Review The Artist (16)
Ashanti: Murder Inc.'s Hip Hop/R&B Princess
Ja Rule. J. Lo. Big Pun. Fat Joe. She’s worked with some of the industry’s best—writing lyrics and singing hooks that help their records reach the top of the music charts. Now it’s time for 21-year-old Ashanti Douglas to take center stage and shine on her very own self-titled debut, the much-anticipated Ashanti. In April, Ashanti hits the scene as the first R&B vocalist on Murder Inc. Although this is a departure for the hip hop powerhouse label that has a roster including rappers Ja Rule, Vita and Charli Baltimore, all indications show that the transition has been more than smooth and successful. Ashanti’s lead single, “Foolish,” has already made waves at radio—getting heavy rotation on urban stations and galvanizing fans to demand an earlier-than-planned release of her album, a tantalizing blend of edgy hip hop groves and subtle R&B styling. With Ashanti’s clever lyrics and slick production by Murder Inc.’s president Irv Gotti, “Foolish” immediately reminds music lovers of the Notorious B.I.G.’s popular “One More Chance” remix. (True old school heads will remember the familiar melody from DeBarge’s 1983 hit “Stay with Me.”) Either way, you’re sure to be hooked. And that’s what Irv’s depending on.
“Ashanti's album is full of ‘one-listens’ like ‘Foolish’,” says an exuberant Gotti, whose passion for this project is palpable. “When you hear this song, and other songs on the album like “TK,” which is based on one of Scarface’s old cuts, you remember it, you’re bopping your head to it and you immediately get it.”
Making sure people “get it” and truly feel where she’s coming from is also of the utmost importance to Ashanti, who penned all 12 songs on the album, most written on-the-spot in the studio. “I want to create something so real and reflective that people just sit back and listen like, ‘damn, was she in my window last night, because this really happened to me,’ ” says the eldest daughter of a dancer and singer. “Everyone has gone through something that’s on this album, and I want to be able to articulate their feelings.”
With cuts like “Happy,” “Baby” and “Rescue,” which detail the ins and outs of relationships, the precocious Long Island native is sure to make her mark with streetwise sophistication similar to the reigning queen of hip hop soul, who first blended hardcore beats and heartfelt lyrics in the early nineties. “Mary paved the way,” says Ashanti, who began pursuing her singing career at age 12 and also cites Ella Fitzgerald and Blue Magic as influences. “I didn't want to sing only slow songs and I didn’t want to be spittin’ rhymes. But Mary put those concepts together. She cleared the way, and now I’m following my own path.” Says Irv, who executive produced the project, “I want Ashanti's album to pick up where Mary’s My Life left off. By no means are we trying to take Mary’s slot because she’s undoubtedly the queen. But Ashanti is Murder Inc.’s princess—with a gansta feel to her.
I really want men to champion this album,” Irv continues. “Usually, with an R&B record, women pioneer it or champion it before anyone else. I want men, thugs, ganstas—I want them to hear the record and be like, ‘yo, this shit is hot.’ That’ll make women like it even more. Ashanti flips the hardcore songs and makes ‘em sweet, so she appeals to both sexes.”
Ashanti’s already well established track record has placed her on the sweet road to success. (Ja Rule’s “Always On Time” has broken history as Def Jam's top selling single. Her contribution to J. Lo's “I'm Real” helped give the former fly girl-turned-actress-turned-singer urban credibility.) With her own album, Ashanti continues the saga that is sure to gain her the hip hop/R&B princess crown. And the impact she hopes to make during her reign is simple: “If you’re a person who has trouble expressing yourself, all you have to do is pop in this album and it’ll speak for you,” she says with all sincerity. “When you listen to this album with your man or your girl, everybody will be on the same page.” Says a much more boastful Gotti, “Ashanti delivers at the highest level. And she has this personality that makes people love her. She’s got too many people feeling her, too many hit records and too much heat for her to stop,” he praises. “She can’t lose.”
Thanks to Sierrafirstname.lastname@example.org for submitting the biography.
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Brown | Reviewer: Damani brown | 10/2/12
I like Ashanti but it makes me mad because they always think she is the best just because she's from New York I am very tired of people talking about New York give it a break its other states out here to you know but you still sexy as hell I will never stop liking you baby keep up the good work princess of hip hop and r and b. love all y'all niggas in murder inc well that's my comments if any of y'all have any questions about the New York thing please comment and please don't be rude or i will flip and be ugly back thank you.
10/4/2012 | Reviewer: Jacob nickholson | 10/4/12
Ashanti can't sing but you are sexy then a mother fucker she can't hit the high notes well poor baby all you need to do is practice forever and ever you probably will never sing well and to all you bitches think y'all all that just because y'all from New York doesn't mean y'all can fight I am from south carolina I'm a country boy and country boys don't play you feel me.
yo biggest fan | Reviewer: aryaunna | 1/17/10
why u dont sing anymore u was the best singer out here man all u got 2 do is b u n do u for get about all yo hater i aint gay r nunthin but u is a beautiful young lady u are a very talented i wish u wouldget another record
Where IS Ashanti | Reviewer: Anonymous | 11/2/09
What ever happend why she doesnt sing any more i dont hear singing any more she is the best true real sexy beautifl singer i ever heard than these fake try to be singers and rappers please ashanti appear on oprah or tyra and explain what happend because you are the best i ever had or we ever had these songs are mostly true for me espically the song you made with Lloyd southside you were that good i wonder how you are doing now how you feel not singing now or anymore i love you im not gay or an stalker please write back or appear on the shows i just mentioned latter thanks luv you Ashanti.
it's ok | Reviewer: Quantavia | 7/27/08
It's ok girl dont even thank about what your haters got to say thay just hatin cause that aint u.talkin about u trifaling they just mad cause thay dont have nelly sexy ass...Ashanti girl keep doing yo thing!!!
the badest bird | Reviewer: keisha jones | 5/1/08
wat my niga wat up wit u and dat new song but it was baggin doe can u make a new hit soon and dont forget dat im yo number 1 fan and when ever you make your new song u thinkin bot yo number 1 fan but keep the luck up and stay off my man NELLY dick!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
the badest bird | Reviewer: keisha jones | 5/1/08
wat my niga wat up wit u and dat new song but it was baggin do can u make a new hit soon and dont forget dat im yo number 1 fan and when ever you make your new song u thinkin bot yo number 1 fan but keep the luck up and stay off my man NELLY dick!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I HATE YOU TIL DEATH!! | Reviewer: Dedra | 12/10/07
Whats up ho I hate you and you need to leave my man nelly alone I hate you soo much that everytime I see your face i just want to scream especially when I see you with nelly the sexiest man alive. you should of stuck with irv gotti you trifaling ho you knew irv gotti was married to ang.
Your pretty | Reviewer: Angelina | 11/30/07
you are pretty because you sing good like the feeling the motion i like your talent soooooooo much and iam your #1 Fan
your biggest fan | Reviewer: Taynea Ramirez | 5/23/07
Ashanti I am proud of your success. I hope that you can continue doing your best. I wish you all the best of luck in your career.
charlaii | Reviewer: Anonymous | 5/12/07
i luuuuuurve this girlee sooo much sh dnt try 2 b gangsta coz sh reppin murda inc all daii so its bowt timeppl reconize wah a talent sh gt here. buh hey h8rz gna h8 ennit lol xx
yEE. | Reviewer: `MARTiNEz. | 4/30/07
yOU`vE WoORKEd REALLy HARd ANd yUUh REALLy DESERVE ALL THiiZz CREDiiT fO` ERRy`THANg yUUH`STUDiiEd ALL THOoSE NiiGHt`z yUUh STAyED UP, SiiNgiNG && WRiTiiNg LyRiiC`z.♥
hurry up.. | Reviewer: taylor | 4/23/07
and come out with something new...
ashanti | Reviewer: erica | 4/20/07
she is 1 of the best artist around shes very pretty and got my man ja on her side do it gurl
YOU ALL THAT | Reviewer: DIAMOND | 2/8/07
GIRL WHEN YOU GO COME OUT WITH A NEW SONG CUZ I BEEN WAITING FOR YOU TO COME OUT WITH A NEW SONG WELL WHEN YOU DECIDE TO COME OUYT WITH A NEW SONG HIT ME BACK UP
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