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GlobalGrind had the wonderful opportunity to speak with VH1’s “Love & Hip-Hop” sexy cast member Somaya Reece. Somaya dished about how she was inspired to begin rapping, her new accessory line and her charity organization. Somaya’s work doesn’t stop there, she’s a busy woman who is also working on a new album and mixtape, as well as putting out a new Lions Gate Film “Go For It,” which will be in theaters in late spring. 

Somaya does it all — she’s an actress, model, musician and she’s here to stay. Read her interview below. 

GLOBALGRIND: What made you decide to join the cast of “Love & Hip-Hop?”

SOMAYA REECE: I was looking to take my brand to the next level. I had been in meetings with other producers for other reality shows. And I hadn’t found anything that fit kind of what I was doing like my music, acting and just my story in general. The show developed as we started filming. It was perfect. The producers let me know like “hey, you can go to the studio on the show,” and it seemed like a perfect fit for me at the time. It made sense.

GG: What’s the most difficult part about being the wife or girlfriend of a rapper or hip-hop artist?

SR: I don’t know because I’m not one.

GG: What are your top 3 favorite hip-hop albums of all time?

SR: Definitely Nas’ “Illmatic.” Gosh. Does it have to be English hip-hop? There are so many good ones.  Tupac’s “All Eyes On Me.” RIP to Mr. Christopher Wallace. “Ready To Die” is a great album too. Those are my top three.  A lot of the things they speak about are my life.

GG: You want to be a rapper, what or who inspired you to begin rapping?

SR: Well I come from a like a Spanish background and I grew up listening to Spanish rap and my sisters introduced me to English rap. I started listening to Tupac and a lot of West Coast rap and I found my way into East Coast rap. A lot of it wasn’t that I wanted to be a rapper. I just wanted to be involved in music as a kid. I grew up in a traditional Latino family, every Sunday my mom would make us go clean and we’d be blasting music while we were doing our chores. I just wanted to be in music in general and it evolved into me rapping. I love hip-hop and I listen to hip-hop all the time. It really started with me as a kid.

FIND OUT WHICH RAPPER SOMAYA WANTS TO COLLABORATE WITH ON THE NEXT PAGE!

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GG: What is your favorite hip-hop lyric of all time?

SR: Tupac’s verse of “Dear Mama.” “The same drama/when things went wrong we blamed mama/ I reminisce on the stress I cause, it was hell/ huggin’ on my mama from a jail cell.” That’s a reflection on how I was as a kid and a teenager. I always wanted to blame my parents for the trouble I was causing.

GG: What do you have planned next for your career? What is Somaya up to in 2011?

SR: I’m really excited about the show. It’s actually a really great opportunity. At the moment right now, I have a single “Dale Mami.” It’s a very clear indication of the style of rapping I’m doing. I’m working on my own accessory line that will have a major campaign behind it. I’m currently working on an album and a mixtape. I want to do an organic movement to create buzz for my album.

Also, I have my film coming out. A Lions Gate Film in May, it’s called “Go For It.” My record is the score on the film. I play myself in the film as well. You’re definitely going to see me a lot in 2011. I’m an actress as well as a musician.

I’m going back to focus on acting, and launching my charity campaign. It’s going to be a very big campaign. I believe in non-violent lifestyle, because of my life in the past. I want to be a voice in hip-hop that supports that. It’s called “Be Yourself,” and basically correlates with the show with me standing up for myself and what I believe in.

It’s a really good thing for kids to learn from it. It’s hard growing up and there’s a lot of pressure in life. Those are the main things I’m pushing. A lot of brand developing. We’re definitely putting out a lot of music and a lot of record labels are kind of interested in me now, so that’s a good thing.

GG: If you could work with any hip-hop artist who would it be?

SR: Lupe Fiasco, Jay-Z, Kanye West, and TI. Kanye is falling into a different category with music as far as becoming more popular and mainstream with his music. I really wish I could work with Nas, but I may be wishing a little too much?

GG: What are your thoughts about Twitter beef?

SR: I don’t know. Twitter beef seems to like me. I don’t know. MySpace was about promoting, Twitter has become about beef. I don’t really have an opinion, but I do know it seems to like me. @Somaya_Reece

MORE SOMAYA REECE ON THE NEXT FEW PAGES!

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GG: Your Non-Violence platform is inspiring, because a lot of violence is unfortunately connected to hip-hop.

SR: I came from the hood and it’s hard not to get involved in violence. So I’ve seen what the streets do to people. I’m so happy that I had the will power to change. I continue to share my story. I don’t like pity parties. So don’t feel sorry me. Take what happened to me and learn to never make the same mistakes twice. I never made the same mistake twice.

We (rappers) get so many stereotypes about violence. If you have one person speak up about it, I believe other people will begin to speak out as well. I think it’s going to be a really good thing. This is all from my experiences. I love to empower women as well. I don’t do it for press and I go speak at battered women shelters and The Boys And Girls club. This is what I do. This is what I love to do.

You can’t treat me any less than an equal, because we’re all human. Life is hard and not everyone is going to like you. If you let people know that they won’t have any power over you. I am the master of my own destiny. And there are other people that can be inspired by that.

GG: Anything else you want to share with GlobalGrind?

SR: I’ve created a free phone hotline, where I leave inspirational messages. A lot of my fans love it. It’s a really big deal. Fans from 11 years old and grown men and women call in to hear my inspirational messages. I do call people back. The number is (213) 785-7668. Please call up. Also “Dale Mami” is dropping soon. I really encourage everyone to be themselves in all circumstances as well.

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Rapper/Model/Actress and starlet of VH1’s hit series “Love & Hip-Hop” Somaya Reece.

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Rapper/Model/Actress and starlet of VH1’s hit series “Love & Hip-Hop” Somaya Reece.

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Rapper/Model/Actress and starlet of VH1’s hit series “Love & Hip-Hop” Somaya Reece.

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Rapper/Model/Actress and starlet of VH1’s hit series “Love & Hip-Hop” Somaya Reece.

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