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Decades: 2000s
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Ashanti Shequoiya Douglas, 13 October 1980, Glen Cove, New York, USA. For urban R&B singer Ashanti it has been a case of third time lucky. Her honey-toned voice and striking looks landed her a recording contract with Jive Records at the age of 14, then again with Epic Records at 17, but neither of those deals came to fruition. It was when she was noticed by Murder Inc. mastermind Irv Gotti that Ashanti began to blossom. Gotti noted her dancing and acting abilities in addition to her vocal skills (she had previously appeared in the Walt Disney television musical Polly). Ashanti’s first musical outing under Gotti was a guest vocal on the track ‘How We Roll’ by Big Punisher. She then appeared in a series of duets that made her a stateside star in March 2002. She was Ja Rule’s counterpart on the hypnotic ‘Always On Time’, provided the chorus to Fat Joe’s ‘What’s Luv?’, and married her vocals with the late Notorious...

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