Missy Elliott
Rapper, singer-songwriter, record producer, actress, dancer
Missy Elliott
Melissa Arnette "Missy" Elliott is an American rapper, singer-songwriter, record producer, dancer and actress. A five-time Grammy Award winner, Elliott, with record sales of over thirty million in the United States, is the only female rapper to have six albums certified platinum by the RIAA, including one double platinum for her 2002 album Under Construction.
Biography
Missy Elliott's personal information overview.
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News
News abour Missy Elliott from around the web
New Mix: Missy Elliott, Sampha, Mount Eerie, Young Fathers, More
NPR - 28 days
This episode of All Songs Considered covers the very ends of spectrum, from carefree celebration to soul-baring sadness. Hear new tracks by Missy Elliott, Mount Eerie, Young Fathers, and more. (Image credit: Courtesy of the artists)
Article Link:
NPR article
Music Monday (1/30): This Week's New Albums + Videos
Yahoo News - 28 days
Our guide to this week's (and last week's) album releases also features the week's top new music videos from artists like Missy Elliott, Ryan Adams, and Elbow, plus brand new streaming music from The New Pornographers, Mastodon, Anohni, and more. Read and Post Comments | Get the full article at Metacritic
Article Link:
Yahoo News article
The (slow) return of Missy Elliott continues with 'I'm Better'
LATimes - about 1 month
Nearly a dozen years have passed since the last time Missy Elliott put out an album. The wait for the comeback of hip-hop’s most innovative, eccentric voice has been frustrating — to say the least — but the wait appears to be ending.  As most of us slept, Elliott dropped a new single and visual while...
Article Link:
LATimes article
Missy Elliott Finally Returns With New Single And Video
Huffington Post - about 1 month
Missy Elliott is back with her first new single ― “I’m Better,” featuring Lamb ― since 2016’s collaboration with Fall Out Boy for the new “Ghostbusters” theme song. She also released a more proper single around this time last year ― “Pep Rally” ― in conjunction with a Super Bowl advertisement. Elliott announced the track on Twitter at midnight Friday. ATTENTION‼️ NEW MISSY single & video #ImBetter ft @daRealLamb FIYAH! available EVERYWHERE! Watch NOW https://t.co/OFBZBPmBBG — Missy Elliott (@MissyElliott) January 27, 2017 The title choice, “I’m Better,” is a good one, as on first pass the new single is highly similar to styles popularized recently by artists such as Future and Migos. At this point in her career, Elliott is a bonafide legend, and here she successfully brings her own skill-set to what may be a slightly derivative approach. It’s fitting that Migos also dropped new music Thursday night with an announcement on Twitter ― although ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
16 Feminist Songs To Get You Hyped For The Women's March
Huffington Post - about 1 month
The Women’s March is almost here. Whether you’re road-tripping to Washington, D.C., or joining one of the other 370 (!!) “sister marches” planned for the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration, you’re going to need a killer playlist to get you there. Here are some rousing lady anthems to blast while you’re en route to fight for women’s rights. 1. Grimes, “Kill V. Maim” For when you’re weighing your options on how to take down the patriarchy. 2. M.I.A, “Bad Girls” Perfect for a road trip when you’re, “lookin’ in the rear view, swaggin’ goin’ swell / Leavin’ boys behind ‘cause it’s illegal just to kill.” 3. 4 Non Blondes, “What’s Up” Because “what’s going on” is particularly apropos at the moment. 4. Beyoncé ft. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, “***Flawless” Name a more iconic duo. We’ll wait. 5. Lily Allen, “F**k You” Presented without comment. 6. Rihanna ft. Drake, “ ...
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Huffington Post article
Frank Ocean's Mom Wants Anti-Gay Singer Cut From Her Son's Album
Huffington Post - about 2 months
Frank Ocean’s mom, Katonya Breaux, has no time for blatant homophobia.  Breaux didn’t mince words when it came to Kim Burrell, the gospel singer who made headlines in recent days when a video in which she made blatantly anti-gay comments in a church sermon surfaced Dec. 30. Burrell, who has performed with artists like Stevie Wonder, Missy Elliott and Harry Connick Jr., is featured on “Godspeed,” a song on Ocean’s 2016 album, “Blonde.” But if Breaux were to have her way, that wouldn’t be the case for long. On New Year’s Day, the LGBTQ icon’s mom offered a cheeky, but pointed, suggestion on Twitter:  Me: Son, can we crop Kim Burrells voice out of your song?? — katonya breaux (@katonya) January 1, 2017 She continued:  I mean damn. Hypocrisy and the inciting of hate pisses me off. Opportunistic &?%#€!! — katonya breaux (@katonya) January 1, 2017 Burrell, who is also a pastor at the Love & Liberty Fellowship Church in Houston, has ...
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Huffington Post article
The Best And Weirdest Celebrity Tattoos Of 2016
Huffington Post - 3 months
By Megan Gustashaw for GQ. 2016 was a hell of a year and, in order to cope, folks got some intense ink. Celebrities were no exception. Micro tattoos were popular with the famous ladies of Instagram (see: Kendall Jenner's "meow" tattoo), but some celebs took things a bit farther than that. From aggressive neck tattoos to highly emotional tribute tats, nothing was left on the table. Here, some of the most daring ink choices we saw over the last twelve months. Justin Bieber’s Whole-Torso Tattoo Justin Bieber got this massive "Son of God" tattoo across his stomach in tandem with quitting Instagram and calling it "the devil". He might be going through something. Zayn Malik’s Star Wars Tribute In a highly nerdy move, Zayn Malik got a UV-light activated light saber tattooed on his middle finger by JonBoy, king of the micro tattoo. Kevin Durant’s Tupac Portrait Over the summer, the NBA all-star commemorated his move to the Golden State Warriors with this tribute to the West ...
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Huffington Post article
Viral Sensation Shirley Caesar Responds To Snoop’s Music Video For The #UNameItChallenge
Huffington Post - 3 months
function onPlayerReadyVidible(e){'undefined'!=typeof HPTrack&&HPTrack.Vid.Vidible_track(e)}!function(e,i){if(e.vdb_Player){if('object'==typeof commercial_video){var a='',o='m.fwsitesection='+commercial_video.site_and_category;if(a+=o,commercial_video['package']){var c='&m.fwkeyvalues=sponsorship%3D'+commercial_video['package'];a+=c}e.setAttribute('vdb_params',a)}i(e.vdb_Player)}else{var t=arguments.callee;setTimeout(function(){t(e,i)},0)}}(document.getElementById('vidible_1'),onPlayerReadyVidible); Chris Brown started it. Then a flood of dance-happy social media users got in on the craze. Then Snoop Dogg took the whole thing to the next level. Now, the original voice behind the viral #UNameItChallenge is responding to Snoop’s two-minute iteration of the remixed “beans, greens, potatoes, tomatoes” holiday anthem ― and she loves it. As legendary gospel singer Shirley Caesar tells WhereAreTheyNow.buzz, she’s thrilled that her rendition of the 1988 classic “ ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
A Stunning FLOTUS Portrait To Push You Through This Damn Election
Huffington Post - 4 months
As the nation wakes up eagerly each morning to strike another day off the “how long until the election is over” calendar, it seems few can contain their excitement at the prospect of Nov. 9. There is, however, one sad reality that accompanies this momentous event: our eventual farewell to the political powerhouse that has occupied the White House since 2008. And, while we’ll miss you Barack, we’re really talking about Michelle Obama and how difficult it will be to say goodbye to the First Lady of our dreams come January 2017.  Whether you were riveted by her speech that perfectly laid bare the dangerous way Trump treats women, or blown away by her ability to rap Missy Elliott lyrics, no sweat. Or ― that dress. Michelle is sure doing all she can to make this bon voyage a painful one. Thankfully, an artist by the name of J. Muse just summed up all our happy-sad feelings with this stunner of a portrait of the one and only FLOTUS. The teacher teaches the student ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
Rihanna And Missy Elliott Get Involved In Search For Missing Backup Dancer
Huffington Post - 4 months
Shirlene Quigley, who has danced for Rihanna, Missy Elliott and Beyoncé, has been reported missing. The 32-year-old was last seen at the Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York City around 1 a.m. on Sunday. Rihanna Instagrammed a call for help to find her former backup dancer and dance teacher on Monday, alongside a video of Quigley giving a sweet speech about kindness.  “This beautiful soul, and former dancer of mine is MISSING!!!” Rihanna wrote. “My heart aches thinking of how heavy this is on all who love her! If anyone has seen or has any information on @shirlenequigley’s whereabouts ..... PLEASE CONTACT the North Bergen Police Department 201 392 2100 !!!!”  This beautiful soul, and former dancer of mine is MISSING!!! My heart aches thinking of how heavy this is on all who love her! If anyone has seen or has any information on @shirlenequigley's whereabouts ..... PLEASE CONTACT the North Bergen Police Department 201 392 2100 !!!! A video posted by badgalrir ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Missy Elliott
    FORTIES
  • 2016
    By March 15, 2016, First Lady Michelle Obama proclaimed that she had assembled a collaborative track featuring vocals from Missy Elliott, Kelly Clarkson, Janelle Monáe and Zendaya, alongside production credit from pop songwriter Diane Warren and Elliott, titled "This Is for My Girls".
    More Details Hide Details The iTunes-exclusive record will be used to both coincide with Obama's Texan SXSW speech and to promote the First Lady's third-world educational initiative "Let Girls Learn". Elliott has said that she wants to start a family, but she is afraid of giving birth. She states, "I don't know if I can take that kind of pain labor. Maybe in the year 2020 you could just pop a baby out and it'd be fine. But right now I'd rather just adopt." Elliott and her father occasionally talk, but the singer says she hasn't forgiven him. In June 2011, Elliott told People magazine that her absence from the music industry was due to a hyperthyroid disorder known as Graves' disease. She was diagnosed after she nearly crashed a car from having severe leg spasms. She experienced severe symptoms from the condition, and she could not even hold a pen up to write songs. After treatment, her symptoms stabilized, and she has announced that she would like to get back to her career.
    On February 7, 2016, the day of the fiftieth Super Bowl, Missy Elliott released a follow-up single, "Pep Rally".
    More Details Hide Details Later that month, Elliott reunited with former protégée Tweet and frequent collaborator Timbaland on the cut "Somebody Else Will" taken from the former's third studio album, Charlene.
  • 2015
    On April 2, 2015, Pharrell Williams confirmed that he was working on Elliott's album during an episode of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.
    More Details Hide Details On November 12, 2015, "WTF (Where They From)" and its music video were simultaneously released to digital outlets. By November 19, the song and its video had been streamed 6.1 million times in the US alone, with an additional count of 16 million views per YouTube viewing.
    On February 3, 2015, it was confirmed that Elliott would be a feature on the upcoming remix to Diplo and Skrillex's "Take Ü There".
    More Details Hide Details On February 11, Elliott stated that she was still in the process of recording her seventh studio album, Block Party, with Timbaland.
    In 2015, Missy Elliott performed at the Super Bowl XLIX halftime show with Katy Perry.
    More Details Hide Details Elliott performed a medley of "Get Ur Freak On", "Work It", and "Lose Control". The performance was well-received, and boosted digital sales of Elliott's work that week, with a twenty-five-fold increase in album sales (to 2,000 units) and a ten-fold increase in sales of the three songs she performed (to 71,000 units) compared to the week before. It also became the most watched Super Bowl halftime show in NFL history, receiving 118.5 million viewers in the United States.
  • 2014
    On July 29, 2014, a snippet of a Missy Elliott–produced song, nicknamed "I Love Him", premiered on Monica's official Instagram account.
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    On July 7, 2014, fellow R&B singer Monica confirmed that Elliott would be a feature on her upcoming eighth studio album.
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    In March 2014, Evans revealed one of the tracks was named "I Deserve It", featuring Missy and her protégée Sharaya J, in which Evans cited it as a "banger" and "feel good" record.
    More Details Hide Details Evans also revealed that in total Elliott contributed three tracks to her album.
  • 2013
    In August 2013, R&B singer Faith Evans revealed that Missy Elliott would be featured on her sixth studio album, tentatively titled Incomparable.
    More Details Hide Details
    As early as July 2013, Missy Elliott and Timbaland held recording sessions for Kat Dahlia's debut, My Garden (2015).
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    In December 2013, Elliott received a Grammy nomination with Fantasia and Kelly Rowland for their song "Without Me".
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    Throughout 2013, Missy Elliott was featured on Eve's album cut "Wanna Be," as well as international artists' singles, Little Mix's "How Ya Doin'?
    More Details Hide Details " and "NiLiria" with K-pop musician G-Dragon, which was named by Complex magazine as one of the "50 Best Songs of 2013". Elliott also contributed to her protégée Sharaya J's two releases, "Banji" and "Smash Up The Place/Snatch Yo Wigs".
  • 2011
    In 2011 and 2012, Elliott made guest appearances on "All Night Long" by Demi Lovato, "Nobody's Perfect" by J.
    More Details Hide Details Cole, the remix of "Why Stop Now" by Busta Rhymes with Chris Brown and Lil Wayne, and a remix of Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" that helped catapult "T.G.I.F." to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. She also produced Monica's singles "Anything (To Find You)" and "Until It's Gone".
  • 2010
    In the summer of 2010, Elliott embarked on a 2 part tour with stops in Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia, while she also performed at VH1's "Hip Hop Honors: The Dirty South" in a tribute to Timbaland, performing "Get Ur Freak On" and "Work It".
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  • THIRTIES
  • 2008
    While Elliott did also release the song "Best, Best" in 2008, she renamed the album from FANomenal to its current tentative title to Block Party in 2008.
    More Details Hide Details She later decided against Block Party and four years later, in 2012, Elliott released two Timbaland-produced singles ("9th Inning" and "Triple Threat") exclusively to iTunes. Though the songs managed to chart on Billboard Hot Digital Songs, in an interview with Yahoo's The Yo Show, Missy talked about her hiatus from making records: "Your brain needs time to refresh! Things happen in your life where you can then write something else instead of the same three topics. Like, how many times we gonna talk about the club? I gotta feel like what I'm giving the fans is 100 percent and that it's game-changing. I don't just throw out microwave records." In between the recording of her seventh album, Missy Elliott found success behind the scenes. Elliott's writing and production helped her reach #1 on Billboards Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs with Keyshia Cole's "Let It Go" (2007), Jazmine Sullivan's "Need U Bad" (2008), and Monica's "Everything to Me" (2010). Since 2008, songs written and/or produced by Elliott for Fantasia ("Free Yourself"), Jennifer Hudson ("I'm His Only Woman"), Monica ("Everything to Me"), Keyshia Cole ("Let It Go"), and Jazmine Sullivan ("Need U Bad" and "Holding You Down (Goin' in Circles)") have all received Grammy nominations. Both Fantasia's "Free Yourself" (2005) and Sullivan's "Holding You Down (Goin' In Circles)" reached #3 on Billboards Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs.
  • 2007
    In 2007, she worked with Timbaland, Swizz Beatz, Danja, T-Pain and DJ Toomp and planned to release an album at the beginning of 2008.
    More Details Hide Details In January 2008, "Ching-a-Ling" was released as the lead single for the Step Up 2: The Streets soundtrack, which also featured "Shake Your Pom Pom" produced by Timbaland.
    Elliott was an honoree of the 2007 VH1 Hip Hop Honors.
    More Details Hide Details In honor of her career, many artists performed some of her biggest hits. Timbaland and Tweet performed "The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)", Eve and Keyshia Cole performed "Hot Boyz" and "Work It", Fatman Scoop and Ciara performed "Lose Control", and Nelly Furtado performed "Get Ur Freak On (The Remix)." Since 2007, Elliott's seventh studio album has had several different forms with extensive delays.
  • 2006
    Respect M.E., Elliott's first greatest hits album, was released outside the United States and Canada on September 4, 2006, only in South Africa, Australia, Europe, Japan, and Brazil.
    More Details Hide Details The collection became her second top ten album in the UK and her highest charting album to date, peaking at number seven there.
    The song was also nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Rap Solo Performance category in 2006.
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  • 2005
    Elliott won Best Female Hip Hop Artist at the 2005 American Music Awards, and was nominated for Best International Female Artist at the 2006 BRIT Awards.
    More Details Hide Details "Lose Control" featuring Ciara and Fatman Scoop, became a Top 5 hit in the early summer (peaking at number three on the Billboard Hot 100). The second single, Teary Eyed, did not chart, although the video charted on MTV's TRL for a few weeks, and BET's 106 & Park for a few days. The third single, We Run This, was released with heavy airplay on VH1, MTV, and BET. It served as the lead single for the soundtrack to the gymnastics-themed film Stick It.
    Elliott received 5 Grammy nominations in 2005, including one for Best Rap Album for The Cookbook. The album's first single, "Lose Control," won a Grammy for Best Short Form Video and was nominated for Best Rap Song. "Lose Control" also garnered Elliott six 2005 MTV VMA award nominations (winning Best Dance Video and Best Hip-Hop Video).
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    Elliott wanted to "give people the unexpected" by utilizing producers other than Timbaland and a "more to the center" sound not as far left as her other music. Her sixth solo album, The Cookbook was released in July 2005, debuted at number two on the U.S. charts and was certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America, (RIAA), selling 645,000 copies in the United States.
    More Details Hide Details Elliott's work during The Cookbook era was heavily recognized.
    Elliott premiered her own reality show on the UPN Network, The Road to Stardom with Missy Elliott in 2005, though it was not renewed for a second season.
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  • 2004
    In 2004, Elliott was featured on Ciara's hit single "1, 2 Step", with her verse interpolating Teena Marie's single, "Square Biz".
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    Elliott was also featured on Wyclef Jean's "Party to Damascus" and Ghostface Killah's "Tush" singles, the latter of which became a minor 2004 dance hit, and had a pivotal role in the film Honey.
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  • 2003
    Elliott furthered her relationship with Madonna by performing the controversial 2003 MTV Video Music Awards show opening alongside Madonna, Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera.
    More Details Hide Details A year after Elliott's most successful album to date was released, Elliott felt pressured by her label to release another album, hoping to capitalize on her recent success. Elliott's singles, "Pass That Dutch" and "I'm Really Hot", from her fifth album, This Is Not a Test! (released November 2003), both rose the urban charts. However, both were not as successful at pop radio in comparison to many of her previous efforts. This Is Not A Test sold 690,000 copies in the United States and has been certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Elliott has since stated "This Is Not A Test! came out extremely too quickly for me. I didn't want it to come out when it did."
  • 2002
    In 2002, Elliott wrote a letter on behalf of PETA to the mayor of Portsmouth, Virginia, asking that all shelter animals be neutered/spayed before being adopted.
    More Details Hide Details For the reality show The Road to Stardom, there was a contest for viewers to create a public service ad for the Break the Cycle fund. In 2004, she joined forces with MAC Cosmetics to promote their "Viva Glam" campaign. In addition to the ad campaign, Elliott promoted the MAC Viva Glam V lipstick from which 100% of the sale goes to the MAC AIDS Fund. In 2007, Elliott appeared on an ABC's Extreme Makeover and awarded four scholarships for a weight loss program to four underprivileged teens. Albums Headlining Co-headlining Special guest Opening act
    In 2002, Elliott won a Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance for "Get Ur Freak On". In 2003, Under Construction received Grammy nominations for Best Rap Album and Album of the Year.
    More Details Hide Details The New York Times called Under Construction "this year's best hip-hop album." Elliott released two singles off of Under Construction. The lead single, "Work It" reached #2 on Billboards Hot 100 chart and won the "Video of the Year" award at MTV's Video Music Awards. The second single, "Gossip Folks" featuring Ludacris, became a Top 10 hit on Billboards Hot 100 chart, was one of the most-played music videos on MTV, MTV2, MTV Jams, and BET in 2003 and was embraced by the dance community, as well as the mainstream, due to a Fatboy Slim remix. A third single was never released, though a video was shot for "Back In The Day" featuring Jay-Z and Elliott was set to release the sexual-themed, "P***ycat", as the album's final single with a remixed version featuring Janet Jackson. Although not released as single and with no video, "Pussycat" peaked at number 77 on the Billboard Hot 100.
    Elliott's fourth album, 2002's Under Construction (see 2002 in music) is known as the best selling female rap album with 2.1 million copies sold in the United States.
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    Tweet's appearance on Elliott's "Take Away" as well as her cameo at Elliott's house on MTV Cribs helped to create a buzz about the new R&B singer. Tweet's own debut single, "Oops (Oh My)", was co-written by Elliott and released through Goldmind in February 2002.
    More Details Hide Details The single was a top ten hit, thanks partially to Elliott's songwriting and guest rap, and to Timbaland's unusual production on the track. Elliott co-produced the Christina Aguilera, Lil' Kim, Mýa and Pink cover of "Lady Marmalade" for the album Moulin Rouge! Music from Baz Luhrmann's Film, which went to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2001. For her next outing, Elliott and Timbaland focused on an old school sound, utilizing many old school rap and funk samples, such as Run–D.M.C.'s "Peter Piper" and Frankie Smith's "Double Dutch Bus."
  • 2001
    The double music video for "Take Away/4 My People" was released in the fall of 2001, shortly after the 9-11 terrorist attacks and the death of Elliott's friend Aaliyah in August.
    More Details Hide Details The "Take Away" video contained images of and words about Aaliyah, and the slow ballad acted as a tribute to her memory. The remainder of the video was the more upbeat "4 My People", contained scenes of people dancing happily in front of American flags and Elliott dressed in red, white and blue. Though "Take Away" was not a success on radio, "4 My People" went on to become an American and European club hit due to a popular remix by house music duo Basement Jaxx in 2002.
  • TWENTIES
  • 1999
    Also in 1999, Elliott was featured, alongside Da Brat, on the official remix to a Mariah Carey single "Heartbreaker".
    More Details Hide Details Missy Elliott next released Miss E... So Addictive in 2001. The album spawned the massive pop and urban hits "One Minute Man", featuring Ludacris and Trina, and "Get Ur Freak On", as well as the international club hit "4 My People" and the less commercially successful single "Take Away".
  • 1998
    Elliott co-wrote and co-produced two tracks on Whitney Houston's 1998 album My Love Is Your Love, providing vocal cameos for "In My Business" and "Oh Yes".
    More Details Hide Details The same year, Elliott also produced and made a guest appearance on Spice Girl Melanie Brown's debut solo single, "I Want You Back", which topped the UK Singles Chart. Although a much darker album than her debut, Elliott's second album was just as successful as the first, selling 1.5 million copies and 3 million copies worldwide. She remarked, "I can't even explain the pressure. The last album took me a week to record. This one took almost two months…I couldn't rush it the second time because people expect more." Da Real World (1999) included the singles "All n My Grill", a collaboration with Nicole Wray and Big Boi (from OutKast), a remix to "Hot Boyz" and "She's a Bitch".
    In 1998, Elliott continued her successful career in the background as a producer and writer on Total's single "Trippin'", as well as working with several others in the hip-hop and R&B communities.
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  • 1997
    In the center of a busy period making guest appearances and writing for other artists, Elliott's debut album, Supa Dupa Fly, was released in mid-1997; the success of its lead single "The Rain" led the album to be certified platinum. The success was also a result of the music videos of her single releases which had been directed by Harold "Hype" Williams, who created many groundbreaking hip hop videos at the time. The album was also nominated for Best Rap Album at the 1998 Grammy Awards, but lost to Puff Daddy's No Way Out.
    More Details Hide Details The year also saw Elliott perform live at the MTV Video Music Awards show on a remix to Lil' Kim's "Ladies Night" with fellow rappers Da Brat, Angie Martinez and TLC-rapper Left Eye.
    Following several collaborations and guest appearances, she launched her solo career in 1997 with her debut album Supa Dupa Fly, which spawned the hit singles "The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)" and "Sock It 2 Me".
    More Details Hide Details The album debuted at number three on the Billboard 200, the highest-charting debut for a female rapper at the time. Elliott's following album Da Real World (1999), produced the singles "She's a Bitch", "All n My Grill", and top five hit "Hot Boyz". With the release of Miss E... So Addictive (2001), Under Construction (2002), and This Is Not a Test! (2003) Elliott established an international career that yielded hits including "Get Ur Freak On", "One Minute Man", "4 My People", "Gossip Folks", and "Work It". The latter won her a Grammy Award for Best Female Rap Solo Performance; Elliott would go on to win five Grammy Awards and sell over 30 million records in the United States.
  • 1996
    She instead signed a deal with East West Records, a division of Elektra Entertainment Group at that time, in 1996 to create her own imprint, The Goldmind Inc., for which she would record as a solo artist.
    More Details Hide Details Timbaland was again recruited as her production partner, a role he would hold on most of Elliott's solo releases. Missy also appeared in LSG's song "All the Time" with Gerald Levert, Keith Sweat, Johnny Gill, Faith Evans, and Coko in 1997 on Levert Sweat Gill classic album. The same year, she rapped in "Keys To My House" with old friends group LeVert.
    Elliott began her career as a featured vocalist rapping on Sean "Puffy" Combs's Bad Boy remixes to Gina Thompson's "The Things That You Do", (which had a video featuring cameo appearances by Notorious B.I.G and Puff Daddy), MC Lyte's 1996 hit single Cold Rock a Party (backup vocals by Gina Thompson), and New Edition's 1996 single "You Don't Have to Worry".
    More Details Hide Details Combs had hoped to sign Elliott to his Bad Boy record label. In addition Elliott written the bulk of Total's second and final album Kima, Keisha, and Pam and Nicole Wray's debut Make It Hot (both released in 1998). Also that year Elliott appeared on the Men of Vizion's remix of "Do Thangz" which was produced by Rodney Jerkins (coincidentally the producer of the original version of "The Things That You Do").
  • 1995
    But by the end of 1995, Swing Mob had folded and many of its members dispersed; Elliott, Timbaland, Magoo, Ginuwine, and Playa remained together and collaborated on each other's records for the rest of the decade as the musical collective The Superfriends.
    More Details Hide Details After leaving Swing Mob, Elliott and Timbaland worked together as a songwriting/production team, crafting tracks for acts including SWV and 702, but the most notable of them was Aaliyah. The pair wrote and produced nine tracks for Aaliyah's second album, One in a Million (1996), among them the hit singles "If Your Girl Only Knew", "One in a Million", "Hot Like Fire", and "4 Page Letter". Elliott contributed background vocals and/or guest raps to nearly all of the tracks on which she and Timbaland worked. One in a Million went double platinum and made stars out of the production duo. Elliott and Timbaland continued to work together for other artists, later creating hits for artists such as Total ("What About Us? ", 1997), Nicole Wray ("Make It Hot", 1998), and Destiny's Child ("Get on the Bus", 1998), as well as one final hit for Aaliyah, "I Care 4 U" before her death in 2001.
  • 1993
    While Elliott wrote and rapped on Raven-Symoné's 1993 debut single, "That's What Little Girls Are Made Of", she also contributed, credited and uncredited, to the Jodeci albums Diary of a Mad Band (1993) and The Show, the After Party, the Hotel (1995).
    More Details Hide Details Timbaland and DeVante jointly produced a Sista album, entitled 4 All the Sistas Around da World (1994). Elliott met R&B artist Mary J. Blige while Blige was in sessions for her second album My Life. Though videos were released for the original and remix versions of the single "Brand New", the album was shelved and never released. One of the group's tracks, "It's Alright" featuring Craig Mack, did however make the cut on the soundtrack of the 1995 motion picture Dangerous Minds.
    Sista debut song was titled "Brand New" released in 1993 Elliott took Mosley — whom DeVante re-christened Timbaland — and their friend Melvin "Magoo" Barcliff along with her.
    More Details Hide Details All 20-plus members of the Swing Mob — among them future stars such as Ginuwine, Playa, and Tweet — lived in a single two-storey house in New York and were often at work on material both for Jodeci and their own projects.
  • 1990
    Elliott graduated from Woodrow Wilson High School in Portsmouth, Virginia, in 1990.
    More Details Hide Details In the early 1990s Elliott formed an all female R&B group, called Fayze (later renamed Sista), with friends La'Shawn Shellman, Chonita Coleman, and Radiah Scott. She recruited her neighborhood friend Timothy Mosley as the group's producer and began making demo tracks, among them included the promo "First Move". In 1991, Fayze caught the attention of Jodeci member and producer DeVante Swing by performing Jodeci songs a cappella for him backstage after one of his group's concerts. In short order, Fayze moved to New York City and signed to Elektra Records through DeVante's Swing Mob imprint, also renaming the group Sista.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1975
    At the age of four in 1975, she wanted to be a performer, and, as biographer Veronica A. Davis writes, she "would sing and perform for her family".
    More Details Hide Details In later years, she feared no one would take her seriously, because she was always the class clown. While her father was an active Marine, the family lived in Jacksonville, North Carolina, in a manufactured home community. Elliott blossomed during this part of her life. She enjoyed school for the friendships she formed though she had little interest in school work. She would later get well above average marks on intelligence tests, and she was advanced two years ahead of her former class. Her move in grades caused isolation, and she purposely failed, eventually returning to her previous class. When her father returned from the Marines, they moved back to Virginia, where they lived in extreme poverty. Life in Virginia saw many hardships. Elliott tells of domestic abuse by her father. She refused to stay over at friends' homes out of fear that, on her return home, she would find her mother dead. When Elliott was eight, she was molested by a cousin. In one violent incident, Ronnie Elliott dislocated his wife's shoulders and, during another, Elliott herself was threatened with a gun. At fourteen, Elliott's mother decided to end the situation; she fled with her daughter under the guise of taking a joyride on a local bus. In reality, the pair had found refuge at a family member's home where their possessions were stored in a loaded U-Haul truck.
  • 1971
    Melissa Arnette Elliott was born on July 1, 1971, in Portsmouth, Virginia.
    More Details Hide Details She is the only child of mother Patricia Elliott, a power-company dispatcher, and father Ronnie, a U.S. Marine no longer on active duty working as a Shipyard welder. Elliott grew up in an active church choir family, and singing was a normal part of her youth.
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