Shawntae Harris, also known as Da Brat, is an American rapper who was born on April 14, 1974. She started her career in 1992 when she signed with So So Def Records and was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois.
Her debut album, Funkdafied (1994), went platinum, becoming her the first female solo rap act to do so and the second female rap act overall (solo or group) after Salt-N-Pepa.
She had two Billboard Hot 100 top ten songs in her career, “Funkdafied” and “Not Tonight,” the latter of which she co-wrote with Lil’ Kim, Lisa Lopes, and Missy Elliott, and Angie Martinez.
Other tracks by Brat include “I Think They Like Me,” a remix of Mariah Carey’s “Loverboy,” and “In Love wit Chu.”  Two Grammy nominations have been given to Brat.
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Who is Da Brat?
Da Brat was born in Chicago, Illinois, on April 14, 1974, and grew up mostly in the city’s West Side neighborhood. Beverly Calloway is a city bus driver, and her father is a businessman named David Ray McCoy .
Her parents never married and had no children. Brat was reared in two houses after that. Da Brat spent some time with her mother and grandma and sang in the chorus at an Apostolic church four times a week.
LisaRaye McCoy is her half-sister. During her sophomore and junior years, Da Brat was a track and basketball athlete at Kenwood Academy. In 1992, she graduated from the Academy of Scholastic Achievement, an at-risk continuing charter school.
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Da Brat’s Career
When producer Jermaine Dupri found Da Brat in 1992, she was still in her teens, having won an amateur rap competition sponsored by “Yo! MTV Raps.” She was introduced to Dupri, who signed her to his So So Def label, as part of her award.
Da Brat’s first album, “Funkdafied,” was produced by Dupri and went platinum, reaching number two on the R&B charts and topping the rap singles chart for over three months.
The song was No. 1 on the rap singles chart and #6 on the Billboard Hot 100. “Give It 2 You,” the album’s second single, debuted at No. 26 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Da Brat regained control of her music and identity with her 1996 follow-up album, “Anuthatantrum,” which was a financial success. She returned to the R&B Top Five and pop Top 20 with the hits “Sittin’ on Top of the World” and “Ghetto Love,” with T-Boz from TLC.
During this time, she also had high-profile cameo appearances on tracks by Mariah Carey (on a remix of her smash “Always Be My Baby”), Missy Eliot, Dru Hill, and Lil’ Kim, to name a few.
Da Brat’s soo work was overshadowed by her guest appearances on other rappers’ albums for the remainder of the 1990s. On the albums “Da Bomb” and “Young, Rich, and Dangerous,” she collaborated with Kriss Kross on the title track.
Da Brat debuted in a feature film in 1996, appearing opposite Shaq in “Kazaam.” She collaborated with Dupri on another Carey remix in 1997 “Honey (So So Def mix).
The hit remix of Da Brat’s “Lil’ Kim, TLC’s Left Eye, Angie Martinez, and Missy Elliot performed Ladies Night (Not Tonight) in 1997. Elliot’s debut album “Supa Dupa Fly” featured her on the track “Sock It 2 Me” later that year. In 1999, Da Brat remixed Destiny’s Child’s “Jumpin’ Jumpin’.”
In the spring of 2000, she released her third album, “Unrestricted,” which featured her in sexier outfits. Not only did the album become her second R&B chart-topper, but it also became her largest pop album to date, reaching the Top Five. Da Brat’s singles “That’s What I’m Looking For” and “What’Chu Like,” both featuring Tyrese, were also hit.
The album was not as highly regarded as her previous two albums in comparison to her prior efforts. With Ludacris on a remix of Mariah Carey’s “Loverboy,” she topped the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip Hop songs chart in 2001.
She appeared on a remix of Destiny’s Child’s “Survivor” the same year. Mariah Carey’s ill-fated film “Glitter” reintroduced her to the big screen in 2002.
“Limelite, Luv, & Niteclubz,” Da Brat’s fourth studio album, was released in 2003. It reached number 17 on the Billboard Hot 200 and number 6 on the Top R&B albums list. She also appeared on VH1’s “The Surreal Life” in season four that year.
She resurfaced in 2005, reuniting with Jermaine Dupri and appearing on Dem Franchize Boyz’ remix of “I Think They Like Me.” The song reached number one on the Hot R&B chart and number 15 on the Billboard Hot 100.
In 2006, she went on tour with Mariah Carey, singing rap verses on “Heartbreaker” and “Honey” in Atlanta, New York, Long Island, Washington, D.C., Chicago, and Los Angeles. On the extra track “Gotsta Go” from Kelly Rowland’s album “Ms. Kelly,” Da Brat collaborated with her in 2007. She appeared in Season 5 of VH1’s “Celebrity Fit Club” later that year.
Prison sentences Issues
Da Brat was assaulted at the Studio 72 nightclub in Atlanta during a Halloween party in October 2007. When a hostess moved away to summon her boss, Da Brat attacked her from behind with a rum bottle and smacked her in the face. Da Brat was apprehended and imprisoned.
She was sentenced to three years in jail, seven years of probation, and 200 hours of community service after entering a guilty plea to aggravated assault charges in court.
She was granted a work release in May 2010 and was released from prison permanently on February 28, 2011. The attack victim was awarded $6.4 million in February 2014 to compensate her for her injuries and lost earnings in the past and future.
After her release from prison, Da Brat created a video series called “Brat Chronicles: In Transition” on YouTube to chronicle her life outside prison. In 2011, she collaborated on a remix called “Motivation” with Kelly Rowland and Lil Wayne.
On July 2, 2013, she dropped a new single called “Is It Chu?” Since July 2015, she has been a co-host on Rickey Smiley Morning and is a member of Atlanta’s “Dish Nation” cast. She has also acted as a coach for aspiring musicians on the reality show “The Rap Game.” Da Brat has been a regular on the reality show “Growing Up Hip Hop: Atlanta” since 2017.
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Da Brat filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 in August 2018. Her assets were $108,700 and her liabilities were $7.8 million, according to her statement. The $6.4 million judgment due to the nightclub attack victim was included in her overall responsibility.
She was also said to owe Sony Music $1.255 million, Ally Bank $12,000, and the IRS and the Georgia Department of Revenue a few thousand dollars.
She claimed a $5,000 Mercedes 238i, a $15,000 BMW 328i, and a $23,000 Jeep Wrangler as her possessions. She said she made $9,300 per month on average and spent $10,500 per month. Da Brat had declared $75,000 in income at the time of her filing, which was around halfway through 2018. In 2016, she earned $92,000.
Her attack victim filed a lawsuit a few months after the bankruptcy filing, demanding that her debt not be discharged. The debt had escalated from $6.4 million to $8 million plus interest, according to the victim. She stated that she has yet to receive any payment from the artist.
Da Brat’s Personal Life
Da Brat finally came out on Instagram in March 2020, revealing she was in a relationship with businesswoman Jesseca Dupart, after years of keeping her sexuality and relationships fully hidden from the public eye. Jessica is the CEO and founder of Kaleidoscope Hair Products, a multimillion-dollar business.
Da Brat’s Net Worth
Da Brat’s net worth is expected to reach $1 million by 2022. Her profits have been large as a result of various activities such as album sales, concerts, and other live appearances. Da Brat makes $40,000 every month.
She is a singer and songwriter who has recorded two albums so far, in addition to her work as an actress in television shows and films. Da Brat makes almost $200,000 in a year.
Da Brat debuted in the music industry in 1992, when she won a rap competition sponsored by YO! MTV Raps, catapulting her into the limelight. Her meeting with Jermaine Dupri, Kris Kross‘ music producer, happened as a result of her winning a local contest sponsored by the fledgling rap group Kris Kross.
Following that, the producer gave Da Brat the chance to sign with his record label, ‘So So Def Label,’ which he accepted.
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Da Brat has cooperated with some of the biggest names in the music industry, in addition to her own projects, which has helped her achieve such amazing success. She released her second studio album, “Anuthatantrum,” in 1996, which was not as economically successful as her first but did well in the music rankings.
In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Da Brat worked with artists such as Mariah Carey, Lil Kim, Missy Elliott, and Destiny’s Child to produce a number of hit tracks.
Da Brat’s third studio album, released around the turn of 2000, was titled ‘Unrestricted.’ even though the project received little attention at the time, the talented rap artist received a flurry of awards, including several Billboard Music Awards and one BET Award. She’s even been nominated for two Grammys for her rap performances, both solo and in a duet.