Lil Mama
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Lil Mama
Lil Mama
Lil Mama.jpg
Lil Mama in 2008
Background information
Niatia Jessica Kirkland
Born (1989-10-04) October 4, 1989 (age 29)
Harlem, New York City, New York, U.S.
OriginBrooklyn, New York City, New York, U.S.
GenresHip hop, Contempory R&B and Soul, Rap
Rapper, singer, songwriter, dancer, actress
LabelsJive, RCA
Chris Brown, T-Pain, Mishon Ratliff, Avril Lavigne, TLC (band)

Niatia Jessica Kirkland (born October 4, 1989), better known by her stage name Lil Mama, is an American hip hop recording artist from Brooklyn, New York City, New York. A rapper, singer, songwriter, dancer and actress, Lil Mama was also a talent show judge for seven seasons on America's Best Dance Crew. She experienced Billboard placement with the release of her debut album, VYP (Voice of the Young People), which spawned the hit single "Lip Gloss". She was also cast for the role of Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes, in the VH1 biographical film CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story, which aired in October 2013. Lil Mama has sold over 1 million records worldwide.

Life and career

1989–2005: Early life

Lil Mama was born Niatia Jessica Kirkland in Harlem, in 1989. She was raised in Brooklyn, New York where she attended Edward R. Murrow High School. She is of Trinidad and Jamaican descent. Kirkland is the third child and eldest daughter of eight children. Being the eldest daughter of eight children, she acquired her nickname "lil mama".[1] Kirkland faced personal and financial struggles at an early age. As one of eight children, she started to express herself artistically through poetry and dance. She was influenced by Mc Lyte, Missy Elliot, Lauren Hill and her parents. Her Mother Tara Kirkland was a talented singer and her Father Allen Brunner was a muscian. Her mother Tara, died on December 15, 2007 following a four-year battle with breast cancer.

2006–08: Career beginnings and VYP (Voice of the Young People)

In 2006, Kirkland signed a recording contract with Jive Records. In 2007, she was featured in Dr. Luke's remix of Avril Lavigne's song, "Girlfriend".[2] Her first studio album VYP (Voice of the Young People) was released in late April 2008. The album spawned four singles: "Lip Gloss", "G-Slide (Tour Bus)", "Shawty Get Loose" and "What It Is (Strike a Pose)". The album sold 19,000 copies in the first week, debuting at number 25 on the Billboard 200. Lil Mama served as a judge on the competitive dance contest television series America's Best Dance Crew. She joined the judges's team in 2008 at the age of nineteen.


Since the release of her first album, Lil Mama has been in the studio working on new music. She released the singles "Dough Boy" featuring Mishon, "On & On & On", and "NYNYLALA" featuring Snoop Dogg. She has since released two singles entitled "Scrawberry" and "Hustler Girl" featuring Clyde McKnight. In 2009, she announced the title of her proposed new album as Voice Of The Young People: I Am That, although this has not been released.[3]

At the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, Lil Mama came onstage while Jay-Z and Alicia Keys performed "Empire State of Mind". While Jay-Z was ending his final verse, Lil Mama left her seat in the audience, got onto the stage, and started bobbing her head to the beat. Jay-Z was surprised but continued to perform. Right before this moment, Beyonce had even tried to hold her from going up. Jay-Z patted Lil Mama on the leg to fall back, jokingly telling her, "you T-Paining now," a reference to a similar incident two months earlier when T-Pain jumped onstage with Jay-Z at Summer Jam during his performance of "D.O.A.". At the end of the performance, Lil Mama came to foreground and posed alongside Jay-Z and Keys. She later clarified that she "would never ... try to disrespect Jay-Z or take a moment that someone has created it and try to relive it. I'm too original for that and I respect him too much for that."[4] In October 2009, she appeared in cycle 13 of America's Next Top Model with Benny Ninja.

On October 7, 2012, RCA Music Group announced it was disbanding J Records along with Arista Records and Jive Records. With the shutdown, Lil Mama (and all other artists previously signed to these three labels) would release future material on the RCA Records brand. However Lil Mama had left Jive Records before the transition to RCA, she stated in an interview that she was not in the right space to make music and decided to take a hiatus.[5][6]Voice Of The Young People: I Am That, a proposed album would have had guest appearances including Soulja Boy, Khalil, Angel Haze, LoLa Monroe, Teyana Taylor, Trina, Keke Palmer, Nas, Chris Brown among others. Unfortunately due to her leaving Jive, the Album never saw a release and instead she released few singles recorded with Zomba Records directly online for her fans. The other songs with the featured artist were never recorded and were disbanded. This made Lil Mama an independent artist.

2013-17: VH1's TLC: CrazySexyCool and "Sausage" video

In October 2013, Lil Mama starred as Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes in the VH1 TLC biographical film CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story, which aired on October 21, 2013, alongside Keke Palmer and Drew Sidora, who played Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas and Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins, respectively.[7][8]

In November 2014, Lil Mama was featured in MC Lyte's first music video in years, "Ball". The music video also featured artist AV and was released on November 13, 2014. Lil Mama appeared in the video, providing rap verses, along with some of her signature dance moves.[9]

In May 2015, Lil Mama released the video for her song, "Sausage".[10] The video incorporates many themes, including the Sausage movement on Vine,[11] Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, voguing, Mary J. Blige, Caribbean love, and community fun. It immediately went viral, with more than 3 million views in its first week, topping the Billboard Music + Twitter charts.[12] It held itself steady in the top 20 well into June, with numerous dance studio and dance jams featuring choreography and routines on social media danced to the Sausage track.[13][13][14]

The track was not made available for sale, being absent from both iTunes and Assumed to be due to all the inspirations referenced and sampled (the track listed on the YouTube video is actually "Mona Lisa" by Slick Rick[10]) the track was only available on the Lil Mama SoundCloud account only.[15] The video also opted out of advertising revenue on YouTube, with no ads appearing before the music video.[10]

In June 2015, Lil Mama was listed as a featured speaker at an event sponsored by BET and the Hip Hop Sisters Network. Titled "Women, Wealth and Relationships," the event also featured guest speakers MC Lyte, Shanice and Elise Neal, as well as main speaker and financial advisor specialist Lynn Richardson.[16] The event, held on June 27, 2015, focuses on empowering black women both in their lives and financially, providing answers on such tough issues as men, money and family relationships. On March 10, 2016, Lil Mama was arrested while driving 38 mph in a 25 mph speed zone. The incident took place in Harlem around 4 AM. Officers conducted an investigation and Lil Mama's driver's license was revoked.

On August 28, 2017, Mama starred in the television movie When Love Kills: The Falicia Blakely Story, based on a true story.[17] It premiered to 1.6 million viewers, ranking as TV One's #1 original movie premiere of all time among all key demos.[18]

2018- Shoe Game, Growing Up Hip Hop, and present

On May 3, 2018, Lil Mama released a Single titled Shoe Game. The Single was available everywhere online for Sale, Streaming, and digital Download. The Single was later followed by a music video directed by Walu, on the 25th of May 2018. It Became a YouTube Exclusive, following a million and twenty thousand views within five months. Lil Mama went on to promote the single on TRL A.M. morning show in late September informing that this will lead to a future album.

On September 9, 2018, Lil Mama was Presenter for the 2018 BET Special Black Girls Rock! she had the privilege to work with artist such as Queen Latifah, Janet Jackson, Mary J. Blige, etc. She presented the award to Shanay Thompson for her M.A.D. GIRLS Celebrated by Coca-Cola. On September 25, 2018 Entertainment Tonight announced that Lil Mama would join the cast of the The CW All American (TV series) as a supporting Character Chynna Q. this will be her first acting role since the Falicia Blakely Story.

On October 4, 2018, Lil Mama appeared on T.V. One's morning talk show Sister Circle to discuss her latest single Shoe Game, and her being Casted On Growing Up Hip Hop: Atlanta. There she stated that she will be joining the cast as a regular due to her move to Atlanta to work on her upcoming album that Bow Wow (rapper) will be assisting to co-produce and allow the show to document her journey as well as her experiences.On the Show she also got to discuss her acting career, as well as her taking vocal lessons from R&B Singer Kelly Price, her singing will debut on the intended album.

On October 18, 2018, Growing Up Hip Hop: Atlanta premiered for the continuation of its second season. Lil Mama made her debut on the first episode alongside Kiyomi Leslie and Maisika as replacement for cast members who quit.Lil Mama stars alongside with her Mentor and new manager MC Lyte. On November 14, 2018, Lil Mama made her debut appearance on the CW's All American (TV series) in its fifth episode. Her role is an upcoming Hip Hop artist Chynna Q. who is dating one of the protagonists of the show's father, a Wealthy and Successful Mogul who can help her career.


Studio albums

List of studio albums, with selected chart positions and sales figures
Title Album details Peak chart positions Sales


VYP (Voice of the Young People) 25 5 3


List of mixtapes
Title Album details
Take Me Back
  • Released: December 18, 2015[23]
  • Label: Self-released
  • Format: Streaming


Year Song Peak chart positions[24] Certifications Album



2007 "Lip Gloss" 10 36 40 16 -- -- -- 121 VYP (Voice of the Young People)
"G-Slide (Tour Bus)" -- -- -- -- -- -- 8 --
2008 "Shawty Get Loose"
(featuring Chris Brown and T-Pain)
10 43 -- 13 41 38 3 57
" L. I. F. E." _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
"What It Is (Strike a Pose)"
(featuring T-Pain)
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
2009 "Truly in Love"

(Featuring Peter Toh & Fanny Pak)

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
2010 "Doughboy"[37]
(Ft.Mishon Ratliff)
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Non-album singles
"Hustler Girl"[38]
(featuring Shawn Marvel, Mitch and A Dot)
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
2011 "Scrawberry" _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ Failed Album

Voice of the Young People: I Am That (VYP: I Am That)


(Featuring Snoop Dogg)

"On & On & On"
2015 "Sausage"[39] -- -- _ -- -- -- -- Take Me Back
2016 "Too Fly"
"Memes featuring Kadar"
"West Coast Lover"
"It Takes Two" (featuring Arnstar)
"Take Me Back"
2018 "Shoe Game" -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Non-Album Single

As featured artist

Title Year Album
"Girlfriend (Dr. Luke Remix)"[2]
(Avril Lavigne featuring Lil Mama)
2007 The Best Damn Thing
(Yahaira featuring Lil Mama)
2010 Non-album singles
(Prince Malik featuring Jim Jones and Lil Mama)
"call me when you're lonely"

(Drake Bell feat. Lil Mama)

2018 Non-Album Single

Guest appearances

List of non-single guest appearances, with other performing artists, showing year released and album name
Title Year Other performer(s) Album
"Amazed" 2008 Vanessa Hudgens Identified
"Block Party" 2009 Lisa Lopes, Clyde McKnight Eye Legacy
"Turn it Up" 2009 Mishon Ratliff,

Roscoe Dash

"Video Chat" 2010 College Boyys Spring Break
"Big Boy Rims"
"Ball" 2014 MC Lyte Legend


Year Title Role Notes
2013 CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story Lisa "Left-Eye" Lopes VH1 Biopic
2017 When Love Kills: The Falicia Blakely Story Falicia Blakely TV One Biopic
2019 All In Keema Post-Production


Year Title Role Notes
2005 The Drop Herself Guest Spot
2007 Dear Mama: A BET Mother's Day Herself Guest
MTV VMA Pre Show Royale Herself Performer
What Perez Sez Herself Guest
2007-13 BET Hip Hop Awards 2007 Herself performer
BET Hip Hop Awards 2013 Herself Guest
2007-18 MTV: Total Request Live Herself

2 episodes

Performer & Guest
2008-12 America's Best Dance Crew Herself Judge
2008-15 BET Awards 2008 Herself Nominee
BET Awards 2013 Herself Guest
BET Awards


Herself Performer
2008 Live with Kelly and Ryan Herself Guest
Jimmy Kimmel Live! Herself Guest
The Teen Choice Awards 2008 Herself Winner & Presenter
2008-2009 FNMTV Presents: A Miley-Sized Surprise... New Year's Eve 2009 Herself Co-Host
2009 Talk Stoop Herself Guest
America's Next Top Model Herself Dancer & Recording Artist
The Bonnie Hunt Show Herself Guest
MTV Cribs Herself Presenter
2009-11 MTV Video Music Awards 2009 Herself Guest
MTV Video Music Awards Herself Guest
2010 The Mo'Nique Show Herself Guest
2011 Style It Rich Herself Recording Artist
2012 Huff Post BV 365 Herself Guest
2012-13 Soul Train Awards 2012 Herself Performer
Soul Train Awards 2013 Herself Guest
2013 The Wendy Williams Show Herself Guest
American Music Awards Herself Performer
2014 Just Keke Herself Guest
2015 The Real Herself Performer
2017 Hip-Hop Squares Herself Guest
2018 MTV's

The Challenge: Champs Vs. Stars

Herself Contestant
BET Presents

Black Girls Rock! 2018

Herself Presenter
Sister's Circle Herself Guest
All American Chynna Q. Supporting Role
2018-present Growing Up Hip Hop: Atlanta Herself Main cast

Awards and nominations

BET Awards

Year Nominee/work Award Result
2008 Herself Best Female Hip-Hop Artist Nominated
2009 Nominated

MTV Video Music Awards

Year Nominee/work Award Result
2007 "Lip Gloss" Monster Single of the Year Nominated

MTV Asia Awards

Year Nominee/work Award Result
2008 "Girlfriend (Remix)" Best Hook Up [42] Nominated

Teen Choice Awards

Year Nominee/work Award Result
2007 Herself Choice Rap Artist Nominated
"Lip Gloss" Choice Summer Song Won
2008 "Shawty Get Loose" Choice Music Hook Up Nominated
Choice Rap/Hip-Hop Track Won
Herself Choice TV Personality: Randy Jackson's America's Best Dance Crew Nominated

Vibe Awards

Year Nominee/work Award Result
2007 "Lip Gloss" Ringtone of the Year [43] Nominated


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on May 14, 2013. Retrieved 2012.
  2. ^ a b "Girlfriend - Single". iTunes. Retrieved 2014.
  3. ^ "Lil' Mama Reveals New Album Title". 2009-07-20. Retrieved .
  4. ^ Bennett, Deborah (23 September 2009). "Jay-Z Compares Lil Mama To Kanye". Radio One. Retrieved 2012.
  5. ^ "RCA's New Executive Team Named Under CEO Peter Edge Amid Layoffs (Update)". 2011-08-23. Retrieved .
  6. ^ "Radio Industry News, Music Industry Updates, Arbitron Ratings, Music News and more!". FMQB. Retrieved .
  7. ^ "Original TV Shows, Reality TV Shows". VH1. 2016-02-09. Retrieved .
  8. ^ Arbeiter, Michael (2013-02-20). "TLC Movie (Band, Not Channel) Casts Lil Mama, Keke Palmer, and a Third Human". Retrieved .
  9. ^ "MC Lyte - Ball ft. Lil Mama & AV". YouTube. 2014-11-13. Retrieved .
  10. ^ a b c "Lil Mama "Sausage" (WSHH Exclusive - Official Music Video)". YouTube. 2015-05-28. Retrieved .
  11. ^ "#sausagemovement - Vine". Archived from the original on 2016-03-14. Retrieved .
  12. ^ Trevor Anderson. "Lil Mama's 'Sausage' Sizzles on Billboard + Twitter Top Tracks Chart". Billboard. Retrieved .
  13. ^ a b "SAUSAGE x KENYA CLAY CHOREOGRAPHY x #LilMama #SausageMovement". YouTube. 2015-06-10. Retrieved .
  14. ^ [1][dead link]
  15. ^ "IamLilMama | Iam Lil Mama | Free Listening on SoundCloud". Retrieved .
  16. ^ "Tickets | Hip Hop Sisters Network". 2014-06-20. Retrieved .
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^ "Lil' Mama - Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved 2015.
  20. ^ "Lil' Mama - Chart History: R&B/Hip-Hop Albums". Billboard. Retrieved 2015.
  21. ^ "Lil' Mama - Chart History: Rap Albums". Billboard. Retrieved 2015.
  22. ^ "VYP - Voice of the Young People by Lil' Mama". iTunes Store. Apple. Retrieved 2015.
  23. ^ "Premiere: Stream Lil Mama's 'Take Me Back' Mixtape". 2015-12-18. Retrieved .
  24. ^ "Music News, Reviews, Articles, Information, News Online & Free Music". Retrieved .
  25. ^ "Lil Mama - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved .
  26. ^ "Lil' Mama - Chart history". Billboard. 2008-04-05. Retrieved .
  27. ^ "Lil' Mama - Chart history". Billboard. 2008-03-22. Retrieved .
  28. ^ "Lil Mama - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved .
  29. ^ "Lil Mama - Chart history". Billboard. 2007-07-28. Retrieved .
  30. ^ "Lil' Mama - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved .
  31. ^ "Lil Mama - Chart history". Billboard. Retrieved .
  32. ^ Steffen Hung. "Australian charts portal". Retrieved .
  33. ^ "Lil' Mama - Chart history". Billboard. 2008-04-05. Retrieved .
  34. ^ Steffen Hung. "New Zealand charts portal". Retrieved .
  35. ^ Peaks in the United Kingdom:
  36. ^ Searchable Database. RIAA. Accessed October 29, 2007.
  37. ^ "Dough Boy (feat. Mishon)". iTunes. Retrieved 2014.
  38. ^ "Hustler Girl - Single Lil Mama". iTunes. Retrieved 2014.
  39. ^ "Lil Mama Turned a Meme into a Totally Bonkers Single". Metro Lyrics. 29 May 2015. Retrieved 2015.
  40. ^ "Sexiest (feat. Lil Mama)". iTunes. Retrieved 2014.
  41. ^ "Billionaire (feat. Jim Jones & Lil Mama) - Single". iTunes. Retrieved 2014.
  42. ^ Lil Mama got a new hair style. The Glamorous Life. 2014. Retrieved 2014.[permanent dead link]
  43. ^ "Vibe". p. 53. Retrieved .

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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