The Hotheads Of Harlem: 9 Uptown Celebrities Who Will Put You In Check

September 26, 2013  |  
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After watching the drama unfold between Rihanna and Teyana Taylor on Twitter this week, I learned two things: 1. Rihanna really likes to nitpick at people. 2. Teyana Taylor is extremely trill to be so tiny. While folks like Ciara, Karreuche Tran, and more have all cowered back in the corner when they’ve had to deal with the Bajan bad girl, Taylor held nothing back (though she did get a little too fired up). But I’m not really surprised. TT is from Harlem, and Uptown folks don’t play that. Don’t believe me? Check out these nine other Harlem-ites who are quick to put somebody in their place and maybe snatch a wig or two in the process.


Azealia Banks

This one’s definitely a firecracker. Just check her beef list. She’s had many words for everybody from Lady Gaga to T.I. and she doesn’t back down from anybody, including legends in the hip-hop game like Lil Kim.  And maybe she’s garnered such a tough exterior from dealing with abuse as a young girl, abuse which she says came from her mother:

“After my dad died, my mom became really abusive – physically and verbally. Like she would hit me and my sisters with baseball bats, bang our heads up against walls, and she would always tell me I was ugly. I remember once she threw out all the food in the fridge, just so we wouldn’t have anything to eat.”

Her willingness to say what she feels no matter what is clearly something she’s known for (possibly more so than her music).

A$AP Rocky

For the most part, A$AP Rocky, aka Rakim Mayers, comes off like a very mellow guy. But grab his designer threads the wrong way or touch his plaits and baby boo might backhand the hell out of you. Seriously. A$AP has been accused more than once of slapping his female fans (one incident was caught on tape) when they became a little too excited to see him. And there’s that video from the VMAs where he was too ready like Freddy to throw down with a security guard outside. Don’t let the pretty face fool you–he’s clearly a little crazy.

Judy Eddy/


The highest paid star in Hip-Hop music has definitely come a very way; but it wasn’t too long ago that he was out here busting bottles of Champagne over Steve Stoute’s head over disagreements on music videos. For that incident, Diddy was charged with second-degree assault and made to take anger management classes. Speaking on the incident later he said, “We got in a fight when we were kids, and it’s funny that it still comes up, years later. We were millionaires at 26 years old.” Not calling yourself kids at 26 though…You guys were grown as hell, Puff…


Chrissy & Jim Jones

Don’t let their warm smiles warm your heart too much. They don’t play that. They were once the glue that held Love and Hip Hop New York together (and made it interesting), but they were also one of the feistiest couples we had seen on TV. When he wasn’t threatening Somaya Reece’s manager or checking folks with the quickness, Chrissy was stomping people out in the name of her friends and calling folks on their BS. They were literally the perfect match (whether they walked down the aisle or not).


Is it terrible that I kind of have a fascination with Cam’Ron? Killa Kam, blim blam. The Harlem rapper is another one not to hold his tongue. He’s engaged in physical fights with other rappers over mixtape disses, gone at the best in the game with no hesitation (Jay Z and 50 Cent for example), and he truly doesn’t give a flying you know what. I have a feeling that his work as Rico in Paid in Full as far as being an extremely ready-to-embarrass-and-hurt-you character was not too far off from his regular self. Call me Cam!



Let us not forget that Kelis was the first girl to scream on a track. With her big hair and raspy voice, she wasn’t trying to be cute when she told her ex, “I HATE YOU SO MUCH RIGHT NOW!!!!” And we loved it! But Kelis is definitely a feisty chick. A few years ago she was arrested for cursing out and charging at two undercover cops who were posing as prostitutes in Miami. Clearly such an epic night to remember, Nas brought it up in his song, “Bye Baby”:

“You screaming at the racist cops in Miami was probably
The highlight of my life, like “Ha, yo, look at my wife!”
Gangsta, me and twenty cops ’bout to fight
Crazy night, bailed you out, next morning we got clean
Like it never happened and later we at that Heat game
Just another day in the life of two people in love” 

Bre Scullark

Any throwback America’s Next Top Model fans in the house? Back in the day I used to be a big fan of Bre Scullark during Cycle 5 of the show. However, people who were actually on the show felt that she was an absolute nightmare. She was messing with people’s food when she felt disrespected by someone in the house, she was arguing with girls at photoshoots, and she was basically made into the bad girl in season 5. Outside of the show, she was actually arrested for disorderly conduct for cursing out a Starbucks worker…She’s still cute though!


Damon Dash

Before he made up recently with Jay Z, Damon Dash was out in these streets calling him everything but a child of God. Of course, the men played an integral part in the establishment of Roc-a-Fella Records, but when they parted ways, Dame’s controlling interests in the brand that Roc-a-Fella had become (more than just music), were basically severed. He spoke about feeling betrayed numerous times:

“We all earned those masters.  The people that I was helping, once they realized their dreams, they did what a criminal would do.  They stabbed you in the back. Think about the frustration of building a brand for years that should be taking care of your family, and then the person that was the closest to you saying, ‘Nah, you can’t have no parts of it,’ and flushing it.”

Thankfully they kissed and made up. Or hugged. Whatever.


Teddy Riley

Teddy Riley has always come off like a laid back talented dude, but just a few years ago, he had a moment of rage against his daughters. The legendary producer was accused by his 18-year-old daughter Taja of beating her with a video game guitar (the one from the game Rock Band) and also attacking his older daughter after a disagreement. He would go on to kick them out of the house according to the women. But what really made it crazy was the fact that Riley bragged about the beating on Twitter after the fact, saying, “i did it for a reason, and i would do it again for them to get it. don’t disrespect the hand that feeds you.” Oh parents…

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