T.I. and his former Xscape-member wife Tameka have a combined 36 years worth of music industry experience under their belts, so it should be no surprise that they now have offspring who’ve decided to follow in their footsteps. In an exclusive interview with the Family Hustle stars, the celebrity couple and their kids reveal what it’s like to tackle entertainment’s ups and downs.
DOMANI + RAPPER DREAMS
Domani Harris might only be 12-years-old, but to Tiny, he’s focused on his craft. Often playing mediator between the young aspiring rapper and her husband, the Family Hustle matriarch tries to get Tip to see eye to eye with her stepson who frequently spends time with a writing partner in the studio.
“I speak to Tip a lot about making sure he’s interested in what he’s doing,” she explains. [Domani’s] serious, really good, and [Tip] might just have to lead him in the right direction.” And steer the future rap star, he does. During my interview with Domani during our T.I. Father’s Day Weekend shoot, he confessed that dealing with his pops can be a double edge sword.
“He’s pretty strict,” Domani remarked. “Every song I put out, he doesn’t like it, and that’s good. It helps me get better and every time I have to think about it.”
Continue reading to see how OMG Girlz star Zonnique interacts with her ’rents.
ZONNIQUE + THE MUSIC BIZ
Tiny’s biological daughter Zonnique is a member of the OMG Girlz, a 3-girl teenage group that’s heading out on tour with Mindless Behavior next month. Working to release the trio’s first album later this year, the 17-year-old they affectionately call Niq-Niq is already encountering fame and music industry politics.
“Even though she’s the oldest, she’s a baby,” Tiny told us of Niq, insisting that she does all she can to make sure her daughter stays on top of her stuff and on top of her game. “I try to give her insight of what could happen, what to do when things happen, what to try and avoid, and what to do better. She’s my best friend. We’re tight and we talk about everything.”
According to Niq, her relationship with her mom (who’s single-handedly formed the OMG Girlz’ in 2009) means the world to her, and she is equally grateful that her stepfather, rapper T.I., also has her back.
“Going to your dad for advice can be hard, especially for me, but really I learned that he has some of the best advice that I’ve ever gotten. Music he knows a lot about, of course. He makes sure we ask questions and that we know what we’re doing.” Giving her some hands on experience, Tip even took his Niq to one of his meetings at Atlantic Records.
“I went into a meeting with him where he was playing the music for his label. He was showing us pretty much how it goes before we even got signed [and] he showed us how to present your music. He’s always taking me to different places and telling me how it goes, getting me ready for it. I’m very grateful.”
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