enlargement.

These women seem to be looked down on in the videos, as a lot of the time they are wearing close to nothing and are simply there for the male gaze. Young females look to music videos as an entry level into higher grounds, such as film, modelling or singing. However, as with Claudia, you can see that there are sacrifices to be made in order to reach what is seen as perfection in the media’s eyes.

Rihanna is someone who has seen her latest video for ‘S&M’ being heavily criticised. It’s been banned in some countries, while only being played at certain times in others. Not to mention the radio edits and playing restrictions, as well as the YouTube controversy. However, even though there is a lot of criticism towards the video, it is this that brings a lot of publicity, which has worked in favour of the artist.

The album just climbed back up to number 5 on the US Billboard chart and the song has already reached number 1 in some countries, while continuing to climb the charts worldwide. The 22-year-old singer is aware of her young fans and knows they look up to her, so you would think she would tone down her image at times, but it seems she is getting more and more sexual as time moves on.

It is said that sex sells, and yes, even Marks & Spencer’s use it in their adverts with food that looks almost too good to eat. However, the entertainment industry needs to take a good look at itself and see that there are many cases, like Claudia’s, of young girls going after a definition of ‘perfection’ which has been fed to them through media and things have not gone accordingly. She was only 20 years old and had her whole life to look forward to, but in the end, sadly her life was lost after chasing the dream. Something needs to be done, and fast in order for young girls to be happy with who they are, rather than trying to be someone else.

Words: Brady Kinghorn (@BradyLondon)

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Han’s Hip-Hop Report: Remembering Tupac Shakur 1971 – 1996

Today marks 14 years since Tupac Shakur was killed… Here’s a great article remembering the iconic MC by Han O’ Conner for MTV’s Wrap UP.

Surely one of the most misused terms in hip-hop, ‘great’ is used all too frequently in the game today. What, however, is greatness? Whilst seemingly measured in today’s industry by first-week sales, ringtones or endorsements rewind the clock back to the mid-Nineties and the word ‘great’ had a very different definition. Presence, personality, passion, performance and poetics all played a significant role in defining the perceived greatness of the first true hip-hop stars…

The tragic deaths of the two most prominent figures to surface during this golden era (Tupac Shakur and Christopher ‘Biggie Smalls’ Wallace) would then add arguably the most important factor to the definition – impact. “Every rapper who grew up in the Nineties owes something to Tupac,” 50 Cent once – quite correctly recalled. “He didn’t sound like anyone who came before him.” From his ‘Digital Underground’ debut to the ‘Makaveli’ phase, he always managed to bring something fresh, experimental and original. Perhaps not blessed with the most consistent or even accurate delivery, it was Pac’s passion that seemed to transcend the technical conventions; many artists may have had a better flow admittedly, but Tupac really spoke to you.

A captivating storyteller and street anthropologist, it was his lyrical prowess that sparked the interest of an entire generation. Furthermore, his incessant work ethic, fuelled by raw passion for his craft – and perhaps supplemented by his feeling of ‘the shadow’s depth’ – ensured that upon his untimely demise he left an undeniable body of work that has served to truly cement his immortality. Often criticised for his contradictory behaviour and messages, even his critics cannot deny that unlike many of his peers he gave an in-depth insight into the full spectrum of human feeling.

If hip-hop can be defined as fearless self-expression, then Pac is surely the epitome of pure, unadulterated hip-hop. An iconic symbol of empowerment and revolution, a source of inspiration and a beacon of hope in times of pain or suffering, his words provide and enduring tribute to the golden era that he once ruled.
So, in terms of legacy, influence and impact, Tupac Shakur surely more than embodies the term greatness. After all, it took ‘The Rose That Grew From Concrete’ to make me appreciate the works of Langston Hughes and William Shakespeare; in fact, like arguably an entire generation of hip-hop heads, his words have been perhaps my single greatest inspiration. Frankly, in my humble opinion, that is the true definition of greatness.

“I’m not saying I’m going to change the world, but I guarantee I will spark the mind that will.” – Tupac Shakur

Addictive: Mixtape Launch x Interview!

Female singing duo Addictive have just released their new mixtape ‘They Wanna Wife Me’ – a 27 track project that sees the girls fuse their trademark bassline/funky sound and mix it with contemporary R&B, as well as featuring some soulful live acoustic songs into the mix, taken from their BBC Live Lounge Session. Louise Bagan and Aisha Stuart both grew up in Plaistow, East London and after singing in many talent shows, the childhood friends joined forces five years ago to create, Addictive…

It’s been a long journey for the talented twosome, but last year the hard work began to really pay off. Their 2009 T2 produced bassline club hit ‘Gonna Be Mine’ was the number one video on MTV Base for three consecutive weeks and number one for two consecutive weeks on MTV Dance, as well as being top five in the BBC Radio 1 Dance Chart.

“Bassline was quite a new sound in London (at the time), so we weren’t too sure how the single would be received,” Louise explains on her surprise at the songs huge success. “But it worked, so we’re really grateful for that. We didn’t expect it to be that big,” she adds. The UK urban dance scene has really taken off in the last 12months, but Addictive are one of a few female acts who are standing tall in this male dominated genre. “It’s great that the UK is finally embracing the UK, because there’s so much talent over here. But there’s not enough ladies,” Aisha explains. “We’re very supportive of all the other female artists out there, so if we can do something for the ladies – which I’m sure we will – then that’s all good.”

‘They Wanna Wife Me’ is a collection of songs the girls recorded over the last two years and sees them creatively explore new grounds that an album would normally restrict them from venturing. “We didn’t have to follow any guidelines; we were just free to do us. You’re gonna hear some R&B, some funky and there’s also a little melody at the end,” Aisha explains. “There are some lyrics on there that are not necessarily explicit, but you might have to be a bit careful if you were putting it on an album,” she continued. “With a mixtape there are no rules,” Louise adds.

I attended Additive’s official mixtape launch at the Pep-C club in central London, where the ladies gave a stunning live performance to a packed crowd. They wore sexy lycra-style body suits that would give Rihanna a run for her money in the style stakes. They performed a medley of their bassline/funky songs, which really got the crowd hype. But for me it was the soulful acoustic part at the end that really excited me. While Addictive are famed for their fast club style hits, seeing them live shows a different side to the London duo. They can REALLY sing. Their vocal ability could rival the best of the female singers out there. It’s no surprise Louise beat X-Factor winner Leona Lewis to first prize at the UK Unsigned talent show a few years back.

Addictive have worked with some of the best producers in the industry for their latest project: Gordon Chambers (Beyoncé and Usher), Corporal (Neyo, Rihanna and Jay-Z) and Andy Chatterley (Kanye West). There really is something for everyone.

Download Addictive’s mixtape – ‘They Wanna Wife Me’: HERE

Vanessa Laker Meets Flo Rida: The Interview!

Flo Rida recently popped into MTV HQ where he had a chat with Vanessa Laker and discussed everything from his chart topping new single, to his love for UK artists and why Lady Gaga is such a phenomenon, all exclusively for The Wrap Up!

 

Ever since he burst onto the scene in 2008 with his smash hit ‘Low’ Flo Rida has consistently released hit after hit and is currently one of the biggest artists in the music biz – breaking some impressive records along the way. His 2009 Timbaland produced track ‘Right Round’ broke the record for the most digital one week sales in the U.S., shifting 636,000 copies, beating the previous record which was held by none other than Flo Rida himself, for debut single ‘Low’.

The Florida Native, real name Tramar Dillard, is currently on a European promo tour and this weekend beat off stiff competition from Eminem, Rihanna and The Saturdays, by storming to number one on the official UK single charts with new track ‘Club Can’t Handle Me’ – a song that features man of the moment David Guetta and is from the Step Up 3D soundtrack.

Vanessa: You’ve got a new single out ‘Club Can’t Handle Me’. Tell us a little bit about the track and the concept behind it?

Flo Rida: It’s a real fun party track. It’s about going out to the club, feeling good, knowing that you’re fly and basically having a good time with your people. It’s just an all round fun song.

Vanessa: The video looks really fun. Was it just as fun to make as it looks?

Flo Rida: OMG the video shoot was a blast. It’s actually my favorite video shoot so far. There was so much positive energy. It was a hell lot of fun to make, definitely my favorite video to date.

Vanessa: You teamed up with super-producer David Guetta for this song. What was it like working with him?

Flo Rida: It’s amazing working with David. He’s one of the most talented guys out there and he’s such a cool person too.

Vanessa: The song is for the Step Up 3D soundtrack, have you had a chance to see the movie yet? If so, any good?

Vanessa: I have… With this one they raised the bar even higher with the quality of dance. The moves are ridiculous. They’ve really stepped up the gear. The techniques, the style etc. It’s on a different level.

Vanessa: Last night you performed Live at London’s Heaven. What was it like and how did you find your UK fans?

Flo Rida: The show was amazing. The energy and the vibe was so crazy. I actually got a chance to talk to the fans and sign some autographs, which was great. I love my fans, so when I get the chance to interact with them, it’s beautiful. I love the energy over here in the UK, the hospitality is insane. It’s always overwhelming when you come to another country and you’re embraced in such a positive way.

Vanessa: You’ve worked with a couple of UK artists (X-Factor winner Alexandra Burke and R&B singer Nathan). Are you a fan of UK music and if so are there any other UK artists you’d like to work with?

Flo Rida: I love the UK scene. It’s fresh and there’s so much talent out here. I’m a huge fan of Taio Cruz. I’m really liking what he’s doing at the moment. I’d love to do something with him.

Vanessa: You’ve had the pleasure of working with some amazing artists – Rick Ross, Wil-I-Am, Ne-Yo, Timbaland, Nelly Furtado etc – is there anyone you haven’t worked with yet, that you’d really like to?

Flo Rida: Yeah, loads. I would love to do something with Beyonce. I’ve been on tour with her, which was such an amazing experience. She’s such a talented artist it’s crazy. We haven’t worked on a track together though, so I’d love to do something in the studio with her. I’d also like to do something with Katy Perry. I really like her sound and style.

Vanessa: You featured on Lady Gaga’s ‘The Fame’ album. So what’s your take on the whole Gaga phenomenon?

Flo Rida: I think she’s incredible. Her creativity, her hustle, she’s really doing her thing. She’s a real artist. You have to give props to someone who puts so much into their craft. And no-one’s doing it on such a level that Gaga is doing it. I’ve got a lot of respect for her.

Vanessa: After high school you attended the University of Nevada, where you studied International Business. If the music thing didn’t work out, what would you see yourself doing right now?

Flo Rida: I’d probably be doing something within international business. Definitely something along those lines. I think it’s really important for musicians to have a backup plan, because nothing is promised in this industry. I’m still very business minded. I’ve got my own label, IMG (International Music Group) and we’re working with some great new talent, so look out for that.

Vanessa: You’ve got a new album ‘The Only One’ coming out soon. Tell us a bit about the project and what can we expect to here?

Flo Rida: I’m really excited about this new album. I’ve got some exciting stuff that I’m looking forward to showcasing. There’s the ‘Club Can’t Handle Me’ with David Guetta which is out already. I’ve got a song with Lil Wayne called ‘Fresh I stay’ so keep your ears out for that one. I always aim to take it to that next level, so I’m really excited about this project. The LP should be out later this year.

Stay up to date with Flo Rida on Twitter – www.twitter.com/Official_Flo

This interview was originally posted on MTV UK’s website.

Ryan Phillippe Wants To A Become HipHop Producer…

He acted in Oscar winning film Crash and has been lighting up the big screen for over ten years now, but it seems Hollywood star Ryan Phillippe is an actor trapped in a rappers body. Just last month he told Men’s Health Magazine of his great rapping ability; “I rap really well. I can sound like Lil Wayne or Ludacris. I’m dead serious, I can spit!

Now the Cruel Intentions actor has expressed his desire to produce. Speaking exclusively with MTV US the actor spoke of his love for hip-hop and he’s appreciation of raps man of the moment Drake – Phillippe attended the rappers sold-out show at Los Angeles’ Club Nokia earlier this week.

“He was amazing,” Phillippe says. “Not only was it Drake, but he brought out Nicki Minaj. Birdman came out and Tyga and Soulja Boy. There’s this guy Jay Electronica that I’m really into right now,” he adds. He’s not just into the new generation of rappers either. Phillipe’s been a fan of rap since he was a little boy and sights Jay-Z and Biggie Smalls as two his favourite MCs. He also expressed his desire to produce, saying he hopes to “produce an artist” sometime down the line.

This feature was initially written for MTV The Wrap UP.

Vanessa Laker Talks To KimberlyWyatt: The Interview

KimberlyWyatt: The Interview

I recently went down to the MTV HQ in Camden to interview the lovely Kimberly Wyatt. The former Pussycat Doll is promoting hit single “Candy” with UK rapper Aggro Santos. This interview was conducted on behalf of MTV: The Wrap UP and was originally printed on The Wrap Up’s website. 

 

Since 2005 Kimberly Wyatt has been dominating the charts and performing sell out shows around the world with former group The Pussycats Dolls. She’s sold millions of records and worked with the likes of Missy Elliot, Snoop Dogg and Busta Rhymes, to name a few. After leaving the band in January this year, she embarked on a solo career and is currently riding high in the top 5 of the UK singles chart with London rapper Aggro Santos – supplying the vocals on his smash hit ‘Candy’.

The Wrap Up: You’re branching out as a solo singer. How is it performing without the girls?

Kimberly Wyatt: I’ve been performing since the age of 7 now, so I feel at home on the stage. But of course I’m used to having the girls with me all the time, so right now everyday is a new experience. It’s super exciting. It’s been a roller coaster.
 
TWU: Are you enjoying being a solo artist?
 
Kimberly Wyatt: Being in the Pussycat Dolls was a great period in my life, those girls are my sisters. But it came to the point that I had to revise the situation. I was unable to grow creatively and knew that I would never be able to do the things I wanted to do whilst being in the group. Right now I’m enjoying the creative freedom I have and just being able to make the music that I like.
 
TWU: What kind of music can we expect to hear from your upcoming album?
 
Kimberly Wyatt: I really like electro and house. I’ve been experimenting with different sounds, which is really fun. I’ve actually got a mixtape out right now with a really good friend of mine Her Majesty And The Wolves. That’s a little taster of what direction I’m going into musically. But I’d say my new album is electro pop. It’ll be out quite soon.
 
TWU: You’ve achieved so much with the Pussycat Dolls, do you feel you can relax a little as you’ve already proved yourself as an artist or do you feel under pressure to match the group’s success?
 
Kimberly Wyatt: We really did so much together. We conquered the world. We’ve had number ones and sold out shows across the globe, which is great. But now I’m all about making music I like that makes me happy. I’ve got this saying; ‘Art before chart.’ I’m just having so much fun right now. I’m making great songs and doing great shows. I’m surrounded by so many down to earth creative people and I’m really growing as person and I’ve got the freedom to experiment creatively – something that I wasn’t able to do in the group.
 
TWU: You were recently a judge On Sky 1’s dance show, Got To Dance. How was that experience for you?
 
Kimberly Wyatt: OMG, I loved it. I’m a dancer, that’s where I started and I always try and stay true to my roots. Dancing is my passion. It’s what I’ve been doing for so many years. I feel like dancers are not given enough credit. In a live show the dancers are a huge part of the production, but for some reason they’re always at bottom of the pile and not given enough recognition. So I was honoured to be a part of the show.
 
TWU: After seeing you dancing in various music videos Robin Antin (founder of the Pussycat Dolls) asked you to join the group. Did you plan to get into singing and how did you find the transition?
 
Kimberly Wyatt: Ever since I started dancing my teachers told me ‘you have to be a triple threat.’ So although growing up I was primarily a dancer, I always sang as well. Before moving to LA I used to work on a cruise ship, where I used to sing and dance. So I’ve kind of pretty much always done both.
 
TWU: What do you like to do in your spare time when you’re not busy working?
 
Kimberly Wyatt: I absolutely love writing. It’s one of my favourite things to do to relax. I like writing positive things. I’m really into the world of social networking. I have a blog, Beautiful Movements (www.beautifulmovements.com) which is a place of self expression. I love literature and strongly believe that through words and self expression, we can get through so many things and conquer negative feelings by letting them out and not suppressing our thoughts.
 
TWU: When was the last time you got star struck?
 
Kimberly Wyatt: I absolutely love Missy Elliot. Even though we’re friends now, I still get star struck every time we speak. Just last week she texted me and I said to my friend ‘OMG, OMG look at my phone, Missy just text me.’ Yeh, I still get star struck.
 
TWU: Your current single with Aggro Santos is called ‘Candy,’ but what is your favourite candy?
 
Kimberly Wyatt: I love Startburst. I’m totally addicted to them.
 
Aggro Santos ft. Kimberly Wyatt: ‘Candy’ – is out now.
 

 

For more interviews and news on your favourite musicians and celebs go to MTV’s website www.mtv.co.uk and for alls things urban check out The Wrap Up www.mtv.co.uk/music/urban

Diddy To Manage Jay Electronica?

He may not have the same commercial buzz as fellow newcomer Drake, but Jay Electronica is causing huge waves within hip-hop fans worldwide. His flow and lyrical content takes hip-hop back to the ‘real rap’ days and is reminiscent of the genres heyday; before record companies turned it into million dollar money making industry – which left many rappers choosing chart success over credible music. Jay Electronica is a breath of fresh air and is proving that ‘real’ hip-hop is well and truly not dead…

P. Diddy’s already allegedly taking care of managerial duties for rap heavyweight Rick Ross and Young Money’s First Lady Nicki Minaj, but there have been reports suggesting the Bad Boy CEO is now about to take the New Orleans wordsmith under his belt.
 
In a recent interview with VIBE.com, Jay addresses those Diddy rumours. “Puff is my man. Puff is going to be involved. I’ve been knowing him a while before people know who I was. I sought him out in 2004,” he explains. “At the moment I’m not contractually tied to anything right now. He’s not a manager. My manager is Angela Yee. Let me ask you something. On a scale of 1 to 10, how big is the news of Diddy allegedly being my manager?” The reporter responds with; “Oh that’s a ten.” To which Jay says, “Well, if that’s a 10, then what is really about to happen is off the charts.”
 
It seems like Diddy’s really serious about getting his title back as the richest man in hip-hop. Jay-Z knocked him off Forbes number one spot a few years ago, but with Diddy’s band Dirty Money going hard and his managerial career going from strength to strength, Jigga should watch over his shoulder because it seems like his rival could be on course to get his crown back.
 
If Diddy does team up with Jay Electronica I hope he brings the Southern rapper to the masses, because this guy is the truth, and with the right people working behind him he has the potential to be a hip-hop great.
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This piece was written for MTV The Wrap UP www.mtv.co.uk/music/urban
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