Joe Budden‘s a new face on Love And Hip Hop, but he’s been all over the music scene for quite a while. Over the years, he’s hung out with some of the biggest names in the game, from Usher to Reverend Run to Ice-T and Coco, who also know a thing or two about transitioning from music to the reality world.
Check out some of our favorite pics of Joe throughout the years hanging out with his pals, plus a shot of him with Tahiry while they were still together, and of course a gratuitous shirtless shot of him on stage, just because we couldn’t resist.
[Photo: Getty Images]
There might not be anyone who is as endearing, fashionable, and well-connected as La La Vasquez. Yes, she’s a humble “basketball wife,” but she’s spent years as a radio DJ and later a VJ at MTV, and she’s now an actress and style icon in her own right. Basically she’s done it all, worn it all, and hung out with some amazingly cool people at the same time. As a tribute to her evolving style and her lasting friendships in show business, we’ve created a mega-gallery of La La through the years, from her early days at MTV where she was a jeans and t-shirt gal, to her Full Court Wedding, to today, where she can hold her own at Fashion Week with the best of the best, like her pals Beyonce, Russell Simmons, Kelly Rowland, and of course, Po and Dice.
[Photos: Getty Images]
Lil Wayne‘s New York State prison term for gun possession may have come and gone, but Ja Rule‘s—stemming from an arrest made that same night after the same concert—just began last month, and the rapper has taken his moment of public penance to address other misdeeds, including a five-year stretch during which he paid none of the over $1 million in taxes that he owed. Today, just six weeks into his two-year rap for the gun case, Ja Rule was sentenced to 28 months in prison on the tax charges, resulting from a deal in which he pled guilty to charges relating to three of the five years of nonpayment. The sentence will be served concurrently with his current sentence, and is predicated on the payment of all back taxes and penalties.
We can’t imagine that getting one’s finances in order is an easy job when one is facing a gun possession rap (not to mention when one’s past financial mentor was Irv Gotti), but Ja Rule made no excuses. When he spoke to MTV’s RapFix a month before beginning his gun-possession sentence, he expressed only regret concerning his actions, particularly in terms of how their consequences would affect his family.
Rapper Ja Rule sentenced to 28 months in prison on tax charges [CNN]
[Image: Getty Images]
Woohoo! Ashanti, who performed on Good Morning America this morning to promote her new album, is clearly psyched by how damn good she looks. She’s almost as pumped as former famous dude Ja Rule is about now singing in her shadow. Ouch.
Ashanti’s Tips for a Bangin’ Summer Body
Last we heard from Ja Rule, he was raging against the Viacom machine for “these f***ing shows that they have on MTV that is promoting homosexuality, that my kids can’t watch this s***.” He went on to pronounce gay-friendly dating shows as contributing to the “f***ing up” of America. Did he instill the fear of tolerance in your heart?
After being almost universally lambasted for his homophobia, Ja Rule has answered some of Spinner’s questions regarding his comments. It’s now two weeks after the fact, but whatever. Better late than hateful. Ja proclaims himself a “a very avid speaker for all people’s rights and people having their own preference” and contends that his comments were “taken out of context.” Which: duh. Isn’t everything? Ja continues:
“We’re focused on the wrong things — like, our country is at war right now. These things are more of a problem to me. Like another case I just read about — young ladies being raped by six white men. These are the stories that should be popping up on my TV screen. That’s what I was talking about, and somehow it got spun into some other s—.“
So why not focus on that via your public platform instead of, you know, MTV programming, Ja? He goes on to report that he’s related to gay people and celebrates Christmas with them, he doesn’t have a problem with gay marriage and he would accept any child of his who ended up coming out to him. Well now he would, publicly, at least. Lesson learned! [Spinner / Image credit: Getty]
Ja Rule: Don’t Hate Hip-Hop, Hate Gays Instead!
Ja Rule & Lil Wayne Busted With Guns
Ja Rule Artist Info
Browse Ja Rule Photos
Ja Rule Music Videos
In an interview with Complex, Ja Rule rants against the media’s persecution of hip-hop, and suggests that gay people make much better punching bags.
“There’s a f***ing black kid right now about to get 25 years for having a fight with some white kids over hanging the nooses over the white tree, let’s get to that. Let’s get into s*** like that, because that’s what’s tearing up America, not me calling a woman a bitch or a hoe on my rap songs. And if it is, then we need to go step to Paramount, and f***ing MGM, and all of these other motherf***ers that’s making all of these movies and we need to go step to MTV and Viacom, and lets talk about all these f***ing shows that they have on MTV that is promoting homosexuality, that my kids can’t watch this s***. Dating shows that’s showing two guys or two girls in mid-afternoon. Let’s talk about s*** like that! If that’s not f***ing up America, I don’t know what is.“
It should be pointed out that Ja Rule’s shirtless, cartoonishly butch antics in his videos have done just as much to promote homosexuality.
You feel me? It’s funny how a homophobe can come off so…gay.
[SOHH.com / Getty]
Ja Rule and Lil Wayne Busted with Guns
Ja Rule Artist Info
Browse Ja Rule Photos
Watch his Music Videos
Sunday was a bad night for two hip hop stars in NYC, after Ja Rule and Lil Wayne were arrested in separate incidents, both for being in possession of illegal .40 caliber guns. Ja Rule was the first to get busted when he was pulled over in his Maybach (a car so expensive and luxurious that you’ve maybe never even heard of it) for speeding. A quick search of his vehicle turned up the pistol and he and his two companions were arrested.
Only an hour later and a few blocks away, Lil Wayne was arrested after cops spotted him and another man near his tour-bus getting their toke on with some weed. His gun was also discovered, and the two men were charged with possession of marijuana and a weapon. Lil Wayne had just performed earlier in the evening at the Beacon Theater.
The two rappers are both currently awaiting arraignment at the Criminal Court in NYC. Word is the fashion police may also be filing complaints against the rappers – tiny moustaches and tear drop tattoos are in clear violation of trendy Big Apple fashion codes. Both styles are soooo last year. [Newsday/TMZ. Images: Getty]