Yandy Smith talks loving hip-hop

“Love and Hip-Hop” fans may just be getting to know newcomer and favorite Yandy Smith, but she’s a music industry vet who’s all business!

Although Yandy believes she gained a passion for hip-hop later than most, she has become a dominant leading force helping and working alongside many successful hip-hop artists.

“I was a late bloomer on the hip-hop side of the world because I went to an all-White private school. I was the only Black girl in the school, so my music taste is a little different from a normal Black girl from Harlem in the projects,” the Howard University grad told KYSDC.

Yandy broke into the industry with the help of Mona Scott-Young, who along with Yandy created the VH1 hit show. Yandy first became an assistant to Mona at Violator Management, a multi-media corporation. It wasn’t easy for Yandy to make her way into the business, but her drive helped her land the job.

“I was just persistent, I got the number to the receptionist and I would call her everyday, then I found out Mona’s assistant number and I called her everyday,” she said.

Both Yandy and Mona have been responsible for managing legendary hip-hop stars such as, LL Cool J, Missy Elliot, Busta Rhymes, and Jim Jones. She is not only a professional associate and friend of these successful artists; she has also become a fan of their hard work.

“They are really about business… They always worked outside the box and that kind of stuff is what drives me to do what I do,” she said.

Yandy has been successful for years now. She earned prestige in 2008 by landing a spot in “Billboard Magazine’s Top 30 Executives under 30.”

Even though she has been on the scene for a while now, Yandy didn’t find it necessary to make her appearance on her show “Love and Hip-Hop” until the second season. “Women have taken the backseat for so long. Now you’ll see a shift in the music business,” said Yandy who joined the cast to give audiences an inside view on a successful WOMAN in the music industry.

With all her projects in the music world, Yandy explained that love and hip-hop isn’t just a title of a show. It’s something she’s working toward.

“Now I’m getting older I see what’s important in life. I’m starting to see family and a relationship is important. I never really cared much before,” she said.

—Gianna Banner

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