MC Lyte Background information Birth name Lana Michele Moorer Born October 11, 1971
Brooklyn, New York
Genres Hip hop, R&B Occupations Emcee-songwriter, narrator, mentor, actress Years active 1986–present Labels DuBose Music Group
First Priority Music
Website MC Lyte.com
MC Lyte (born Lana Michele Moorer; October 11, 1971) is an American rapper who first gained fame in the late-1980s becoming the first solo female rapper to release a full album with 1988's critically acclaimed Lyte as a Rock.
Lyte was born Lana Michelle Moorer in 1971. Raised in Brooklyn, Lyte began rapping at the age of 12. Two of her brothers later formed the hip-hop duo, Audio Two, which later helped to collaborate on Lyte's records. Lyte recorded her first song, "I Cram to Understand U (Sam)", in 1986. Lyte had originally written the song in 1984. The song, about a relationship that fell apart due to the protagonist's lover's crack addiction, got her notice from First Priority, who signed Lyte in late 1987. Soon after she was signed with Atlantic Records by its VP Sylvia Rhone.
Her first album, Lyte as a Rock, was released in September 1988 and was noted for the hit "Paper Thin" and the battle rap, "10% Dis", which was a response from then-Hurby Azor associate Antoinette. Both rappers released battle records against each other. Lyte followed her debut with 1989's Eyes on This, which spawned the hits "Cha Cha Cha" and "Cappucino". Both albums were notable for Lyte's uncensored lyrical matter. Lyte sweetened up a little on 1991's Act Like You Know, noted for its new jack swing sound and the hit single, "Poor Georgie". Lyte's fourth album, 1993's Ain't No Other, became her first to reach gold status and was notable for her first top 40 pop hit, "Ruffneck". Lyte became a featured artist on hits by Janet Jackson and Brandy in 1994.
Two years afterwards, Lyte's fifth album, Bad As I Wanna B, featured production from Jermaine Dupri and Sean Combs and featured the hits "Keep On, Keepin' On" and "Cold Rock a Party", which featured then up-and-coming rapper, songwriter and producer Missy Elliott. This album was her first with East West Records and became successful after the aforementioned singles became big hits with "Keep On Keepin' On" peaking at the top ten and "Cold Rock a Party" peaking at number-eleven. It was her second gold album. Her 1998 follow-up, Seven & Seven, however, wasn't as successful and she left East West by the end of the decade. Lyte released the independently produced record The Undaground Heat featuring Jamie Foxx , in 2003, notable for the song, "Ride With Me". The single was nominated for both a Grammy and a BET award.
Lyte has been featured on television as herself on such shows as MTV Unplugged, In Living Color, Moesha, New York Undercover, My Wife and Kids,and Sisters in the Name of Rap. She has also acted on TV as a character (not as "MC Lyte") in such shows as In the House, Get Real, Half & Half, and The District.
Her first acting role was in 1991, an off Broadway theater play entitled Club Twelve, a Hip-hop twist on The Twelfth Night alongside Wyclef Jean, Lauryn Hill and Lisa Nicole Carson. After she acted in a film was in the 1993 movie titled Fly by Night, starring alongside Jeffrey Sams, Ron Brice, and Steve Gomer. Since then she has also starred other films, such as A Luv Tale (1999), Train Ride (2000), Civil Brand (2002) and Playa's Ball (2003).
In 1996 Lyte began what is now a very successful voice over career. She has voiced campaigns with several corporate brands. Lyte also voiced a short-lived BET show called "The Boot" and has just signed on to become a voice for the branding of the STARZ network.
In 2007 Lyte joined the cast of MTV's Celebrity Rap Superstar and coached Shar Jackson to a hip hop mc victory in a mere 8 weeks. During that same time Lyte hit the road in between shooting and joined The Roots for a nationwide VH1 House of Blues Tour.
She has also recently opened Shaitel, a Los Angeles boutique that specializes in accessories from belts to sunglasses. "We sell a mixture of new and vintage [items]," explains Lyte. "We also have a few signature pieces that are done just for the store. We boast to bring a little New York flavor out here to California." 
In February 2006, her diary, as well as a turntable, records, and other assorted ephemera from the early days of hip hop, were donated to the Smithsonian Institution. This collection, entitled "Hip-Hop Won’t Stop: The Beat, The Rhymes, The Life" is a program to assemble objects of historical relevance to the hip hop genre from its inception.
In October 2006, MC Lyte was one of the honored hip hop artists on VH1's annual award show Hip Hop Honors. She was joined by fellow female MC's Da Brat, Remy Ma, and Lil' Kim as they performed some of her tracks, "Cha Cha Cha," "Lyte as a Rock," "Paper-Thin," and "Ruffneck." She previously took part in the MTV reality series Celebrity Rap Superstar as the mentor of Moesha actress Shar Jackson. She is also an honorary member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.
In 2005, she released two songs produced by Richard "Wolfie" Wolf called "Can I Get It Now" & "Don't Walk Away" (with Meechie), both available at the iTunes store. In 2007, she released a song called "Mad at Me" available at the iTunes store. In 2008, she released two songs called "Juke Joint" (on both UK & US) & "Get Lyte" (exclusive to US) available at the iTunes store. In 2009, she released a song at the iTunes store called "Brooklyn."
MC Lyte's song "My main aim" is the title song for the console and computer game 'NBA Live 2005' by 'EA sports'.
- ^ "MC Lyte: Still Rockin' With The Best (Interview by Han O'Connor)". Allhiphop.com. 2010-01-13. http://allhiphop.com/stories/features/archive/2010/01/13/22094450.aspx/. Retrieved 2010-01-18. [dead link]
- ^ [dead link]
- ^ Celebrity Rap Superstar | Ep. 101 | Let The Raps Begin | Episode Summary, Video, Photos | MTV
- ^ MC Lyte‚ Biography‚ Famous MC Lyte Birthday‚ Profile‚ MC Lyte Career‚ Achievements
- ^ Latin American Herald Tribune - MC Lyte’s diary goes to Smithsonian
- ^ "Hip-Hop Comes to the Smithsonian" (Press release). National Museum of American History. 2006-02-28. http://americanhistory.si.edu/news/pressrelease.cfm?key=29&newskey=318. Retrieved 2008-03-06.
- ^ VH1 Hip Hop Honors 2006: Da Brat Does MC Lyte
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