Friday, May 17, 2013

May 17: R&B singer-songwriter and record producer Kandi Burruss – AKA Kandi & Kandi Girl – is 37-years-old today.


Kandi was born on May 17, 1976 in Atlanta, Georgia. Her first major public appearance was on BET's Teen Summit. Kandi  is now known as the no-nonsense housewife on Bravo’s hit reality series The Real Housewives of Atlanta.

She is also a former member of the group Xscape from Atlanta. Xscape was a female American R&B group that originally started out as a quintet and then became a quartet. The group had a string of hit songs during the 1990s. The original lineup of the group consisted of Kandi, along with sisters LaTocha Scott and Tamika Scott-Byas, Tameka "Tiny" Cottle, and Tamera Coggins.

L to r: LaTocha Scott, Tameka Scott, Tameka "Tiny" Cottle, and Kandi
After the disbanding of Xscape, Burruss began to focus on production and songwriting. In 1999, Burruss teamed with bandmate Tameka "Tiny" Cottle to score the international number one hit "No Scrubs" for TLC. The single received a Grammy for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal, MTV Video Music Award, Billboard Music Award and Soul Train Music Award.

That same year, Burruss scored a hit for Destiny's Child on their second album, "The Writing's on the Wall.” "Bills, Bills, Bills,” also topped the Billboard "Hot 100" chart & was followed by their second single "Bug a Boo,” also penned by Burruss.

Kandi the worked with then newcomer Pink by penning her debut single "There You Go" off Pink's debut album "Can't Take Me Home.”
Burruss was the first African-American woman ever to win ASCAP's Songwriter of the Year award in 2000, winning in the Rhythm & Soul category. She won for songwriting credits such as Destiny Child's "Bills, Bills, Bills" and TLC's No Scrubs.

Kandi's writing credits continued to grow by penning for the likes of Mariah Carey, Alicia Keys, Boyz II Men, Da Brat, NSYNC, N-Toon, Solo, Usher, Fantasia, Mýa, Joe, MC Lyte and Whitney Houston.

In early 2006, Kandi began work on her second album. The first single "I Need" was a promotional single only. It featured rap duo 8Ball and MJG. Another song, "Keep It Gangsta" featuring rapper Lil Scrappy, was also set to appear on the album, although it was never released as a promo single. Failing to generate interest, plans for the new album were temporarily put on hold.

Kandi has since written and executive produced "Tardy For The Party" for Real Housewives of Atlanta co-star Kim Zolciak's debut album. The song was made available to iTunes on September 1, 2009.

Burruss has teamed with Atlanta female rapper Rasheeda to form the duo Peach Candy, signed to D-Lo Entertainment. Their first single, entitled "Bam," got little airplay and plans for this album were also put on hold. PeachCandy EP was released on iTunes with a 5-track lineup.

In 2009, Kandi joined the second season of the Bravo reality series, The Real Housewives of Atlanta and went back to work on her second album, then titled B.L.O.G.. Her debut EP, the Fly Above EP, was released on October 29, 2009. The album was released on her own record label Kandi Koated Entertainment.

The album features appearances by Rick Ross, Rasheeda, Gucci Mane and possibly Missy Elliott. Despite speculation that the lead single would be either "I Like Him" featuring Rick Ross and Rasheeda or "Trade Him In" featuring Gucci Mane, the lead single, "Fly Above,” was released on October 6, 2009. It was later dubbed a promo single.

(Continued below video and Amazon portals ...)

(Press album cover for direct link to the entire Amazon Website):

In late 2008, Kandi began a relationship with Ashley "A.J." Jewell and after dating several months, the couple became engaged to be married in January 2009. In June 2009, Burruss and Jewell called off the engagement and later dissolved their romantic relationship. Less than four months after they separated, Jewell was killed outside of a club's parking lot in a fight on the night of October 2, 2009.

In late 2010, Kandi released Kandi Koated with Asylum Records. Her album includes tracks such as "Me and U," "Fly Above," and "Haven't Loved Right." Many songs on her album are inspired by her late ex-fiance AJ. The lead single "Leave U" debuted at number 89 on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.
Kandi and three of her friends started a "sex and relationship" webshow on Ustream. So far, they have had numerous guests including Kat Stacks, Tionna Smalls, Grand Hustle, Jazzy Pha, Young Joc, and many more. The show is now a television reality series.


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