All Articles Tagged "Ne-Yo"

Here’s Why “The Wiz Live” Attracted 11.5 Million Viewers Last Night

December 4th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
Share to Twitter Email This

I have so many thoughts about last night’s live production of “The Wiz Live.” It was just everything. I’ll formulate my thoughts more clearly on the following pages. While I was legitimately sad when it was over, I was also so very full. It was a beautiful display that went beyond just entertainment value. What I saw last night was good for my spirit. The recent and persistent evils of this world have had me feeling down lately and this uplifter was much needed. With so much racism and  sexism, it was nothing short of therapeutic for the Black community to see such a display of Black excellence, particularly from a cast that featured quite a few amazing women.

Check out the best and most standout moments from the production and watch the full show again or for the first time, on the last page.

“It’s A Part Of Who I Am, It’s A Part Of Why I Am”: “The Wiz Live” Cast Share What The Story Means To Them

December 1st, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
Share to Twitter Email This
Source: NBC

Source: NBC

Just when I thought I couldn’t be any more invested in “The Wiz Live,” we had an opportunity to speak with the cast members about their experience rehearsing for this live, televised event on Thursday, December 3. We interviewed some of the biggest names in entertainment and they had a lot to say about this project. But more than anything, the cast members kept reiterating how important The Wiz, both the play and the feature film, were to not only themselves but to the African American community as a whole.

Check out some of the thoughts, memories and passion shared by both the on-stage talent as well as the folks behind the curtain.

Source: NBC

Source: NBC

Stephanie Mills, Auntie Em

I knew of Shanice (who plays Dorothy) before they actually cast her because Kenny and I were having a talk and he said, ‘There’s this girl and I know she’s Dorothy, I know she’s Dorothy.’

I’ve given her love. I told her you can’t–I don’t want you to try to do what I did. She’s her Dorothy, the 2015 Dorothy. It’s her. I did my part 40 years ago.

It’s emotional because I see myself in her. I see the innocence, how young I was doing it and how afraid I was at that time. It brings back all those memories.

Executive producer, Craig Zadan: I don’t think we had any pressure. We took it on because we love it and we thought it would make a great show for us to do. What we were surprised at was the amount of people who called us. I would say this was the first time in our lives that very prominent African American artists, actors, directors, producers called us to say ‘Do you know how important this is to the community? Don’t blow it.’ And we realized at that moment that there’s a reverence for this material. We didn’t take it on for the reverence. We took it on because we loved it. But then you realize that there is that added responsibility of making sure that it’s done correctly. And we’ve done it correctly. We hope. We hope when you all see that you feel it’s done correctly too.

MN: Was there a moment when you felt like ‘ok, this is right’?

Executive producer, Neil Meron: Yeah. At the table read when it was all the talent in one room and we heard how much they collectively felt the same way about the material and what we were about to do. It felt good.

(Photo by: Paul Gilmore/NBC)

(Photo by: Paul Gilmore/NBC)

Amber Riley, Addaperle (Good Witch of the North)

I don’t know how old I was but I remember watching [The Wiz] and rewinding it over and over again. And I remember trying to do “Ease on Down The Road.” I remember the music, I specifically remember the music.

Before even hearing what names were going to be a part of [this production], I wanted to be a part of it anyway. I didn’t really care who was going to be in it. You know, this is iconic. The fact that my mom has seen it and that was her first Broadway show and then I saw it in the movie and now my niece is four is going to be able to watch it. Anything that can withstand generations has to be amazing. There’s something special about it and I really wanted to be a part of that.

Update: Ne-Yo Engaged To Crystal Renay, Expecting Third Child

August 31st, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
Share to Twitter Email This

Update 9/1/15:

Neyo has taken to social media to dispel rumors regarding his relationship with Crystal Renay. The couple is expecting their first child together and are engaged to be married, but they have not tied the knot yet.


A photo posted by NE-YO (@neyo) on

2015 has been an exciting year for Neyo.

Just days after subtly announcing his marriage to girlfriend, Crystal Renay, the singer-songwriter—whose birth name is Shaffer Smith—confirmed that they’re also expecting a baby.

The 35-year-old singer, who is already father to Mason and Madilyn Smith, made the shocking revelations on Instagram, of all places. And apparently, he anticipated that the news would attract its share of backlash because his announcement included a low-key jab at critics.

“Happiness. Go get you some,” he wrote. “Shouts to @j3collection for the flick and the lovely @mscrystalrenay of course for making it look so good. (She’s the sexy in this couple😏 I just try to keep up) #ClassicCouple #AT #HO #TheSmiths #BeHappyForMyHappyOrJustBeQuiet.”

The “So Sick” singer has been the target of much criticism since his ex-fiancée and mother of his two children, Monyetta Shaw, revealed the circumstances surrounding their 2013 breakup. As you may recall, Shaw appeared as a cast member on VH1’s “Atlanta Exes” where she expressed regret over deciding to tie and burn her tubes after a conversation with Smith, who was her fiancé at the time the decision was made, about not wanting more children. He later broke up with her over the phone.

Ballerific Comment Creepin ——🌾👀🌾 #Neyo #commentcreepin

A photo posted by Baller Alert (@balleralert) on

Smith and Shaw have since put aside their differences, and it seems that she and Renay are on good terms as well. Back in April, the women met for the first time and Shaw shared that it was a pleasant experience.

“Actually, it’s funny that you asked that, I recently met her – I met her this weekend. As a mother, it’s my duty to meet the person that’s potentially going to be around my kids,” the mother of two told said last year. “It’s definitely time for me to meet her, get to know her, well start to get to know her, and that’s what I did. Actually, it was all good – pleasantly surprised.”

It’s refreshing to see that everyone has moved on and can be cordial for the sake of the children involved in this situation.

Congrats to both Neyo and Crystal!

#CrystalRenay's bestie confirms baby and marriage! Congratulations!! #Neyo

A photo posted by The Shade Room (@theshaderoominc) on

Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise

Meet The Men Of “The Wiz Live!”

August 13th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
Share to Twitter Email This



the men of the wiz feat

With each passing week, I get more and more excited about NBC’s “The Wiz Live!” The cast, from Uzo Aduba to David Alan Grier to Queen Latifah, is looking like it’s going to be top notch.

And now we’re getting word on the fellas.

Common, Ne-Yo and Elijah Kelley are joining the party as well.

Common will take the role of the gate keep of Oz, Ne-Yo will play the Tin Man and Elijah will be playing the Scarerow.

Can you see it? Are you here for these choices?

Angela Simmons Inspires And Encourages Harlem Youth With GIRLTALK #takeover Event

July 31st, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
Share to Twitter Email This
GIRLTALK #takeover

GIRLTALK #takeover

On Wednesday, 200 girls in Harlem were treated like divas. The girls, ages 8-16, were received manicures, runway walk tutorials, makeovers and much more in an attempt to inspire them to feel beautiful, confident and informed.

The day-long event was the brainchild of Angela Simmons and her partner Kerri Berson Levine. The two, who had been friends for a while, had spoken about hosting an event for young girls often. Three years ago, through a partnership with the Boys and Girls Club, they launched what is now GIRLTALK #takeover.

In addition to the beauty component, there were fitness activities hosted by Pretty Girls Sweat, a yoga class. And in a classroom on the premises, health professionals spoke to the teenagers about healthy romantic relationships, reproductive health and puberty.

During this session, Simmons popped in to discuss the pressure many girls feel to engage in sex, perhaps prematurely.

She shared that she’s a virgin, waiting to marriage to have sex.

I had a chance to chat with Simmons and she explained that she felt it was important to share that story.

“I feel like in this day and age with social media, that decision is often made for them. So I want them to be able to make their own decision on what they want to do and to know that if they make the decision, they’re not an alien, they’re not by themselves.” 

In addition to these lessons, the girls had a few surprises that day when 14-year-old Little leaguer and Espy Award winner Mo’Ne Davis showed up to give a slew of hugs, sign autographs and take pictures.

Later, artists Ne-Yo, Justine Skye and Simmons’ younger brother Diggy came through to meet the girls.

This won’t be the last time you hear of GIRLTALK #takeover as there are plans to take the program to other cities in the nation.

Check out some pictures from the fun and festive day below.

Ne-Yo’s Ex Says She Thought He Would Come Back Home After Sowing “His Oats”

April 7th, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
Share to Twitter Email This
Splash News

Splash News

Last summer, Monyetta Shaw revealed that her former fiancée Ne-Yo broke up with her over the phone. According to the mother of two, the breakup caught her off guard, but she dealt with it the best way that she knew how. Ne-Yo has since entered a relationship with a model that goes by the name Crystal Renay and things appear to be serious.

In a recent interview with Mara the Hip Hop Socialite, Moyetta explained that for a long time, she didn’t believe that her split from Ne-Yo would be a permanent one.

“Girl, I’m going to be real, I’m human. Maybe I’m saying too much, but I’m going to say it. Because everybody saw me on the show, and I was completely vulnerable and open, I’m not mad at admitting this,” she shared. “Of course I knew that he would, you know, in my head, he was going to sow his oats and come back home when he was ready. And maybe that’s what everybody else thought, but life happens, and I’m okay with it. I’m human – at times it didn’t feel good, but I understand everything happens for a reason, and God has a plan, so all is well.”

Speaking of Ne-Yo’s new lady, the “Atlanta Exes” star also opened up about recently meeting her.

“Actually, it’s funny that you asked that, I recently met her – I met her this weekend. As a mother, it’s my duty to meet the person that’s potentially going to be around my kids. And, like you said, the initials [Ne-Yo and Crystal recently got each other’s initials tattooed on their ring fingers] and everything – they hot and heavy over there. Can’t be mad at that, you know.”

Although she initially hoped that her family would come back together, Monyetta says that she has nothing but well wishes for Ne-Yo and Crystal.

“I have wished him the best and everything, I still do, and I felt like it was time, you know. It’s definitely time for me to meet her, get to know her, well start to get to know her, and that’s what I did. Actually, it was all good – pleasantly surprised.”

Unfortunately, she’s still not sure about the future of her VH1 reality show “Atlanta Exes.” As previously reported, “Hollywood Exes” has officially been canceled.

Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise

Exclusive: Ne-Yo’s Ex-Girlfriend Opens Up About Paternity Scandal & Trying To Find Love On “Match Made In Heaven”

March 6th, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
Share to Twitter Email This


Earlier this week, we told you that Ne-Yo’s ex-girlfriend Jesseca White, who now goes by the name Phoenix, was a contestant on WEtv dating show “Match Made in Heaven.” While on the series, White briefly opened up about the high-profile paternity scandal involving herself and the singer. We were recently able to sit down with the White for her first ever interview regarding the scandal involving her famous ex. Check out what she had to say below.

MN: Why reality television?

I decided to do reality television at the very last minute. It took literally until the day before the show was shooting. A friend of mine called me and was like, “Hey, I think you’d be really great for the show to find love,” and I thought hey, let me just try it. It wasn’t a big, big thing.

MN: So there was no audition process? They just wanted you?

No. I just got a call from one of my friends.

MN: What was it that attracted you to Shawn? Were you actually looking for love or was it more about the show?

No, it wasn’t that I just wanted to do the show. I think that it was just trying something different for love. I didn’t believe that you could find love on a reality show in the beginning, but I felt like all the signs were kind of pointing for me to do it so I just kind of went with it. So that’s why I did it.

As far as Shawn, what attracted me to him was that he’s very charming, he was a good listener and I felt like he got me. So when we had our private moments and we had our conversations, it felt like a deeper chemistry for me. So I appreciated it. And he’s cute too! So that doesn’t hurt.

MN: So Shawn recently interviewed with us and he had quite a bit to say about Black women wearing their scarves and bonnets to bed. He also mentioned White women who go “right to sleep without the head wraps.” What are your thoughts on that?

Is that what he said? Look, we got to protect our edges. I think from his perspective, I think it’s also important that we continue to be sexy while in a relationship. Yeah, wrap your hair up a little bit later, but I’m trying to go to bed sexy. White women don’t have to worry about their edges.

MN: Were you concerned about your past resurfacing when you signed on to appear on the show?

Yes, which was part of the reason why I didn’t want to do the show. I’ve always been very private about my private life even when all of that stuff was happening [with Ne-Yo] in the past. I never said anything. It wasn’t about that and I felt like if I love somebody or if I was ever in love with someone, our personal problems and issues are our own. I just kept it to myself, but I figured it would probably come up. I was hoping that it wouldn’t, but it did.

MN: And how did it come up exactly?

How it came up was that one of the girls ran up to Shawn and told him something. No one else in the house heard it, but I just so happened to hear it. I was like, you know what? No one is ever going to tell a man something about me that I haven’t told him first. Then when you’re trapped in the house with a bunch of women, and if you’ve watched the show, it’s been very unpredictable with how people react in the house, to anything. There’s a lot of sabotage, a lot of fighting, a lot of underhanded stuff going on. I don’t do all that. I don’t like confrontation and I don’t operate that way. So I was like, I’m going to stand up here, take the risk in front of everybody at the same time and I’m going to tell him what I have to say because I really like him so I was willing to take that chance because what I felt for him was real.

MN: His mom looks like she can be a piece of work at times. Were you concerned about how she would react?

I talked to her the night before. I was like, “There’s going to be some stuff that I am going to tell you and your son that you’re probably not going to like, but I’m going to tell you the truth. If that gets me eliminated off of the show or not, I don’t care because I’d rather stand up for my truth and stand in that than not.” And she respected that.

MN: On the show, you described the paternity issue with Ne-Yo and the things that followed as a situation you were thrown into that wasn’t your “choice.” Can you elaborate on what you mean by that?

What I meant by that was that I never chose to be thrown into the media and it was made into this big huge scandal. No one has ever heard me say anything. I’ve never defended myself. I’ve never fought against it. I’ve never tried to clear my name. It’s something that I was thrown into based on what PR people decided to do at that time. And that’s what I meant.

Exclusive: Ne-Yo’s “Fake” Baby Mama Opens Up About Paternity Scandal On “Match Made In Heaven” [Watch]

March 4th, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
Share to Twitter Email This


Romance-centered reality shows are always full of dirty little secrets and WEtv’s “Match Made in Heaven” is no different. In an exclusive sneak preview of this week’s episode obtained by MadameNoire, you will see contestant “Phoenix” open up about a major scandal.

You see, Phoenix’s real name is Jesseca White and she’s actually the ex-girlfriend of R&B crooner Ne-Yo. We’ve discussed White on multiple occasions in the past, as she’s the woman whom the world came to know as Ne-Yo’s “fake” baby mama. During her relationship with the singer, she gave birth to a child, which Ne-Yo believed was his. Unfortunately, in 2009, he found out Maury Povich-style that he was not the father of the now 9-year-old. Sadly, the drama did not stop there. After Ne-Yo opened up about the scandal on VH1’s “Behind the Music,” the 33-year-old photographer filed a defamation lawsuit against him, which you can read more about here.

Apparently, this traumatic situation has not slowed down White’s quest to find love, but it certainly may hinder it if she’s seriously looking to find it in the arms of “Match Made in Heaven” star Shawn Bullard. In episode five, the ladies gather around for a testimony-styled gathering and White comes clean to Bullard, his mother and Bullard’s spiritual advisor Ken Johnson about her sketchy past.

“I’m nervous ‘cause I’m like, ‘Oh sh-t,’ but it’s the perfect opportunity. His mom is here, the pastor’s here, Shawn’s here, all the girls are here,” White said of her decision to open up about the scandal. “I’m about to lay it all out in front of everybody.”

Apparently, she was pushed to come clean because another contestant by the name of Dolly was already aware of the situation and was threatening to expose her.

“So yesterday, Dolly said some stuff. She went up there and she said, ‘There’s people in here who have babies by celebrities.’ I dated a man by the name of Ne-Yo and I lost everything over it. I was involved with a very huge scandal—not by choice, but because I was thrown into something and I was judged and ridiculed by the entire world for something that I never even did. It not only affects me, but it affects my baby. Contractually, I can only say so much, but I’m not tearing down other people to make myself look better so I would never do that.”

Yeah, straight messy. The full episode airs Thursday, March 5 at 11pm ET/PT on WEtv.

Check out the clip below. Thoughts?

Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise

Funny Business? Ne-Yo Sues Ex-Business Manager For $8 Million

February 24th, 2015 - By Ann Brown
Share to Twitter Email This
Source: AP

Source: AP

Ne-Yo isn’t too happy with his ex-business manager, so much so that he’s taking him to court. According to a lawsuit filed by Ne-Yo, Kevin Foster committed fraud and the superstar is seeking $8 million in damages.

The singer claims that Foster as well as  Vernon & Co., the consulting firm he worked for, moved money from his accounts without permission, forged loan documents, and even invested in a water company with Ne-Yo’s money, reports Ne-Yo filed a lawsuit against his former manager once before as well.

In all, Ne-Yo says Foster shifted $4.5 million out of his bank accounts as well as charged an additional $3.5 million in fees over the years. This is how Ne-Yo reached the $8 million he is seeking from the suit.

But none of this is true, counters Foster who says that while he did have control over Ne-Yo’s bank accounts he didn’t commit any fraud while managing the money, reports EURWeb. The court will soon decide who is telling the truth.

Didn’t know Ne-Yo was rolling in that kind of dough? Well, according to Celebrity Worth, Ne-Yo is currently worth about $16 million.

#ManCrushMonday: Ne-Yo

February 16th, 2015 - By Rich
Share to Twitter Email This

main image: Tinseltown /

Ne-Yo may not be a traditional type of handsome, but this Las Vegas-bred, Def Jam-signed father of two with killer pipes and a penchant for writing hit songs has tons of appeal to make up for it. From his inviting smile, which exposes his perfectly lined pearly whites, to his tight eyes (his father is of Chinese decent), his baldy (which we find ultra sexy!), the way he is able to confidently wear a suit like no other, and, most importantly, that silky voice and his ability to pen songs that touch people’s hearts – let’s just say, Ne-Yo is a keeper in our book.

Born Shaffer Chimere Smith, Ne-Yo first became nationally recognized for his artistry back in 2004, when he wrote the song “Let Me Love You” for singer Mario. The song reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and remained at the top spot for nine weeks. That’s when then CEO of Def Jam Recordings, Jay-Z, offered him a deal with the famed label, and the rest is history.

In 2006, he released his debut album, In My Own Words, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and spawned hits like “So Sick.” Ne-Yo released his second No. 1 album, Because of You, in 2007, followed by Year of the Gentleman, in 2008. During an interview with UK journalist Peter Lewis about his third album’s title, Ne-Yo explained:  “To me, Year of the Gentleman is all about a persona, a swag and a charm… so the title basically represents me trying to lead by example, and showing these cats what it is to be a gentleman in this business still.” That is exactly what we think of Ne-Yo – he personifies a gentleman’s swag and an unparalled charm. We couldn’t have said it better ourselves, Mr. Smith.

Ne-Yo took a break between the release of Gentleman and his next album because he and his then girlfriend, Monyetta Shaw, were expecting his first child. Madilyn Grace Smith was born on November 12, 2010. The following year, the couple brought in a second child, their first son, named Mason Evan Smith, born October 9, 2011.

Ne-Yo followed the release of Gentleman with 2010’s Libra Scale and 2012’s R.E.D., both sets which found him successfully experimenting with the euro electro sound a bit. In fact, his track “Beautiful Monster,” off Scale, was his first No. 1 on the UK Singles Chart.

On January 27th, 2015, Ne-Yo released his sixth studio album, Non-Fiction, and it takes Ne-Yo back to his sexy, sultry, bedroom R&B songs that his fans love him for. If you haven’t heard it, please do yourself a favor and do so! Sidenote: the album debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.

Now that you’re all filled-in, check out this slideshow of flicks of Ne-Yo doing one of the things he does best – being as charming as ever.

#ManCrushMonday: Ne-Yo