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Singers and Their Rapping Alter Egos

Submitted by on January 8, 2010 – 11:55 pm6 Comments
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Plenty of recording artists have parlayed their singing careers into acting careers. Now, it seems that quite a few singers want to be emcees. Find out what singers should keep their day jobs after the jump.

Omarion‘s tumultuous departure from Lil Wayne and Young Money Entertainment obviously put a chip on his shoulder. Maybe he thinks he can do better than the New Orleans native, because the “Ice Box” singer is now spitting. Check out his most recent video for “I Get It In” featuring Gucci Mane.

His album, Ollusion, is slated for a January 12 release.

Omarion, however, is not alone in turning from solo to flow.

Brandy/Bran’Nu

Singer Brandy has also turned in vocals for swag-tastic delivery. She appears as a rapper on two tracks for Timbaland‘s Shock Value 2. Brandy even changes her name to complete the transformation, rapping under the alias Bran’Nu. One of the tracks, “Meet In The Middle” is posted below.

I guess this type of career switch is not that unusual.

Tyrese/Black Ty

Tyrese did the same thing – including the name change – on his 2006 album. The aptly-titled Alter Ego featured the singing Tyrese as well as his rapping alter ego, Black Ty.

Beyonce explored a similar type of sound with her track, “Diva.”

Fergie famously spit a few verses on the Black Eyed Peas hit, “My Humps” (as well as quite a few songs on her solo album, The Duchess.)

Cassie was less successful with her foray into the rapping world, with “Long Way 2 Go.”

However, it seems that a more successful and lucrative switch is the one from rapping to singing.

T-Pain

Of course,  the one and only T-Pain switched hustles and never looked back. His first album, the properly-titled Rappa Ternt Sanga spawned record-breaking singles such as “I’m Sprung” and “I’m In Luv (Wit A Stripper).”

Snoop Dogg took over radio with his vocal performance of  “Sensual Seduction.”

Young Berg did a little singing on his track, “The Business,” featuring Casha.

Lil’ Wayne has also dabbled in singing over the past few years. He was probably most prominently featured as a singer on the Playaz Circle track, “Duffle Bag Boy.”

Of course, Kanye West shocked the entire industry by singing an entire album, 2008′s 808′s and Heartbreak. Despite the shock, however, the album went platinum and is considered a commercial and critical success.

What do all of our rappers-turned-singers have in common? One word: Auto-Tune.

Until they come out with auto-flow, our singers may not be quite as lucky with rap careers.

Which singers can actually rap? Why do rappers have an easier transition into singing? Which singers/rappers would you like to see switch musical careers next? Hit up the comments section to share your thoughts!

Main Image: SingersRoom

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6 Comments »

  • Chickabay says:

    I think Brandy did good if that was actually her rapping up there? was it? didnt sound like her. and i love the soung THE BUISNESS it never gets old…but kanye need to hang up singing and Omarion? oh wow he need to STOP rapping haha

  • Oops says:

    Well…T Pain had an amazing transition, nobody can argue with that. I mean, rapping had him flipping burgers in a McDonald’s in Tennessee, and singing made him a multi platinum artist. Besides that, boy can actually blow. The rest though….yeah.

  • Jimi Washington says:

    Rappers that can sing/Singers that can rap: Cee-Lo, Andre 3000, Mos Def, J Dilla, Lauryn Hill, Blu, Charles Hamilton(jk), T3, Baatin(R.I.P), Phonte, Erykah Badu, Dwele(I think), Amanda Diva…shit the list goes on

  • Jimi Washington says:

    @Oops
    T-Pain was from Tallahassee, Fl, not Tennessee

  • Frost says:

    Lauryn Hill! Yes, she is the number one rapping singer. Hands down.

    Oh, and T-Pain cannot “Blow”. He’s a horrible singer.

  • SHAY says:

    Everybody loves I GET IN BY Omarion
    one of the hottest tracks out right now
    and love Brandy.
    OMARION, TREY SONGZ,AND BRANDY

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