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Ayra Starr: At 19, Having No Fear Makes Me Dangerous

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Ayra starr

It was not until that scary predicament after a chat with Ayra Starr that one fully understood what she embodies on her recently released debut album, 19 and Dangerous. After a fantastic conversation with her, I had somehow lost the recording and went into full panic mode. However, as I tried to wriggle my way out of the tight spot, I realised that I could not be writing about the most confident 19-year-old I had ever spoken with, without having some form of that confidence as well. And the rest, they say, is… well, that’s what you are about to read now. Oyinkansola Aderigbigbe, better known as Ayra Starr, is not just dangerous – her personal synonym for dauntless – but is also very ambitious and fortunate. The Mavin Records princess stormed the music scene last year, with her charismatic and brow-raising self-titled extended playlist (EP). And within a year, her artistry has evolved with such grandeur that reflects the trinity of her sincerity, confidence and maturity.

“If I cast then, I cast/Anything they wan talk, they talk/ I’m going to be who I want to be; live my life the way I want to be/With no shame/With no haste,” the soulful lyrics from the Afro-RnB record, Cast, opens the and sets the tone for a very emotionally-charged and vulnerable record. For the remaining 10 songs on the album, from Fashion Killa, to In Between, Toxic, Snitch, Beggie Beggie, Bridgertn, the entire record creates a strong musical identity for Starr, showcasing her skillful lyricism and vocal maturity. The entire Afro-fusion project is soaked in her confidence, emotions and intentionality. From Afro-Trap, to Afro-pop, to Afro-RnB, Starr refuses to stay in a box, churning out classics in diverse genres. Generally, the album feels calming, gentle and warm, not because it was produced by the production whiz, Loudaa, Johnny Drille, London, Andre Vibe and Don Jazzy himself, but because with every listen, you become more deeply connected with the singer, as if you have been given an intimate peek into her life without any dilution. This rare honesty, even to make mistakes, is what makes Ayra Starr both radical and inspiring. In this interview, she tells Guardian Music about living her dream at age 19, being a ‘fashion killer’, getting her name from divine inspiration, meeting Don Jazzy, becoming Mavin Records’ latest ‘daughter’, and being scared of nothing but chicken and goats.

Could you tell us about your new project, 19 and Dangerous, what really makes you dangerous?
I HAVE always thought that my album was going to be called 19 and Dangerous; I came up with the name like two years ago. I don’t know, but I just like the way it sounded. The day I knew I was dangerous was the day I knew that I wasn’t afraid of making mistakes. I am not just afraid of anything, to be honest. Once you have nothing you are scared of, you become dangerous; because you have nothing to lose.

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What’s the inspiration behind the messages you brought on this album?
I am so happy that when I was working on this album, I didn’t create it with the intention of making an album; it was just what it was, I just had songs. I recorded the songs for myself; these were songs that made me feel better about myself.
I was trying to help people to feel like their mind is being spoken out; I wanted to help people know that it is okay to be vulnerable. We are still struggling; I wanted this album to be like a safety zone for people.

Are they your own life stories?
Some of them; Fashion Killa definitely is one of them. Bloody Samaritan too; there are some others there.

Interestingly, the album almost had no features, was that deliberate?
There was actually not meant to be anybody, but I just felt that I should get Foushee on the song and Ckay. I felt like it was my story to tell and I didn’t feel anybody could interpret it the way I wanted it.

What’s a typical Ayra Starr creative process like?
It just depends on my mood; it depends on what I am doing. Sometimes, I am at home and I just feel like writing a song and then I get to it. Sometimes, I am at the studio and I hear a beat and I start to vibe to it. I wrote Beggie Beggie in a bus; I wrote Karma in a hospital. It just depends on where I am.

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Do you play any instrument?
No, but my brother, Milar, plays the guitar; he is my partner in crime. We do the music thing together.

I noticed you have a fusion of different melodies on the album, how would you describe your own sound?
So, I don’t like to describe my sound with genres; I feel like genres don’t explain it enough. I am too versatile to be described with a genre. I like to describe my sound with feelings. It is like how do you feel when you hear the song? Are you euphoric? Do you feel happy or do you feel free?

ALSO READ :- Erica reveals amount of money left in her account if N10M is removed

So, this album feels dangerous?
Dangerous, yes! Free. Dangerous. Happy. Vulnerable. Emotional.

You came into the industry like a surprise, now your name is everywhere. What is the inspiration behind your name Ayra Starr?
So, it is not inspired by the Game of Thrones series, as most people think it is. Ayra is an Arabic name that means someone that is highly respected, woke and open-minded. That is what I want to stand for. Starr is just because I have always seen myself as a star, since I was like five years old.

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So, you sat down and researched Arabic names, until you found Ayra?
No. So, there was this name I was using at the time called Ira. And since my real name is already Oyin, I didn’t want to have two Yoruba names; I wanted to do something different. So, I kept pronouncing the Ira as Ayra (eye-rah), but people kept pronouncing Ira (ee-rah). I had to keep explaining that it is Ayra and not Ira. So, I just googled Ira with an A and Y. And when I saw the Arabic name, I just had goosebumps. It felt like God gave it to me.

Tell us about how you grew up, at what point were you connected with music?
I grew up in a very musical home. I have always loved music; it has always been like a part of my life. My childhood games were musical games. When I did well in school, my mum would let me go for choir practice. Music was like a reward system for me as a child; I have always loved music.

When I was 10, I was so sure I was going to do music. I called myself a superstar. My brother was playing the guitar; he used to write with me. We were ready to take over the world. When I moved to at age 13, with my mum, what my mum used to tell me was that this was where I would start my musical career; I would never forget that. She used to bring me to Lagos and I was always excited.

Then, at 17, I started uploading song covers on Instagram and then Don Jazzy saw me. In 2019, I uploaded my first original song and it wasn’t even up to three hours after that he sent me a message asking me to come to his studio and that was how it works.

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You mentioned that your mum was bringing you to Lagos. Where were you guys coming from?
I was born in Cotonou, but we were living in Abuja, at that time. So, we lived in both places, before we moved to Lagos.

While in school, did you have any parallel ambition?
Yeah, definitely. In school, I used to study International Relations and Political Science; I schooled in Benin Republic. But even when I was in school, I always knew it was going to be music for me. I had like a band I used to sing with. We were like a group of friends who just came together, although we never did any gigs. But I always knew that I was going to do music. I just had to go to school.

So, if you were not doing music, what else would you be doing?
Well, if I wasn’t doing music, let me be honest, I would rather do fashion or be unemployed.

So, what’s your fashion style like?
Just like my music; my fashion style is how I feel. Sometimes, I feel calm and I just dress it.
Tell us three things people don’t know about Ayra Starr.
Hmmm. Well, Ayra Starr is an introvert. Many people don’t know that I love to stay indoors; I love my space. I love to be alone and just do my thing. Another thing I would say is that I am not scared of anything, but you already know that. The only thing I am afraid of is chicken and goats; I cannot stand near them.

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But you can eat them?
Ha-ha, of course!

So, what’s the plan now with the music?
Definitely would be going on tours, and making more music.

How would you describe Ayra Starr in a phrase?
Ayra Starr is 19 and is ready for everything!

 

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BET Awards 2022: Check out full list of winners

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bet awards 2022 winners

BET Awards 2022: Check out full list of winners and nominees: BET Awards 2022 celebrates Black culture featuring favorite artists from film, television, music, literature, and more.

This year’s BET Awards event was held on Sunday 26th June 2022 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.

Famous actress, Taraji P Henson hosted the show, and it featured performances from Roddy Rich, Fireboy DML, Jack Harlow, Babyface, Chance the Rapper, GIVĒON, Chlöe, Joey Bada$$, amongst others.

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Afrobeats was well represented at the award with Pheelz performing on the red carpet and Fireboy DML performing at the live event.

Here is a list of all the winners at the 2022 BET Awards.

Best Female R&B/Pop Artist

Ari Lennox
Chlöe
Doja Cat
H.E.R.
Jazmine Sullivan *WINNER
Mary J. Blige
Summer Walker

Best male R&B/Pop Artist

Blxst
Chris Brown
Giveon
Lucky Daye
The Weeknd *WINNER
Wizkid
Yung Bleu

Best Group

Silk Sonic (Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak) *WINNER
Chlöe X Halle
City Girls
Lil Baby & Lil Durk
Migos
Young Dolph & Key Glock

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ALSO READ:- “I was saving up to get him flowers, wine and a card” – Queen Mercy opens up on how she tried hard to keep ‘friendship’ with Whitemoney

Best Collaboration

Wizkid feat. Justin Bieber & Tems – ‘Essence’ *WINNER
DJ Khaled fest. Lil Baby & Lil Durk – ‘Every Chance I Get’
Baby Keem & Kendrick Lamar – ‘Family Ties’
Doja Cat feat. SZA – ‘Kiss Me More’
Drake feat. Future & Young Thug – ‘Way 2 Sexy’
Bia feat. Nicki Minaj – ‘Whole Lotta Money (Remix)’

Best Female Hip Hop Artist

Cardi B
Doja Cat
Latto
Megan Thee Stallion *WINNER
Nicki Minaj
Saweetie

Best Male Hip Hop Artist

Drake
Future
J. Cole
Jack Harlow
Kanye West
Kendrick Lamar *WINNER
Lil Baby

Video of the Year

Baby Keem & Kendrick Lamar – ‘Family Ties’
Chlöe – ‘Have Mercy’
Doja Cat feat. SZA – ‘Kiss Me More’
Ari Lennox – ‘Pressure’
Silk Sonic (Bruno Mars & Anderson Paak) – ‘Smokin Out The Window’ *WINNER
Drake feat. Future & Young Thug – ‘Way 2 Sexy’

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Video Director of the Year

Anderson .Paak a.k.a. Director .Paak *WINNER
Benny Boom
Beyoncé & Dikayl Rimmasch
Director X
Hype Williams
Missy Elliott

Best New Artist

Baby Keem
Benny the Butcher
Latto *WINNER
Muni Long
Tems
Yung Bleu

Album of the Year

Silk Sonic (Bruno Mars & Anderson Paak) – ‘An Evening with Silk Sonic’ *WINNER
H.E.R. – ‘Back of My Mind’
Tyler, the Creator – ‘Call Me If You Get Lost’
Drake – ‘Certified Lover Boy’
Kanye West – ‘Donda’
Jazmine Sullivan – ‘Heaux Tales, Mo’ Tales: The Deluxe’
Doja Cat – ‘Planet Her’
Dr. Bobby Jones

Best Gospel/Inspirational Award

Marvin Sapp – ‘All In Your Hands’
Kanye West – ‘Come to Life’
Kelly Price – ‘Grace’
Fred Hammond – ‘Hallelujah’
H.E.R. & Tauren Wells – ‘Hold Us Together (Hope Mix)’
Election Worship & Maverick City Music – ‘Jireh’
Lil Baby X Kirk Franklin – ‘We Win’ *WINNER

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BET Her

Alicia Keys – ‘Best of Me (Originals)’
Mary J. Blige – ‘Good Morning Gorgeous’ *WINNER
Chlöe – ‘Have Mercy’
Ari Lennox – ‘Pressure’
Jazmine Sullivan – ‘Roster’
Summer Walker & Ari Lennox – ‘Unloyal’
Doja Cat – ‘Woman’

Best International Act

Dave (UK)
Dinos (France)
Fally Ipupa (DRC)
Fireboy DML (Nigeria)
Little Simz (UK)
Ludmilla (Brazil)
Major League DJZ (South Africa)
Tayc (France)
Tems (Nigeria) *WINNER

Best Movie

‘Candyman’
‘King Richard’ *WINNER
‘Respect’
‘Space Jam: A New Legacy’
‘Summer of Soul’
‘The Harder They Fall’

Best Actor

Adrian Holmes – ‘Bel-Air’
Anthony Anderson – ‘Black-ish’
Damson Idris – ‘Snowfall’
Denzel Washington – ‘The Tragedy of Macbeth’
Forest Whitaker – ‘Respect’ / “Godfather of Harlem’
Jabari Banks – ‘Bel-Air’
Sterling K. Brown – ‘This Is Us’
Will Smith – ‘King Richard’ *WINNER

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Best Actress

Aunjanue Ellis – ‘King Richard’
Coco Jones – ‘Bel-Air’
Issa Rae – ‘Insecure’
Jennifer Hudson – ‘Respect’
Mary J. Blige – ‘Power Book II: Ghost’
Queen Latifah – ‘The Equalizer’
Quinta Brunson – ‘Abbott Elementary’
Regina King – ‘The Harder They Fall’
Zendaya – ‘Euphoria’ / ‘Spider-Man: No Way Home’ *WINNER

Youngstars Award

Akira Akbar
Demi Singleton
Miles Brown
Saniyya Sidney
Storm Reid
Marsai Martin *WINNER

Sportswoman of the Year Award

Brittney Griner
Candace Parker
Naomi Osaka *WINNER
Serena Williams
Sha’Carri Richardson
Simone Biles

Sportsman of the Year Award

Aaron Donald
Bubba Wallace
Giannis Antetokounmpo
Ja Morant
LeBron James
Stephen Curry *WINNER

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“I was saving up to get him flowers, wine and a card” – Queen Mercy opens up on how she tried hard to keep ‘friendship’ with Whitemoney

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Queen and Whitemoney friendship

Former BBNaija housemate, Queen Mercy Atang has recounted how she had fought hard to keep her friendship with Whitemoney.

The reality star took to her social media page to write a lengthy emotional note in which she described Whitemoney as the ‘fair skinned guy’ she had noticed on entering the house.

She had tried everything she could to strike up a relationship with Whitemoney and even had to stop flirting with other guys even apologizing to Whitemoney for sharing a kiiiss with Cross.

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She revealed that she had been saving up money in the house in order to buy flowers and wine to apologize to him in a special way but her plans failed as she was evicted before carrying it out.

In her words:

ALSO READ:- “Together till dèath” – Nigerian man says as he takes bloód oath with his girlfriend

“Days on I noticed another guy in the house🙈Light skin, well build, sexy tattoo on his body. @crossda_bossMy brothers and sisters your girl became Alice in the wonderland🤣In the garden pere, cross and I were chilling. And I quickly ask cross. But why haven’t I noticed you since I entered this house. I like fair guys and you’re fair🤣 pere said to me, chiaa this girl. I no sure say you dey okay.

Let me not use the exact word he called me🤣My stay in biggies was very fun and interesting. And I’m thankful I had one friend in the house who was there for me.Unfortunately along the line we had our little misunderstanding in the house. Which I quickly apologized for, I tried my best to make peace at all times we had issue.Yes I fought for our friendship because I was already used to playing, disturbing, teasing him etc.

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I was very comfortable around him. Noticing my friend was giving another attention made me really really sad.. I can jealous sha🙈I can recall a particular Friday I kept to myself all through. That night I told cross and Pere to take care of me, I’m very light headed so I really don’t do much alcohol 🍺 but then I was ready to drink and get high. Because I was sad.Unfortunately that night. I and cross had our pool kiss. I was a little tipsy🙈I can recall this didn’t sit well with my dear friend, and occasionally he will always advise me to stop flirting with cross and other guys.. But then you’re doing your own thing what do you want me to do.Anyways I was obedient and I stopped.. and apologized to him because I didn’t want to loose our friendship. I was already too use him.I really wanted to apologize in a special way and say sorry. So I stopped using my Abeg Naira… I was saving up to get him flowers and wine and a card. I kept begging biggie for this.. I planned this surprised with nini and saga.I can recall one Saturday we were trying do our weekly buying and I refused to buy. I told him to shop for me. He said I don’t like stingy girls ooh Playfully.He had no idea I was trying to save enough Abeg Naira to shop for him🙈Unfortunately for me I was evicted🥺’ Queen and Whitemoney friendship Queen and Whitemoney friendship

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Kim Kardashian Accused Of Damaging Marilyn Monroe Dress At Met Gala

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Kim Kardashian Accused Of Damaging Marilyn Monroe Dress At Met Gala

Kim Kardashian Accused Of Damaging Marilyn Monroe Dress At Met Gala: The private museum that owns an iconic dress worn by Marilyn Monroe allowed it to be “permanently damaged” when it lent it to reality star Kim Kardashian for her appearance at the Met Gala extravaganza last month, a Monroe memorabilia collector alleged Wednesday.

A platinum blonde Kardashian shined but also stirred controversy when she donned the stunning skintight gown Monroe wore in 1962 to sing “Happy Birthday, Mr President” to John F Kennedy.

Scott Fortner, a collector who runs a website dedicated entirely to Monroe, released before and after photos this week of the crystal-studded cream gown.

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The after shots were taken by a friend of Fortner, who saw the dress on display Sunday at curiosity museum Ripley’s Believe It or Not! in Los Angeles, which owns the dress and had allowed Kardashian to wear it.

The comparison shots seem to show small tears in the fabric near hooks that fastened the dress together as well as missing crystals and others hanging by a thread.

ALSO READ:- Lil Wayne Denied Entry Into The United Kingdom

The alleged damage to the gown, which Ripley’s bought at auction for a record $4.8 million, has drawn widespread criticism on social media in recent days.

In an update published to his Instagram account on Wednesday, Fortner specified that “I blame Ripley’s, as they allowed the dress to be worn.”

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“I feel that any and every celebrity offered a chance to wear this garment very likely would jump at the opportunity,” he said. “There’s a reason someone would want to wear it. Kim K. just happened to be the one who got to do it.”

“It’s now permanently damaged, and likely would have been damaged regardless of who wore it,” Fortner said.

Asked by AFP about the accusations, Ripley did not respond Wednesday afternoon.

In early May, Ripley’s trumpeted the opportunity for Kardashian to wear the dress.

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“Great care was taken to preserve this piece of history. With input from garment conservationists, appraisers, archivists, and insurance, the garment’s condition was top priority,” the company said.

Kardashian, who reportedly went on a major diet to be able to squeeze into the legendary garment, did not respond to the allegations on her social networks.

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