Hip Hop

Nelly Booking Agent

Nelly :

A savvy rapper with crossover appeal, Nelly seemed like a novelty when he debuted with the Top Ten pop hit "Country Grammar (Hot...)" in 2000, but he quickly proved to be a legitimate hitmaker with "Hot in Herre," "Dilemma," and "Shake Ya Tailfeather" -- and those three only account for a fraction of his Hot 100-topping and Grammy-winning hits. These feats built the foundation of a career that boasts six consecutive Top Ten albums, from the diamond Country Grammar (2000) to the platinum 5.0 (2010) and "The Fix" (2015), leading to warmly received collaborations in the 2020s.

Flo Rida Booking Agent

Flo Rida :

Poised at the confluence of feel-good rap, pop, and electronic, Flo Rida established himself as the party king of the late 2000s with global smash hits like the T-Pain-assisted "Low" and the massive club banger "Right Round" featuring Kesha. The Florida-born MC and singer carried his international success into the next decade, further cementing his reputation with 2011's The Wild Ones, an album that yielded four multi-platinum singles including "Good Feeling," "Whistle," and the Sia-assisted title cut. Known for his dynamic rapped/sung attack and larger-than-life personality, Flo Rida has been able to move freely between the rap and pop worlds while also enlisting prominent dance producers like Axwell and Avicii to supercharge his sound. His later output trended exclusively toward singles like the 2016 Jason Derulo collaboration "Hello Friday" and 2017's "Cake" with 99 Percent. In 2021, he featured on the Eurovision Song Contest entry "Adrenalina" by Italian singer Senhit.

Ashanti Booking Agent

Ashanti :

Celebrated most for her yearning love songs and hooks, but just as capable of using her smooth, sweet, meringue-like voice to deliver anguished cinematic ballads, Ashanti became an almost inescapable pop-R&B force in 2002. The week of March 30 that year, the singer and songwriter followed the Beatles as only the second artist to simultaneously occupy spots in the Top Ten of the Billboard Hot 100 with her first three charting singles. She was featured on Murder Inc. labelmate Ja Rule's "Always on Time" and Fat Joe's "What's Luv?," hits that took the fourth and fifth positions, while "Foolish," her debut solo single, moved up to number nine. Upon arrival the next month, her self-titled album topped the Billboard 200 on its way to triple-platinum, Grammy-winning status. After Chapter II (2003), Concrete Rose (2004), and The Declaration (2008) sustained her commercial prominence, Ashanti parted ways with Murder Inc. (aka The Inc.), only to score her fifth Top Ten studio album with the independently released Braveheart (2014). These successes were followed by an assortment of singles and high-profile contributions to titles ranging from The Hamilton Mixtape (2016) to DaBaby's "Nasty" (2020).

Ja Rule Booking Agent

Ja Rule :

As the flagship artist for producer Irv Gotti's Def Jam-affiliated Murder Inc. label, Ja Rule became one of the rap industry's most commercially successful artists during the early 2000s, working closely with the hitmaking producer and his stable of talent. Born Jeffrey Atkins on February 29, 1976, in Queens, New York, Ja Rule established himself with Venni Vetti Vecci (1999), a hardcore debut album similar in style to the rugged thug rap then popularized by DMX and the Ruff Ryder collective. On his second album, Rule 3:36 (2000), he began collaborating with female R&B singers, and a string of radio-friendly hits resulted ("Between Me and You," "Put It on Me," "I Cry"). Pain Is Love (2001) followed the same template, serving up a few rap-R&B hybrids for the singles ("I'm Real," "Livin' It Up," "Always on Time," "Down Ass Chick") and filling out the album with hardcore rap.

Juvenile Booking Agent

Juvenile :

Having come up in the Hot Boys group alongside superstar Lil Wayne, New Orleans rapper Juvenile is a Southern hip-hop veteran, and a chart-topping one as well, having climbed the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 with his 2004 single "Slow Motion." Born Terius Gray, Juvenile was one of the initial figures involved in New Orleans' "bounce" craze of the early '90s, an uptempo style of hip-hop that combined gangster rap and party music. Besides an affiliation with the bounce group U.N.L.V., Juvenile was featured on two tracks from bounce artist DJ Jimi, 1991's "It's Jimi" and 1993's "Bounce (For the Juvenile)."

Ginuwine Booking Agent

Ginuwine :

Ginuwine was one of R&B's preeminent love men during the '90s heyday of hip-hop soul. Initially teamed with Timbaland, the most innovative producer of the late '90s, Ginuwine's sultry, seductive crooning earned him a substantial female following and made him a regular presence on the R&B charts, even after the futuristic production he favored was eclipsed by the more organic, retro-leaning neo-soul movement.

T-Pain Booking Agent

T-Pain :

T-Pain's singing ability has been on clear display since the first notes of his breakthrough R&B single "I'm Sprung," yet his recurrent use of Auto-Tune created a widespread ripple effect that has made his performing name synonymous with voice modulation. Following Rappa Ternt Sanga (2005), his descriptively titled debut album, the Floridian made a quick rise to the top of the Billboard 200 with Epiphany (2007), led by the number one Hot 100 hit "Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin')." Over the next few years, T-Pain enhanced his reputation as a fun-loving party-starter with Three Ringz (2008) and Revolver (2011), along with featured appearances on numerous tracks exemplified by Kanye West's "Good Life" and Jamie Foxx's "Blame It," both of which won Grammys. By the release of Happy Hour: The Greatest Hits (2014), T-Pain had racked up five headlining platinum singles. Despite bearing the brunt of Auto-Tune backlash, he has remained an enduring pop culture figure. The same year he won the first season of The Masked Singer, he issued his sixth charting album, 1Up (2019), and soon returned to the Hot 100 when Tory Lanez sampled "I'm Sprung" for "Up Down (Do This All Day)."

En Vogue Booking Agent

En Vogue :

When En Vogue debuted to dazzling, chart-topping effect in 1990, the vocal R&B group attracted comparisons to the Supremes, even though Terry Ellis, Cindy Herron, Maxine Jones, and Dawn Robinson shared lead vocals and intentionally designated no particular singer the group's Diana Ross. The quartet had more in common with fellow Oakland natives the Pointer Sisters, as they drew from all eras of R&B with convincing stylistic diversions and a knack for recalling the past and sounding current at once. After three consecutive platinum albums and six Top Ten pop hits during the '90s alone, En Vogue had set a standard by which all subsequent female vocal groups were judged. Lineup changes, lawsuits, and infrequent recordings during the ensuing decades did not diminish the impact of their impeccable harmonies.

Monica Booking Agent

Monica :

When Monica arrived in the wake of the new jack swing era with the multi-platinum Miss Thang (1995), the singer was among a class of teenaged pop-R&B newcomers with the likes of Usher, Brandy, and Aaliyah. She stood out with distinctly Southern grit and boldness, as well as unmatched maturity and versatility that belied her age. Like those peers, Monica proved to be no mere shooting star. Her follow-up, The Boy Is Mine (1998), also went multi-platinum, powered by the Brandy duet of the same title, which for three months topped the Hot 100 before it took that year's Grammy for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal. Just as she and early supporter Dallas Austin were key to the emergence of the Atlanta music scene in the '90s, Monica was a major factor in the city's dominance across the next two decades. She put together four straight Top Ten albums, including the chart-topping After the Storm (2003), and each one involved established and emergent Georgians as producers, fellow songwriters, and featured artists. By the time Monica ended her major-label affiliation, following eighth album Code Red (2015), her catalog was deep and deceptively vast, ranging from Diane Warren-penned adult contemporary ballads to Millie Jackson-like broadsides, and from vintage-sounding slow jams produced by Missy Elliott to booming tracks straight from the streets of ATL. She has since gone independent with singles issued in anticipation of Trenches (2020), her ninth full-length.

The Sugarhill Gang Booking Agent

The Sugarhill Gang :

The story of the Sugarhill Gang is perhaps one of the most controversial among old school hip hop and hip hop on a whole for that matter. Englewood, New Jersey, USA troupe, whose ‘Rapper’s Delight’ was hip-hop’s breakthrough single and paved the way for the mainstream success of rap music in the 80s. They gave the music an identity and a calling card in the first line of the song: ‘A hip-hop, The hi-be, To the hi-be, The hip-hip-hop, You don’t stop rockin’. Master G (Guy O’Brien, 1963), Wonder Mike (b. Michael Wright, 1958) and Big Bank Hank (b. Henry Jackson, 1958) saw massive international success in 1979 with ‘Rapper’s Delight’, based on the subsequently widely borrowed rhythm track from Chic’s ‘Good Times’, over which the trio offered a series of sly boasts which were chatted rather than sung.

T.I. Booking Agent

T.I. :

Once dubbed "the Jay-Z of the South" by Pharrell Williams, T.I. gradually came into his own and established himself as one of rap's most successful MCs during the early 2000s. Like Jay-Z, T.I. -- born Clifford Harris in Atlanta, Georgia -- carried a balance of smoothness and toughness, and grew from regional acclaim in his earliest days to chart-topping records like 2008's hit-spawning Paper Trail. His iconic presence influenced new waves of Atlanta rap talent, and T.I. continued making music alongside those following in his footsteps with albums like 2020's The L.I.B.R.A.

Sean Kingston Booking Agent

Sean Kingston :

The Jamaican–American singer, rapper, songwriter, and record producer became famous after the release of his first album ‘Sean Kingston’ in 2007. Kingston is known for his hard lyrics, a result of his homelessness and his difficult childhood. He has shared the stage with Pitbull, Trick Daddy, and Ludacris. Kingston was signed by producer Jonathan “JR” Rotem who was impressed by the young rapper’s demo. Rotem offered him a contract with his record label ‘Beluga Heights.’ Although he was barely 16 when his first song was released, Kingston sounded like an adult. His second single, ‘Beautiful Girls,’ was a huge hit. In 2009, he released his sophomore album, ‘Tomorrow,’ which featured the singles ‘Fire Burning,’ ‘Face Drop,’ and ‘My Girlfriend.’ In 2013, he released a single which had him performing with Nicki Minaj. Over the years, Kingston has received a number of awards and nominations for his spectacular music.

Sean Paul Booking Agent

Sean Paul :

Jamaican dancehall singer and rapper Sean Paul broke into the global mainstream in the early 2000s with pop-friendly party jams like "Get Busy" from his Grammy-winning Dutty Rock album, plus the chart-topping smash "Temperature." An early proponent of the dancehall pop movement, Paul also earned a reputation as a worthy guest star, appearing on Beyoncé's hit "Baby Boy," then enjoying a career resurgence in the latter part of the 2010s when he was introduced to a fresh generation of fans via high-profile collaborations with artists like Sia, Clean Bandit, and Pharrell Williams. His 2018 EP Mad Love: The Prequel thrust him back in the spotlight, boasting major hits like "No Lie" with Dua Lipa and "Mad Love" with David Guetta and Becky G. Paul carried his success into the next decade with a barrage of singles including 2020's Tove Lo collaboration "Calling on Me" and 2021's "Dynamite" with Sia.

Keith Sweat Booking Agent

Keith Sweat :

Keith Sweat, a Harlem-born R&B singer/songwriter known for his distinctive "whining" vocal style, co-produced 1984/1985 singles by GQ and Roberta Gilliam and issued independent singles of his own ("Lucky Seven" and "My Mind Is Made Up"), but he didn't release his debut full-length for Elektra, Make It Last Forever, until November 1987. The album sold over three million copies, spawning the hits "I Want Her" (number one R&B, number five pop), "Something Just Ain't Right" (number three R&B), "Make It Last Forever" (number two R&B), and "Don't Stop Your Love" (number nine R&B). It was followed in 1990 by I'll Give All My Love to You, another million-seller, which featured the hits "Make You Sweat" (number one R&B, number 14 pop), "Merry Go Round" (number two R&B), "I'll Give All My Love to You" (number one R&B, number seven pop), and "Your Love, Pt. 2" (number four R&B). Sweat's third album was Keep It Comin', an R&B chart-topper at the end of 1991 whose title track was another number one R&B hit.

Johnny Gill Booking Agent

Johnny Gill:

When he scored his first of eight Top Ten R&B singles in 1984 with the Stacy Lattisaw duet "Perfect Combination," Johnny Gill sounded less like a teenager than he did a mature contemporary of Peabo Bryson and James Ingram. Although the ballad didn't necessarily jump-start the singer commercially, he was added to the lineup of New Edition in time to record the multi-platinum Heart Break (1988), which broadened his audience. This soon led to a true solo breakthrough with Johnny Gill (1990), a platinum and Grammy-nominated hit perfectly coordinated with the commercial peak of new jack swing, a style that suited his deep and sometimes growling baritone. After two more gold solo albums, additional success as one-third of LSG with Gerald Levert and Keith Sweat, and continued, if irregular activity with New Edition, Gill tended to his solo career with a trio of studio albums released across the 2010s, capped off with the ballad-rich but stylistically eclectic Game Changer II (2019).

Fantasia Booking Agent

Fantasia :

Fantasia Barrino may have won the third season of American Idol with "I Believe" (2004), an eventual number one pop hit, but it was a passionate take on George Gershwin's "Summertime" that effectively launched the powerhouse singer's career weeks earlier. Confident to a degree that she could have been considered brash, Barrino at first glance seemed an unlikely candidate to take the teen-oriented show's title, but with her dynamic, gospel-rooted voice that never failed her, she became the favorite of the Idol judges and of the voting public. Through the RIAA-certified albums Free Yourself (2004) and Fantasia (2006), the singer affirmed that she was more than simply the winner of a talent competition, and it wasn't long before she reached a higher level of acclaim by winning a Grammy award for "Bittersweet" (Best Female R&B Vocal Performance, 2010). Barrino remained an old-school soul stalwart throughout the next decade with her third, fourth, and fifth Top Ten pop LPs, including The Definition Of... (2016), and her sixth proper album, Sketchbook (2019).

Chingy Booking Agent

Chingy :

Kicking off his career in 2003 with the massive hit "Right Thurr," St. Louis rapper Chingy spent two solid years in the limelight, releasing two platinum-selling albums while becoming a household name thanks to some television appearances and movie roles. Born Howard Bailey, Jr. on March 9, 1980, he began writing rhymes at the age of 10 and began rapping under the name of "H Thugs" during his teen years. Renamed Chingy after a slang term for a looking wealthy, he signed with Fo-Reel Entertainment, an artist management firm with local heroes Nelly and St. Lunatics on the roster. While on tour with Nelly in 2002, he met rapper and Disturbing Tha Peace labelhead Ludacris. He would sign to DTP in 2003 and release "Right Thurr" on the label that same year. With Chingy's slow drawl and laid-back swagger, the track became the anthem for hot summer nights, peaking at number two on Billboard's Hot 100 while topping the magazine's Hot Rap Tracks chart. Released in July, his debut album Jackpot spawned two additional Top Five hits, "Holidae In" with Ludacris and Snoop Dogg, plus "One Call Away" with J/Weav. A monetary dispute between the rapper and DTP would result in a supposed "beef" with Ludacris -- Luda issued some terse words through a press release while Chingy claimed there was no animosity -- and would end with the formation of Chingy's own Capitol imprint Slot-A-Lot. Featuring the singles "Balla Baby" and "Don't Worry," the platinum-selling Powerballin' would become his first album for the label in 2004. The year 2005 found him appearing on television's Punk'd plus The George Lopez show and a year later he would land a role in Scary Movie 4.

Brandy Booking Agent

Brandy :

Brandy is among the few artists to achieve mainstream success as a teenager and make smooth artistic transitions across a multi-decade career. The singer and actor emerged during the post-new jack swing era like the kid sister of Mary J. Blige or TLC, specializing in pop-oriented R&B epitomized by her first two singles, "I Wanna Be Down" and "Baby," both Top Ten crossover hits that made her debut, Brandy (1994), a multi-platinum smash. The title role on the popular sitcom Moesha, a chart-topping and Grammy-winning duet with Monica ("The Boy Is Mine," the longest-running number one female duet in Billboard chart history), and the multi-platinum follow-up Never Say Never (1998) all reaffirmed Brandy's broad appeal through the end of the '90s. While she could have continued to crank out safe contemporary R&B as her acting career took precedence, she made the most out of her subsequent studio time, highlighted by Full Moon (2002) and Afrodisiac (2004), progressive stylistic hybrids that earned her consecutive Grammy nominations for Best Contemporary R&B Album. Since the mid-2000s, Brandy has recorded less often, with Human (2008) and Two Eleven (2012) maintaining her unbroken streak of Top Ten R&B/hip-hop albums. Amid constant work onscreen and on-stage, Brandy's musical output during the second half of the 2010s was limited to a handful of singles and featured appearances, but she issued her seventh album, B7 (2020), early the next decade.