R&B songstress Ashanti shot to fame in the early 2000s, and while she’s largely been MIA from the music scene, she hasn’t shied away from the public eye. These days, you can catch her on social media flaunting her curvy physique or keeping fans drooling over her thirst traps.
Here are five things you may not have known about the “Rock Wit U” singer.
As a child, she starred in the 1992 film “Malcolm X”
Ashanti had a small, uncredited role in the film as a child extra. She played a student in a Harlem classroom, according to IMDB.
She was discovered by Bad Boy rapper Sean “Diddy” Combs
Though she later signed with Irv Gotti’s label Murder, Inc, the New York songstress was first discovered by producer Sean Combs. She first sang for Diddy and late rapper the Notorious B.I.G when she was just 13 years old.
She had alleged love affair with producer Irv Gotti
In 2017, Gotti sat down with radio DJ Funkmaster Flex to discuss rumors of his romance with the “Baby” singer. He admitted he and Ashanti, 39, had a “thing” and said their relationship wasn’t the cause of his divorce from his wife. Ashanti has never spoken about alleged affair.
She provided background vocals for JLo’s “I’m Real” — and might not have been compensated
In October, the singer’s former Murder, Inc. label mate Ja Rule set the record straight on rumors that Ashanti sang background vocals on Jennifer Lopez 2001 single. While visiting The Wendy Williams Show, the talk show host asked the rapper if the rumors were true.
“Here’s the thing, I am the writer, I referenced the record,” he told her. “My voice is not a great reference voice for the singer to actually reference off of. So we had Shani reference the record … We needed to reference the record so she (Lopez) can hear the riffs that are supposed to be hit.”
When Williams asked if Ashanti’s vocals were left on the song, he replied, “I don’t know.”
She turned down Eve’s song “Gangsta Lovin,” which Alicia Keys went on to sing
It was the hit that got away! In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Ashanti said, “They asked me if I wanted to do that first. I don’t know what I was on, it just didn’t happen. That was a great record!”