Da Brat (born Shawntae Harris on April 14, 1974 in Chicago, Illinois) is an African-American rapper who emerged in the early 1990s and was the first solo female rap artist to go platinum. Throughout the 90s, she could typically be seen wearing baggy cargo pants, a backwards baseball cap, a nose stud, and using profuse vulgarity.
The Jermaine Dupri protĂ©gĂ© had chart success in 1994 with her single and video entitled "Funkdafied," taken from her debut album of the same name (Funkdafied).
During the rest of the decade, she remained somewhat low-key and came to be known more for her "featured" appearances on other rappers and R&B singers' albums than for her own solo work.
In the summer of 1996 she contributed a rhyme to the hip hop remix of Mariah Carey's hit, "Always Be My Baby". During the summer of 1997, Da Brat appeared on a remix of Lil Kim's "Not Tonight". That year, she also was featured on "Sock It 2 Me", a track on Missy Elliott's debut album, which became a popular single in early 1998. She also did a track called "Ghetto love" featuring T-boz of TLC, this song & video was well recieved and was in heavy rotation for a short peroid of time.
In 1999, Da Brat appeared, alongside Krayzie Bone, on the remix to Mariah Carey's cover of Brenda K. Starr's "I Still Believe". She also appeared as a guest artist with Missy Elliott on Carey's remix of "Heartbreaker", and on the remix of Brandy's "U Don't Know Me (Like U Used To)".
In early 2000, Da Brat released her third full-length album Unrestricted, which produced the moderately successful singles "That's What I'm Looking For" and "What Chu Like", featuring soul singer, Tyrese. The album was not well received compared to Brat's earlier work. However, the new album and new millennium did inspire an image makeover for Da Brat. Abandoning her "gangsta" persona, she decided to follow the trend in popular music and attempted to sex her image up; the video for "What Chu Like" featured Da Brat and Tyrese rolling around half naked on a beach. In keeping with her new image, Da Brat "accidentally" exposed her nipples live on MTV's Total Request Live while she was hosting the show.
In 2001, Brat continued her trend of being featured on other artist's remixes, including Mariah Carey's " Loverboy" remix and Destiny's Child's "Survivor" remix. Da Brat also made her feature film debut as Louise in Carey's 2001 movie Glitter.
She appeared on VH1's 4th of season of The Surreal Life with Adrianne Curry, Joanie "Chyna" Laurer, Jane Wiedlin, Christopher Knight, Verne Troyer, and Marcus Schenkenberg.
In 2005, she made a "comeback" of sorts when she was featured on the remix to the song "I Think They Like Me," by Dem Franchize Boyz, which also featured Bow Wow and Jermaine Dupri. The song peaked at #1 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip Hop Singles chart and #15 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Da Brat is the half-sister of actress and model LisaRaye.