The 49-year-old actor made what he calls his “historic rap debut” with a feature in Tech N9ne’s song “Face Off,” released Friday. The song, which also features rappers Joey Cool and King Iso, is part of the Kansas City rapper’s newest album “Asin9ne.”
“Made my historic rap debut (thankfully I didn’t suck) Huge shout to all the hip hop & music fans for your HYPE reactions,” Johnson tweeted Friday.
Johnson lays down the last verse of “Face Off” rapping about “drive” and “power.”
“We stay hungry, we devour / Put in the work, put in the hours and take what’s ours /
Black and Samoan in my veins, my culture bangin’ with Strange,” he raps referring to Tech N9ne’s record label Strange Music Inc.
“I would love to do a repeat with Tech N9ne and Strange Music. If I had the opportunity to collaborate with another artist out there — hip hop artists, blues artists, outlaw country artists — then let’s talk and let’s figure it out,” Johnson said. “If I could rap about the right words that feel real and authentic to me, then I’ll be happy to break out that Teremana, take a few big swigs and jump back into the studio.”
“THANK YOU to my brother, the GOAT @therealtechn9ne for coming up with this big crazy idea of wanting me to drop some Rock gasoline bars on the fire,” Johnson wrote on an Instagram video with a clip of his verse.
In this flashback, Vlad opened up to Kid from Kid ‘n Play about various celebrities coming at Vlad online over a fake article that claimed VladTV was mentioned in Casanova 2X’s paperwork, including Questlove. Vlad pointed out that Nick Cannon’s interview with Casanova was actually mentioned in his paperwork, and Vlad added that neither he nor Nick are the feds, they are just people conducting interviews. To hear more of the conversation, hit the above clip.
Utah Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson helped restore a Filipino food truck that was vandalized last week with racist slurs and derogatory images.
According to Austin Facer of ABC 4, Clarkson was one of a number of people who joined IdentityGraphx and helped restore the World Famous Yum Yum Food Truck, which serves Asian fusion and Filipino food in northern Utah, after the vandalism.
Layton, Utah, Mayor Joy Petro and city council members were also involved in the restoration, and the food truck revealed its new paint job before its reopening at the Philippine Independence Day celebration on Saturday in Salt Lake City.
The owners of the truck thanked those involved in a Facebook post:
“It has been an emotional few days. The love and support that we got from all of you has been deeply heartfelt. My family can’t thank you guys enough. Special thanks to Utah Jazz’s Jordan Clarkson and Dan from Identity graphics for the new look. We want to thank everyone individually in a couple weeks when we have our LOVE celebration in the park and feed the community. Thanks to Mayor Joy Petro, Councilman Clint Morris, Councilman Zach Bloxham, Dustin, everyone in the neighborhood and all of you angels. Love prevails. We are going to have our grand reopening this Saturday at the Philippine independence day celebration in slc.”
On Wednesday, Layton Police announced they are still looking for those responsible for the vandalism and offered a $500 reward for information that leads to their arrest.
Famed photographer Chi Modu has died. The artist, who captured iconic shots of Tupac and many more, was 54.
Modu’s passing was confirmed on Monday by way of a post on his official Instagram account. “Our hearts are broken… We continue the fight,” the caption for the post read. “The family requests privacy at this time.”
While the cause of Modu’s death was not immediately made clear, sources told TMZ today that he passed following a battle with cancer.
Modu—who was born in Nigeria in 1966—broke out as a photographer in the 1990s, when he became director of photography for The Source magazine. There, he would shoot cover photography for 30 issues, documenting the entirety of hip hop’s golden age.
Wu-Tang Clan, Run-DMC, The Notorious B.I.G., Snoop Dogg, Nas, Ice Cube, Eminem and Mary J. Blige were just a few of the many iconic artists he photographed over the years.
According to TMZ, a memorial service for Modu is in the works. His family will offer additional information soon.
The platinum-selling recording artist once known as Mulatto has officially changed her name. On Monday, rapper Latto debuted her new moniker on music streaming platforms like Tidal, Spotify, and Apple Music as she gears up to release an album on Friday.
For several months, the Clayton County-raised performer has discussed the possibility of changing her stage name as the term “mulatto” is described as offensive.
According to the Pew Research Center, the term “mulatto” – mulato in Spanish – commonly referenced a person of mixed-race ancestry with white European and Black African roots. However, it was often used in a derogatory fashion during the times of slavery and segregation in America. The root of the word mula, or mule, refers to the offspring of a horse and a donkey.
In the latest edition of Merriam-Webster, the word is still marked/labeled as “usually offensive.”
The literary trope “tragic mulatto” was born from the word in the early 1840s largely in credit to Lydia Maria Child. “The myth almost exclusively focuses on biracial individuals, especially women, light enough to pass for white,” according to an article by ThoughtCo which explores the history of the trope.
Latto, whose real name is Alyssa Michelle Stephens, identifies as biracial. Back in 2016, she emerged in the music industry as Miss Mulatto in the first season of Jermaine’s Dupri’s reality competition series on Lifetime, “The Rap Game.”
“I’m passionate about my race. I’m Miss Mulatto. The term mulatto technically is a racist slur. It means someone that’s half Black and half white. So it’s, like, controversial,” she said during her time on the show. “I took that negativity from the word mulatto and now … everybody calls me Miss Mulatto.”
She was only 15 years old at the time.
The now 22-year-old “Queen of the South” artist hinted during an interview with HipHopDX at the 2020 BET HipHop Awards that she was thinking about changing her name.
“It is a controversy that I hear and see every day as far as my name goes, so I would be lying to say no I never thought of that. But I can’t say too much … right now, because it’s going to be a part of something bigger,” she told HipHopDX in 2020.
After much social media scrutiny and reflection, the southern lyricist stayed true to her word and revealed that she would change her name in a trending interview with Hot Freestyle back in January.
“You know you might know your intentions, but these are strangers who don’t know you, never even met you in person,” Mulatto expressed in the interview. “So you gotta hear each other out, and if you know those aren’t your intentions and that’s how it’s being perceived, it’s like why not make a change or alter it? For me, it was the name. So now I’m like, ‘OK, my intentions was to never glorify being mulatto.’ So if that’s how it’s being perceived and people think I’m saying, ‘Oh, I’m better because I’m mulatto’ or ‘My personality trait is mulatto’ … then I need to change the matter at hand.”
Latto said she would not just change her social media handles because “that’s not sensitive enough to the subject matter” and she wants “to be able to speak on it” so people can hear her out. She said changing your name in the music industry is no easy feat and it comes with a load of logistics.
“I want them to also understand that the name change at this level in your career is a big decision,” the 22-year-old rapper said during her Hot Freestyle interview. “Freaking investors, labels, everything … been riding on this name, so it is a big decision … it’s way deeper than a tweet.”
She made it clear that multiple aspects were involved in the decision and a variety of business partners had a “say so in that decision.”
“It’s not like me being ‘I want to do this’ and then it’s just done,” she said.
The platinum-selling artist made a video post on Instagram Tuesday evening teasing a potential song speaking on the name change.
“You gotta be strategic with the word choice because it could come off a way that you don’t mean. That’s how I got in this predicament in the first place with the damn name,” she said. “That’s why you gotta be proactive with the word choice … gotta think ahead … my intentions weren’t for the backlash … exactly what I’m saying in the song … intentions weren’t for that.”