BRIANNA IS YOUNG – A 20 YEAR OLD EMCEE WHO HAS BEEN RAPPING SINCE THE AGE OF THREE. BRIANNA IS RICH – SHE HAS A WEALTH OF TALENT EARNING HER A PRIOR DEAL WITH MISSY ELLIOTT AND A CURRENT DEAL WITH ATLANTIC RECORDS.
BRIANNA IS A BANDIT – SHE CAPTURED THE EARS OF SOME HIP HOP’S HEAVYWEIGHTS SUCH AS TRINA, TRICK DADDY, MISSY ELLIOTT, & RICK ROSS.
THIS UNDEFINABLE DIVA IS FACING OFF WITH HER CANDY GIRL PAST, EMBRACING HER GROWN UP PRESENT AND PREPARING FOR MAJOR MOVES IN HER FUTURE.
HHD (THEHIPHOPDIVA): So, Brianna The Young Rich Bandit, we’ve seen your videos, we’ve heard your music, we saw you on 106 & Park. But, can you begin by telling us who you are and what your story is?
BTYRB (BRIANNA THE YOUNG RICH BANDIT): I got in the booth for the first time at the age seven. Much love to everybody at Poe Boy Music Group, they’re pretty much like my family. Going to the studio was like my afterschool care. I was supposed to be doing my math homework, my English homework, but instead I was being a little sponge and trying to mimic artists like Rick Ross and Brisco. I kept begging them to let me get in the booth and they finally did at age seven. Trick and Trina would come through our studio and I was able to get on Trina’s album at nine years old. We redid New Editions “Candy Girl”. From there she took me to “Rap City The Basement” with her. That was major; they talked about it in XXL. From that situation I was signed to Missy Elliott for three years. Then last year I signed to Atlantic Records.
HHD: You say that when you were a kid you were going to the studio. Why were you going to the studio after school?
BTYRB: They would pick me up from school, my uncle, and would just take me there. I would wait for my parents to get off and come pick me up. That was my hangout.
HHD: In December you dropped your project, Face Off. Talk to us about the theme.
BTYRB: I’ve been doing it for a very long time; I started at such a young age. A lot of the time people still associate me with Little Brianna the Candy Girl – just a baby pretty much. But I just had my 20th birthday January 11th so I’m growing up and experiencing things. “Face Off” is just me taking off my baby face and showing people my growth and my maturity.
HHD: You named your hit single after Marilyn Monroe, what is your connection to her?
BTYRB: I was just in the studio having fun. I wanted to do a female anthem – a conceited, confident, and sexy record and Marilyn Monroe is that figure for me. She’s a symbol of femininity and a sex symbol. Women love her.
HHD: You’ve gotten a good number of co-signs from other artists. Which one means the most to you?
BTYRB: Every co-sign that I’ve ever gotten from anybody, especially major heads in the game, it all means a lot. Trina, she’s practically like my family, I’ve known her ever since I can remember. She mentors me not just with music but with life. Missy, she’s in my corner. She’s extremely important and she’s like a music icon so just to have someone like that in my corner is major. Pharrell and Ross, those are all my people and they make sure they look out for me, not just in music but in life period. I appreciate all of them.
HHD: You’ve been rapping since you were three and first recorded at age seven. At what point did you know that you could turn your rap skills into a career?
BTYRB: My whole life. In elementary I was always that kid in plays, spelling bees, oratorical contests – always that kid in the spotlight. My upbringing helps, just always being around music and seeing constant success. Seeing Rick do his thing and Trina and everybody making it mainstream, which was the motivation for me and I just always felt like I could do the same thing.
HHD: Talk to us about your deal with Atlantic Records. What kind of deal is it and how did it come about?
BTYRB: It’s a great deal, I’ll say that. Julie at Atlantic, she’s seen me and watched my growth. She worked hands on with Missy so she saw me when I was signed to Missy. They saw what we were doing with the constant viral videos and the noise that “Marilyn Monroe” was making. We pushed it independently and it debuted on Billboard and I think that’s really when Atlantic saw that I was serious as well as all of the other labels who were interested. We just wanted to take it to that next level and I feel like they’re a great machine, they have what it takes to make this thing come full circle and work.
HHD: You debuted your “Marilyn Monroe” video on 106 & Park. How was that experience?
BTYRB: It was exciting, especially being a part of the BET family. I actually hosted the last show so just to be coming back and debuting my video and my single for a mixtape, it was kind of surreal. It didn’t sink in until I was on the plane coming back home.
HHD: Define your music using one word.
BTYRB: Undefined. It’s just me and a reflection of my life. It’s young, fun, and full of energy and then you have my story behind it.
HHD: What’s up next for you?
BTYRB: Just major things for me. 2012’s going to be the year of the YRB. I’m just ready to kill the game. “Face Off” is in the streets right now, “Marilyn Monroe” is on iTunes and I’m working. I’m just getting it in.
HHD: What is your definition of a hip hop diva?
BTYRB: A classy, charismatic femcee that’s holding it down doing her thing.