2018 AprilMad on Yas Island

Tupac’s break-up letter to Madonna Up For Auction

The star has been fighting the release of the letter, which will hit the auction block in July

There wasn’t a jaw left undropped when Madonna revealed during an interview with Howard Stern back in 2015 that she and legendary rapper, Tupac Shakur had dated in the nineties. And it seems as if the break-up still haunts the material girl who last week lost her battle to have the letter Tupac wrote her from prison, in which he ended their relationship, be put up for auction.

First put on the auction block last year, bids reached over $100,000 (Dhs360,000) before an emergency court order filed by Madonna stopped the sale held by Gotta Have Rock and Roll, and also prevented a further 22 items of the singer’s being sold by her former personal assistant, Darlene Lutz.

In the letter, written when the California Love rapper was being held at Clinton Correctional Facility, Tupac wrote of the reason for the split, “Please understand my previous position as that of a young man with limited experience with [an] extremely famous sex symbol.” And he also asked that she come visit him, adding, “I don’t know how you feel about visiting me but if you could find it in your heart, I would love to speak face to face with you. It’s funny but this experience has taught me to not take time 4 granted.”

Last week, judge Justice Gerald Lebovitz allowed the auction to go ahead in July stating that Lutz had the rights to the items, with Madonna saying, “The fact that I have attained celebrity status as a result of success in my career does not obviate my right to maintain my privacy, including with regard to highly personal items.”

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Eye of the Tyga

Get tuned into Tyga as the Rack City rapper gets ready to play the MAD on Yas Island stage on April 24

As the 28-year-old Compton born and bred rap star hits the stage at Abu Dhabi nightclub MAD on Yas Island, we reveal some facts about Tyga to help you brush up on the talented hip hop artist…

1 His stage name Tyga is an acronym for ‘Thank You God Always’.
2 He had his own reality TV show called Kingin’ with Tyga on MTV2.
3 He also starred as Jamal in the third season of the MTV show, Scream.
4 His former fiancée, Blac Chyna, appeared in the video for his biggest hit, Rack City.
5 He dated reality TV star, Kylie Jenner for three years before their very public split in 2017.
6 He has a six-year-old son with Blac Chyna, called King Cairo.
7 He was spotted holding hands with Aussie rapper, Iggy Azalea at last week’s Coachella.
8 His 2014 split from his former label, Young Money Entertainment, was acrimonious when he accused them of holding his album “hostage” and not allowing him to release it.
9 He has collaborated with, among others, Chris Brown, Lil Wayne, French Montana, Bruno Mars, Rick Ross, Justin Bieber and Wiz Khalifa.
10 His highest peaking track on Billboard was 2012’s Rack City, which hit the number seven spot.

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The biggest singing stars you’ve never heard of

Four of the biggest names in international music and why you should start getting into them

The international music scene is as vibrant and popular as ever and here at MAD Yas Island we’ve long championed non-English speaking artists at our popular Friday night Abu Dhabi loves, Voyage.
With the night aimed at taking guests on a universal musical and cultural journey, we reveal some of our favourite international stars we think you should be downloading…

Agnez Mo
From: Indonesia
This multi-million-selling Jakarta-born star is a singer and actress with a whopping 10 albums to her name at the age of 31. She’s made forays into the international music scene with Coke Bottle, featuring T.I and Timbaland, and Boy Magnet. Plus, she’s the most awarded Indonesian singer ever!

From: Armenia
Armenian star Sirusho won her first award for singing aged nine, and was the first woman to represent Armenia at the Eurovision Song Contest in 2008. With five albums under her belt and a career spanning 20 years she has been nominated for a World Music Award three times and has won 29 other accolades.

From: Mexico
Formed in 1986, Mexican rock band, Mana are one of the most successful Latin American bands ever. Putting out music solely in Spanish, drummer Alex Gonzalez explains, “It’s more about sharing your culture, sharing your philosophy, your ideals, your music.”

From: South Korea
Formerly a member of the record-breaking K-pop girl group 2NE1, the South Korean singer and rapper is huge in her home country and across Asia. Dubbed by Time magazine as “the future of Kpop in America”, she also performed at the 2018 Winter Olympics closing ceremony at Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium.

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Sole Survivors

The urban music scene stars with their own line of sneakers

The relationship between the urban music scene and sneakers dates back to the early 80s when the likes of LL Cool J and Run DMC were rocking Air Jordan 1s and box fresh Adidas. And Run DMC even went on to pay the ultimate homage to their favourite sneakers in their 1986 track, My Adidas.
These days, hip hop and street style are inextricably linked, with a host of stars designing their own kicks, and some lines so rare they’ve become the stuff of legend among sneakerheads.
MAD Abu Dhabi reveals the rap stars rocking their own brands…

The rapper teamed up with Nike in 2015 to create the Nike Air Jordan 4 Eminem X Carhartt to celebrate the 15th anniversary of Mather’s Shady Records label. And these sneakers are pretty rare as they were only released (with a few exceptions) via an online auction.

Kanye West
Kanye’s Yeezy line of sneakers for Nike and Adidas has become the footwear of choice for the super-hip. And while some lines, such as the Yeezy Boost 350 V2 are pretty ubiquitous, if you manage to snag a rare ‘zebra’ version, you could be sitting on a gold mine.

Missy Elliot
The Supa Dupa Fly legend has enjoyed a lengthy collab with Adidas, and back in 2005 launched her Respect M.E shoes and clothing line.

Big Sean
Teaming up with Puma, the Detroit native this month launched a new custom suede shoe to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the brand’s famous suede line, featuring the rapper’s signature at the heel.

Pharrell Williams
The uber-producer has enjoyed a long relationship with Adidas, releasing his own Hu collection. Plus, last year, he collaborated on a pair of Dhs4,200 sneakers with Chanel, pair of which later topped Dhs36,000.

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The Flo Rida guide to living large

We be creeping on Flo Rida’s Instagram to pick up some tips and tricks on living the life of a gazillionaire R&B star

When you’ve sold over 80 million records worldwide, you’d be forgiven for having a teensy bit of a baller attitude. That’s why we can’t hate on one of our fave guys, Flo Rida, for living his best life on the ‘gram, especially as we’ve loved him ever since that epic sky dive over The Palm Jumeirah in his video for Wild Ones.
As he heads to the capital to perform at MAD Yas Island on Friday March 30, we checked in with the Low star’s Instagram to bring you Flo Rida’s guide to living large (80 million record sales not essential to achieving this lifestyle, but generally advisable)…

1 Caption: Perch on the hood of your supercar. Bonus points for being on the phone and having excellent dental work.

2 Caption: Dress like Batman villain Bane at the gym.

3 Caption: Rock the Gucci.

4 caption: When catching the Miami Heat, always be courtside.

5 caption: Employ someone just to hold open the door of your ride for Insta pics.

6 caption: Show off expensive dentistry again, this time in impressive chair.

7 caption: Keep it real – even in a Gucci headband – by having things like wheely bins and small family hatchbacks in the background of your pics.

8 caption: Travel everywhere by private jet. Even to the supermarket.

9 caption: Hang out with man-turned-meme, Salt Bae.

10 caption: Be generally low-key when it comes to accessorising.

Good luck being as awesome as Flo Rida!

Stay up to date with all the incredible acts coming to Mad Yas Island at Home

Source: Instagram @official_flo

The Boys Of British Hip Hop

West London collective, WSTRN, talk music and influences ahead of their Mad Yas Island gig

Hold tight all you fans of British hip hop and R&B, because purveyors of that distinctive sound, WSTRN will be gracing the MAD Yas Island stage on Friday March 23. Consisting of Akelle Charles, his cousin Haile and close pal Louis Rei, the West London trio boast an impressive musical heritage thanks to Akelle and Haile’s fathers, who were in the same reggae band. They also boast a celebrity fan base, with fellow Londoners Lily Allen and Rita Ora both championing the guys. So as the group get ready to wow their fans in the capital at MAD Abu Dhabi, we let the talented trio spill all on their music and influences in their own words. Over to you, boys…

On relatable rap: “I’m going to rap about personal stuff like relationships, pain that I’ve gone through, pain that someone else has gone through. Real life stuff that people can connect to. So they can hear the song and they’re like, ‘Oh my god, this guy is talking about me’.” – Akelle

On London life: “What’s unique about West London is you can walk down a lovely high street and you’ll take a turn and suddenly you’re on a council estate. So you’ll have friends from different walks of life. You just get to experience things from a different viewpoint. It rounds you as a person.”
Louis Rei

On keeping it real: “The story of us coming together is so organic… We was all doing our own thing prior to this. You can’t fake realness, if that makes sense.” – Louis Rei

On their influences: “Lauryn Hill, Brandy, Cassidy, Fabolous, Jada – ​old school stuff as well.” – Akelle

“I’m more of a Marvin Gaye, Evelyn King kinda guy.” – Louis Rei

“Nas, Jay Z, Laila Hathaway; I like some of the new heads like Young Thug and Future too, though.” – Haile

Sources: bbc.com; standard.co.uk; complex.com

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Name checking the biggest stars in hip hop

How some of our URBN favourites earned their names

Our URBN nights have rightly gained a reputation that’s made MAD Abu Dhabi number one among the nightclubs in Abu Dhabi for fans of hip hop and rap. And our world-class DJs on the decks would be the first to admit that the artists they play – along with our always up for it crowd – are what make our nights so special. Having enjoyed incredible live performances from the likes of Tinie Tempah, Ty Dolla Sign and Kid Ink, we were keen to get to know the inspiration behind some of the hottest names on the URBN scene …

Ty Dolla $ign
“My homie Ace just started calling me ‘Dolla Sign’ every time he saw me so I named myself Ty Dolla $ign because you know, I’m young and I’m rich.”

The American star’s name is derived from the character Neo in The Matrix after his producer friend Big D Evans told him “You see music like Neo sees the Matrix.”

Waka Flocka Flame
“I’ve got a Fozzie [bear from The Muppets] chain, because when I was younger, me and my cousin used to watch it and he started calling me ‘Waka’ [after Fozzie’s catchphrase].” Rapper Gucci Mane later added the ‘Flame’.

Snoop Dogg
The laid back rapper was nicknamed ‘Snoopy’ by his mother when he was a child.

French Montana
“France had tried to take over Morocco, not in my time obviously, but there are still influences there from the French culture. So when I came over here [U.S.], the name French just kind of stuck with me. Then the Montana thing I just picked it up [from Scarface’s] Tony Montana.”

A$AP Rocky
A$AP stands for Always Strive And Prosper, while Rocky is the nickname his mother gave him growing up. Even cooler, his real name is Rakim, named after the legendary rapper.

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