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Ludacris

Ludacris

Ludacris rode the early-2000s Dirty South explosion to widespread popularity, as his songs enjoyed an enormous embrace, mainly by urban media outlets but also MTV and pop radio. The Atlanta-based rapper went from local sensation to household name after Def Jam signed him to its Def Jam South subsidiary in 2000. In addition to connecting him with super-producers like Timbaland, the Neptunes, and Organized Noize, Def Jam gave Ludacris remarkable marketing push. Ludacris thus quickly became one of the rap industry's most in-demand rappers, guesting on hits for everyone from Missy Elliott ("One Minute Man") to Jermaine Dupri ("Welcome to Atlanta") when he wasn't dominating the urban market with his own hits, most notably "What's Your Fantasy?," "Southern Hospitality," "Area Codes," and "Rollout (My Business)." Before he became the Dirty South's most successful rapper, Ludacris DJed at an Atlanta radio station. He used the opportunity to hone his craft on the mic, learn about the industry, and make a name for himself throughout the Atlanta area, which had become the South's rap mecca starting in the mid-'90s. Eventually, he began aspiring toward a career as a rapper rather than as a radio jock, and after working with Timbaland -- appearing on the super-producer's Tim's Bio album (the original version of "Fat Rabbit") in 1998 -- Ludacris began taking his rap career seriously. He recorded an album, Incognegro (2000), and released it on his independently released Disturbing tha Peace label. Ludacris primarily worked with producer Shondrae for the album, though also with Organized Noize to a lesser extent. Incognegro sold impressively in Atlanta, where Ludacris was well known for his radio work.

Soon after Incognegro became the talk of Atlanta and "What's Your Fantasy?" became a regional hit, Scarface came knocking. Def Jam had given the veteran rapper the go-ahead to scout for talent in the South, since the Dirty South movement was gaining steam at the time and Def Jam wanted to start a Def Jam South subsidiary. Ludacris became Scarface's first signing, and Def Jam re-packaged the tracks from Incognegro, along with a few new productions: a U.G.K. collaboration ("Stick 'Em Up"), a Neptunes production ("Southern Hospitality"), and a remix of his previously released song with Timbaland (retitled "Phat Rabbit"). Def Jam then gave the resulting album, Back for the First Time (2000), substantial marketing push, choosing "What's Your Fantasy?" (an explicit duet about sexual fantasies from both the male and female perspective) as the first single. Though some radio stations were hesitant to air such a provocative song, "What's Your Fantasy?" became an enormous success -- as did, to a lesser extent, its even more provocative remix featuring Foxy Brown and Trina -- opening the door for countless other truly "dirty" Dirty South songs that would soon become the norm rather than the exception.

Following his initial breakthrough with "What's Your Fantasy?," Ludacris remained ubiquitous. He toured the States with OutKast and released a flurry of successive hit singles: the Neptunes-produced "Southern Hospitality," the Timbaland-produced "Phat Rabbit," the Nate Dogg collabo "Area Codes," the Timbaland-produced "Rollout (My Business)," the Organized Noize-produced "Saturday (Oooh Oooh!)," the KLC-produced "Move Bitch." His second album for Def Jam, Word of Mouf (2001), peaked at number three on the Billboard album chart in October and hovered at the top of the charts for a long time. Furthermore, he contributed to hits for other artists during this same time, most notably Missy Elliott's "One Minute Man" and Jermaine Dupri's "Welcome to Atlanta," and also released another album, Golden Grain (2002), which featured his Disturbing tha Peace posse. The proper Ludacris follow-up, Chicken -N- Beer, was released in October 2003. His acting career included films: The Wash (2001), 2 Fast -2Furious( 2003), Sharltale(2004), Crash (TBD).

Ludacris ( given name Christopher Bridges) was born on September 11, 1977, in Champaign, Illinois.

Ludacris Goes For The Gold — Member, That Is — In New Clip

Decked out in a blue velvet blazer, jeans and an ascot, it looks like Ludacris is taking the "grown and sexy" look to another level.

But don't let the smooth steez fool you, the MC is just stepping into the shoes of shagadelic spy Austin Powers for his new video, a split clip of "Number One Spot" and "The Potion" .

Filmed on a Los Angeles soundstage, the video brings a twist to the "Austin Powers" concept.

"I'm the ghetto Austin Powers, you can say," Luda said. "We're going to do Goldmember, we're going to take the Fat Bastard aspect of it — we're going to do all of that and combine it with Ludacris style."

A bunch of Luda's famous friends, including actors LisaRaye, Verne Troyer (a.k.a. Mini Me) and rapper Slick Rick guest in the video. He even got a cameo from a legendary producer with ties to the original song.

"I sampled the original 'Soul Bossa Nova' made by the legend himself, Mr. Quincy Jones, and we are privileged to have him inside of this video," Luda said. "I developed a relationship with him about a year ago. I went to the man's house and I have been motivated ever since.

"I'm also privileged enough to have Ms. LisaRaye, who's been doing her thing in film and in music for a long time, so I am just blessed with great presences right now," he added. "I always say whatever video is the latest one I've done is the best, but I think this one is going to top every one I've done because of the star power, the song, the sample — everything so far is magnificent."

"I think it's fantastic," Jones agreed. "Never would I have imagined in my wildest dreams that [so much would come from] something I wrote in 20 minutes, 43 years ago, and what the transformation has been. I am a big fan of Ludacris. I've said that behind his back as well as to his face. It makes me feel good to know that the future is going to be in great shape.

"It's a very hip concept," Jones added. "I think it worked backwards: Mike Myers probably got the concept from some house party back in the day anyway, so the circle is fulfilled."

In the clip, which was directed by Fats Cats with Luda's manager/business partner Chaka Zulu, LisaRaye plays Foxxy Cleopatra, the role played by Beyoncé in the film "Austin Powers in Goldmember." Luda said casting the actress was a no-brainer.

"Look at her," he said with a laugh. "I just thought she would be perfect for the role. She has her own pizzazz, her own style and she added it to [the role]. The first take we did, she completely got it down. I just knew she would be perfect for it, and she was.

"I've got great friends, [and] it's two-fold," added Ludacris of the video's various cameos. "Whenever they need me to do something I am there for them, so we've got a little cult going right here. We do each other favors, and scratch each other's backs. We gotta look out for one another, we all we got."

Ludacris talks 'Crash'

Rapper Ludacris, who appeared in the Sundance Film Festival hit Hustle & Flow, has landed a part in the ensemble drama Crash alongside the likes of Sandra Bullock, Brendan Fraser, Ryan Phillippe and Don Cheadle.

Explaining the story of the film, Ludacris has said, "It's talking about present-day racial discrimination in Los Angeles, kind of like Do the Right Thing, I play a thief with certain morals to him, so it's really weird, but life is full of contradictions."

Thandie Newton, Larenz Tate, Loretta Devine, Nona Gaye and Hustle & Flow star Terrence Howard will also appear in Crash.

 

Ludacris: Hustle & Cold

In between performing with Sum 41 on "Saturday Night Live" and shooting the "Number One Spot" video in Los Angeles, Ludacris had exactly 24 hours to take in his first Sundance Film Festival. MTV News tagged along ...

Sunday, January 23

6 p.m.: A lethargic Ludacris arrives at the Salt Lake City airport on a private plane. "It was the only way," he says. "There's a blizzard in New York. We were snowed in."
6:01 p.m.: Luda gets the news that "Hustle & Flow," the movie he's here to promote, just sold for a Sundance record of $9 million. "That's a great thing," he says, slowly showing signs of enthusiasm. "It was made for less than $2 [million]."

7 p.m.: The crew pulls up to the hotel. The streets outside are lined with festival-goers gearing up for another night of parties. For this partier, though, it's nap time.

11 p.m. : Slightly rested, Ludacris, in a gold sweat suit with the hood pulled over his braids, takes a picture with an older white woman claiming to be a fan while he waits outside for his shuttle van. He complains of the cold. Within seconds of climbing into his ride, he fires up his iPod through the stereo. Cam'ron. "I love technology," he says. "We can be our own DJs wherever we go."

11:15 p.m.: Luda arrives at a "gifting" house where companies "gift" (apparently this word is a verb at Sundance) celebrities clothing and gadgets. "Even though we making money these days, you can never not be happy about getting free stuff," he admits.

11:20 p.m.: First stop, Lucky Brand Jeans. "What size jeans are you?" a friendly Lucky woman asks. "In these, 38." They offer 34, which is probably a little closer to his waistline. "I'm a part of the no-tight-jeans coalition," he tells her. Another Lucky woman offers a T-shirt. He holds it up. "It's an extra large," she says with a smile. "It's an extra medium," Ludacris jokes, cracking up his entourage. "These are too small. It was the thought that counted, though, thanks anyway."

11:30 p.m.: Next stop, Sony. Luda's eyes go right to a 70" widescreen HDTV. There are pink flamingos on the screen, but damn do they look crystal clear. "How much is this TV?" "$18,000," a Sony man answers. "How much are you offering it to me for?" Luda inquires. "$13,000." He thinks about it.

11:45 p.m.: With a free Sprint phone and Kenneth Cole boots in hand, Ludacris heads for Harry O's, where he's performing soon. "We're trying to make use of our time spent here and put a little money in our pocket too," he explains. A beautiful blue haze has settled on the mountains surrounding Park City, but no one seems to notice.

11:48 p.m.: Conversation turns to Luda's next project, "Crash," with Sandra Bullock and Don Cheadle. "It's cool to be in a movie with so many big stars, but music is still my number-one love," he says. "I'm not trying to move out to L.A. just yet. I'm just testing the waters, that's all. I still have more music to get out of my system."

12 a.m.: Ludacris walks the red carpet at Harry O's, finally giving the bored photographers something to shoot. It's inside, but he complains of the cold. "Honestly, I like the event, but I don't know about the place where it's at," he tells a reporter. "I like it where it's warm." "Where'd you get your necklace?" another reporter asks of his massive chain and pendant. "I can't tell you." She continues to prod him. "I can't tell you my secrets," Luda insists.

12:02 a.m.: Ludacris runs into Archbishop Don "Magic" Juan as he enters the club. "Where's Snoop?" "He'll be here tomorrow," the king of the pimps answers. But alas, Luda will be gone already. The green room is stacked with Crunk Juice, but Luda drinks water while he flips through magazines on the couch. His DJ is warming up the crowd downstairs with "Lean Back."

12:30 a.m.: "Back again!" Luda yells as he takes the stage, opening with "Number One Spot." The venue is packed. It's at least 100 degrees. Girls in miniskirts are dancing on the bar. Carmen Electra's in the VIP lounge, sipping cocktails with Anthony Anderson and other "Hustle & Flow" stars. (Click here to watch Luda drop "Stand Up.")

12:50 a.m.: Linkin Park's Brad Delson and Rob Bourdon arrive just in time for "What's Your Fantasy." The crowd loves the hits and the girls dancing on the bar start getting friendly with each other.

1:30 a.m.: Show's over. Ludacris is exhausted, but a midnight screening of "Hustle & Flow" is about to finish, and he needs to be at the Q&A session afterward. He excuses MTV News for bed.

Monday, January 24

8 a.m.: A sleepy-eyed Ludacris, wearing a "Hustle & Flow" shirt, arrives at the Premiere Lounge to start interviews for the movie. There was a party in the tent the night before and it reeks of beer and dried sweat. Vacuums moan as camera crews set their lights. He complains of the cold. You can see his breath.
10:15 a.m.: Ludacris and co-stars Taryn Manning and Taraji Henson sit down with MTV News. Ludacris thanks MTV Films for buying the movie. "It's all because of him," Manning says, pointing to the rapper. Luda gives his critique of Terrence Howard, who plays a pimp-turned-rapper in the movie. "Man I ain't gonna lie, I was skeptical at first," he admits. "But once I saw the movie I think he did a damn good job. ... And a lot of people can relate to it because everybody raps these days. Your mama raps, your mama's cousin, your aunties, your grandmas. So it's just real-to-life in a sense that somebody is trying to make something out of nothing."

11 a.m.: After grabbing a bagel, Ludacris walks up to the Sundance Channel's studio for a roundtable live segment with Jay Mohr and Kevin Bacon. The studio door closes in front of us, but we watch them laugh through the window. Must be warm in there.

1:30 p.m.: The crew drives to the Motorola-sponsored "gifting" house. Luda plays some Nintendo and leaves with a DS system and another phone.

4 p.m.: Ludacris returns to Main Street for a photo shoot. "I don't even know what it's for," he confesses. "It's InStyle," his publicist says. Taryn Manning joins him, but MTV does not as it's a closed shoot. "She's gonna be huge," Luda says of his co-star.

6 p.m.: An exhausted Luda piles into his van and heads for the airport. He apologizes for not being more fun. "It's just too cold here," he says.

 

Ludacris: The Angler Not So Ludicrous

LUDACRIS' LAKE HELPS BOOST HIS FISHING SKILLS

Rapper LUDACRIS has created a huge catfish lake on his Atlanta, Georgia, estate so he can perfect his fishing skills.

The SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY star owns a 22-acre (nine-hectare) spread, which houses his impressive mansion, tennis and basketball courts and a movie theatre.

And now he's planning to spend more time relaxing there, thanks to his new lake.
He says, "People would be surprised to know that I'm really trying to get into the whole fishing thing. It clears your mind. It's like one of those things where you can concentrate.

"I have a little paddle boat... but I just stand on the sides of my lake, throw the line in and just try to fish. Then eventually it'll be about cooking that fish. "I can't cook. I wish I could. I have a cook and I keep saying 'I'mma' learn from her."

Ludacris: Time For Respect

Ludacris' latest album may have the words "red light" in the title, but one of hip-hop's loudest and most consistent men on the mic doesn't have "stop" in his vocabulary. He's operating as if his life were just one long series of green lights: He has two new movies coming out this year, and he's continuing to work his fourth major-label release, The Red Light District, which debuted at #1 and is right on track to go triple-platinum like all of his other albums. And despite a couple of disappointments in his Disturbing Tha Peace camp (Chingy left the fold citing mismanagement, jealousy and lies, and the debut albums by I-20 and Shawnna came and went late last year almost unnoticed), you'll be hard-pressed to find Luda without his omnipresent grin.

Here he gives MTV News' Sway a different take on Chingy's departure, insists he doesn't wish Bill O'Reilly or T.I. any malice, and explains why he'll wait for you to admit he's your favorite rapper.

Sway: Chingy has insinuated that because his first album outsold your last one, Chicken-N-Beer, that maybe he wouldn't get the same opportunities he normally would with Disturbing Tha Peace. You guys might not like him being more popular than you.
Ludacris: "Right Thurr" was like the biggest single of the year. I was completely blown away and happy as hell about that, and then you have "Holidae In," another smash record, and then you have the last song, which is "One Call Away." So basically what I'm trying to say is, I'm happy as hell! Of course I'm getting the cut off [of all this], so how am I not going to be happy about this?

Let me tell you why there's no friction. My first album sold 3 million records, but then you got to do it again, and then you got to do it again, and then you got to do it again. It's about longevity, it's about consistency. You can't do it one time and then be like, "I'm the world!" You got to continue, you've got to prove yourself over and over again. You've got to power ball.

Sway: Well let's talk about that. All of your albums have gone multiplatinum. Even at a time when you weren't considered a flagship artist at your label, Def Jam, you were outselling most of the artists on that label, but people weren't putting you in that light. It seems like you kind of confront that issue throughout The Red Light District.

Ludacris: We're starting to get a whole lot more songs where I'm kind of demanding my respect, I would say. I really love when people come up to me on the street and say, "You're my favorite rapper." That means a lot to me because I've always wanted to be in that vein. But I'm patient. I didn't expect it immediately. But now it's to the point where I'm demanding my respect and I feel like it's that time. I've never been a cocky individual, but I am very confident.
Sway: In that song "Number One Spot" — I know this is going to haunt you for a long time — you make reference to Bill O'Reilly. Do you feel vindicated by the recent turmoil in his career due to his being accused of sexual harassment?

Ludacris: I never wished anything negative upon this individual, but it's just funny how it happened because that was karma at its finest. Now he knows what it feels like to be judged and not have people really know the person that he is. He puts a lot of negative energy out there about people he doesn't know, and the same exact thing just happened to him. Do I feel vindicated? It's just funny to me.

Sway: How much stress did you go through with that situation you had with Bill O'Reilly, where you lost a Pepsi endorsement deal thanks to his complaining about your lyrics? Did it change you at all as an artist or how you approach making records?

Ludacris: I think a lot of people get it twisted, like it would be something that would really stress me out. I'm not going to lie, maybe a little bit, for maybe one or two days. And then when people ask me about it, maybe for like one or two minutes. But it doesn't really stress me out. Man, my family is taken care of. There is nothing that can harm me. That's how I feel about it. Did I become a better man because of it? I would definitely say yes, because, really, it just made me realize what corporate America is all about and that sometimes life is not fair. It just made me want to learn more about corporations as a whole and more about individuals like this man Bill O'Reilly. That's all it did.

Sway: I always wanted to ask you about this one record you did with Young Buck called "Stomp." T.I. was on the record, too, and it seemed like he took a shot at you. Is that what he did? Did he really come after you?

Ludacris: It's really crazy, because before the record even came out I sat down and talked to this individual and basically he told me the reason that he said my name on his record was because one of his homeboys came and told him that he saw somebody wearing a Trap Muzik T-shirt in one of my music videos getting beat up. So he thought that was subliminal. Now, after wondering what he was talking about, I realized that it was a Trap Wear shirt — my artist Tity Boi has a clothing line called Trap Wear that has absolutely nothing to do with this individual. If anybody seen my videos or any of my artists' videos, you see us wearing these Trap Wear T-shirts. And it wasn't even my video, this was an I-20 video and it was called "Fightin' in the Club." And I really was thinking that this was ludicrous after I understood why he said it. A lot of beefs in the music industry are caused from miscommunication and just not really understanding what's going on, having people in your ear saying this is what somebody did, or this is what somebody did to you. And that's where it came about.

And I guess he got on the record first, since Young Buck, G-Unit, 50 ... those are all like my homeboys, and they called me and told me this man is saying my name in a record. And I was like, "Oh, really?" And they said, "Do you want to get on the record?" The fact is I was blessed enough to be able to make my response on the same damn record. And there you have it. Eventually I guess his record company took him off the record, but I was able to stay on. But we talked even before the album came out.
Sway: So what's the status of that? Are we going to hear more back-and-forth lyric play between you and T.I.? Or did you guys squash that?

Ludacris: We pretty much squashed that.

Sway: A lot of cats come out and they say they're the "king of the South," but like you said, you been selling records for a long time. Do you take offense when you hear that kind of thing?

Ludacris: It doesn't bother me at all, man. Titles are titles. People call me "the mouth of the South." I'll call myself "the king of the kings," you know what I mean? I'm trying to be number one all the way around. It's not just the South, it's not just the East, it's not the West, I'm going for across the world, you know what I'm saying? This is where I'm coming from.

Ludacris' "Stand Up" Lawsuit

A New York judge has scheduled a Feb. 4 settlement conference between Ludacris, producer Kanye West and aspiring rap group I.O.F.

They will also come together to deal with the New Jersey group’s copyright-infringement lawsuit in April alleging that the two stole the hook for Ludacris' "Stand Up" from them.

Judge Debra Freeman of the United States District Court, Southern District of New York will hear arguments from the group members who say they gave four demo tapes to Ludacris and West on separate occasions.

One of the records featured the song "Straight Like That," which was recorded in 2000 and has a chorus similar to that of "Stand Up," reports MTV.

 

Ludacris And Sum 41 To Team Up On 'SNL'

Canadian pop-punkers to back Luda for 'Get Back.'

Live, from New York, it's ... Ludacris and Sum 41?

Now the super-secret team-up can be revealed. On the January 22 edition of "Saturday Night Live," the mayor of the Red Light District will take the stage accompanied by the mayors of, um,
Canada's pop-punk district. Luda will perform his hit single "Get Back" with the guys from Sum 41 as his backing band.

"We had originally planned on recording a track together about three or four years ago, for the 'Spider-Man' soundtrack, but our schedules could never connect," Sum 41 frontman Deryck Whibley explained. "So when we heard about the opportunity to back him up, we said 'yeah' right away."

Though they've yet to actually rehearse "Get Back," Whibley thinks Sum 41 will be more than ready to answer Luda's call next weekend.

"We'll get together and rehearse it. Every time we're working on some new songs, we'll play them live onstage, probably during the encore," he said. "So we're going to be ready. The weird thing is that this all came together so quickly that we haven't even thought about it. This is the first time Sum 41 will play as a backing band since we did it with Iggy Pop. It'll be different, for sure."

There will probably be less shirtless action and body scarification involved than when Sum 41 backed up the Iggster, but according to Whibley, the performance with Ludacris will still have a definite rock and roll quality to it. In fact, it's already being dubbed "Get Back: The Rock Version."

"We've always loved Ludacris, because he's so smart. He realizes the humor in everything he does," he said. "We're going to make it awesome. It'll be funny, but it'll be great too. This isn't just some, like, screw-off thing."

But perhaps the biggest question of all remains unanswered: Will Sum 41 perform in giant foam hands, just like Ludacris does in the "Get Back" video? And wouldn't giant foam hands make guitar playing impossible?

"Man, it's almost impossible for me to play guitar anyway," Whibley laughed. "But maybe we'll think about using the foam hands. Whatever Ludacris wants, we'll do."

 

Ludacris: The Red Light District


One listen to the bumpin’ and bass blasted The Red Light District and it’s pretty apparent that this multi platinum artist has not only set a goal but also nailed it. Of course what else would you expect from this Dirty South ambassador?

Since he first exploded in TK Ludacris has emerged not only as a chart topper and hit maker (his Def Jam South cds Back For The First Time, Word of Mouf and Chicken N Beer have sold over 10 million copies) but also an influential label head, in demand cameo king and up and coming actor.

A mere 4 short years in the game, Ludacris has proven that he has the tenacity and talent to push hip-hop music, and himself to new heights. O’ Reilly be damned. On The Red Light District Luda is taking no shorts and pulling no punches, lacing us with his buckwildin’ bombast.

The first taste of which is the propulsive “Get Back”. Throwing down a gully gantlet to anyone who dare step in his way or talk behind his back, Luda unleashes a volley of verbiage, delivered with his unmistakably nimble tongued flow. If folks needed any further proof as to Ludacris’s gift, then “Get Back’s call to arms shuts down any and all lingering doubts.

When you title your album after Amsterdam’s infamous open-air sex and drug market people are bound to ask questions about the inspiration. ” I think that with every album you have to give people a piece of you, something that they don’t know about; whether it’s personal or maybe a sound or idea they haven’t heard before. That’s something I set out to do this time. I know that the first thing people think of when they hear Red Light District is Amsterdam but I’m referring to a state of mind. Where there are no limitations to what I can say, or I can do. On this album I talk about everything. I get personal, about my emotions, money situations, my life. I’ve got metaphoric songs, club songs, songs for the women, party songs, songs about my experience traveling: just living my life. I really think this is my best album because it’s what I've always wanted to do."

Chief on the to do list for Ludacris is maintaining his fan base but still having the creative courage to reach out to potential new audiences. To establish a style yet not get stuck in a formulaic rut. From the jump Luda has shown himself to be flexible: able to hold it down with the grimiest of rappers and then seize the spotlight as he did on Usher’s #1 smash “Yeah”." I think one of the things that keeps me fresh and keeps the public interested in me is my versality. That’s why I’ve worked with so many artists over the years and why they want to work with me because I'm able to bring something different each time."

Ludacris's achievements extend beyond the confines of his own albums. As a pivotal member, both behind the mic and behind the scenes of the posse/label Disturbing Tha Peace, Luda has brought his expertise and enthusiasm to a roster of artists that include Fate, 1-20, Shawnna, Playaz Circle and Tity Boi. Along with his hands on participation in DTP, Ludacris oversees The Ludacris Foundation, a non-profit organization he created 3 years ago. The Ludacris Foundation mission is to help young people achieve their dreams through the encouragement of “Principles of Success.”, and to show young people in America they are the builders of their future. The Foundation reaches those goals by incorporating music and the arts to connect with young people by listening to their views, issues, and challenges. Giving back is something of utmost importance to Ludacris, who back in his days as a popular DJ on Atlanta’s Hot 97, often participated in community service outreach. ” I really enjoy working with people. I am one of those people who love helping people help themselves."

Along with his commitment to doing for others Ludacris has been making inroads in other arenas. After generating positive reviews for his role in 2 Fast, 2 Furious.

Everybody loves Ludacris' new album ''The Red Light District''

Everybody loves Ludacris these days: in a volatile hip-hop world, he's Mr. Reliable, the Atlanta spark plug who spits party-hearty anthems the way Manny Ramirez pounds home runs. If you're mad he's on top, then wish him gone. If you're mad he's right, then wish him wrong. But you can always count on Luda to get right to the point, with chant-along choruses and cheap-sh*t jokes over his woofer-blowing club beats. On The Red Light District, his fourth album, he shouts out to right-wing Fox meathead Bill O'Reilly, who denounced Ludacris a few years ago for corrupting the youth of America. Now that O'Reilly has his own "mo' money, mo' problems" scandal, Ludacris has a few kind words: "Hi, Mr. O'Reilly!/Hope everything's well!/Kiss the plaintiff and the wifey!"
On The Red Light District, Ludacris doesn't sweat the technique. On these sixteen tracks, you can rest assured the man will drink, drug, cruise for ladies, make money and shoot pool at the Ludaplex. He will compare himself to the Pillsbury Doughboy ("Women poke my guts/Still I walk around the streets like I'm broke as f*ck"). He will boast: "Nobody light-skinned did rappin' harder since Ice-T." He will check out your lady; he'd like to borrow her, if she's a swallower. He teams up with Nas and Doug E. Fresh for the killer old-school tribute "Virgo" and gets extremely low with Trick Daddy on "Hopeless." Sleepy Brown and Organized Noize guest on the strange dancehall-style cheeba puff "Blueberry Yum Yum." DMX joins for "Put Your Money," where Luda and X boast about their gambling problems, and Nate Dogg croons along with the Teena Marie-flavored "Child of the Night." During the O'Reilly controversy, Russell Simmons memorably defended Ludacris as a hip-hop Austin Powers, and Luda has fun with that image in "Number One Spot," cracking about shagging now or shagging later over a loop of the Austin Powers theme (a.k.a. Quincy Jones' "Soul Bossa Nova"). "Large Amounts" riffs on Depeche Mode as well as the musical Oliver! ("You've Got to Pick a Pocket or Two" -- brilliant), which Ludacris samples much more fruitfully than Jay-Z did.

You don't cross this man. Ludacris is a playa whose revenge is having more fun than the competition, rather than blowing them away. Even in "Get Back," where he rants about hangers-on trying to talk to him in clubs, he just wants to watch the women get drunk as hell so he can wake up in the morning with a story to tell. For all the high spirits, The Red Light District is his most inventive album yet -- especially "The Potion," a dizzying avant-crunk collaboration with Timbaland. Ludacris puts his dirty mouth where his dirty money is, and after four albums he's still rising.

 

Ludacris Vs. Austin Powers?

'Number One Spot'/'Potion' video will be shot this month. Ludacris has his mojo intact and is getting ready to "scheme, scheme" and "plot, plot" a couple of weeks from now in Los Angeles. According to his camp, Cris will be up to no good in his next video, which is a split clip of "Number One Spot" and ''Potion''.
Tentatively scheduled to go into production from January 14 to the 16, Cris' latest tube endeavor will be a sendup of the "Austin Powers" series with Luda said to be parodying a few of the villains who gave Hollywood's favorite man of leisure headaches.

Hip-hop's mouth of the South has even reached out to "Austin Powers" stars Mike Myers and Verne Troyer to participate in the production.

One man Luda does have locked in to appear is Quincy Jones. The legendary producer's "Soul Bossa Nova" is sampled for "Number One Spot." Cris wrote the record for anybody who's been dozing off on his mic skills. For the record, he says all MCs should believe that they're the preeminent spokesperson on the mic, so yes, he does feel he's the best rapper in the game right now.

"But if anyone else doesn't think that, then I'm coming for that 'Number One Spot,' " he further explained of the song in November. "I'm just going out there to gain the #1 spot in all areas, that's what I'm about."

As for "Potion," Cris said he couldn't wait to get back in the studio with Timbaland, who didn't get a chance to work on his last LP, Chicken-N-Beer.

"I always love working with Timbaland. I think me and him vibe really, really well," Luda said. "As soon as I hear his beats, they just automatically motivate me, because he strives to be different with the beats and I strive to do something different with the rhythms. I think that's like the perfect marriage right there."

"Number One Spot" and "Potion" will be co-directed by Cris' manager and business partner, Chaka Zulu, and the Fat Cats.

Ludacris: 11 Questions


He may have been born Christopher Bridges, but to the world at large he's known as Ludacris, the manic, hyper, hard edged, yet humorous MC who has managed to ride the line between bling, braggadocio, and thuggery with nimble aplomb.

Rising out of Atlanta in early 2000, Luda has managed to drop no less than five albums (four if you count Back For The First Time as a major label reissue of his self released debut Inconegro) in that short time. His latest effort, Red Light District, dropped on Tuesday December 7th.

Ever the busy man, Ludacris agreed to let us take advantage of his free time by asking our 11 Questions.

1) Who is your favorite superhero or super villain and why?

Ludacris: Dr. Evil from Austin Powers.

2) What is your favorite late night snack when you're in the studio or out on tour and why?

Ludacris: Ummm…damn! I know what that is…hold on, hold on. Probably like Fig Newtons or some sh!t [laughs].

3) Who or what are your non-musical influences and why?

Ludacris: Who are my non-musical influences? Garth Brooks maybe. I mean he's an influence as far as gettin' money is concerned, cuz goddamn! But naw, lemme think about that again. That's like a crazy question. Lemme see, who the hell…Oh! I'm trippin'. I'm thinkin' of somethin' totally different. I took the question the wrong way. Martin Luther King, of course, and Malcolm X. I would say Michael Jordan.
) What is the motto you live by?

Ludacris: "It'll work if you work it."

5) Which do you prefer more, performing music live or creating it in the studio and why?

Ludacris: If you don't create it, you can't perform it live. So goddamn it, both of those go hand-in-hand, as far as on my love list. They're right up there with each other.

6) Do you remember the first concert you ever went to?

Ludacris: I think it was a Geto Boys concert. The Geto Boys and Public Enemy. It was crazy.

7) Do you remember the first album you ever bought? And was it on CD, vinyl, cassette or 8-track?

Ludacris: UTFO, Roxanne Roxanne. It was on vinyl. [when asked additionally if he still had that original copy, Ludacris laughed] No. I don't know where the hell that sh!t is!

8) Name a musician that you've always wanted to work with but haven't yet and why.

Ludacris: Dr. Dre.

9) If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Ludacris: If I could change one thing about the music industry I would weed out all of the one hit wonders that come out with a second song.

10) What has been your most important professional accomplishment to date?

Ludacris: My Ludacris Foundation. Establishing that. It's a non-profit organization geared towards helping kids help themselves.

11) What has been your most memorable or most f@#ked-up gig to date and why?

Ludacris: Probably…most memorable, huh? When I first performed and I was like 13-years old. It was inside of a night club at a talent showcase and I won. Yeah, when I was 13. That was over a decade ago. I won some money.

Ask Ludacris his career plan and the high-energy artist with the soft-spoken demeanor wastes no time in setting you straight. “I’m in the game to change music. I think that’s what every artist should be in it for. I’m here to change the world or as Tupac said, spark the brain that changes the world. Set myself part. Be me.

One listen to the bumpin’ and bass blasted The Red Light District and it’s pretty apparent that this multi platinum artist has not only set a goal but also nailed it. Of course what else would you expect from this Dirty South ambassador?

Since he first exploded in TK Ludacris has emerged not only as a chart topper and hit maker (his Def Jam South cds Back For The First Time, Word of Mouf and Chicken N Beer have sold over 10 million copies) but also an influential label head, in demand cameo king and up and coming actor

A mere 4 short years in the game, Ludacris has proven that he has the tenacity and talent to push hip-hop music, and himself to new heights. O’ Reilly be damned. On The Red Light District Luda is taking no shorts and pulling no punches, lacing us with his buckwildin’ bombast.
The first taste of which is the propulsive “Get Back”. Throwing down a gully gantlet to anyone who dare step in his way or talk behind his back, Luda unleashes a volley of verbiage, delivered with his unmistakably nimble tongued flow. If folks needed any further proof as to Ludacris’s gift, then “Get Back’s call to arms shuts down any and all lingering doubts.

When you title your album after Amsterdam’s infamous open-air sex and drug market people are bound to ask questions about the inspiration. ” I think that with every album you have to give people a piece of you, something that they don’t know about; whether it’s personal or maybe a sound or idea they haven’t heard before. That’s something I set out to do this time. I know that the first thing people think of when they hear Red Light District is Amsterdam but I’m referring to a state of mind. Where there are no limitations to what I can say, or I can do. On this album I talk about everything. I get personal, about my emotions, money situations, my life. I’ve got metaphoric songs, club songs, songs for the women, party songs, songs about my experience traveling: just living my life. I really think this is my best album because it’s what I've always wanted to do.

Chief on the to do list for Ludacris is maintaining his fan base but still having the creative courage to reach out to potential new audiences. To establish a style yet not get stuck in a formulaic rut. From the jump Luda has shown himself to be flexible: able to hold it down with the grimiest of rappers and then seize the spotlight as he did on Usher’s #1 smash “Yeah”." I think one of the things that keeps me fresh and keeps the public interested in me is my versality. That’s why I’ve worked with so many artists over the years and why they want to work with me because I'm able to bring something different each time.

Ludacris's achievements extend beyond the confines of his own albums. As a pivotal member, both behind the mic and behind the scenes of the posse/label Disturbing Tha Peace, Luda has brought his expertise and enthusiasm to a roster of artists that include Fate, 1-20, Shawnna, Playaz Circle and Tity Boi. Along with his hands on participation in DTP, Ludacris oversees The Ludacris Foundation, a non-profit organization he created 3 years ago. The Ludacris Foundation mission is to help young people achieve their dreams through the encouragement of “Principles of Success.”, and to show young people in America they are the builders of their future. The Foundation reaches those goals by incorporating music and the arts to connect with young people by listening to their views, issues, and challenges. Giving back is something of utmost importance to Ludacris, who back in his days as a popular DJ on Atlanta’s Hot 97, often participated in community service outreach. ” I really enjoy working with people. I am one of those people who love helping people help themselves.

Ludacris has an answer for fans' strange questions

Ludacris has been interviewed so many times, it's ludicrous. So with his fourth album, Red Light District, debuting at No. 1 on the Billboard chart recently, we decided to ask some around-the-way folks what they want to know about the superstar rapper with the quicksilver tongue.

AP: What's up Luda. Sunny, a radio DJ on Hot 97 in New York City, had the following question: We've seen various artists begin as rappers, then later in their career switch to singing, like Andre 3000 and Queen Latifah. Are you next?

Ludacris: I like to call it 'ghetto harmonizing.' On the new album, there's a song called, Blue Berry Yum Yum. But it's nothing in the realm of any of those people just named that are singing on their albums. It's almost like I'm rapping and singing at the same time. I don't even know how to explain it. It's weird.

AP: There was a time in hip-hop when singing was considered wack. When did it become OK for MCs to sing?

Ludacris: When they've already proven they can rap ... like an Andre 3000. He's the perfect example. He rapped for five or six straight albums. So when you try to reinvent yourself and be creative and go to that next album, you can't blame him for (singing) because what more can you rap about. So taking it a step further, trying to harmonize or even sing, and people like it? He's captured a whole new audience. So I think it's cool. As long as you stay true to yourself.

AP: Have you ever serenaded a girl with a song?

Ludacris: I really can't say that I have. But maybe soon to come, who knows. Instead of serenading with singing, I'd probably rap to a girl. My first song was, 'I'm cool I'm bad I might be ten / But I can't survive without my girlfriend.' I've done some romantic things in my time. I hired somebody to put rose petals at (a girl's) feet for a day on her birthday.

AP: Wow! That's nice. Well, since we're talking about women, 29-year-old Courtney Patterson from Baltimore wants to know if you'd date a girl who had pimples and other physical imperfections, but a really big butt.

Ludacris: I have. I try not to judge. I let God judge. But I definitely love girls with beautiful feet. I have a foot fetish. Messed up feet man, sometimes she can trick me and just wear boots and not even show her feet. But when I see the feet, it's a wrap. And I don't like girls with hairy legs. I kind of like it to be nice and smooth. A little hair never hurt anybody. But when it gets a little too much, that's when it's not good anymore.

AP: I know the ladies love Ludacris. Even girls like 29-year-old Evelyn Leduc from New York, who wants to know the chances of a skinny white girl like her with small breasts and no butt getting into one of your videos?

Ludacris: It's extremely possible. There have been some. She just probably didn't see them. But I don't discriminate and I do make a conscious effort to pick some of the girls that are in my videos. It's just about the concept of the song and how I think they will fit into the whole realm of what's going on. My next video, I'm going to have a lot of overweight beautiful women in it. So it's only a matter of time before I just go ahead and get a bunch of skinny, no butt and breasts, white girls in the video.

AP: That would be am interesting way to create diversity and address the obesity problem in America. Would you run for public office?

Ludacris: I can't see myself doing that right now. But I would never say never. I look at myself as a leader, so obviously I would do that. Try to make some changes.

AP: Kevin Ryals, a 24-year-old from the Bronx, wants to know: If you ruled the world, what would you do?

Ludacris: The first thing I'd do is get Bush out of the presidency and bring Bill Clinton back. Besides that, I would deal with the debt. I would pay off the deficit. And of course I would deal with a lot of homeless issues, insurance issues for senior citizens. I would deal with the AIDS issue. I would just try to change what we feel is wrong today. There's no limit to that.

AP: Zayda Rivera, a 24-year-old writer and assistant editor with The Ave magazine, wants to know how your trip to Africa changed your perspective on life in the United States.

Ludacris: It just makes me really value everything that I have because there are a lot of unfortunate people out there — way more than people here. So it make me value life a lot more.

AP: What's the most memorable thing you saw in Africa?

Ludacris: Their projects compared to ours. It looked like a damn tent set up in the middle of a dirt road no bigger than my arm's reach. Thousands of them, in Soweto. I was there for a week, last year December. They were singing Stand Up. It was amazing enough that I went to a whole other continent, 16 hours away and they're singing my song. Crazy.

AP: Zayda also wants to know if this trip helped motivate your work with the Ludacris Foundation?

Ludacris: The motivation comes from how you feel good when you do good. It's that feeling and knowing that what you do is the right thing. Like when somebody gave you something when you were a kid, and how good you felt. Knowing that I can do that and make people feel that way, that's the motivation.

AP: It's good to feel like a kid every now and then. One 14-year-old kid from Brooklyn named Malik Turner wants to know what you're working on next.

Ludacris: After this album is the fifth album. It'll probably be called Release Therapy because it'll be my last album in my deal. Two movies coming up, one John Singleton produced called Hustle and Flow, a southern hood classic about a pimp trying to get into the music game. It sounds crazy, but it's gonna be a classic film. And there's a movie called Crash I did with Sandra Bullock, Brendan Frazier, Loretta Devine and Don Cheadle. Both movies are supposed to be coming out next year around summer time.

Ludacris Determined To Help Poor In Africa

American rapper LUDACRIS was so moved by the enthusiastic reception he received during a visit to Africa last year (03) he has determined to help Africans combat poverty.

The ONE MINUTE MAN star was astounded inhabitants in South Africa's Soweto area were familiar with his music - and shocked by the adverse conditions they face.

Ludacris says, "Their projects compared to ours. It looked like a damn tent set up in the middle of a dirt road no bigger than my arm's reach. Thousands of them, in Soweto.

"I was there for a week, last year in December (03). They were singing STAND UP. It was amazing enough that I went to a whole other continent, 16 hours away and they're singing my song. Crazy."

As for his charity, the Ludacris Foundation, he adds, "The motivation comes from how you feel good when you do good. It's that feeling and knowing that what you do is the right thing.

"Like when somebody gave you something when you were a kid, and how good you felt. Knowing that I can do that and make people feel that way, that's the motivation."


Ludacris Meets Fan With His Name On Her Teeth

Rap star LUDACRIS recently learned just how devoted his fans can be, when he met a girl with his name stitched into her teeth.

The AREA CODES rapper, real name CHRIS BRIDGES, met with a group of excited fans, but was taken aback when one of them smiled at him.

He tells BLENDER magazine, "This girl had 'Luda' stitched into the gold grill in her damn teeth. I think it was permanent. That was pretty wild."


Ludacris' Motorcycle Concern

Hip-hop star LUDACRIS has been hesitant about buying himself a motorcycle - because he's terrified he'll injure himself.

The STAND UP rapper admits he's constantly heard horror stories from pals about the two-wheeled vehicle, but he'd still like to own one.

He tells BLENDER magazine, "I want to get a motorcycle really bad. But every time I think about getting one, somebody's telling me about how they got hurt on theirs, and that's what stops me."

Despite his concerns about motorcycles, Ludacris, real name CHRIS BRIDGES enjoys riding ATV bikes - which rocker OZZY OSBOURNE suffered horrific injuries on last year (03).


Ludacris Raps To The Top


Fans of LUDACRIS have handed the rapper a terrific pre-Christmas gift by giving him the second American number one album of his career.

The hip-hop star's THE RED LIGHT DISTRICT sold 322,000 units in its first week on sale to enter the US charts at the top.

Teen queen LINDSAY LOHAN also had an impressive sales week on the BILLBOARD album charts - the actress' debut, SPEAK, entered the charts at number four, with sales of 261,000.

Common misspellings: "Ludakris", "Ludachris".

Ludacris ring tones


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