Every Monday night on VH1, you are graced by a cast of several industry individuals. A depiction of their life on national television for millions to see. We get the raw reality of their personal lives and many determine opinions about what they see in a small edited 60 minute segment. Can we really judge what we assume is reality? Are we able to dictate what’s real or fake? This season Love and Hip Hop Hollywood returned with our favorite married couple Willie and Shanda Denyce Taylor. What turned into a season which was supposed to focus on their music, ended up in a harsh battle of marriage, lies and humiliation. Kontrol had the chance to converse with the talented LHHH star Shanda Denyce on her opinion of this season, her cast-mates, marriage, family and music.
This season Shanda goal was to focus on her upcoming music and solo career. Shanda says “I want people to know who I am outside of my husband.” The biggest misconception that viewers believed last season was “I danced on poles without telling my husband. People thought I was an untrustworthy wife. I previously dance before I gave birth to my son…I didn’t have a backup plan or money to get a degree. When I was in college, I went to dancing. It helped me become a better mother. I was more responsible…I danced at a gentleman club…Never have I ever danced at Nikki’s club. I haven’t danced in a very long time.”
With that storyline came bad labels. Based off of what people seen on television her motherhood and parenting skills became a question. This sparked a lot of controversy and intense feud between cast-mate Moniece Slaughter another mother on the show. Shanda explained without a doubt “I’m an amazing mom! I do it how I feel I can. They are in school and in extracurricular activities….I’m an amazing mom!” Furthermore, she took the initiative to reach out to Slaughter “I made an opinion about her…to not use an excuse of being a mother. I called to apologize for making an opinion as a mother. There is no right or wrong way for being a parent. I just wanted to be the being a bigger women.”
Turning over a new leaf, season three of Love and Hip Hop Hollywood began. Willie and Shanda Denyce Taylor have been in major blog headlines, but not for the better. Kyesha Shalina came onto the show to “prove” she’s the secret mistress in Willie’s past. A studio section for the singer quickly became a jagged reality. Kontrol asked were you aware she was coming onto the show or in the studio? “I was 100 percent blindsided. I was in the studio doing my music. Production said she wanted to tell me something. I didn’t know she was coming. My story was me working back with a old producer…She’s a home wrecker to try to break up my life. Expose yourself on tv…why would you want to put yourself in that situation.”
We can only image this situation has became hard for her and her family. With knowing her personal life is all out for the world to observe. Kontrol also asked, how are you dealing with this, knowing you have family/children? “We don’t see what’s going on beforehand. I have children that go to school, they have good reputations. I don’t let my kids watch love and hip hop. This is stuff they have no idea about. This is something that can effect my kids…It’s harder for your marriage and family. I can handle it if it was just brought to me…I signed up for this show and I got to deal with it now.”
With denial and remorse, her husband has pleaded for forgiveness and denied majority of the accusations. On the outside looking in everything still seemed perfect for the couple. Did Shanda believe he was sincere with his apology or was she reluctant? Exclusively, she revealed “We are very much separated right now. He has been very apologetic. I don’t think it was a piece sincerity on the show. He has been trying to be different. He’s a changed person…but I’ve been with him since I was 17…He got caught nationally! If he is really sincere, I don’t know yet! I just have to play it by ear and do what I feel is best.”
With tragedy comes triumph. Shanda plans are to focus more on the music and less on the drama. Music has always been major for the artist. “My dad was the first one to influence me to become an artist. He put me in a rap girl group when I was young. He was apart of Aaliyah’s camp. I used to sing for Aaliyah. I admired her. I was around very young…and as a writer, thats when Willie came into place…when I was apart of the group “Babydoll.” He was apart of “Quietstorm.” They helped at our rehearsals. We got really cool. We had the same interest and drive. It felt good for someone to understand you.”
Shanda have been apart of many girl groups. She also shared a group with former LHHH cast mate Apryl Jones. “Were friends prior to me being in a group. They hated how close we were. They turned us against each other. I ended up saying something and I got kicked out of that group. I was too opinionated…They wanted it to be more controlled. We became friends again, through conversation.” Now she’s looking forward to her first solo career. This season we will get the opportunity to hear her new single “Closer” in which she wrote. It is set to premiere on the sixth episode and will be available on iTunes for download.
We ended with laughter and high spirits. Talking about the upcoming episodes, her new music and her family. With wondering, what do we have to look forward to this season…“it can’t get any worse than this. As much as people think it isn’t real, it’s real for me. It’s not fake, it makes look staged, but this is my real life.” Will we see her next season? She states “I don’t know if I would return.” Shanda is multi-talented with a positive vibe, her message to viewers and fans is to “Respect who I am first…I do have a story, I want people to know.”
Written by: @leahgordone