Foxy Brown (rapper)
Foxy Brown, 1998.
|Birth name||Inga DeCarlo Fung Marchand|
|Born||[nb 1] September 6, 1979
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Origin||Brooklyn, New York, U.S.|
|Occupations||Rapper, model, actress|
|Labels||Def Jam (1996-2007)
E1 Music (2007-present)
Black Hand Entertainment (2007-present)
Black Rose (2004-present) Bad Boy (2002-2003)
|Associated acts||Fox-5, Gravy, The Firm, Rick Ross, Jay-Z, Lady Saw, Capone-N-Noreaga, Nicki Minaj|
Inga DeCarlo Fung Marchand (born September 6, 1978), better known by her stage name Foxy Brown, is an American rapper, model, and actress. She was best known for her solo work, as well as numerous collaborations with other artists and her brief stint as part of hip hop music group The Firm. Raised in Brooklyn, New York, her father Keith Stahler abandoned the family at a young age to pursue his career at ERAC records. Her albums include Ill Na Na in 1996, followed by Chyna Doll in 1999, and Broken Silence in 2001. She also performed on the 1997 self-titled album by the Firm, the only album to be released by that group to date. Throughout her career, Brown has held an extensive arrest record and served some time in jail.
After 2002, she continued recording verses for herself and other artists but did not release any albums; she left the Def Jam label in 2003, thus canceling the release of her Ill Na Na 2 album. However, she returned to the label in January 2005 after then-Def Jam president and CEO Jay-Z signed her back to begin work on her new album Black Roses. In December 2005, she began suffering from hearing loss, which put her career on hiatus until the next summer, a few months after surgery. A fourth studio album, which originally was a mixtape, was released in May 2008 following many delays spawned by a jail sentence that Brown served for assault.
Music career 
Early career (1994–97): Ill Na Na, The Firm 
While still a teenager, Brown won a talent contest in the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York. Members of the production team Trackmasters who were working on LL Cool J's Mr. Smith album were in attendance that night and were impressed enough to let Brown rap over "I Shot Ya." She followed this debut with appearances on several RIAA platinum and gold singles from other artists, including remixes of songs "You're Makin' Me High" by Toni Braxton. Brown was also featured on the soundtrack to the 1996 film The Nutty Professor, on the songs "Touch Me Tease Me" by Case and "Ain't No Nigga" by Jay-Z. The immediate success led to a label bidding war at the beginning of 1996, and in March, Def Jam Records won and added the then 17-year old-rapper to their roster. In 1996, Foxy Brown, Lil' Kim, Da Brat, and Total got together for the recording of Bad Boy's remix of "No One Else." This was the only track that Lil' Kim and Foxy Brown appeared on together, the two were friends at the time.
In 1996, Brown released her debut album Ill Na Na to mixed reviews but strong sales. The album sold over 109,000 copies in the first week, and debuted at #7 on the Billboard 200 album charts. The album was heavily produced by Trackmasters, and featured guest appearances from Jay-Z, Blackstreet, Method Man, and Kid Capri. The album went on to go platinum and launched two hit singles: "Get Me Home" (featuring Blackstreet) and "I'll Be" (featuring Jay-Z).
Following the release of Ill Na Na, Brown joined fellow New York-based hip hop artists, Nas, AZ, and Nature to form the supergroup known as The Firm. The album was released via Aftermath Records and was produced and recorded by the collective team of Dr. Dre, The Trackmasters, and Steve "Comissioner" Stout of Violator Entertainment. An early form of The Firm appeared on "Affirmative Action", from Nas' second album, It Was Written. A remix of the song, and several group freestyles were in the album, Nas, Foxy Brown, AZ, and Nature Present The Firm: The Album. The album entered the Billboard 200 album chart at #1 and sold over half a million records and is RIAA certified gold.
In March 1997, she joined the spring break festivities hosted by MTV in Panama City, Florida, among other performers including rapper Snoop Dogg, pop group The Spice Girls, and rock band Stone Temple Pilots. Later, she joined the Smokin' Grooves tour hosted by the House of Blues with the headlining rap group Cypress Hill, along with other performers like Erykah Badu, The Roots, OutKast, and The Pharcyde, the tour set to begin in Boston, Massachusetts in the summer of 1997. However, after missing several dates in the tour, she left it.
1998–99: Chyna Doll 
Chyna Doll was released in January 1999. It sold 173,000 copies in its opening week. However, its sales quickly declined in later weeks. The album's lead single, "Hot Spot", failed to enter the top 50 of the Billboard pop charts, as did the follow-up single, "I Can't" (featuring Total). Chyna Doll has been certified platinum after surpassing one million copies in shipments.
2000–03: Broken Silence and Ill Na Na 2: The Fever 
In 2001, Brown released Broken Silence. The single "BK Anthem" showcased Brown changing to a "street" image and giving a tribute to her hometown, Brooklyn, and to famous rappers such as The Notorious B.I.G. and Jay-Z. The first single from the album was "Oh Yeah", which featured her then-boyfriend, Jamaican dancehall artist Spragga Benz. The track "Na Na Be Like" was produced by Kenya Fame Flames Miller and Nokio from Dru Hill. "Na Na Be Like" was also on the Blue Streak Soundtrack.
In the same year, Brown recorded a song for the action-comedy film Rush Hour 2, Blow My Whistle, which is a collaboration with Japanese-American singer-songwriter Hikaru Utada, and was written by Utada herself alongside Pharrel Williams and Chad Hugo. The song is included on Def Jam's Rush Hour 2 Soundtrack, which peaked the 11th spot on both the Billboard 200 and the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and also the 1st on the Top Soundtracks. "Blow My Whistle" was produced by The Neptunes.
In 2002, Brown returned to the music scene briefly with her single "Stylin'", whose remix featured rappers Birdman, her brother Gavin, Loon, and N.O.R.E.Malkam Dior was to be the first single from her upcoming album Ill Na Na 2: The Fever. The next year, she was featured on DJ Kayslay's single "Too Much for Me" from his Street Sweeper's Volume One Mixtape. She also appeared on Luther Vandross' final studio album Dance with My Father. That April, Brown appeared on popular New York radio DJ Wendy Williams' radio show, and revealed the details of her relationships with Lyor Cohen, president of Def Jam Recordings at the time, and Sean "P. Diddy" Combs. Brown accused both of illegally trading her recording masters. She also announced that Cohen shelved her long awaited fourth album Ill Na Na 2: The Fever over personal disagreements. Therefore, "Stylin'" was released on the compilation album The Source Presents: Hip Hop Hits Vol. 6 in December 2002.
2007–08: Brooklyn's Don Diva 
Brown signed to Koch Records in August 2007. Brooklyn's Don Diva, was released as a street album on May 13, 2008 after many delays triggered by her prison sentence. It is compiled of many tracks previously un-released from her shelved albums. The album peaked at #83 on the Billboard 200 chart, #8 on the Independent Albums chart, and #5 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.
Personal life 
She is of mixed Afro-Trinidadian and Asian (Chinese) descent. Around 2001, she was engaged to Spragga Benz. Brown suffered hearing loss from May 2005 to June 2006. During that time, she opted not to wear a hearing aid, and she had someone tap beats on her shoulder while she recorded music. In June 2008, rumors that Brown was engaged to rapper Rick Ross began to circulate after Brown and Ross were together on a cover photo of Hip Hop Weekly magazine. After the publication of that issue, Ross stated that he was not engaged to anyone.
Legal troubles 
Assault on hotel workers 
On January 25, 1997, Brown spat on two hotel workers in Raleigh, North Carolina when they told her they did not have an iron available. When she missed a court appearance, an arrest warrant was issued and she finally turned herself in on April 30, 1997. She eventually received a 30-day suspended sentence and was ordered to perform 80 hours of community service.
Obscene language on stage 
On July 3, 1999, Brown was escorted off the stage by police at a concert in Trinidad and Tobago for using obscene language, but was neither charged nor arrested. In 2000, she announced she was suffering from depression and entered rehab at Cornell University Medical College for an addiction to prescription painkillers, in particular, morphine, at one point stating that she could not perform or make records unless she was on the drug.
Car crash; driving without a license 
On March 6, 2000, Brown crashed her Range Rover in Flatbush, Brooklyn and was arrested for driving without a license.
Confrontation with police at Jamaica airport 
Police threatened Brown with arrest following an altercation at the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston, Jamaica from July 26, 2002; she would be arrested if she ever would return to the country. Nicola White, clerk of the Kingston Criminal Court, told the New York Post that Brown illegally evaded a body search at the airport and punched a policewoman in the stomach. Brown's publicist, Marvette Britto, argued that Brown felt that she was being "detained" at the airport. Originally, a hearing for Brown was scheduled for July 28, 2002, but Brown failed to show up. Thus, in late December 2002, an arrest warrant was set up for Brown skipping the hearing.
Assaulting store employee; BlackBerry incident; other 2007 altercations 
Brown pleaded guilty in March 2007 to assaulting a beauty supply store employee. Her other arrests during 2007 included leaving New York state without permission during probation, hitting a neighbor with a BlackBerry, and almost running over a stroller with a baby inside. The New York Times reported that Brown moved from Brooklyn to Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey without informing officials, but Brown's lawyer Alan Stutman stated that Brown's mother owned the Englewood Cliffs residence in question.[nb 2]
Assault on two manicurists; jail time 
On August 29, 2004, Brown attacked two manicurists in Chelsea, Manhattan during a dispute over a $20 bill that she refused to pay, and in April 2005 pleaded not guilty to assault charges and entered three years of probation effective October 2006. For that incident, she would also take anger management classes. Female rapper Jacki-O, in April 2005, alleged that she and Brown got into a physical altercation at a recording studio in Miami, Florida, saying that Brown came into the studio during her session and expected her to "bow down" to her. The next month, Brown denied any such altercation in an interview with the Miami, Florida hip-hop radio station WEDR. Joseph Tacopina, Brown's attorney, stated on December 6, 2005 that he could no longer communicate with Foxy Brown verbally due to her sudden hearing loss. Judge Melissa Jackson suspended Brown's assault case for two weeks.
On September 7, 2007, New York Criminal Court Judge Melissa Jackson sentenced Foxy Brown to one year in jail for violating her probation that stemmed from the 2004 fight with two manicurists in a New York City nail salon. No mention was made during the trial by anyone about Brown expecting a baby. On September 12, 2007, her representatives stated the rapper was not pregnant in response to claims by her lawyer that she was. On October 23, 2007, Brown was given 76 days in solitary confinement due to a physical altercation that took place on October 3, 2007 with another prisoner. According to the prison authorities, Brown, the next day after the incident, was also verbally abusive toward correction officers and refused to take a random drug test. Prison authorities reported on November 27 that she was released "from solitary confinement...for good behavior", and Brown was finally released from prison on April 18, 2008.
Violation of order of protection 
On July 22, 2010, Brown was charged with one count of criminal contempt, which is a class E felony (the least severe), for violating an order of protection. The charge stems from an incident during the evening of July 21, 2010, in which it was claimed that Brown swore at and then mooned her neighbour Arlene Raymond, at whom she had thrown her BlackBerry, in 2007. Following the BlackBerry incident, Raymond has a restraining order against Brown.
Following her arrest, Brown appeared in court where she pleaded "not guilty" to the charge and was released on a $5,000 bail. If convicted, she faces up to seven years imprisonment.
Hip hop feuds 
Lil' Kim 
Long before the beef erupted between Lil' Kim and Foxy Brown, the two were at one point high school friends. The pair resided in Brooklyn and would often hang out and talk on the phone till six in the morning. Foxy Brown recalls, "We always had a pact. We use to be managed by Lance 'Un' Rivera. But then Kim went with Biggie, and I went with Jay-Z; she paid her dues." Although they became associates and members of differing hip-hop groups (Kim with Junior M.A.F.I.A. and Foxy with The Firm), both Foxy and Kim still remained the best of friends and began to work together musically in various projects. In 1995, the two were featured on the music video and remix of Total's single, "No One Else" alongside Da Brat. In the summer of 1996, both Brown and Kim were featured in the Hot 97 NY Fashion Show. By the latter end of 1996, Kim and Foxy were requested to be featured in a variety of magazine covers together, among the likes of Source and the Vibe special, "Rap Reigns Supreme," which saw releases in 1997 and 1998, respectively.
But in the midst of their collaborative efforts, conflicts were developing between Brown's and Kim's camps. The first dispute occurred during the releases of their debut albums, which were both coincidentally released in November 1996, a week apart from each other. Moreover, media sources took notice of copycatting in the album sleeve of Foxy Brown's Ill Na Na, where Brown was shown wearing the same exact outfit as the one Kim was wearing in the album sleeve of her debut Hard Core.
In 1997, Kim and Foxy Brown were slated to record an album and its title track, "Thelma & Louise." However, the dispute between the two female rappers prevented any recording for the project; Brown had even went further to add that she and Kim were no longer friends. When asked on the matter, Brown stated, "It didn't have to do with Kim and I personally. It was the people around us. At the time we were supposed to record [Thelma & Louise], we weren't speaking. [Lance] 'Un' [Rivera] came to me and said, 'I know you and Shorty [Kim] ain't on the best of terms right now, but....' And at first I wasn't really with it. The day after, Kim called me. But when you have two women who once were friends, who now have bitter feelings toward each other and are getting fed bull from every angle... the conversation was useless." Kim and Foxy then began to argue over the phone for 30 minutes in debate of "who said what." Brown recalls, "I was talking to a dial tone." Brown hung up on Kim and decided to record her verse for "Thelma & Louise" anyway despite the argument she and Kim just had. After finishing her recording, Brown was waiting with Chris Lighty and 'Un' in the studio and claims she was expecting Kim to come to the studio to record her part. However, after waiting "several hours," Brown recalled, "[Kim] never showed."
For more than a year, Brown and Kim would no longer talk to each other until a burglary incident at Brown's house broke their silence. On July 8, 1998, two gunmen had forced their way into Brown's home by pretending to be package delivery men; they had pushed Brown's mother into the bathroom and held Brown at gunpoint with a handgun. Stricken with fear, Lil' Kim immediately phoned Foxy Brown to check to see if she was okay. Brown confirmed, "Kim was the first one concerned. I appreciated that and still have mad love for her." Following the heinous crime, Lance 'Un' Rivera negotiated with Foxy and Kim to complete "Thelma & Louise"; however, the two were not 100% ready due to they were still in the process of slowly rekindling their friendship. But less than a year later, friction between the two would resurface again.
On January 26, 1999, Foxy Brown's sophomore album, Chyna Doll, was released to mixed reviews. Critics took note of Brown's record "My Life," which served as an "open appeal" to Brown's friendship with Lil' Kim, in which she cited the relationship being "lost for pride." Critics also noted Brown's contradiction of "My Life," in the latter portion of Chyna Doll, where she made attacks on "pointed mistresses." Critics indicated the records were in subtle use to diss Lil' Kim, especially since during this time, Brown had been supporting Kim's rival Faith Evans in multiple interviews. On May 1999, the mastered version of Lil Cease's "Play Around" with Diddy's verse had hit radio airwaves and was set to be featured on Cease's debut The Wonderful World of Cease A Leo. In the song, after Kim's guest rap, Diddy says, "Stop trying to sound like her too bitches"; a subliminal diss aimed at Foxy. In addition, tabloid reports began to circulate and beg the question, "Why does Foxy Brown suddenly sound exactly like Lil' Kim?" While others went on to add, in emphasis of Diddy's "Play Around" verse: "It's finally coming out. Foxy Brown bites worse than a pit bull." In addition, Kim's guest appearance on Mobb Deep's "Quiet Storm (Remix)" and her sophomore album's title track, "The Notorious K.I.M.," were released as diss records to Foxy Brown. Angered by Kim's response, Brown joined forces with longtime associates Capone-N-Noreaga on the track, "Bang, Bang." In the track, Brown mimicked Kim's interpolation of MC Lyte's "10% Dis," and went on to add: "You and Diddy y'all kill me with that subliminal shit." Towards the ending of her verse, Brown pushed the envelope by dissing Kim's grieving for the loss of Biggie Smalls, "Let the nigga [Biggie] rest in peace, and hop off his dick, bitch do you."
Deeply offended by Foxy's harsh remarks, Kim did not reply subliminally nor openly towards Brown. However, on February 26, 2001, at 3 p.m., when Kim had left New York radio station Hot 97 a shooting broke out; over twenty shots were fired between two groups of three men. One of the men in the groups was Capone, one-half member of Capone-N-Noreaga, who was entering the Hot 97 building in promotion of interviewer DJ Clue's new album, The Professional 2, which happened to have also featured Kim. An affiliate, Efrain Ocasio, from Capone's entourage was shot in the back; both parties from Kim and Capone denied any involvement in the shooting. However, a motive behind the shooting was later determined; detectives informed The New York Daily News that it was a result of the verses Foxy Brown recited in "Bang, Bang."
Shaken up by the incident, Brown tried to reach out to Kim in hopes of settling a truce. Brown stated, "I really don't know how it started. But Russell [Simmons] and I, we got together, and I said, 'Russell, I want to call a truce.' I want to have a sit-down with Kim. I don't care what it is. Let's just end it. We can even do a collaboration. We're bigger than this. If it has to start with me, let it start with me." Brown even extended an olive branch to Kim's camp, however Kim had cut all ties with Diddy, Bad Boy associates and wanted no communication with Brown whatsoever. On July 6, 2005, Kim was sentenced to prison for three counts of perjury and one count of conspiracy.
During the 4-year span leading up to Kim's sentencing, Brown and Kim began to exchange subtle diss records towards each other, among them included Kim's La Bella Mafia, "Came Back for You," "Quiet," and "Guess Who's Back"; and in turn, Brown's Ill Na Na 2: The Fever and various mixtape freestyles with Kim's rival, Charli Baltimore. In the midst of the diss records, Brown was interviewed by Doug Banks in 2003 to disclose any further details pertaining to her dispute with Kim. Brown claimed that Kim was allegedly jealous that Biggie was to include Brown in his Junior Mafia collective. Brown also added that a tell-all book disclosing the feud would be released in Christmas of 2003. In her final regards to the dispute, Brown stated: "Kim is the only female artist that keeps me on my toes. She's the only one that I can look at; and any other artist that says they don't have that one person that keeps them driven... is lying."
Following her release from prison, Lil' Kim no longer acknowledged Foxy Brown. Brown, on the other hand, has consistently targeted Kim as a prime basis in her music and concert venues since Kim's prison release.
On May 17, 2012, Kim attended an interview with radio show, The Breakfast Club. When asked about whether or not she had spoken to Brown at all in recent years, Kim replied, "I don't even know her. And when I say that; I don't know who she is to these days. I wouldn't even know what her voice sounds like."
Queen Latifah 
A beef between Foxy Brown and hip-hop legend Queen Latifah ensued in mid–1996, where media reports indicated that Brown was a prime target in Latifah's diss record "Name Callin'," which was featured in the movie soundtrack Set It Off. In response, Brown made allegations of Latifah "checking her out" at musical events and had even gone further to question Latifah's sexuality in various public radio interviews. In 1998, Brown released a diss record titled "10% Dis," where she continually questioned Latifah's sexuality and accused her of being jealous.
By late spring of 1998, Latifah responded to Brown through another diss record titled, "Name Callin' Part II." In the record, Latifah disses Brown about her heavy reliance on sex-appeal, in which she implies that Brown has to rely on skimpy outfits to hide her "half-assed flow." Foxy Brown retaliated back via a response-diss record titled "Talk to Me," in which Brown made fun of the ratings of Latifah's television talk show and went on to make various homophobic remarks to both Latifah and then–newcomer Queen Pen.
In spite of the release of "Talk to Me," the media blatantly ignored Brown's response and dubbed Latifah as the winner of the feud. Hip-hop magazine ego trip stated that Latifah won the feud with her diss record "Name Callin' Part II" and added that she showed that "the lady's still first," in reference to Latifah's 1990 single, "Ladies First." In 2000, both Brown and Latifah reconciled and squashed the beef; to show truce, Brown performed her song "Na Na Be Like" on The Queen Latifah Show.
Queen Pen 
In 1998, a dispute between Foxy Brown and then–newcomer Queen Pen developed over Pen's controversial lesbian-themed single, "Girlfriend." Brown, who took offense of the song's subject, spewed homophobic remarks to both Pen and former rival Queen Latifah via her diss record, "10% Dis." In response, Pen had reportedly stepped to Brown barefoot in the lobby of Nevada's Reno Hilton during the Impact Music Convention and tried to slap and chase her down an elevator. The fight would later be broken up by Brown's associates Noreaga and Cam'ron, resulting in a subjugation of the altercation. However, when Foxy Brown was accompanied by ex-lover Kurupt, Queen Pen coincidentally bumped into her again; the conflict was yet again subdued before any further physical contact played into effect.
In late 1998, Brown would release another diss track titled "Talk to Me," which contained more homophobic remarks to Pen and Latifah. In 2001, Pen subliminally responded to the diss track via her record "I Got Cha," in which Pen rechristened Brown as a "bum bitch," and later went on to make remarks about her being funny and fake "like a drag queen." Although Pen insisted the song was not about Brown, she hinted: "...You make a record about me, I make a record about you. Sooner or later I'm going to have to punch you in your face." Shortly after the track's release, the feud began to die down and by August 2006, both Pen and Brown reconciled and squashed the beef during an attendance at Russell Simmons' Hip-Hop Summit.
On April 24, 2005, an altercation occurred between Jacki-O and Foxy Brown at Circle House Studios in Miami, Florida. Jacki-O stated her refusal to "bow down" to Brown, was the prime motive in the physical altercation. A day following the incident, she stated to MTV News: "I just know that yesterday I did not go there to get in no altercation. I went to work, and I did not know I would be winning an ass-kicking contest. You don't come to somebody's session acting like a clown. Something is seriously wrong with her. She's washed up. She needs to sit back and relax and retire. It ain't happening for her no more."
O and Brooklyn native rapper, Gravy, were reportedly in Circle House Studios recording a track titled "Ménage," when in the midst, Brown and her business partner Fendi walked in and tried to negotiate to be a feature on the song. Brown, who was supposedly upset by the lack of welcoming in the studio, allegedly stated: "You don't know who the fuck I am? You need to bow down. That's what's wrong with y'all new rapper hoes." Following a lack of resolution, O claimed she had overheard Brown in the recording booth talking about her; allegedly ranting: "This bitch don't know, I'm about to slap the shit out of her." Days later, Foxy Brown was interviewed to give her take on the incident and denied all of Jacki-O's claims. In response, Jacki-O released a diss track titled, "Tko."
|2004||Fade to Black||Herself|
- An arrest report by the Broward County Sheriff's Office dated February 16, 2007 listed her birth year as 1978. An article in The New York Times from September 8, 2007, stated: "Ms. Brown, who turned 29 on Thursday [September 6], had tried to conceal her identity by writing her name as Enga rather than Inga, and giving her date of birth as 1980 rather than 1978." The website allmusic lists her birth date as September 6, 1979. An Entertainment Weekly article from March 9, 2001 appears to support the 1979 birth year. In her song "I Don't Need Nobody," Marchand raps "1978 / The year I was born"
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