At 12 years old Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. was performing as the Tin Man at Eleanor McMain Secondary School in New Orleans. Now 26 and known as Lil Wayne, he’s preparing to perform the major hits from his 13 year career at the Pearl Theatre at the Palms Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
The Saturday, March 28 show comes just weeks before the anticipated debut of Lil Wayne’s seventh album, Rebirth, which is expected to follow in the Grammy nominated footsteps of The Carter III. Which Rebirth cuts will be the next Swagga Like Us or Lollipop?
Singer/songwriter Keri Hilson – the reported love squeeze of Lil Wayne – is also scheduled to perform with the rapper.
Hilson’s own album A Perfect World will be available March 24. Lil Wayne and Hilson performed together on Turnin’ Me On the third single from Hilson’s album released as a download on November 25, 2008. Turnin’ Me On hit number two on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and broke the top 20 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart.
Hip-hop star Nelly is pacting with “The Biggest Loser” producer 25/7 Productions to take a stab at the popular variety TV genre.
“Nelly’s Night in Vegas” is currently being pitched to networks as a weekly series that would feature Nelly performing and interacting with celebrities. 25/7’s Dave Broome is set to be the executive producer along with Nelly and “The Daily Show” co-creator Madeleine Smithberg.
“I was thinking about what was missing on TV, and when this idea came about, it made sense for me,” said Nelly, whose real name is Cornell Iral Haynes Jr. “We do have talkshows, but no one’s speaking from the pop culture perspective. Let’s get a little more pop, a little more edge, a little bit younger, and not look like you’re sitting in the principal’s office. As a performer, that’s the type of show you look forward to going on.”
Broome said the producers have reportedly already sealed a deal with Planet Hollywood to film the weekly show at its Las Vegas hotel; 25/7 is also in conversations with other sponsors about potential pacts.
“Nelly’s Night in Vegas” would be a talkshow-variety hybrid, Broome said, with a sidekick and house band, as well as guests and performances. Because it will shoot in LasVegas, there may also be an in-studio gaming element.
Nelly has sold more than 20 million albums throughout his career and has picked up several Grammy Awards. As an actor, Nelly appeared in feature “The Longest Yard” and in a multiepisode arc on CBS’ “CSI: NY.”
Nelly is the latest star to dabble in reviving the variety genre; CBS is working on a variety special starring musician John Mayer, while Fox is set to launch a show this spring starring the Osbournes.
Rap producer Marion “Suge” Knight has pleaded guilty to misdemeanor battery on February 17 for beating a woman in a Las Vegas parking lot last year.
Knight entered the plea in Las Vegas Justice Court in a deal that dismissed two felony drug charges and one felony coercion charge. The plea deal came a day after Knight was treated in an Arizona hospital for facial injuries suffered during a fight following the NBA All-Star Game. Knight was not charged in the incident.
Las Vegas police arrested Knight in August. Officers said they saw the 43-year-old co-founder of Death Row Records striking Melissa Isaac while holding a knife in a parking lot near the Las Vegas Strip.
Isaac, who identified herself to police as Knight’s girlfriend, was not stabbed, and was treated and released for her injuries. Knight was found to be carrying Ecstasy and hydrocodone, police said. Knight was facing mandatory probation and up to four years in a Nevada state prison on each of the drug charges.
Knight’s attorneys, David Chesnoff and Richard Schonfeld, have said they had evidence that would have defended Knight against the charges.
Justice of the Peace Eric Goodman ordered Knight to receive counseling and pay a $340 fine. He was ordered to report back to court in August for a status check.