Cassie, Ludacris, Chamillionaire, Aaliyah
Cassie is an American singer, model and dancer that was born on August 26, 1986 in New London, Connecticut. She graduated from The Williams School, a preparatory school in New London, Connecticut. When she completed high school in 2004, she announced that she would pursue her career in modeling and singing, effectively skipping college. After high school, she moved to New York City and continued modeling, as well attending classes at the Broadway Dance Center. Cassie was later introduced to Sean “P-Diddy” Combs by a make-up artist from one of her modeling assignments which helped her to get a shot at a music career. On August 8, 2006 she released her first studio album entitled Cassie. The album debuted at number four on the U.S. Billboard 200 with over one hundred thousand copies sold in its first week. It stayed in the top twenty for two weeks, in the top forty for three weeks and on the chart for twelve weeks. As of spring of 2008, the album has sold over three hundred thousand copies. Cassie followed up the success of her debut album with the release of her second studio album Electro Love in 2009. The title of the album is taken from one of it’s songs of the same name.
Ludacris is the stage name of Christopher Bridges born on September 11, 1977 in Champaign, Illinois. He is a rapper and also works occassional as an actor. He wrote his first rap song at age nine and joined an amateur rap group three years later. From 1998 to 1999, he studied music management at Georgia Tech and went on to work at Atlanta radio station Hot 97.5. WHTA. This is where he met rapper/producer Timbaland. Ludacris performed on the track “Phat Rabbit” as Ludacris on Timbaland’s 1998 album Tim’s Bio: Life from da Bassment. He then went on to release his debut album, Incognegro in 1999. The album has sold more than 300,000 copies. His second studio release was Back for the First Time which contained track taken from his first album. Since its release, it has been certified triple platinum. Word of Mouf, Ludacris’ third album was released in 2001. It has been his best selling album, selling more than 3.8 million copies. Ludacris has since released four more albums, Chicken-n-Beer in 2003, The Red Light District in 2004, Release Therapy in 2006 and Theater of the Mind in 2008. Ludacris is the highest-selling Southern hip hop solo artist of all time with over 15 million units sold in the United States and 20 million records sold worldwide. In addition to music, he has also acted in several movie roles which include 2 Fast 2 Furious, Crash, Hustle & Flow and Max Payne. Ludacris has also acted on television in Eve as a cab driver and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit as Darius Parker. In addition he has lent his voice to several video games which include Def Jam: Vendetta (2003), The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay (2004) and NBA Ballers Phenom (2006).
Chamillionaire was born Hakeem Seriki on November 28, 1979 in Washington, D.C. At the age of four he moved with his family to Acres Homes, Houston. His father was a muslim Nigerian immigrant and his mother was an African American Christian. Before becoming a rapper Chamillionaire held numerous jobs, including stocking trucks and transporting blood and urine for a medical lab. In November 2006 he released his first major solo album The Sound of Revenge through Chamillitary Entertainment and Universal Records. It includes contributions from Lil’ Flip, Lil Wayne, younger brother Rasaq, Natalie Alvarado, Krayzie Bone, Bun B, Scarface and Pastor Troy. The album sold 130,000 in its first week and has since gone platinum. His sophomore album Ultimate Victory was released on September 18, 2007. In the first week it sold nearly eighty thousand copies and an estimated three hundred and eighty thousand as of May 1, 2009. Venom is Chamillionaire’s third solo album and have Ludacris & The Game listed as featured guest. Other confirmed collaborators for the album include Pimp C, Good Charlotte, Z-Ro, Scarface, Three 6 Mafi, Bobby Valentino and J. Holiday. Listed producers of the project include Don Cannon, Mannie Fresh, J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League and Drumma Boy. Venom is scheduled for release sometime in 2009.
Aaliyah was born on January 16, 1979 in Brooklyn, New York. Her birth name is Aaliyah Dana Haughton and she is the youngest child of Diane and Michael Haughton. When she was five years old, her family moved to Detroit, Michigan, where she was raised along with her older brother, Rashad. She attended a Catholic school, Gesu Elementary, where she received a part in the stage play Annie in first grade and from that point on, she was determined to become an entertainer. Aaliyah’s uncle, Barry Hankerson, was an entertainment lawyer who was previously married to Gladys Knight. As a child, Aaliyah traveled with Gladys Knight and worked with an agent in New York to audition for commercials. At the age of nine she would go on to appear on the variety show Star Search. After Barry Hankerson signed a distribution deal with Jive Records, he signed Aaliyah to his Blackground Records label at the age of twelve. She released her debut album, Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number on June 14, 1994. The album peaked at number 18 on the Billboard 200 and sold two million copies in the United States. After her debut album, Aaliyah left Jive Records and signed to Atlantic Records. She then released her second album, One in a Million. It features the singles,”One in a Million”, “Hot Like Fire”, “The One I Gave My Heart To”, “If Your Girl Only Knew”, and “4 Page Letter” and has since sold over two million copies. In 2000, Aaliyah landed her first major movie role in Romeo Must Die. A loose adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. She then went back to the studio and released her third album Aaliyah on July 17, 2001. The album debuted at number two on the Billboard 200 and sold over 20,000 copies it’s first week. The album sold nearly 3 million copies in the United States, and 12 million copies worldwide to date. On August 25, 2001, at 6:45 PM (EST), Aaliyah and various members of her record company boarded a twin engine Cessna 402B at Abaco Island, Bahamas. The plane crashed shortly after takeoff, killing Aaliyah and all members on board.