Photo by Gary Coronado/Los Angeles Times via Getty ImagesMarion "Suge" Knight pleaded no contest on Wednesday to running over a man and killing him in a restaurant parking lot three years ago, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office.
The 53-year-old former rap mogul entered a plea to one count of voluntary manslaughter and admitted a special allegation that he used a deadly weapon, a truck, the D.A.'s. office wrote in a statement obtained by ABC News.
In exchange for his plea, Knight is expected to be sentenced to 28 years in the Foltz Criminal Justice Center on October 4.
The plea deal stems from a 2015 altercation that occurred outside a Compton, California restaurant in which Knight ran over two men with his truck. Terry Carter, 55, was killed and the other man was injured. Knight, who was out on bail for robbery at the time, fled the scene, but was later arrested.
Under the sentencing guidelines, Knight would receive 11 years in prison for the voluntary manslaughter count, but due to a prior conviction his sentence would double under California's three strikes law. The Death Row Records co-founder also would receive an additional five years because the conviction was for a serious and violent felony, and a year for the deadly weapon allegation, according to the D.A.
By entering his plea, Knight also will resolve two other pending criminal cases. He was indicted for making criminal threats, and charged with allegedly stealing a camera from a woman, both incidents taking place in 2014.
Those charges would be dismissed by a judge at sentencing.
ABC RadioFat Joe is weighing in on the ongoing beef between Nicki Minaj and Cardi B.
The drama, which reached its boiling point during New York Fashion Week, went viral when Cardi was seen first attempting to fight, and then throwing her shoe at Minaj. Among Cardi's complaints: She claimed Nicki had dissed her abilities as a mother. But Joe says the altercation was inevitable.
"There's a changing of the guards," Joe tells ABC Radio while promoting his forthcoming film Night School.
"Nikki had it seven years straight winning every award. I mean females [were] even discouraged to even rap at that time," he explains. "They [were] like, "Oh, no she's drop dead gorgeous. She's dope. She's with the biggest team. She wins everything-- all her records. Like we don't even want to rap, because it's not even a chance."
But according to Joe, Minaj reign as queen was cut short by his fellow Terror Squad membor and close friend Remy Ma.
"So then Remy comes out of her 'college stint' -- seven years," Joe says, referring to Remy's time behind bars. "And she goes for it-- and she becomes the new female rapper of the year. So that kind of like changes everything. And when they went into beef, Cardi just had a clear lane to go up in there."
Following Cardi's metoric rise, Joe claims, Nicki hasn't been able to accept the demotion and refuses to share the spotlight.
"So now, she's there and it seems like it's just hard for Nicki to adjust, with like being the queen seven years straight unanimously-- to having to share that space with these other females," he adds.
Gabriel Olsen/Getty ImagesMacy Gray is back with a new album, Ruby, designed to bring her fans “ear candy” and ”excitement.”
“I just wanna give people, like, ear candy, like, something you can close your eyes to and you just love it,” the Grammy Award-winner tells ABC Radio.
“Music is just supposed to make you feel better,” she says. “You can give people that moment where they just have....for three-and-a-half minutes, your life is good, because your favorite song is on, so that’s always my goal.”
As for the title of her new album, she says Ruby wasn't her first choice.
“I wanted to call my album Red because that stands for like excitement.” Gray says. “But it turns out everybody knows Red is also the name of 50 other albums."
"I think every other artist in the world has an album called Red, so we’re like, 'There’s other types of red.' There’s scarlet, crimson, and then somebody said 'ruby.' I thought, 'OK.'” (AUDIO IS ABC 1-ON-1)
Ruby, which is out today, features Gray's latest single, “Sugar Daddy.”
Since releasing her triple platinum debut album On How Life Is in 1999, Gray has diversified her career, starring in several movies, including Training Day with Denzel Washington, and “For Colored Girls,” directed by Tyler Perry.
Getty Images via ABCRihanna: music star, movie star, fashion mogul, and now ambassador for her home country of Barbados.
RiRi has been named an official "Ambassador Extraordinary" by Barbados Prime Minster Mia Mottley.Her specific responsibilities will be promoting education, tourism and investment for the Caribbean island where she was born.
“I couldn’t be more proud to take on such a prestigious title in my home country,” the "Diamonds" singer said in a statement, according to BarbadosToday.com. “Every Barbadian is going to have to play their role in this current effort, and I’m ready and excited to take on the responsibility. I look forward to working with Prime Minister Mottley and her team to reimagine Barbados.”
“Rihanna has a deep love for this country and this is reflected in her philanthropy, especially in the areas of health and education,” Mottley said. “She also shows her patriotism in the way she gives back to this country and continues to treasure the island as her home."
“She has also demonstrated, beyond her success as a pop icon, significant creative acumen and shrewdness in business," she continued. "It is therefore fitting that we engage and empower her to play a more definitive role as we work to transform Barbados."
This is an expanded role for the Ocean’s 8 star, who was previously appointed one of Barbados’ Cultural Ambassadors in 2008.
Last week, Rihanna’s star-studded Diamond Ball gala, hosted by Issa Rae in New York City, raised nearly $6 million for her Clara Lionel Foundation, which assists young people around the world.
Chesnot/WireImageKanye West is on the warpath again, and this time his targets are Drake, Nick Cannon and Tyson Beckford.
Ye is calling them out for disrespectful comments they recently made about his wife, Kim Kardashian, and members of her family.
“First of all I want to address Nick Cannon,” Kanye said in an Instagram video. “ I understand that you used to date my wife but you get in an interview, don’t mention my wife. If someone brings my wife up, you say I respect that man; I’m not speaking on that."
Ye recently apologized to Drake about the Pusha-T diss tracks, but now he taking back the olive branch, as he addressed Drizzy.
Kanye said he does not appreciate Drake’s “Kylie & Kendall,” song about his wife’s sisters, Kylie Jennerand Kendall Jenner. Ye told Drizzy the track is a diss to Kylie’s boyfriend, Travis Scott.
“When you played that record for me in the studio that said,' Yo we got some Kylies we got some Kendalls,’ I told you Travis is your man, don’t make no record like that," said Kanye. "That man just had a baby with her."
"Don’t speak on nobody from my family," he added. "Nothing can even be mentioned with my wife. Period."
West also ripped Beckford for commenting on Instagram about Kim, “She is not real, doctor f***ed up on her right hip."
"As far as Tyson Beckford go don’t speak on my wife, bro. Like none of y’all speak on my wife. Period. What is you taking about?"
"I’m married. We in love. We a family. Ya’ll be promoting all that like negativity. It don’t sit right with my soul...All three of ya’ll," said Kanye. "Y’all come talk to me. Y’all holla at me. We’ll work it out. We’ll come to a resolution."
Jelani Day French Montana and Drake shout-out their favorite fashion designers in their new collabo track, ”No Stylist,” which dropped Thursday.
Montana raps, “Iced out no stylist new Chanel, Saint Laurent, Gucci bag/Lifestyle no stylist Louis Vuitton, Jimmy Choos, that’s on you/Diamonds on my neck, frozen tears hoppin' out the jet, Lears”
The 33-year-old rapper commented on Instagram, “LIVE FROM WHERE EVERYTHING STARTED ITS ABOUT THAT TIME HAANNNNN !! My official single #NOSTYLIST coming out this Thursday, Sept 20 ft. My brother @champagnepapi."
Slick Rick appears on the cover, and Montana commented, “Shout out to one of the originators, @therulernyc for being on this epic cover with me!!”
In 2016, Drake was featured on Montana’s platinum hit, “No Shopping." They began working together in 2012 with Rick Ross’ “Stay Schemin’,” followed by “Pop That” featuring Ross and Lil Wayne.
The video, which will debut September 28, was shot in Montana’s hometown of New York City. It features Slick Rick, Cam’ron, and hip-hop fashion icon Dapper Dan.
“No Stylist" will be included on Montana’s third studio album, which he plans to drop next year.
Bettmann/Getty ImagesPrince's Piano & a Microphone 1983 album is being released Friday, featuring liner notes by Lisa Coleman from Prince’s Purple Rain-era band, The Revolution. Coleman says the project brought her joy, and pain.
“I didn't want to do it,” the keyboard player tells Billboard. “It was hard and I cried, and just hearing his voice at the beginning of the tape, when he tinkles around and he's talking to one of his engineers and just speaks into the mic...Just hearing his voice like that, it was wonderful to hear and it was painful.”
Piano & a Microphone 1983 is the late music legend 35 years ago accompanied only by a piano, just after the release of 1999 and a year prior to the release of Purple Rain, which launched him to super-stardom.
There are nine tracks in all, recorded at Prince's Chanhassen, Minnesota studios that later came to be known as Paisley Park. Songs include pre-release versions of "17 Days," which was the B-side of "When Doves Cry" a year later; "Strange Relationship," from 1987's Sign o' the Times; and a performance of what would become Prince's signature hit, "Purple Rain." The first single, "Mary Don't You Weep," was released some three months ago.
The Prince estate will be releasing more music; Coleman says, “There's, like, 100 years’ worth of material in that vault."
“Inside the band there's a famous jam called "Ice Cream," she continues. "When Prince was in a good mood or we were having a good show he would sometimes just run to the microphone and scream "ice cream," and that was a cue for us to go into this particular jam thing, and that's never been released or heard or really known."
Coleman is now touring as a member of The Revolution, with dates through October 28 in Providence, Rhode Island.
Here's the Piano & a Microphone 1983 track list:
1) "17 Days" 2) "Purple Rain" 3) "A Case of You" 4) "Mary Don’t You Weep" 5) "Strange Relationship" 6) "International Lover" 7) "Wednesday" 8) "Cold Coffee & Cocaine" 9) "Why the Butterflies"
Nicky J. Sims/RedfernsIt was all love as Beyoncé reunited with former Destiny’s Child member LaTavia Roberson when the On the Run 2 tour arrived in their hometown of Houston Sunday.
“It was so wonderful sharing a laugh and spending time with my FRIEND of 30 yrs.....hadn’t seen Bey in 18 yrs," Roberson commented on a photo of her, her mom, and Queen Bey. “My mother @cheryl_lastrap is clearly tickled. The children are amazing."
LaTavia concluded her post with a reference to Beyoncé's album with JAY-Z, writing, “Everything IS Love.”
This was LaTavia and Beyoncé's first meeting since Beyoncé’s father, Mathew Knowles, who managed Destiny’s Child, kicked her and LeToya Luckett out of the group in 2000. They were replaced by Farrah Franklin and Michelle Williams. Six months later, Franklin was fired.
Last week, Beyoncé reunited with Luckett backstage at the On the Run 2 concert in Arlington, Texas.
EssenceIt’s been four years since Kelis released her most recent album, Food, and the 39-year old singer says she is happy to be out of the spotlight.
“Anyone who knows me knows I can take fame or leave it,” the Grammy nominee says in the cover story for the new Essence global beauty issue. “I can walk away from all of this and never look back. Being famous has never validated me -- ever. I’ve never cared if people liked me or didn’t like me. Either way, I’m cool.”
After beginning her recording career in 1999 and releasing six albums, Kelis expanded her brand. She designed a line of fashion accessories, hosted the Saucy and Sweet show on the Cooking Channel, and published a cookbook. She says she strives to be versatile.
“The only way you are really ever going to be truly content is if you are constantly evolving,” Kelis says.
The “Milkshake” singer married Nas in 2005, and they divorced in 2010. As previously reported, in April, she accused him of domestic violence, and he recently responded with a lengthy Instagram post denying her allegations. Last week, Kelis clapped back, commenting that her statement about Nas abusing her is not false.
“It's not my truth babe, it's THE truth. Period. I know, he knows it and most of all GOD knows it,” she commented on Instagram. "I am truly grateful and happy I escaped a horrendous situation and that I am in love and my boys are delicious perfect children."
The Essence global beauty issue featuring Kelis on the cover will be on newsstands Friday.
Burak Cingi/Redferns via Getty Images2 Chainz, Drake, Quavo and Murda Beatz go back in time to their childhood in the new “Bigger Than You" video, which was released Wednesday.
In the clip, the rappers are portrayed by kids who hilariously take over their elementary school and ignite a frenzied party in the classrooms and the halls. After being punished with detention, the mini lookalikes tie up the detention supervisor. Eventually, all the teachers feel the groove and begin dancing with the students.
"Bigger Than Me" is rumored to be included on 2 Chainz' upcoming album, Rap or Go to the League, which is expected to drop later this year.
Weezy will receive the I Am Hip-Hop Award at the event, held October 6 in Miami. The legendary rapper from New Orleans has won five Grammy Awards and sold over 100 million records. He also launched the career of several stars, including Drake and Nicki Minaj, on his Young Money Entertainment label. His long awaited Tha Carter V album is scheduled to be released Friday.
Matias J. Ocner/Miami Herald/TNS via Getty ImagesILoveMakonnenreleased a posthumous collaboration between late rappers XXXTentacion and Lil Peep titled “Falling Down” on Wednesday.
The Los Angeles rapper/singer co-wrote the track and received approval to release the song from the mothers of both fallen artists, according to Billboard.
In August, ILoveMakonnen wrote on Instagram that he would be releasing the song, and posted a recording of XXX expressing his admiration for Lil Peep.
"I am honored to have co written this song that X was inspired to be a part of, shortly before he died,” Makonnen commented. “Peep and I always believed that music heals and brings people together in a way nothing else can. When I heard X’s recording, talking about my dear friend Peep I could not wait any longer to share this.”
In the recording, XXX said he regretted not meeting Lil Peep, and that a worker in the studio commented that Peep wanted to meet him.
“Nick told me the last time before he died, when he was down here bro, like he was asking about you bro, and that to me was like yo, are you serious?," XXX said. "He was asking, how are you, like what type of person you are. Do you stay down here?”
XXX was touched hearing that Lil Peep wanted to know more about him. “It was divine to me,” he said.
The song, originally titled “Sunlight on Your Skin,” was first recorded by Peep. Then XXX added his vocals after Peep passed away from a drug overdose last November at the age of 21.
XXXTentacion was fatally shot on June 18 in Deerfield, Florida. Four suspects have been arrested.
El Pics/Getty ImagesAmerican Airlines has apologized to Wale after he implied flight attendants were racist toward him during a recent flight.
The 33-year-old rapper from Washington, D.C. says crew members threatened to call police Sunday because he was sitting in first class.
He tweeted, “How about ur employees Megumi and Don told me “ur not supposed to be in first class I’m calling the police." That was in response to a tweet from American apologizing for a delay in Wale's New York City to Los Angeles flight departing -- a maintenance problem forced passengers to leave the plane and then reboard.
Then when the flight landed, Wale says the attendants told him he didn't belong in first class, even though he had a first-class ticket.
“We just want to apologize to Wale for what really occurred here,” an American Airlines representative told Essence. “He’s a good customer of ours. He flies with us regularly. We really just want to apologize profusely."
“When the flight landed [in Los Angeles], he was sitting in his correct seat…but he wasn’t showing on their tablets as being on their aircraft,” the airline rep went on, adding that the flight attendants “were just trying to figure out why he wasn’t listed on the flight in the first place. His seat was inadvertently dropped in the system when they boarded back.”
American Airlines says it is investigating what they’re calling an “IT issue” that caused the problem.
Republic RecordsDrake is suing a woman who claimed he sexually assaulted her and got her pregnant.
According to People.com, the "In My Feelings" rapper filed a lawsuit Tuesday against Laquana Morris, who works in the adult industry under the name Layla Lace. Drake's seeking damages for civil extortion, intentional infliction of emotional distress, abuse of process, fraud, and defamation.
According to Drake’s lawsuit, he and Morris had consensual, protected sex after a concert in Manchester, England in February 2017. Later, Morris claimed in a radio interview that Drake impregnated her. He claims that in May 2017, she hired a lawyer who demanded money from him for her alleged baby. The Canadian rapper requested a paternity test but Morris allegedly refused to cooperate.
Morris also filed criminal charges against Drake, claiming that he assaulted her in Manchester and forced her to perform oral sex against her will.
“There is no credible evidence of pregnancy, nor any baby, which would have been born last fall,” Drake’s lawyer writes in the court documents. The lawsuit also claims that Drake was cleared of the criminal charges, after which Morris “demanded payment of millions of dollars in exchange for her silence.”
“Drake is refusing to allow Layla to get away with her malicious plot and scheme to extort millions of dollars from him by threatening to go public with salacious (and ever-changing) false allegations of conduct that simply did not happen,” the lawsuit says.
“Layla and her attorneys underestimated Drake’s steadfast resolve not to pay hush money to avoid negative publicity arising from fabricated claims. He looks forward to holding Layla and those working in concert with her responsible for her egregious misconduct.”
Aaron J. Thornton#638682#51B ED/Getty Images2018 has been a landmark year for Michael Bivins of New Edition and Bell Biv Devoe. He turned 50 years old in August, and in June, he received an honorary high school diploma.
Bivins returned to Belmont High School in Belmont, Massachusetts for the ceremony. 33 years ago, in 1985, he left school as a 15-year-old sophomore to become a full time entertainer. He remembers growing up with New Edition member Ronnie DeVoe, and how proud he was to be honored by his school.
“It felt good because my speech was my SAT,” Bivins tells ABC Radio. “It was to inspire the other black kids from the program Ron and I come from, Metco, on what you could be, but don’t do it the way I did because the way I did it, you might not be here. All of my teachers, people I played ball with that became policemen, they were all there,” he continues.
The singer/rapper will never forget reuniting with some of his former classmates.
“When I walked in the gym, I was looking at my man Chris Donahue and he used to play besides me playing ball,” Bivins recalls.
“So it was emotional, not just with the paper, it was just the fact that all of us that touched each other, they were there to take in the moments and my kids were there," he says. "My daughter spoke, Savanna. She was up there like a big girl. That meant everything to me and my mother was here, living to see it."
Bivins is now on tour with Bell Biv DeVoe on the RBRM tour featuring Bobby Brown. The tour kicked off September 6 in Ontario, California, and wraps up Sunday in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
Image Group LA/ABC After leaving the Jeremih Later That Night tour last month because she felt disrespected, Teyana Taylor is now claiming that the majority of the crowd came to see her, not Jeremih, perform.
“I was doing everything. The promotion. I do my own promo videos, like, I just took it very seriously and I was very, very excited about it and he did little to no [promo]...my name wasn't even on the ticket,” Taylor said on The Real syndicated TV show.
Teyana said she felt dissed when the singer referred to her as his opening act.
"You call me your opener during one of the shows, but then go on radio and say, 'But I got love for her,'” Taylor continued. "If you had love for me, you never would have tried to play me live."
"The reason [there's] no footage of it is because 80 percent of the room left after my performance,” she added. "So it was probably only like 20 people left, so nobody really captured the shade when he did it.”
The singer/actress said when she questioned Jeremih about the remark, his response prompted her to leave the tour.
“I pressed him about it over text...he kinda admitted that he did say it,” she recalled.
“I was like, 'You know what? This tour is done,' so he said, 'Let’s just let it be done,'” she remembered. She then asked him why, if she was just the opening act, she would have the power to call off the tour.
“It was like, 'Don’t try to play me,'” she added.
Taylor launched her own solo tour after leaving the Later That Night tour. She’s on the cover of the September/October issue of Playboy, and she’s starring in the Fall 2018 campaign for Agent Provocateur lingerie.
David M. Russell | Disney/ABC Home Entertainment and TV Distribution As the Cardi B/Nicki Minaj war continues, Queen Latifah is calling for them to take their battle to the studio.
“These two ladies have had huge success and I definitely don’t want to see them come to blows. I‘d really rather see 'em shoot the fair one on a record and take everybody out," Latiifah said Tuesday on Live with Kelly and Ryan.
The Queen offered to be the executive producer of the song.
Latifah is celebrating her 30th anniversary as a recording artist and trailblazer for women in hip-hop. The Grammy Award winner does not condone the drama between Cardi and Nicki, but says she's proud to see more women achieving success in hip-hop.
"I have a lot of respect for female rappers and we are such a powerful minority," she says. "I say powerful in the sense that if you hear one female rapper’s record come through on the radio, you hear that record, you know that record, you memorize that record. We just stand out.”
2018 Parkwood EntertainmentBeyoncé and JAY-Z have been presenting $100,000 college scholarships during their On the Run 2 tour, which led to a special moment for one unsuspecting recipient in Queen Bey's hometown.
Seventeen-year-old Alezae Uresti was shocked when her name was called to receive the scholarship as she attended Sunday’s night concert at NRG Stadium in Houston.
"I had no clue. I didn't even realize," Uresti told Houston ABC affiliate KTRK-TV. “All of these cameras start pointing at me," she said. "I was like, looking back, like, 'Oh, my God.' I was shocked and ecstatic. I was just jumping with excitement.”
After the concert, the Ball High School senior met Beyoncé.
"I didn't know what to say, and she gave me a huge hug and JAY-Z was just like chilling," Uresti said. "So I gave her a hug and then after that, me and Beyoncé took a picture and I told Jay-Z, 'Come on, come on, get in the picture,' so we all took a picture."
Uresti plans to attend Texas State University to major in forensic science pathology,
Beyonce and JAY-Z are awarding $100,000 scholarshipsto high-school seniors in 11 cities during the On the Run II tour: Orlando, Atlanta, Miami, Arlington, New Orleans, Houston, Phoenix, Los Angeles, San Diego, Santa Clara and Seattle.
The Boys & Girls Club of America selects the winners.
Getty Images via ABCOne week after raising nearly $6 million for her Clara Lionel Foundation, which assists young people around the world, Rihanna is expressing her commitment to global education.
“We must fight for the quarter of a billion young people still denied an education by conflict, poverty, sexism and bad policy,” she writes in an op-ed piece for The Guardian.
“Education can be stolen from you in a second,” the singer from Barbados continues. “As we’ve seen recently on an unprecedented scale, the Caribbean gets hit by natural disasters that wipe out schools, leaving thousands of children stranded.”
But the singer and actress is determined to make sure youth aren't denied opportunities to go to school.
“The lack of access to education for children around the world is a massive problem, but that does not mean we should throw up our hands in despair and surrender,” she says. “Instead, we need to take on as much of the challenge as we can manage to set an example and see the difference. This is what has driven me to prioritize global education in my philanthropy and advocacy work. The notion that millions of children are desperate to go to school and are not given the opportunity is something I cannot accept.”
Rihanna explained the mission of her Clara Lionel Foundation in 2012, and how she was inspired by her trip last year to the African nation of Malawi.
“We fund programs that remove barriers to education by offering financial support to children and their communities," she says. "And following our time in Malawi, I am proud to say we are supporting thousands of girls there to move through secondary school.”
Rihanna concluded her op-ed, “If we can overcome the education deficit in the developing world, everybody wins.”