R. Kelly has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for numerous sex trafficking charges. The R&B singer reportedly used his celebrity status throughout his career to coerce young individuals to participate in sexual acts.
Kelly’s conviction in 2021 found him guilty of one count of racketeering and eight breaches of the Mann Act, which criminalizes the use of “any woman or girl for prostitution or debauchery, or for any other immoral purpose.”
The beginning of the #MeToo movement and the Lifetime documentary entitled “Surviving R. Kelly” broadcasted Kelly’s actions on a wide scale. Survivors of his acts had been silenced in the past, hoping to hide the extent of Kelly’s crimes.
One of the most prominent illegal acts involves Kelly’s previous marriage to the R&B artist Aaliyah. Allegedly, Kelly got pregnant at the age of 15 when the two married. Because of her underage status, witnesses have stated that Kelly used his status to bribe a government official to supply a fake ID, further protecting his name.
Kelly’s marriage to Aaliyah is just one story of countless survivors. Angela, another victim of these sexual crimes, made a statement about Kelly while his sentence hearing commenced. “With every addition of a new victim, you grew in wickedness, […] You used your fame and power to groom and coach underage boys and girls for your own sexual gratification.”
Still to come are Kelly’s pending criminal charges in Chicago and Minnesota. Of those illegalities, Kelly has been charged with child pornography and obstruction of justice and will be tried in Illinois later this year.
Kelly’s lawyer, Jennifer Bonjean, aided the process of overturning Bill Cosby’s sexual assault conviction. She has stated that they are planning to appeal this sentencing.
A Tubi Original two-hour special, premieres Friday, March 4, celebrating vocalists whose talent, strength and ability to overcome obstacles made them a force of nature in the music industry. We all know them by one name: Amy (Winehouse), Aaliyah (Dana Haughton), Left Eye (Lisa Lopes) and Selena (Quintanilla-Perez). GONE BEFORE HER TIME gives us a look back at their legacies with feature interviews from those who were closest to them. These trailblazers will forever be known as the stars that were destined to shine bright, influencing generations to come.
Tubi has more than 40,000 movies and television series from more than 250+ content partners, including every major studio, in addition to the largest offering of free live local and national news channels in streaming. The platform gives fans of entertainment, news and sports an easy way to discover new content that is available completely free.
Tubi is available on Android and iOS mobile devices, Amazon Echo Show, Google Nest Hub, and on OTT devices such as Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Apple TV, Chromecast, GoogleTV, Vizio TVs, Sony TVs, Samsung TVs, Hisense TVs, Comcast X1, Cox Contour, PlayStation 4 and 5 and Xbox One and Series X | S. Consumers can also watch Tubi content on the web HERE.
At the junction of fashion and hip-hop lies the iconic and immortalized designs of Karl Kani. Coined the Godfather of Streetwear, the brand’s designer, born Carl Williams, first developed an interest in fashion when he watched his father, a Panamanian immigrant, have his clothing personally made by a tailor. In a conversation with Flaunt, Williams said, “Watching him make his own clothing inspired me to understand how easy it is to make clothing. […] so I decided I wanted to make my own outfits with my dad’s tailor.” This endeavor quickly became a small business of its own as friends would ask Williams to make them replicas of whatever styles he was wearing. But the real turning point moment was when an incredulous friend refused to believe that a certain jacket had actually been made by Williams, asking why his name was not emblazoned on the piece’s tag. The “street revolution”—as Williams calls it—then began, and every new design proudly had Williams’ name on it.
In 1989, at just 17 years old, Williams moved to Los Angeles to pursue fashion more seriously. He opened a store on Crenshaw Boulevard and continued to design, but this time under a new moniker, Karl Kani. According to the official Karl Kani website, the name came to being as the brand grew in recognition and demand, and consequently, Williams would always ask himself, “Can I do this?” It was with this incessant question in mind that he rose to his own challenge and legally changed his name to Karl Kani, an alternative spelling of both his birth name and “Can I?”
Since the brand’s electric inception, Karl Kani filled a void in the world of fashion and revolutionized the concept of streetwear. In the Flaunt interview mentioned above, Kani said, “Hip-hop needed a clothing brand; Karl Kani needed an industry, so we [could] combine together and [were] able to create success for everyone.” Karl Kani quickly became the “it” brand for the Golden Age of hip-hop that emerged in the late 1980s and commanded the music and pop culture scene through the 1990s.
The eternally cool streetwear brand became the paragon of and blueprint for a distinctive revolution in the world of fashion. In a white-dominated industry, Karl Kani clothing was unapologetically designed with black people, and specifically black creatives, in mind. “The only thing that really kept me striving was seeing black people being successful in the music industry,” Kani told The Los Angeles Times in 1994. “I wanted to be a part of that, but I knew I couldn’t sing or dance or rap. I couldn’t do all that, but I could provide clothing for the people who were out there, who could make me famous at the same time.”
Kani formed poignant and lucrative bonds with many of these black performers, most notably Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls. In 1994, Kani approached Tupac about shooting a campaign for the fashion company since the rapper often sported his clothing and asked how much he would charge for the favor. As Kani remembers it, Tupac responded, “No, I’m not charging you for nothing. You’re my people, you’re black. I got you.” His only request was that Kani put his song, “Thug Life” in the background of some of his advertisements. The Karl Kani × Tupac collaboration became iconic: a moment in which two art forms came together and the world stood by to watch.
Kani’s relationship with Biggie was solidified when the artist shouted out the brand in his song, “One More Chance,” rapping: “I got the funk flow to make your drawers drop slow, so recognize the dick size in these Karl Kani jeans. I wear thirteens, know what I mean?” (And by the way, Biggie really did wear a size thirteen in Karl Kani jeans. Kani consciously made clothing for men of bigger sizes who fashion largely ignored at the time.)
You can check out Tupac, Biggie and a collection of other celebrities wearing Karl Kani HERE.
One of Kani’s most resonant, popular and withstanding designs was the wide-leg jeans. The design came to being as Kani noticed that people would size up when purchasing jeans to achieve a baggier aesthetic but the waists would then be far too large on them. He ingeniously bypassed this problem by increasing only the size of the pant legs and never altering the waist.
If there is anything that defines Kani, though, it is his adaptable, trendsetting and forward-thinking mind. When his signature wide-leg jeans were co-opted by other brands, and as the streetwear look evolved past its earlier days, Kani ensured that his designs pioneered stylistic change, never to be left behind. “A lot of people are doing a lot of the things we used to do, and we want to look different,” Kani said in 1994. “By staying real and staying focused and always changing your style, you’re always going to stay ahead of the marketplace.”
Recently, Karl Kani has made a striking resurgence in the world of streetwear due to its on-point designs—including an entire collection of unisex pieces—and the rise of nostalgia fashion, now making the brand a multi-generational and inclusive powerhouse. This new wave of Karl Kani designs has been accompanied with a new troupe of black artists advertising the brand. For example, the rap group, Migos, formed a relationship with Karl Kani starting in 2015. “They wore it in all their videos and press and they were able to reintroduce my brand to a whole new young generation which was really cool because they were on top of their game,” Kani said to INDIE Magazine in 2019. Kani also told Wonderland Magazine that he sees artists like “Rihanna, Travis Scott, A$AP Rocky [and] Keith Powers” as dream collaborations and models for the brand: artists that represent the eternal spirit and vibe of Karl Kani.
It is safe to say that no matter who takes over the hip-hop scene next, or however the world of street fashion reinvents itself, Karl Kani will be a part of it.
Official Statements from DMX’s Family & White Plains Hospital
“We are deeply saddened to announce today that our loved one, DMX, birth name of Earl Simmons, passed away at 50-years-old at White Plains Hospital with his family by his side after being placed on life support for the past few days. Earl was a warrior who fought till the very end. He loved his family with all of his heart, and we cherish the times we spent with him. Earl’s music inspired countless fans across the world and his iconic legacy will live on forever. We appreciate all of the love and support during this incredibly difficult time. Please respect our privacy as we grieve the loss of our brother, father, uncle and the man the world knew as DMX. We will share information about his memorial service once details are finalized.” – Earl “DMX” Simmons’ Family
“White Plains Hospital extends its deepest condolences to the family of Mr. Simmons, as well as his friends and legions of fans who expressed their unwavering support during this difficult time. Earl Simmons passed away peacefully with family present after suffering a catastrophic cardiac arrest.”
When it comes to DMX, a man blessed with a vicious bark of a voice, there is no such thing as half-stepping. Born Earl Simmons in 1970, the Yonkers-raised MC arrived as the physical embodiment of unbridled energy—a one-man distillation of fellow rugged New York acts like Wu-Tang Clan. With the release of his 1998 debut, It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot, DMX wrapped himself in musical aggression that enhanced his imposing presence across songs like the minimal, clanging “Get at Me Dog” and rowdy breakout “Ruff Ryders’ Anthem.” But X scaled back the pugnacity on that same album’s introspective “How’s It Goin’ Down,” which featured angelic vocals from R&B’s Faith Evans and painted a vivid picture of a complex relationship headed down the wrong path. DMX would revisit that sensitivity on “Slippin’,” a heart-rending track from 1998’s Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood that found him expressing a desire to live a less tumultuous life. As at odds as the rapper’s two sides may seem to be, he’s always thrived most while letting his emotions fly unrestrained. In 2000, he released …And Then There Was X, where even the anthemic “Party Up” served as a prime example of DMX’s uniquely intense take on hardcore hip-hop. But whether ferocious, amped up, or introspective, the MC has remained grounded by his faith, which, especially in the later years of his career, he approaches with nothing short of absolute devotion.
Following the deaths of Tupac Shakur and the Notorious B.I.G., DMX took over as the undisputed reigning king of hardcore rap. He was that rare commodity: a commercial powerhouse with artistic and street credibility to spare. His rapid ascent to stardom was actually almost a decade in the making, which gave him a chance to develop the theatrical image that made him one of rap’s most distinctive personalities during his heyday. Everything about DMX was unremittingly intense, from his muscular, tattooed physique to his gruff, barking delivery, which made a perfect match for his trademark lyrical obsession with dogs. Plus, there was substance behind the style; much of his work was tied together by a fascination with the split between the sacred and the profane. He could move from spiritual anguish one minute to a narrative about the sins of the streets the next yet keep it all part of the same complex character, sort of like a hip-hop Johnny Cash. The results were compelling enough to make DMX the first artist ever to have his first four albums enter the charts at number one.
Today the California Chanteuse, R&B sensation, singer/songwriter Paloma Ford announces August 7th as the official release date for her highly anticipated, new body-of-work X Tapes. The rapturous announcement is backed with the unveiling of the project’s official cover art, creatively directed by Paloma, as she channels nostalgic sentiments tied to the direction of the overall project.
More on this theme for X Tapes, Paloma says: “Being an R&B artist in today’s climate you feel the pressure to switch up your sound to make it fit the market. But X Tapes was all about staying true to myself. I try to keep it as raw as possible. You’re going to feel those familiar R&B influences that inspire me, as well as fresh sounds and tempos that are Paloma Ford”.
X Tapes is heralded by the heartfelt R&B ballad “Nights I Cry,” and the accompanying official visual, praised by LA Weekly, ThisisRnB, HNHH, and more, capturing a smooth, laid-back California vibe to match the single’s sultry sound. Her track “Rain,” which premiered on Complex, and led as the introduction track for X Tapes, as well as the emotive live acoustic performance experience for “’Chome’ In My Feelings Version” will also feature on the project. X Tapes serves as follow up to Paloma’s 2016 Nearly Civilized EP, supported by an array of standout singles: “W.E.T.” [2.4 million Spotify streams], “Hit Of You” [1.6 million Spotify streams], and “Jada” [1.6 Million Spotify streams].
WATCH ‘CHROME’ ‘IN MY FEELINGS LIVE’ OFFICIAL VIDEO HERE
About Paloma Ford
Born in Los Angeles, Paloma Ford—singer, songwriter, designer, and mother exemplifies the feminine ideal from multiple angles. On the microphone, her sultry and soulful delivery consistently captivates listeners, while her relatable stories of love, passion, and heartbreak keep us coming back for more. It should be no surprise Paloma cites her primary influences as Aaliyah, Sade, and Janet Jackson, as she also bends R&B to fit and express her individual style.
Off the mic, Paloma describes herself as simply, “A mother and a girl from Los Angeles who has been through a lot of relatable experiences.” “I’m very optimistic, I try to see the good in others. I love being able to help and heal people. I’m a private person, so I don’t show everything on my social media. In my music, you can recognize moments of sensuality and strength. It’s all part of being a woman. That’s the message. It’s important for me to talk about other situations I’ve been in that other women can relate to.”
In 2006, she serendipitously met Macy Gray before a House of Blues gig. As it turned out, a background singer fell ill, so Macy asked Paloma to step in. Numerous live performances followed as Paloma also contributed vocals to three tracks from the star’s 2007 release Big—joining an esteemed cast of collaborators such as Justin Timberlake and will.i.am. As she built a following on YouTube via independent tracks “Dollars,” “Ménage à Trois,” and “Hit of You,” Meek Mill enlisted her for his 2014 single “I Don’t Know,” which rose fast on the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop and Rap Charts. During 2017, she unveiled her Nearly Civilized EP powered by a series of standout singles: “W.E.T.” [2.4 million Spotify streams], “Hit Of You” [1.6 million Spotify streams], and “Jada” [1.6 Million Spotify streams]. She appeared alongside Fabolous and Davo on “Connection” from Tory Lanez’s chart-topping Memories Don’t Die in 2018. At the same time, she carefully assembled what would become her 2020 independent EP, X Tapes.
WATCH THE OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO FOR DEBUT SINGLE, “RIGHT NOW” HERE
21-year-old emerging artist, MALACHI releases “San Fernando Wine” today via 21 Entertainment/Republic Records/Universal Music Canada, the country’s leading music company. Available to stream/download online now, the track emphasizes Malachi’s ability to combine hard hitting lyrics and rhythmic verses with ease. The track is exemplified by the melodic backdrop that seamlessly merges every element of the song.
“San Fernando Wine” follows Malachi’s debut single, “Right Now,” released in January. The single was the first introduction to the young Toronto-based artist. The official music video for the track arrived shortly after its release, and is available HERE.
Growing up on the outskirts of Toronto, 21-year-old rising artist Malachi, spent his childhood surrounded by music of all kinds. From his Trinidadian-born father’s reggae career to his mother’s favourite R&B singers like Mary J. Blige, Aaliyah and Destiny’s Child, music was always part of his environment. Malachi began actively participating in music when his grandmother had him join her church’s gospel choir at the age of 4. Over the last three years the emerging artist has been in the studio bringing his songwriting to life. Now, he’s ready to release the outpouring of creativity and share it with the world.
A division of Universal Music Group, the world’s leading music company, Republic Records is home to an all-star roster of multi-platinum, award-winning legends and superstar artists such as Ariana Grande, Black Sabbath, Florence + the Machine, Hailee Steinfeld, James Blake, James Bay, John Mellencamp, Julia Michaels, Kid Cudi, Liam Payne, Of Monsters and Men, Post Malone, Seth MacFarlane, Stevie Wonder, Taylor Swift and more. Founded by brothers and chief executives Monte and Avery Lipman, it is also comprised of innovative business ventures, including American Recordings (The Avett Brothers), Boominati Worldwide (Metro Boomin), Brushfire (Jack Johnson), Casablanca Records (Tïesto), Cash Money (Drake, Jacquees, Nicki Minaj), Hollywood Records (Sofia Carson, Zendaya), Lava Records (Greta Van Fleet, Jessie J, Lorde), Monkeywrench (Pearl Jam), XO (The Weeknd, Belly, NAV), Young Money (Drake, Lil Wayne, Nicki Minaj), Roc Nation (Jaden Smith, Justine Skye, The Dream), among others. Republic also maintains a long-standing strategic alliance with country powerhouse Big Machine Records, and Universal Music Latin Entertainment. In addition, Republic has expanded to release high-profile soundtracks for Universal Pictures (Fifty Shades of Grey, SING), Fox TV (Lee Daniels’ STAR, The Four), and NBC TV (The Voice), as well as other notable film and television franchises.
When the end of Summer hits, the desire to rewind time kicks in, reliving every magical moment from the season’s past. It’s a vibe that newcomer DaniLeigh has managed to encapsulate in her debut EP Summer With Friends, coming soon. The 22-year-old singing and dancing phenomenon cut her teeth in the business when she directed a music video for her late mentor, Prince. She enhanced her buzz with back-to-back jams “Play” (featuring Kap G) and “Lurkin’”, and is here to continue her mission of making music that both sounds and feels good.
The South Florida native had music in her blood, singing from a young age. As an early teen, DaniLeigh recorded YouTube covers of songs like Musiq Soulchild’s “So Beautiful,” though she wasn’t quite ready for the big time. “I was really shy,” she admits, “and I didn’t realize the unique sound of my voice until later on.” It wasn’t until a few years later when she moved to Los Angeles at 16 that DaniLeigh began harnessing her craft. In LA she found her footing in the music industry, starting with dancing. “I was dancing in music videos, commercials, you name it,” she recalls. “From there, I met a lot of producers onset and just networked.” Singing became the secret weapon, as DaniLeigh would reveal her chops and be invited to studios for recording sessions. However, a life-changing encounter with the legendary Prince would be the real catalyst.
After learning of DaniLeigh’s talents as a dancer (through a one-minute video clip), the Purple One reached out to have her direct his video for “Breakfast Can Wait” at just 18 years old. The video hit worldwide, appearing on networks like MTV, BET, and REVOLT. Prince ultimately took DaniLeigh under his wing, mentoring her budding singing career. His untimely death in 2016 left a void in DaniLeigh’s life, though his presence is still felt as DaniLeigh’s star is only getting brighter.
“Play” truly kicked things off. The high-energy single is described by DaniLeigh as an empowering anthem for women. “It’s a bold statement,” she says of the cut, which carries a message of “making a play” in all areas of life. “I’m a very positive person and this song I feel can help motivate people to put in that work,” she says. Bringing Kap G (who is of Mexican descent) into the fold as a feature was her way of uniting more Latinos in music, as DaniLeigh’s Dominican heritage is evident in both her style and sound. The single “Lurkin’” immediately followed, as a slick nod to social those stalkers who don’t congratulate moves, yet look on from the social media sidelines. The song even made its way to the HBO hit series Insecure. The stage is now set for DaniLeigh to show the diverse angles of her talent on a grander scale.
Aptly titled Summer With Friends, the upcoming EP sums up DaniLeigh’s past few months, which she lightheartedly describes as “just having fun and working.” The relatable nature of the project brings forth the aforementioned singles, along with feel good songs that channel the young artist’s inspirations including Aaliyah, Missy Elliott, and Drake while showing her ability to fuse hip-hop and R&B with poppier electronic-driven vibes. Songs like “Questions” playfully target those relationship interrogation sessions (Where were you? Who were you with?), while “Ex” is a self-explanatory track about the now-single artist’s previous romance. “He got one song,” she jokes. Other cuts like the infectious “On” and “All I Know” show DaniLeigh’s versatility within the pop-urban landscape, while “All Day” highlights her Dominican roots. “That’s a bachata beat underneath [the production],” she proudly points out. “The time right now is in alignment, showing that things are going the right way.” As DaniLeigh unveils her debut Summer With Friends and the projects that follow, she maintains her goal of positive music, though has one wish involving one important angel by her side. “I always say I wish Prince was here to see all of this happening with me right now,” she says. “It’s okay though. I know he’s watching.”
CERTIFIED CLASSICS RELEASES NEW PICTURE DISC TODAY IN CELEBRATION OF THE 20TH ANNIVERSARY OF BIG PUN’S CAPITAL PUNISHMENT
2-LP PICTURE DISC VINYL FEATURING ICONIC ALBUM ARTWORK AVAILABLE HERE
CERTIFIED CLASSICS ALONG WITH THE THREAD SHOP & BIG PUN’S ESTATE RELEASED NEW MERCHANDISE WHICH IS AVAILABLE HERE
Sony Music’s Certified Classics,Legacy Recording’s division for the celebration of Sony Music’s Hip Hop and R&B catalogue, honors the legacy of the late great Bronx emceeBig Punwith the release of a special 20thAnniversary Picture Disc Vinyl edition ofCapital Punishmentwhich is available now. ClickHEREto purchase.
The 2-LP picture disc vinyl features iconic album artwork (shot by photographer Danny Hastings) fromCapital Punishmenton each LP side.Capital Punishment, originally released on April 28th, 1998, celebrated its 20thAnniversary earlier this year.
In addition to the picture disc vinyl, Certified Classics, in conjunction with Sony Music’s innovative merchandising companyThe Thread Shopas well as theBig Pun Estateworked hand-in-hand to create a newBig PunCapital Punishmentmerch collection as part of the celebration. ClickHEREto purchase.
About Certified Classics
Certified Classics is Legacy Recordings’ division for the celebration of Sony Music’s Hip-Hop and R&B catalog. With artists like The Fugees, Maxwell, Nas, A Tribe Quest, Xscape, Aaliyah and many more, Certified aims to pay homage to the legendary innovators of Hip-Hop and R&B by preserving, curating and reissuing repertoire from the 1980s through the early 2000s.
Launched in 2016, Certified creates opportunities to discuss, revisit, and renew interest in a genre that shaped an entire culture, making the leap from a grassroots form of expression to a mainstream juggernaut with staying power. Certified provides contemporary music fans access to rare and unreleased albums, singles, remixes, photos and video footage from iconic labels that have come through the Sony label system such as Jive, Ruffhouse, J Records, Arista, LaFace, So So Def, Profile, RCA Records, Epic, and Columbiaߞall in an effort to tell stories that help illustrate the impact R&B and Hip-Hop have made on music and the world.
In honor of the late singer Aaliyah, fans had been petitioning MAC on change.org to release a makeup line for her. The petition gained over 26,000 signatures in the process and helped fans make their wishes into a reality. The only downside is as soon as the collection was put out on MAC’s website at 11 a.m. ET on June 20, the $250 set was sold out within an hour. The pyramid-shaped set is inspired by Aaliyah’s own makeup kit and comes with a bandana similar to the one she wore, as well as a poster of her. The eyeshadow palette is combined of different colors which include neutrals, purples, and metallics while the lipsticks include neutrals, reds, and black. There are 12 products in total that MAC Cosmetics has commemorated in her name and they have all been approved by Aaliyah’s brother Rashad Haughton prior to the official release.
Three-time Grammy Award-winning and multi-platinum-selling artist Pentatonix have launched a pre-order for their forthcoming release – PTX PRESENTS: TOP POP, VOL. I – out April 13th via RCA Records. Pre-order here.
Pentatonix has sold nearly 10 million albums in worldwide consumption and performed for hundreds of thousands of fans at their sold out shows across the globe. Their YouTube channel boasts more than 14.6 million subscribers, yielding over 3.1 billion video views. Their 2015 self-titled album is certified gold after debuting #1 on Billboard’s 200.
Additionally, nine of their albums reached the top 10 on Billboard’s 200 chart (two albums reaching #1) and received multiple RIAA certifications for multi-platinum, platinum and gold selling albums and singles. Most recently, “Mary, Did You Know?” and “Hallelujah” were certified platinum, while the Pentatonix original, “Can’t Sleep Love,” was certified gold. The group has had two holiday specials on NBC, released their tour documentary – On My Way Home – in 2015 and appeared in the feature film, Pitch Perfect 2.
Most recently, Pentatonix released a deluxe version of their certified platinum 2016 holiday album A Pentatonix Christmas Deluxe and wrapped their sold-out A Pentatonix Christmas Tour in December.
North American Tour Dates:
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Those who pre-order the album will receive “Havana” and “New Rules x Are You That Somebody?” instantly.
The quintet’s arrangement of “New Rules x Are You That Somebody?” mashes up the Dua Lipa hit with the Aaliyah classic. Watch the music video here. Additionally, the video for the Pentatonix cover of Camila Cabello’s “Havana” has surpassed 10 million views.
In concert with the album’s pre-order launch, tickets for the group’s 39-city North American tour are available today at 12pm local time. All fans who purchase tickets online through May 31, 2018 will receive a digital download of PTX PRESENTS: TOP POP, VOL. 1.