Perhaps no one other Love & Hip Hop Hollywood newcomer had a more trying season than dancer and aspiring artist Apple Watts. The South Central Los Angeles native thought she had gotten one step closer to becoming a recording artist after being scooped up by a new manager, Shun Love, and having her dad (John) back in her life. But as soon as she started focusing on securing the bag, her life started unraveling.
After John confessed that he was just pretending to be her biological father, Apple was rightfully devastated and confused. To make matters worse, Apple and Shun went at it on the reunion stage about their business contract, with Shun saying she expects to be reimbursed for her investment. This isn't the first time Apple has had to pick up the pieces and start over. We spoke to her after the reunion to get her side of the story that wasn't aired. Some tidbits from her past might show you why she's dead-set on keeping her guard up.
Where are you in the search for your birth father?
It's been a year since I've spoken to my mother, but if I come back next season I would actually [like to] bring my mother on as well as my sister who went into foster care with me. My mom has been on drugs, so I want to talk to her to find out some information. She named a few people [who could be my dad.] You know they were wild in the '80s. I got stories for days.
It's interesting that Shun was able to see John's character immediately.
Yeah, but it's no difference between the both of them. She just has the money.
Based on social media, it seems the jury is still out on Shun. Some people think she was genuinely trying to help you while others felt she had a hidden agenda. What's your take on it?
She did one studio session with me and she did get me an apartment. But she told me "Don't dance or else" I'd get in trouble. Shun is a good person, but she likes to control situations. Instead of working and getting my own money, I had to wait for her to come back in town and give me $500 or $1,000. That doesn't last for me, especially with kids and bills. She'd pick and choose what she'd wanted to pay for, and that's why my bill added up so much, because I wasn't working. She treated me like a child, telling me she'd pay my rent, bills and give me allowance. But it's what she wants to give me. So I'd be sitting there broke and have to bug someone else for some money. I think a lot of people didn't understand where I was coming from with that. I took a chance, and I knew she would throw it in my face. When I text her, I said I never wanted to stop doing business with her. I just told her she didn't have to [support me] anymore but that we could still continue the music and bookings. She decided to cut me off and stopped responding. It wasn't my decision to stop messing with Shun, but she waited until the reunion to bring out receipts. At the end of the day, I'd rather go back to the strip club and work my way up and mind my damn business.
So the relationship with Shun is for sure over?
We don't work together or talk. I even texted her on her birthday, because that's the type of person I am. Even though she talked about my kids and all, I wished her a happy birthday because I don't hold grudges. I even wrote a heartfelt letter on my page saying I have nothing against Shun. A lot of people chase clout, I don't do that. I'm not a talker, I'm a fighter. I forgive very easily because I can't hold that weight on me. I don't know how she feels, she can talk down on me, but that doesn't mean anything. If your heart isn't pure, you're no good. It's like a devil in sheep's clothing. I would never in my life do this again. AND I signed the worst contract ever. Thirty-five percent is never something a manager should take. The only reason I signed was because she told me I couldn't get my bills paid for that month [if I didn't]. I was literally in a corner, and a lot of people don't know that. Shun says she's from the hood, that she done had abortions and sold her body...but you're talking about people like me who is still coming up. Just because my money isn't up there like yours don't mean I'm a broke b-tch, it just means it's not my time to shine right now. I have no beef with that lady. God bless her soul and her career.
We see you share lots of adorable moments on Instagram with your sons. What's the relationship like with their fathers? Are they contributing at all when it comes to co-parenting?
Well, one baby was actually conceived through a sperm donor. I was gay at the time. [That man] is not involved. My other son's dad is fighting life in jail right now. Hopefully he'll get out. Everything is good with my kids, though. They're being raised good. Lele, my friend you've seen on the show, is actually the best father and the only father they've known ever. They don't even need their daddies.
Are you still dancing right now?
Right now, I do more bookings and appearances. I haven't danced in a while. The last time I did I made $4,000 doing one song. So if they're talking about that kind of money, then I'm fine with that. But there's nothing wrong with getting all money in. Maliah Michel dances and makes millions. I can do the same thing because I'm talented.
Sometimes people can react negatively to the stripper-turned-rapper concept because many people, most famously Cardi B, have taken this route. What makes you different?
Here's the thing: those girls are just bouncing their booties. I really entertain. I shut down the stage every time. I'm a "strapper" like A1 said. And some of those girls only made because they're not black. That's how I feel, anyway.
So you feel that you being a black stripper in particular plays a role in how you're perceived?
It does play a role. A lot of black women are pushed to the back burner who are very talented. Like Kash Doll --- she needs to be up there. Her skills are ridiculous and her attitude is fierce. That's the way it is in the industry. A lot of black women don't make it because white women and Mexican women are the trend. Black women are overlooked in the world period. Strip clubs in L.A. cater to white and Mexican girls. It's hard for black girls to even find places to dance because of our skin tone. I'm not even a dark skinned girl, but my attitude is what they don't like.
Besides Lyrica and A1, who else has been supportive of you on the show?
Well, I talk to Lyrica on a personal basis. Brooke calls me and has helped me when I'm down. Ray J helps me a lot with bookings. Roccstar is my dog. I know it sounds crazy, but a lot of people don't understand I didn't know Roccstar during the show. After the show, I found out he knew everyone from my neighborhood. He's been the nicest person to me music-wise. I don't talk to Amber Diamond like that anymore because Shun told her not to f--k with me like that. Misster Ray has been dope to me too.
Is there a special man or woman in your life?
No more women! I haven't been down that road since my son five years ago. I need to find a man. Every man I've ever had in my life has broken my heart. I need a backbone, but it's hard to find the right one because these men are so crazy. I would love to do a spin-off called "Bite the Apple" where I can get to know someone. It's difficult being a stripper, but now that I'm on TV I don't know who is real or fake. Now I have to deal with all of that at one time. So I'm just looking for love.
Any new music we can look forward to from you?
I'll be working on my music with my friend in Richmond, VA. I'm hoping to have my album done no later than March. I'm releasing my first single soon. Then I'm also working on my shoe line and hoping to have my first sample done by next year.
Watch Shun Love talk about struggling to help Apple Watts during her transition from stripper to rapper.