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She also wrote, “I got love for both of 'em,” on top of the video, clarifying that she still respects Minaj as an artist.
Bhabie recently snatched a nomination for Top Female Rap Artist at this year's Billboard Music Awards, and when TMZ approached her about the nomination she expressed that she’s “already winning” by being nominated. The 15-year-old then said she thinks it’ll be Cardi who takes home the award. “Obviously Cardi is gonna win,” she said. “She really deserves it.”
She followed that up with some comments about why she prefers the up-and-coming Bronx rapper over rap royalty Nicki Minaj. “Cardi actually says stuff, Nicki just has attitude. So what. Big deal,” she said.
Cardi recently dropped her album Invasion of Privacy, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart. A week later, Nicki dropped her singles “Chun-Li” and “Barbie Tingz” ahead of her forthcoming album. The two rappers have a history of some manufactured beef, mostly proliferated by fans (though there seems to be some truth to it), but Bhabie’s comments no doubt fanned the flames.
Bhabie has recently been caught up in some beef of her own, sparring with her nemesis, YouTube star WoahVicky. But in the meantime the teen meme turned rapper is focusing most of her energy on producing a reality TV show and headlining her first national tour.
Tyra Banks is a fashion world icon, legendary supermodel, TV host, business mogul, and author of “Perfect Is Boring,” a new book she wrote with her mom. But how is she with hot food? Find out in one of the most combustible Hot Ones episodes of all time. In between America’s Next Top Model anecdotes and expert breakdowns of the modeling industry, Ty Ty drops a fire rap verse, critiques Sean Evans’ head shots, stress-eats ice cream, strikes hot sauce-inspired poses, and so much more. This is an episode for the history books.
Complex News' Natasha Martinez caught up with Ty Dolla Sign at his hometown stop of the Don't Judge Me Tour in Los Angeles to chat about his birthday plans, his label The Movement, who he wants to see at Coachella, and how he’s a big Beyoncé fan. He even goes so far as to compare her live shows to the legendary Michael Jackson.
“Of course Beyoncé’s the queen, I would love to see Beyoncé,” Ty said. “I saw her Formation Tour […] and like watching her perform first of all, it was the most amazing show I’ve ever seen in my life. When I was a kid and used to watch Michael Jackson on TV, like seeing Beyoncé live, it gave me those vibes. Just like the greatest performer ever. Just the greatest stage set—everything about it, from her vocals to her dancing to all the attributes, she got it going.”
Ty wrapped up the majority of his Don’t Judge Me Tour in early April, and is now gearing up to join G-Eazy, Lil Uzi Vert, YBN Nahmir, P-Lo, and Murda Beatz on the 32-date Endless Summer Tour, which kicks off on July 20 in Seattle and ends on Sept. 8 in Miami.
According to Billboard, Logic dropped by On Air With Ryan Seacrest show on Tuesday to talk about his new exercise routine, his “Bennie and the Jets” Elton John cover featuring Pink, and his upcoming projects. In an unexpected turn of events, Logic has apparently already written a comedy script that’s aimed to start production before the year is out. On top of that, he’s working on two novels, one of which is called Supermarket, and the other one being self-described as a “really rad” piece of work.
“I love range, as far as acting, from like drama and all types of stuff, but if I was like, 'If I’m going to come out the gate, I just want to make people laugh,'” he told Seacrest about why he's choosing comedy. Logic didn't give too much away about the premise, but he did say it revolves around a record store. Regarding his on-screen work, Logic will apparently be back on unspecified scripted TV shows after voicing himself on Rick and Morty last year.
In clinical terms,Love & Hip Hop is a long-running reality franchise about the personal and professional struggles of figures in the music business. In colloquial terms, it’s a ratchet-reality soap opera with around 200 interwoven characters. Many of them exist at the periphery of the music industry; others have won Grammys, gone platinum, and crafted No. 1 records at some point in their career. In nearly every episode, there is an obligatory scene of one or more of them in the studio. But with very few songs released, we need to know: What exactly are they working on?
LHH is the cornerstone of Vh1. In 2017, the network had four of the top 10 unscripted shows on cable, and the Atlanta and New York editions were Nos. 1 and 2, respectively. And shows weren’t measured in “social engagement” before Love & Hip Hop started dominating Twitter each time an episode aired. All this to say, everyone is watching the show. Everyone is talking about the show. But no one is fucking with the music from the show.
In fact, for a program called Love & Hip Hop, only one featured personality from its cast is actually relevant for their current musical output: a former stripper with minimal prior rap experience named Cardi B.
And no one saw her coming.
When Cardi joined Love & Hip Hop’s New York cast in season 6 she was already a social media starlet with over a million followers on Twitter (she now has 2.8M). She was known for her personality, not any musical inclinations, and had retired from the pole two months before the season premiere on December 14, 2015. By that point Cardi had started making a whole living off club appearances. But Vh1 wanted to portray her as a silly exotic dancer languishing in a messy situationship.
“Yo, it’s so crazy, like, them motherfuckers [the producers] really doubted me. It’s like, why would y’all doubt me? Like, I have seven hundred thousand bajillion followers,” she told THE FADER in February 2016. “I’m telling them like, ‘Yo, I have a brand. I’m not even an artist and I fill out clubs. Three thousand, whatever the crap, I fill them shits out!’ But they didn’t care about that. They just wanted to make me look as the stripper, a struggling stripper.”
love & hip hop may help raise an artist’s visibility, but for all the wrong reasons when it comes to their actual artistry.
And indeed, she played her part. In her now-legendary LHH video introduction, Cardi announced, “Hey, America, washpoppin’? You might know me as that annoying dancer on social media that be talking hella crazy, with the long nails and the big ol’ titties, but I’m just a regular, degular, shmegular girl from the Bronx.” We went on to see Cardi’s frustration over Power 105 radio personality DJ Self, whom she slept with occasionally, not playing her music. In her words, he was “the hottest DJ in New York or whatever” and she was willing to deal with him seeing other women so long as he helped get her music played.
See, for most of the show’s history, that was the dynamic: The men were the legitimate figures in the industry, and the women were around to jockey for their assistance or attention. Remember how Stevie J. constantly threatened to send Joseline Hernandez back to the strip club on Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta? Like no character before or after her, Cardi B. was able to flip the script.
To understand how disruptive Cardi was, we should rewind. The show’s earliest iteration, Keeping Up With the Joneses, centered around Dipset rapper Jim Jones, his longsuffering girlfriend Christine Lampkin, and outspoken mother, Nancy “Mama” Jones. But Jimmy became less interested after he released his most successful single, “We Fly High.” To save the show, manager Yandy Smith and her mentor, Violator Management co-founder Mona Scott-Young, bumpedJones down to supporting cast member, and elevated Chrissy and her friends to the main cast. Re-christened Love & Hip Hop, the show was now giving visibility to the women behind famous men in hip-hop.
Now, fast-forward: Cardi B. came on the show with a game plan, and it wasn’t to be behind anybody. Her cunning, singular focus is perhaps what allowed her to become the show’s unlikeliest success story. This theory makes more sense when you consider that Cardi quit after two seasons in order to pursue her music. She paused the shenanigans to go work on her craft, instead of posturing in the studio like many of the men we see every episode. Within months of leaving LHH, she released her second mixtape, signed a multimillion-dollar record deal, then released “Bodak Yellow.” And within a year of her last trip to Vh1, Cardi had a No. 1 record, two Grammy nominations, and multiple pop and hip-hop features dominating the charts.
Given her beloved personality, Cardi could’ve easily joined the likes of LHH mainstays Stevie J., Lil Scrappy, and Yung Joc, bouncing between spinoffs in reality TV purgatory. But unlike them, Cardi didn’t want chasing checks from Mona Scott-Young to be her ceiling. “A lot of the n***as on that show are cornballs, but it is what it is,” clairvoyant Cardi said in an interview right before she left the LHH.
That about sums up why no one who continues to appear on the show is likely to break through on the charts any time soon. LHH may help raise an artist’s visibility, but for all the wrong reasons when it comes to their actual artistry. We all agreed amongst ourselves that the franchise was fake, but it was a juicy lie that we enjoyed pretending to believe. Cardi’s contrasting authenticity made us step into the light.
Cardi could’ve easily joined the likes of LHH mainstays Stevie J., Lil Scrappy, and Yung Joc, bouncing between spinoffs in reality TV purgatory. But Cardi didn’t want chasing checks from Mona Scott-Young to be her ceiling.
Millions of people rallied behind her as a person—she could have sold us anything she wanted after that, lip kits or weave—but she chose to sling hits. Cardi didn’t blow up the day after she left, no. But she was persistent and converted momentum into clout. Some of the credible artists remaining on LHH, like Remy Ma and Trina, haven’t been able to figure this part out yet—even though both have albums on the way and purposefully steer clear of the drama by limiting their camera time. There appears to still be an understanding of their brand equity, which is something many of their peers seem to lack, but the reality of reality TV is that it’s a means to an end.
As we sit here in the afterglow of Cardi’s soon-to-be-crowned No. 1 debut album, her feature on Saturday Night Live, and third appearance on The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon, we have to respect what she’s achieved. Cardi was an underestimated woman whose role on LHH was to orbit the “powerful” men, but yet she launched past them all. As a soon-to-be mother engaged to one of the hottest artists in the industry, she’s basically secured the love and the hip-hop without the cameras. It’s doubtful anyone else on the franchise can replicate those shmoney moves.
The Love, Simon soundtrack, exec-produced by Bleachers, features the debut solo single from Fifth Harmony's Normani. Tuesday, Normani and Khalid brought that track to the Tonight Show.
Though the Roots didn't join them for the track's TV debut, the performance is still very much worth your time. See Normani and Khalid televise their “Love Lies”:
Normani was confirmed earlier this week as the first artist to ink a deal with Tunji Balogun's new joint venture, Keep Cool/RCA. In a statement to Billboard announcing the deal, Balogun said he was looking forward to watching Normani “thrive and flourish” with new music. “Normani is a dynamic, multi-talented young woman with vibrant energy and a powerful spirit,” Balogun said. A debut solo album is presently in the works.
News of the deal arrived on the heels of Fifth Harmony's announcement that they would be kicking off a hiatus in an effort to allow them to pursue other creative avenues. Launching “solo endeavors,” the group said in a joint statement, will allow them to stay true to themselves. “In doing this, we are allowing ourselves to gain new experiences, strengths, and perspectives that we can bring back to our Fifth Harmony family,” the group said. In 2016, Camila Cabello left the group before eventually releasing her debut solo album featuring the hits “Havana” and “Never Be the Same.”
Revisit Normani and Khalid's official video for “Love Lies” below:
What if I told you (and your doubting parents) that you could actually make a living playing hours of your favorite video game? This week the NBA and 2K Sports made that a reality with the first-ever NBA 2K League Draft, a historic moment that changed the lives of 102 gamers.
The NBA 2K League is a professional electronic sports (eSports) league created by 2K Sports in partnership with the NBA. Here’s how it works: Of the 30 actual teams in the NBA, 17 joined forces to create a corresponding eSports team made up of six gamers—one for each position that a regular NBA team has plus an alternate, based on the position they primarily play in NBA 2K18. But how did the gamers get chosen to enter this first-of-its-kind draft? Back in January, the NBA held a combine where 72,000 players participated; this was chiseled down to the 102 players who were selected to enter the draft and become the NBA’s first Professional Gamers.
When the NBA first announced that it was invested in becoming a part of eSports, it shocked many in the sports industry because, prior to that, competitive video games had never been viewed with the same importance as traditional sports. To bear this out, on Wednesday at the 2KL draft ceremony, held in New York's Madison Square Garden, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announced the first three rounds of draft picks just as he does every year at the NBA’s draft. Players came on stage wearing caps representing the team that would be their new home for the season. And each player was college-draft prospect fly, decked out like the fashion-forward hopefuls on any other NBA Draft Day.
College student Rochell Woods, aka ixsplashkingxi, became the youngest player drafted into the NBA 2K League when the Detroit Pistons GT selected him in the third round. The young eShooting guard out of Memphis, Tennessee, said he started playing in the ninth grade and normally spends seven to ten hours a day playing 2K to keep his skills sharp.
Each player drafted lands a six-month contract of $35,000 for first-round picks, then $32,000 for the lower rounds. On top of their salary, an additional $1 million is up for grabs, split among three in-season tournaments. In addition, players are free to sign endorsement deals as well. The league also covers moving, travel, medical, retirement, and living expenses. Each franchise will have their own apartments or dedicated house for the players to live in. When the season starts, ePlayers will be flown out to NBA studios each week to play in front of an arena crowd just like in traditional eSports settings.
Similar to draftees in the NBA, training and practice with your new teammates comes next. But how does that process look outside of playing physical basketball? The general managers of the new Philadelphia 76ers Gaming Club, Michael Lai and Ian Hillman, helped provide context as to what the players can expect.
“Right now we are focused on bringing them into the market,” says Lai, who has a background in analytics. “A lot of these guys are pretty young and they might not have the experience of living in a new place, so the focus is getting them here, settled in and comfortable to then develop a training regimen.”
Hillman explains that it will be a bit experimental: “In terms of the actual practice of basketball there will be somewhat of a learning in trying out different styles of practice and drills. It is a little more difficult from physical versus digital, but we will definitely try to leverage some of the best practices from the actual Sixers training staff to the staff here with the 76ers Gaming Club.”
the same type of philosophies we practice with our Sixers players we will try to apply with our esports athletes.
He adds that just as with 76ers stars like Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons, full-body wellness is important for eSports players as well. “When we think about the research behind the effects of sleep and healthy diets on athletes, the same type of philosophies we practice with our Sixers players we will try to apply with our eSports athletes.”
As far as the importance of the NBA 2KL, the Sixers GMs and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver agree that eSports is the perfect equalizer. Thousands of people have hoop dreams but lack the gifts to realize them. In eSports, all you have to do is show up and prove your skill no matter what your physical abilities are.
“We're opening up this opportunity to a much larger pool of players, just by definition, because in the NBA or WNBA you have to have certain physical prowess to compete,” Silver says. “It's a different kind of skill here. But in terms of the gaming community, this is something where virtually anyone can set out to try to achieve at the highest level.”
Despite the groundbreaking nature of the 2KL draft, one thing it was sorely lacking in was female NBA 2K ballers. Representatives from the NBA noticed as well, say they want to rectify this in the future, and have already launched an initiative to focus on recruiting and developing female 2K League players.
“I'll tell you one thing just to put it on the table that's been a disappointment for all of us so far is that there are no women who are in the initial draft pool, and just to make it clear, whittling down from the 72,000, it's by avatars in essence, it's blind,” Silver explained. “I'm not concerned that there was something wrong with the process necessarily… This is a much larger issue in the gaming community.”
The process to get this level of professional gaming wasn't easy, but the players selected in the inaugural 2KL draft are dispelling the myth that sitting for hours in front of a TV will never pay off. Just like training for a sport in real life, people can put in the time and dedication to craft a skill digitally and take it to the bank as an eSports athlete.
The NBA 2K League season is scheduled to tip off in May.