Raise your hands in the air like you just don't care if you remember Lil' Bow Wow, real name Shad Moss. (My theory that rappers always choose ridiculous stage names because their given names are spectacularly boring has never been disproven!) Mr. Wow was discovered by Snoop Dogg when he was only 6 years old and performing at an L.A. concert. In 2000 Snoop collaborated with Bow Wow on the hit "Bow Wow (That's My Name)," and Bow Wow eventually went on to drop the "Lil" from his name and release seven albums.
He's also appeared in a number of TV shows (including Entourage) and movies, and is apparently working on a documentary about his life titled, Who Is Shad Moss? Dude's been busy over the years, and he's not quite so lil anymore: at 24 years old, the rapper has revealed that he's the father to a little girl, Shai Moss, born in June.
Strangely, he initially denied reports of the girl's birth, and now says it's because he was nervous about what fans would think of him.
He also says that parenthood has changed him as a person, and helped him overcome his dark and occasional suicidal thoughts over the years:
My lil girl is (getting) BIG fast. I love every minute of it, She inspires me to go harder. Even made me treat my mother better, its like it made me into a man over night. For the past 3 years I (been) battling life. Even thought about taking my own. I felt like as a kid i did everything and saw everything too fast which spoiled my adult years. i felt as is I had no purpose to live (Thinking selfishly) until god gave me the illest gift of my life.
I think most of us can identify with how having a child forces you to grow up a little (or a lot), and I hope for his daughter's sake, his newfound maturity eventually extends to the girl's mother. Shai's mom is his ex-girlfriend Joie Chavis, and it sounds like their relationship isn't that great, since he refers to his "baby momma drama" and how he tries not let her "get the best of my feelings by playin them stupid games."
What's interesting is how he talks about the way he wants his daughter to "have everything I didn't"—referring to his fame at a young age, and how he missed out on so much as a result. I wonder how many young stars grow up to feel the same way, that they wouldn't want their own kids to have the same lifestyle they did. (Clearly not Will Smith.)
Well, good on Bow Wow, it sounds like after years of toiling in the entertainment industry he's got his real work cut out for him at this point. Best of luck in fatherhood and music and maybe even improving your grammar a teeny tiny bit, Mr. Wow!
Are you a Bow Wow fan? Surprised to hear he's a dad now wow?
Image via Flickr/licia5