DA BRAT


Da Brat

Da Brat (born Shawntae Harris; April 14, 1974 in Joliet, Illinois) is an American Grammy-nominated rapper and actress. Her debut album, Funkdafied (1994), sold one million copies, making her the first female solo rap act to have a platinum-selling album, and the second overall female rap act (solo or group) after Salt N Pepa. Harris is the younger half-sister of actress LisaRaye McCoy. In 1992, Harris got a big break when she won the grand prize in a local rap contest sponsored by Yo! MTV Raps. For the prize, she got to meet Kris Kross, and they in turn introduced her to their producer, Jermaine Dupri, who signed her to his So So Def label. Dupri cultivated Da Brat's image as a "female Snoop Doggy Dogg", and she became one of the first female "reality-based" rappers. Harris told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that her stage name, "Da Brat", was inspired because she is "a spoiled only child." Da Brat's debut album Funkdafied was released in 1994 and entered the rap albums chart at Number #1. The album went platinum, which made her the first female solo rapper to sell one million units. The eponymous single reached #1 on the rap singles chart and #6 on the Billboard Hot 100. She had a follow-up hit from the same album, "Give It 2 You", which reached #26 on the Hot 100. In 1996, Da Brat released her second full-length album, Anuthatantrum, which included the single "Ghetto Love" featuring T-Boz of TLC. During the rest of the '90s, Da Brat came to be known more for her "featured" appearances on other rappers' and R&B singers' albums rather than for her own solo work. Da Brat was also featured with Kris Kross on their track "Da Bomb" on the album Da Bomb (1993), as well as on their third album Young, Rich and Dangerous (1996). She contributed a rhyme to the hip hop remix of Mariah Carey's hit, "Always Be My Baby" (1996). She also made her feature film debut that year in Kazaam (1996) with Shaquille O'Neal. During the summer of 1997, Da Brat appeared along with Dupri on a remix of Carey's "Honey (So So Def mix)" (1997) and recorded the hit remix of "Ladies' Night (Not Tonight)" (1997) with Lil' Kim, Left-Eye of TLC, Angie Martinez and Missy Elliott. Also in 1997, she was featured on "Sock It 2 Me", a track on Missy Elliott's debut album, Supa Dupa Fly. In 1999, she appeared, alongside Krayzie Bone, on the remix to Mariah Carey's cover of Brenda K. Starr's "I Still Believe" (1988). She also appeared as a guest artist with Elliott on Carey's remix of "Heartbreaker" (1999), and on the remix of Brandy's "U Don't Know Me (Like U Used To)". That year, she was also featured on a remix of the Destiny's Child single "Jumpin', Jumpin'". In early 2000, Da Brat released her third full-length album Unrestricted, which produced the moderately successful singles "That's What I'm Looking For" (U.S. #56) and "What Chu Like" (U.S. #26), featuring soul singer, Tyrese. The album was not well received compared to Brat's earlier work. However, the new album and new millennium did inspire an image makeover for Da Brat. Abandoning her "gangsta" persona, she decided to follow the trend in popular music and attempted to add to her sex appeal. In 2001, Brat continued her trend of being featured on other artist's remixes, reaching #1 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip Hop Singles chart along with rapper Ludacris on the main remix of Mariah Carey's "Loverboy" and being featured artist on Destiny's Child's "Survivor" remix. Da Brat also appeared as Louise in Carey's 2001 movie Glitter. In 2003, Brat released her fourth album, titled Limelite, Luv & Niteclubz, and appeared on the 4th season of VH1's The Surreal Life. In 2005, she made a comeback of sorts when she was featured on the remix to the song "I Think They Like Me," by Dem Franchize Boyz, which also featured Bow Wow and Jermaine Dupri. The song peaked at #1 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip Hop Singles chart and #15 on the Billboard Hot 100. In 2006, she was an onstage guest on Mariah Carey's The Adventures of Mimi Tour in Atlanta, New York City, Long Island, Washington DC, Chicago, and Los Angeles performing her rap verses on the "Heartbreaker" and "Honey" remixes. She was also featured on Kelly Rowland's "Gotsta Go", a bonus track from her 2007 album Ms. Kelly and is also featured on a bonus track from Carey's E=MC² on a track entitled "4real4real". She also co-wrote a song with Mariah Carey called "O.O.C." which appears on E=MC² and contributes backing vocals on the track. In 2007, she participated in the fifth season of the VH1 reality series Celebrity Fit Club. In 2011, she did a remix with Kelly Rowland called "Motivation" featuring Lil Wayne. Following her release from prison, she launched a web series about life after the experience titled "Brat Chronicles: In Transition" on YouTube. She released her new single "Is It Chu?" on iTunes and other digital services on July 2, 2013.

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