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Cassie Ventura

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Cassie Ventura
Cassie Ventura.jpg
Cassie at the premiere of Step Up 2: The Streets in February 2008
Background information
Birth name Casandra Elizabeth Ventura
Born (1986-08-26) August 26, 1986 (age 31)
New London, Connecticut, U.S.
Genres
Occupation(s)
  • Singer
  • dancer
  • actress
  • model
Years active 2005–present
Labels
Associated acts
Website cassiesuper.com

Casandra Elizabeth Ventura (born August 26, 1986), known mononymously as Cassie, is an American singer, dancer, actress and model. Born in New London, Connecticut, she began her career as a result of meeting record producer Ryan Leslie in late 2002, who later signed her to NextSelection Lifestyle Group. During this time, Diddy heard "Me & U" in a club, and Leslie convinced him to partner his Bad Boy Records with Leslie's NextSelection imprint for the release of Cassie's debut album.

Cassie's self titled debut studio album was released in August 2006, peaking at number four on the Billboard 200 chart and features the Billboard Hot 100 top three hit "Me & U", which became a major hit in 2006.[2] She began work on her second studio album in 2007 releasing three singles; "Official Girl" featuring Lil Wayne in August 2008, "Must Be Love" featuring Diddy in April 2009, and "Let's Get Crazy" featuring Akon in August 2009, which all failed to chart in the USA, in late 2009 Cassie signed a record deal with Interscope Records. On April 11, 2013 Cassie released her debut mixtape RockaByeBaby, which was promoted with the release of "Numb" featuring Rick Ross and "Paradise" featuring Wiz Khalifa.

Apart from music, Cassie is signed to modeling agency Wilhelmina Models and One Management. Cassie has modeled for Calvin Klein one[3] and has been featured in magazines including GQ[4] and Bust and becoming the face of ASOS 2013 spring collection,[5] Cassie has appeared in adverts for Delia's, Adidas, Abercrombie & Fitch, Seventeen, and a commercial for Clean and Clear.[6] Cassie is known for being a style icon due to her "edgy style"[7] and "feminine" and "sophisticated" fashion. Cassie is also known for setting the trend among women of shaving their hair, after Cassie shaved hers in 2009 influenced by punk.[8] Cassie cites Kate Moss as her style influence.[9] Cassie has also ventured into acting; she made her film debut in Step Up 2: The Streets (2008).

Early life

Cassie Ventura was born in 1986 in New London, Connecticut;[10] the daughter of a Filipino father and a mother of African-American, Mexican and West Indian descent.[11] She attended the Williams School, a preparatory school, located on the Connecticut College campus.[12] At age 14 Cassie began modeling, and when she was sixteen, she was modeling for local department stores, Delia's fashion catalog, and Seventeen.[10][12][13] Cassie also briefly appeared in R&B singer Mario's "Just a Friend 2002" music video.[14] Encouraged by producer Rockwilder, Cassie took vocal lessons, modern ballet, as well as using her school's performing arts program.[12] Cassie finished high school in 2004, instead of going to college like her peers she moved to New York City, where she returned to modeling and classes at the Broadway Dance Center.[12] While Cassie was in New York, she began booking print and commercial modeling gigs and being represented by Wilhelmina Models.[15]

Career

2004–07: Cassie

Ryan Leslie spotted Cassie at clubs and parties in late 2002 frequently.[12][16] The two wrote a duet called "Kiss Me", and after recording the track, Leslie played the song for music executive Tommy Mottola.[12][17] Mottola offered Cassie a management deal, and Leslie signed her to NextSelection Lifestyle Group, his music-media company he founded with online marketing partner Rasheed Richmond.[18][19] Leslie wrote and produced Cassie's first single, "Me & U", in 2005. The song became a club hit in Germany.[10] During this time, Diddy heard "Me & U" in a club, and Leslie convinced him to partner his Bad Boy Records with Leslie's NextSelection imprint for the release of Cassie's debut album.[10]

Cassie in April 2007

Ryan Leslie produced most of the album, which is a mix of R&B/hip hop/pop. Ventura said in an interview, "I rap, I sing, I do my R&B, I do my slow songs and stuff that the girls will love, I have a down South joint, I have a rock song that I did with my girls this band called Pretty Boys."[20] She paid tribute to her Filipino culture by incorporating OPM sounds into some of the ballads. The album, Cassie, was released on August 8, 2006 and sold 321,000 copies in the United States.[21] The album's lead single "Me & U" peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100, selling more than 1 million digital downloads.[22] To promote her album, Cassie performed on Total Request Live and 106 & Park: BET's Top 10 Live. Her performances were described as "rocky" and "less-than-stellar", but Diddy said that it was due to her inexperience.[23] He said that he would be "with her through her development", and that he has no "question on her ability [to sing]".[23] Cassie addressed the events on her MySpace page, saying that she is aware that her performances were "pretty bad", and that she was "still getting over stage fright".[23]

MTV News reported in June 2007 that contrary to rumors, Cassie had not been dropped from Bad Boy Records after releasing two singles from her self-titled debut album. Diddy said that she was in the studio working with producers Kanye West and Pharrell Williams on her second album.[24] It was also reported that Cassie was no longer collaborating with Ryan Leslie, who had produced the majority of her debut album.[25] However, the singer later stated that she was open to collaborating with Leslie again.[26] According to Bad Boy A&R Daniel 'Skid' Mitchell, rather than largely relying on the one songwriter-producer, the new album's mix of writers and producers, as well as her own co-write input, makes it a more personal record for her.[27] Additional production on the album came from Seven and LV, as well as Diddy himself.[28] Cassie said that she had also collaborated with Akon, The Neptunes, Danja, Eric Hudson, The Surf Club and Rob Holiday, although she was not sure which tracks were going to be included on the album.[26] Commenting on the number of producers on the album, Cassie said that she "collaborated with a lot of different producers and a lot of different writers, which was an amazing opportunity for me, because on my first album, one producer [Ryan Leslie] straight through...which was fun, but it was nice to experience other people."[29]

2008–13: Acting and RockaByeBaby

In 2008, Cassie made her film debut as Sophie Donovan in the dance film Step Up 2: The Streets, Cassie also sang the lead single "Is It You" to the Step Up soundtrack. The song was released on November 13, 2007,[30] and peaked at eighty-five on the Canadian Hot 100[31] and fifty-two in the United Kingdom.[32] In July 2009, Cassie announced that her second studio album's title would be Electro Love.[26] Cassie said that her new album will demonstrate more "independence"; there will be a "difference in vocals, a little bit more personality. And it's definitely a sensual album".[33] Three singles have been released from the album; "Official Girl" featuring Lil Wayne in August 2008, "Must Be Love" featuring Diddy in April 2009, and "Let's Get Crazy" featuring Akon in August 2009. All three singles failed to chart in the United States.[25]

After several delays, it was announced in December 2009 that Cassie had signed a new record deal with Interscope Records.[34] She is featured in a spread in the August/September issue of Bust in which she said a new single will be released in the fall. She has recently told her Twitter followers that she is still in the studio recording for her album. At the time of an October 2010 interview with HitQuarters, A&R Daniel 'Skid' Mitchell said that Cassie had already recorded around fifty songs for the album. Mitchell said that she was taking her time over the album because she is keen for "it to be something that people are going to respect".[27] She also appeared in rapper Wiz Khalifa's "Roll Up" music video as his love interest.

Cassie released the single, "King of Hearts", which was released in the United States on February 14, 2012, along with the official music video.[35] On April 24, 2012, Cassie performed the single live for the first time at BET's 106 & Park music video show. She concluded the performance with a brief dance number set to the Kanye West remix of the song, along with four dancers. After the performance Cassie and 106 & Park were worldwide trending topics on Twitter and it received mostly mixed to positive reviews from various online media outlets.[36] The single, "Balcony", featuring Young Jeezy, was then sent to U.S. urban radio stations on September 18, 2012.[37] On September 13, 2012, Nicki Minaj released the debut single off her re-release album Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded – The Re-Up, titled "The Boys", featuring Cassie.[38] The song was then sent to urban radios on September 25 and a music video was released on October 18.[39]

In July 2012, Cassie announced in a letter to her fans that she had been working simultaneously on her album and a new mixtape titled RockaByeBaby.[40][41] RockaByeBaby was released on April 11, 2013,[42] and was named the best mixtape of the year by Dazed & Confused.[43] The mixtape saw the release of "Numb" featuring American rapper Rick Ross on April 2, along with the songs accompanying music video[44] and "Paradise" featuring rapper Wiz Khalifa premiered on April 9, 2013 alongside the video on BET 106 & Park.[9][45][46] In April 2013 it was announced that Cassie was the face of the Summer 2013 Forever 21 collection.[47]

2016: Second studio album and return to acting

In March 2015, Cassie's boyfriend, rapper Diddy announced he would return to producing and revealed he would be producing songs for Cassie's second studio album.[48] In 2016 it was announced Cassie would return to acting, playing the lead role in the romantic comedy The Perfect Match. Released on March 11, 2016, the Billie Woodruff directed film, stars Cassie alongside Terrence J who plays Charlie, a successful playboy who doesn't believe in love until he crosses paths with the sexy Eva (Cassie).[49] In August 2017, she released the single "Love a Loser" featuring American rapper G-Eazy.[50]

Artistry

Cassie's musical sound is R&B, pop, and hip hop soul. Her voice has "character and ability".[51] Cassie cites Aaliyah, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera, Madonna, Stevie Wonder, Nine Inch Nails, Britney Spears, La Lupe, Mariah Carey, Faith Evans and Usher as musical influences. Cassie also refers to herself as a "die-hard Janet Jackson fan", continuing to say "I'd love to emulate Janet Jackson's career—totally, Janet Jackson is an incredible and fantastic, from her moves to her voice".[52][53] Cassie debut album was R&B and pop rock with urban and contemporary R&B styles, the album contained "looming synthesizer patterns" and "ice-cream-truck melody to give it a slightly twisted and threatening edge", as well as containing "flippant playfulness".[51] RockaByeBaby is an R&B and hip hop mixtape that featured "dark"[54] and a "raw, laid back vibe".[55]

Personal life

In May 2015, Cassie was featured in a racy advertisement for Diddy's fragrance "3 AM".[56]

Discography

Filmography

Film
Year Title Role
2008 Step Up 2: The Streets Sophie Donovan
2016 The Perfect Match Eva
Honey 3: Dare to Dance Melea Martin
Television
Year Title Role
2018 Empire Haven Quinn

References

  1. ^ https://www.theguardian.com/music/2013/aug/15/timbaland-future-stars-experimental-cassie
  2. ^ Farber, Jim. Sounds of Summer, Daily News|location=New York. August 1, 2006. NOW; Bullets & Bombs; page 34.
  3. ^ "Cassie Goes Bra And Panties For CK1 (PHOTOS)". Global Grind. February 24, 2011. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  4. ^ Anthony, Mark. "Cassie Sexy GQ Photos – October 2012: Music". GQ. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Cassie Ventura Stars As The Face of ASOS Spring Campaign (PHOTOS)". Global Grind. February 28, 2013. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Cassie Ventura Biography". The Hollywood Gossip. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Cassie Ventura". Zimbio. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  8. ^ Vena, Jocelyn (October 25, 2012). "From Rihanna To Ellie Goulding: Cassie Breaks Down The Shaved-Head Trend – Music, Celebrity, Artist News". MTV. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "Cassie Brings 'RockaByeBaby' to '106 & Park'". Rap-Up.com. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  10. ^ a b c d "Cassie". AskMen.com. Retrieved October 2, 2009. 
  11. ^ Harris, Tara (February 11, 2008). "STEP UP 2 THE STREETS An Interview with Cassie Ventura". Blackfilm.com. Archived from the original on June 17, 2008. Retrieved December 16, 2013. 
  12. ^ a b c d e f "Cassie – AskMen". Uk.askmen.com. August 26, 1986. Archived from the original on July 20, 2013. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  13. ^ "Warner Music Canada – CASSIE". Warnermusic.ca. Archived from the original on May 3, 2010. Retrieved August 31, 2010. 
  14. ^ "Mario – Just A Friend 2002". Retrieved December 16, 2012 – via YouTube. 
  15. ^ "Cassie Ventura Biography". Buddytv.com. August 26, 1986. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  16. ^ "Cassie – Discover music, concerts, stats, & pictures at". Last.fm. January 15, 2013. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  17. ^ "Cassie – Discover music, concerts, stats, & pictures at". Last.fm. January 15, 2013. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  18. ^ Ryan Leslie Interview. Randb.about.com. Retrieved February 8, 2012.
  19. ^ An Interactive Design Agency. NextSelection. Retrieved February 8, 2012.
  20. ^ Williams-Wheeler, Dorrie (June 2006). "Cassie-Interview at Thabiz.com Urban Entertainment Celebrity Interviews". Thabiz.com. Archived from the original on August 30, 2006. Retrieved August 13, 2007. 
  21. ^ Werde, Bill (April 6, 2008). "Diddy: Cassie CD Will Catch People 'Off Guard'". Billboard. Retrieved March 26, 2011. 
  22. ^ Werde, Bill (April 7, 2008). "Diddy: Cassie CD Will Catch People "Off Guard"". Billboard. Retrieved October 2, 2009. 
  23. ^ a b c Reid, Shaheem (August 16, 2006). "Diddy Brushes Off Cassie's Rocky Week". MTV. Retrieved July 19, 2008. 
  24. ^ Reid, Shaheem (June 21, 2007). "Diddy Says Cassie Hasn't Been Dropped – She's Just Busy With Kanye, Pharrell". MTV News. Retrieved September 20, 2009. 
  25. ^ a b Adelman, Charlie (September 16, 2009). "Waiting for Cassie to give us her Love". The Daily Free Press. Archived from the original on November 25, 2009. Retrieved September 20, 2009. 
  26. ^ a b c Ivey, Nile (July 30, 2009). "Cassie: It's All Electro Love". Black Entertainment Television. Archived from the original on August 27, 2009. Retrieved September 20, 2009. 
  27. ^ a b "Interview With Daniel 'Skid' Mitchell". HitQuarters. October 25, 2010. Retrieved November 10, 2010. 
  28. ^ "Cassie Grows Up on second album". Billboard. Retrieved December 29, 2009. 
  29. ^ "Exclusive: Cassie Grows Up on Second Album". Rap-Up. August 26, 2008. Retrieved December 29, 2009. 
  30. ^ "iTunes Music – Is It You – Single by Cassie". iTunes Store. November 13, 2007. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  31. ^ "Is It You" (Canadian Hot 100) at Billboard online, February 23, 2008.
  32. ^ "Cassie – Is It You". Retrieved March 4, 2015. 
  33. ^ Vena, Jocelyn (August 18, 2008). "Cassie's Single With Lil Wayne, Official Girl, Shows Personality, Sensuality of Singer's Sophomore LP". MTV. Archived from the original on July 6, 2011. Retrieved August 23, 2008. 
  34. ^ Sir Platinum Graham (December 11, 2009). "Cassie To Interscope With Diddy, Red Cafe ? | Singersroom Celebs". Blog.singersroom.com. Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. Retrieved August 31, 2010. 
  35. ^ "Cassie – King of Hearts". February 14, 2012. Retrieved December 16, 2012 – via YouTube. 
  36. ^ "Cassie Performs 'King of Hearts' on '106 & Park'". Rap-Up. Retrieved March 4, 2015. 
  37. ^ "Urban/UAC Future Releases | R&B, Hip Hop, Release Schedule and Street Dates |". Allaccess.com. Retrieved December 16, 2012. 
  38. ^ "iTunes Music – The Boys – Single by Nicki Minaj & Cassie". iTunes Store. September 13, 2012. Retrieved December 16, 2012. 
  39. ^ "Nicki Minaj, Cassie – The Boys (Explicit)". Retrieved December 16, 2012 – via YouTube. 
  40. ^ "CassieSuper: A letter to my". tmi.me. July 7, 2012. Retrieved December 16, 2012. 
  41. ^ "Cassie – RockaByeBaby". DatPiff. Retrieved March 4, 2015. 
  42. ^ "Cassie announces release date for Rock A Bye Baby – FACT Magazine: Music News, New Music". Factmag.com. March 12, 2013. Retrieved March 29, 2013. 
  43. ^ Dazed. "Top ten mixtapes of 2013". Dazed. Retrieved March 4, 2015. 
  44. ^ "Video: Cassie f/ Rick Ross – 'Numb'". Rap-Up.com. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  45. ^ "Cassie Feat. Wiz Khalifa – 'Paradise' Music Video". Directlyrics.com. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  46. ^ "Video: Cassie f/ Wiz Khalifa – 'Paradise'". Rap-Up.com. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  47. ^ Emma Spedding (April 12, 2013). "EXCLUSIVE: First Look At Cassie As The Face Of Forever 21's Spring Summer 2013 Campaign | Grazia Fashion". Graziadaily.co.uk. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  48. ^ Times, Music (March 11, 2015). "Sean "Diddy" Combs Producing New Music For Kanye West, Pusha T, The Weeknd, A$AP Ferg & More". 
  49. ^ "Watch Cassie, Brandy, & French Montana in 'The Perfect Match' Trailer". 
  50. ^ "Cassie Returns With Her Latest Single 'Love a Loser' f/ G-Eazy". Complex. August 4, 2017. Retrieved August 4, 2017. 
  51. ^ a b Kellman, Andy (August 8, 2006). "Cassie – Cassie : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  52. ^ "Cassie Ventura Profile and biography". Celebrity Days. Archived from the original on October 14, 2011. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  53. ^ "Cassie Music Influences". MTV Artists. Retrieved April 18, 2016. 
  54. ^ "Cassie #RockaByeBaby (MIXTAPE DOWNLOAD)". Global Grind. April 11, 2013. Retrieved April 18, 2013. 
  55. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on December 17, 2013. Retrieved April 12, 2013. 
  56. ^ "Diddy and Cassie Get Naked in Racy '3AM' Fragrance Ad". Rap-Up. Retrieved June 1, 2015. 

Further reading

  • Macpherson, Alex (December 30, 2008). "Cassie's unreleased classic". The Guardian. Retrieved August 6, 2013. 
  • Beaumont-Thomas, Ben (January 6, 2011). "The growing cult of Cassie". The Guardian. Retrieved August 6, 2013. 

External links

  • Official website
  • Cassie Ventura on IMDb
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