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Kreayshawn performing 2011.jpg
Background information
Birth name Natassia Gail Zolot
Also known as DJ Kreayshawn, Based Goddess
Born (1989-09-24) September 24, 1989 (age 24)
San Francisico, California, U.S.
Origin Oakland, California
Genres Hip hop
Occupations Rapper, music video director
Years active 2008–Present
Labels Columbia (2011–13)
Associated acts White Girl Mob (V-Nasty, Lil Debbie) Lil B, 2 Chainz

Natassia Gail Zolot (born September 24, 1989),[1] better known by her stage name Kreayshawn, is an American rapper and music video director from Oakland, California. In 2011, while serving as a member of a rap group with her friends, she released the music video to her debut single "Gucci Gucci", to internet viral success. The popularity of the song and its video led to a recording contract with Columbia Records soon after. Kreayshawn released her debut studio album, entitled Somethin' 'Bout Kreay, on September 14, 2012.

Life and career[edit]

1989–2009: Early life and career beginnings[edit]

Natassia Gail Zolot was born on September 24, 1989, in San Francisco. She has Russian ancestry on her mother's side.[2] Her mother, Elka Zolot, is a former member of the San Francisco garage punk band The Trashwomen.[3] Kreayshawn moved to East Oakland[4] and got her first video camera at age ten, and started documenting her raps and films about herself and everyday life.[5] At the age of 13, she enrolled at MetWest high school, which she described as a "new alternative type of high school".[6] Instead of having the usual classes, such as English and mathematics, she had to take an internship at a local radio station three days a week. She was dissatisfied with the lack of work and wanted to go to a normal high school, so she switched to Oakland High School. However, according to Kreayshawn, she "went to none of [her] classes, ever" at her new school, which led to her finishing the term with a 0.0 grade point average and getting expelled for truancy.[6] After taking a short break, she went to Alameda High School but after a few months she was expelled for threatening to throw a watermelon at a schoolmate.[4] After the incident, she then enrolled in the continuation high school, Island High, where she then completed her sophomore year. While attending, she began skipping school for weeks on end. After two weeks, she returned to find out the school moved to a different location. Since she had no address or any contact with the school she was unable to find the new location and never went back.[6]

At the age of 16, she moved to live with her aunt in Berkeley and was taking care of her little cousin. She later moved again to live with her friend V-Nasty and enrolled in a work program, where she passed her GED test. After graduating, she received financial support from her work program and used the money to get her own apartment.[6] She became employed at IKEA, and was also selling marijuana and working a short-lived stint as a "Craigslist pimp" in her spare time.[4] When she was 17, she got a laptop and began recording songs and exploring her interest in cinematography, by shooting music videos for local artists such as Lil B.[7] Her videos caught the attention of dean Patrick Kriwanek, and she attended Berkeley Digital Film Institute with a full scholarship for two semesters.[8] She then moved to Los Angeles to pursue her music video career.[5] Her manager Chioke McCoy, whom she met while directing a video for DB tha General, encouraged her take on a music career of her own.[9]

Kreayshawn performed in the hip hop group the White Girl Mob (WGM). The group included her friends V-Nasty[10] and Lil Debbie. The White Girl Mob, after many disputes, disbanded in 2012. However, the entire White Girl Mob crew appears in Kreayshawn's video "Go Hard (La.La.La)".[11]

2010–2012: "Gucci Gucci" and Somethin 'Bout Kreay[edit]

In 2010, Kreayshawn released her first mixtape, Kittys x Choppas,[12] as well as her first music video for the song "Bumpin Bumpin." On May 16, 2011, she released a music video for her single "Gucci Gucci", which generated nearly three million views on YouTube in the first three weeks. "Gucci Gucci," according to Kreayshawn, is a song coaxing people to wear their own styles and not succumb to being "basic bitches,"[13] The popularity of her "Gucci Gucci" video caught the attention of several record labels, and Kreayshawn quickly signed a contract with Columbia Records.[14] Kreayshawn's management was contacted by the label representing the Red Hot Chili Peppers about directing a music video[15] for the band's single, "The Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie" (from the album, I'm with You).[16] In August 2011, Billboard ranked Kreayshawn number 34 on their Social 50 chart for her presence on social media.[17]

Kreayshawn sparked controversy during a Tinychat freestyle, wherein she insulted rapper Rick Ross by calling him "fake." She later retracted her statements and described it as a misunderstanding;[18] however, a few days following her statement, Kreayshawn continued making negative remarks about Ross's body weight, once again calling him "fake" and stating that "he can't rap."[19] These remarks eventually led to Rick Ross verbally threatening Kreayshawn and her manager Chioke "Stretch" McCoy[20] entourage during the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards. She was nominated for the MTV Video Music Award for Best New Artist, but lost the category to Tyler, The Creator. She also hosted the Red Carpet event.[21][22] The same night, nude pictures of herself were leaked via her Twitter being hacked.[23][24] She claimed the photos were taken when she was underage.[25][26]

In July 2011, Kreayshawn's first physical release, Nattymari presents Kreayshawn and Sortahuman Murder in Memphis Vol 1, came out on cassette tape via Clan Destine Records.[27] Produced by Nattymari with features by V-Nasty and Yung Hawaii Slim[28] among others, the release was limited to 100 copies and celebrated Memphis' culture of murky, underground rap distributed via tape. Side A of the tape is available for free online via clothing company Mishka NYC, while the instrumental side B is tape exclusive.[29] In 2012, Kreayshawn was nominated for the O Music Awards.

Kreayshawn's debut studio album, Somethin' 'Bout Kreay was released for digital download on September 14, 2012 under Columbia Records in the United States.[30] It was released on CD elsewhere on September 25, 2012.[31] The singles, "Breakfast", featuring 2 Chainz, and "Go Hard (La.La.La)" precede the album. A music video was released for "Blasé Blasé" exclusively through HungerTV. In 2014, Kreayshawn revealed that she earned only one cent from the sales of Somethin' 'Bout Kreay.[32]

2013–present: Motherhood and upcoming EP[edit]

On May 5, 2013, Kreayshawn announced via her Instagram that she is expecting her first child.[33] She gave birth to her son, Desmond, on September 18, 2013.[34][35] On one of her YouTube videos she stated that she's working on an EP. On February 15, Kreayshawn vlogged her at the shoot for her new line of jewelry along with her appearing in a new music video with Bukkweatbill for their song "Pipe Down"[36] Kreayshawn announced in a vlog released on February 22, 2014 that she has recorded several songs that might be on her upcoming EP, she also announced that she had an interest in getting a production crew together and to start directing again along with making a reel.[37] In the same vlog, she also said that she had been unsigned from her label after she had had her first child.

Musical style and controversy[edit]

Kreayshawn says that her biggest influences on her rapping style are Spice Girls and Missy Elliott.[38] Critics of her music cite cultural appropriation and "exploitation of African American culture."[39] West coast rapper Game released a diss track, titled "Uncle Otis", containing lyrics criticizing Kreayshawn for her alleged use of the word 'nigga'[40] though she has never used the word in her music, she has expressed frustration at repeatedly having to account for her friend V-Nasty's use of the word.[4]


Rick Ross[edit]

A few weeks before 2011's MTV Video Music Awards, Kreayshawn had dissed rapper Rick Ross several times by referencing him in one of her songs with the lyrics "I’m about to grab a knife, you tryin’ to play me like a boss, But you faker than Rick Ross"[41] and also making several live streams saying he was fake. After the 2011 VMAs, a video surfaced online showing Kreayshawn's security talking to Rick Ross and his crew, with Kreayshawn being lead out of the building shortly after. Kreayshawn revealed in a radio interview that she and Rick Ross had talked it out and everything was fine between the two.[42] Kreayshawn also ended up including the song "Left Ey3" where she dissed Rick Ross on her debut album "Somethin' 'Bout Kreay", with the lyrics referencing Rick Ross changed.

Azealia Banks[edit]

Kreayshawn had a brief feud with American rapper Azealia Banks on Twitter in early January 2012 after Kreayshawn had retweeted a link of Azealia Banks' video for her song "212" on PornHub, Banks responded with a string of tweets telling Kreayshawn that she couldn't rap and wasn't funny for tweeting the link.[43] Kreayshawn responded by telling Banks that she was a fan of her music and that Banks' frustration was confusing to her. After several tweets from Banks describing her anger towards Kreayshawn retweeting a video of her song on a PornHub video, Kreayshawn told Azealia "Come on you mad because I retweeted your link? Because I like your music? Pffff get outta here! Not a fan anymore." Several months later after their Twitter feud, Banks tweeted her apologies to Kreayshawn and offered to do a collaboration with Kreayshawn and Angel Haze. Kreayshawn accepted her apology and stated her looking forward to them collaborating on music.[44]


Tension rose between Kreayshawn and her close friend and fellow White Girls Mob member V-Nasty after their group broke up. V-Nasty wrote a string of Tweets to Kreayshawn about her "being fake", dissing fellow White Girl Mob member Lil Debbie's video for her debut single "Ratchets", claiming that Kreayshawn doesn't write her own lyrics, and that Kreayshawn didn't want to share fame with V-Nasty and Lil Debbie.[45] The results of the feud have not been publicly revealed, but V-Nasty said that she and Lil Debbie were fine but she and Kreayshawn weren't. Lil Debbie spoke about her and Kreayshawn's relationship in an interview for VLADTV saying that she and Kreayshawn still don't talk and she congratulated Kreayshawn on being pregnant. She went on to say in the interview that Kreayshawn had kicked her out of White Girl Mob after Lil Debbie's constant partying and never being in the studio affected recording their music. [46] It is also unknown whether Kreayshawn and Lil Debbie are talking again or not.


Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Work Result
2011 MTV Video Music Award Best New Artist Kreayshawn Nominated
2012 O Music Awards Best Artist with a Cameraphone Kreayshawn Nominated


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