Exclusive Interview: The “First Family of Hip Hop” Is As Real As It Gets!

(photo courtesy Bravo Media)

No, it’s not the Combs’ crew. Nor did we socialize Simmons’ style. We are taking it way deeper into the vinyl holding Hip Hop crates of history. EGL reconnected with Hip Hop royalty. We chatted with the Robinson clan, the heirs to the legendary Sugar Hill Records.  While to those who are wondering what is Sugar Hill Records and who are the Robinsons, you can watch and learn all about both on the new Bravo reality TV series, “First Family of Hip Hop” premiering on January 15th.

Unlike the myriad of what seems like scripted overly dramatic reality programming, “First Family of Hip Hop” offers a fresh approach. The cast members, who are the children, grandchildren, nieces, and nephews to the “Matriarch of Hip Hop” Sylvia Robinson, are all vying to take control of the family business. This may sound like a storyline ripped from a daytime soap opera, but it’s the actual life and heartbeat of the Robinsons. The lines get blurred in the battle of business meets familial relationships.  Only time will tell who will manage to reestablish the 40 year old Sugar Hill brand back into the forefront of the music industry.

EGL spoke with cast members LeA Robinson (granddaughter), Shanell “Lady Luck” Jones (great niece), and Somaya Reece (Lady Luck’s girlfriend) about their roles on the show. The ladies were pleasantly candid about the impact each has in this TV family affair.  Check out what the reality stars had to say.

Meet LeA Robinson.This triple threat is heir to the Sugar Hill Hip Hop throne. Watch out for this singer, dancer, and aspiring music business executive. LeA is the granddaughter of Sugar Hill Records founder Sylvia Robinson. (photo courtesy Bravo Media)

EGL: What does it mean to be “music industry royalty”? And how will your music play a part in rebranding the Sugar Hill name?

LeA: Being a part of a family like mine meant that I had to work harder. People think you aren’t able to truly be accomplished in your own right. The music I create is a breath of fresh air. I like to describe it as new age type of soul music. It just makes you feel good.

EGL: How do you feel your series “First Family of Hip Hop” will impact viewers? Do you think sharing the “family business” the good, and the not so pretty, enlightens or is it purely meant to entertain?

LeA: I think it brings something new to television. We aren’t the perfect family; we are very real, and relatable. I like that the show showcases how talented my entire family is. It will be enlightening in regards to the music business and to the dynamics of family relationships. With us there is no façade. Our story simply shows a very real side of life.

Shanell “Lady Luck” Jones, rapper, producer, and grand niece of Sylvia Robinson founder of Sugar Hill Records. (photo courtesy Bravo Media).

EGL: How does it feel to see your family matters aired out on TV?

Lady Luck:  It’s weird to be on TV. Yo, the cameras are constantly rolling. It’s difficult at times. You get caught up in the moment. Everything is in real time. You can’t yell, “Stop!”

EGL: You’ve been in the music business as a rapper since you were 16 years old. What do you want viewers to see of your career journey at this time?

Lady Luck: I want the audience to see my skills as a writer and a producer. I’m in a good space right now. My single “The Face Lift” is out, and coming soon “She God Volume I” will be out too. My partner Somaya and I collaborated on our joint venture LaRosa Entertainment/The Greatest Entertainment.

EGL: What do think the viewers will think of your relationship with Somaya?

Lady Luck: I don’t care what people think. Years ago people would cast judgment about what they thought of me. Now I’m just like, “I like women.” I really don’t give an “F.” I make music for people who like me.

Somaya Reece girlfriend and business partner to Lady Luck. (photo courtesy Bravo Media)

EGL: Somaya, as the girlfriend of Lady Luck, a member of a Hip Hop empire, what are your thoughts about participating on the family show?

Somaya: I come from a really large family so I’m fine with it. I’m saying we all have crazy families in some regards. The Robinsons have been very nice to me. They are like most other families; it’s just that they are doing business together. My family didn’t do that together so that’s different for me. As for the television aspect, I am no stranger. I studied theater at UCLA and have been on other shows in the past including “Love and Hip Hop.” Although this is the first time I’ve put my relationship out there to the public.

EGL: What will people learn about you on “First Family of Hip Hop”?

Somaya: I am 100 percent authentic. They will see that I’m straightforward and about my business. I’m an actress, a Latina rapper and a business woman. And I definitely love hard. Also I’m Shanell’s biggest cheerleader. She gives so much of herself to others. I remind [her] that Hip Hop needs her and that I want her to win.

EGL is excitedly anticipating the debut of “First Family of Hip Hop.” Looking forward to seeing how the Robinsons’ Sugar Hill Records will impact the music landscape in 2017.

Checkout the trailer for the show below:

“First Family of Hip Hop” premieres Sunday, January 15 at 9/8c on Bravo.

Written By: Tawana C. Coleman

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