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4 reasons why you can't miss VH1's Dirty South Hip Hop Honors

bow-wow-dupriImage Credit: Theo Wargo/WireImage.comLast night (June 3) at New York’s Hammerstein Ballroom VH1 paid its annual homage to hip-hop, VH1 Hip Hop Honors: The Dirty South. The “Dirty South” part is new. For the first time, VH1 chose to pay its respects to a specific region—an effort that a few Southern legends found disrespectful. Wondering why VH1 couldn’t simply incorporate more Southern acts into their regular Hip Hop Honors celebrations, Suave House Records founder Tony Draper and veteran Houston rapper Scarface both declined on opportunities to be involved. But the show went on. And aside from a couple of technical difficulties Uncle Luke and his 2 Live Crew experienced, it went off without a hitch.

Missy Elliott, Fabolous, and Keri Hilson came out to honor hitmaker and Virginia native, Timbaland. J Prince of Rap-A-Lot Records sat back and enjoyed performances from fellow Texas homeboys Paul Wall and Chamillionaire. But there were a few moments that stood out above the rest, making its premiere this Monday (June 7) must see TV. One was nasty.  Another was backwards. Read what they are after the jump.


Fabolous on 'Chelsea Lately': Sex, drugs, and Twitter

Some time in the last year, E!’s Chelsea Handler quietly became the best hip-hop interviewer on basic cable — or at least the funniest. Take Fabolous’ visit last night to her show, Chelsea Lately. Handler opened by attempting to call Fab out on the unorthodox spelling of his stage name. Then she misread the tracklist of his No. 1 album, Loso’s Way, asking him about the song featuring Kobe Bryant (no such collab exists). Those exchanges might have been annoying coming from anyone else, but Handler makes them work by turning her own cluelessness about all things rap into the punchline.

She can pose real questions, too, though. After chatting about the joys of Twitter and the perils of unprotected sex, Handler asked Fab about the February incident in which cops alleged they found a staggering 500 pounds of marijuana on his tour bus. I give her props for bringing that issue up so directly, much like she did with T.I. and his gun charges earlier this year. Fabolous, quick on his feet, asserted his innocence before getting in a quick LOL. “It’s completely ridiculous,” he deadpanned. “Like, anybody who knows me knows I would put the 500 pounds of weed on an airplane. I would never put it on a bus.”

Indeed. Watch their interview segment below in case you missed it (clip via Nah Right). Then let us know: Anyone else catch Fabolous on Chelsea Lately last night? Are there any other rappers you’d like to see swing by Chelsea’s studio?

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Fabolous, outsold by Michael Jackson, tops the charts

Fabolous, outsold by Michael Jackson, tops the albums chart

Fabulous-Losos-Way_lFabolous puts out pretty much the same exact album every couple of years. Hey, it’s a pretty good album — why tamper with success? The 99,000 fans who, according to Nielsen SoundScan, bought this year’s model, Loso’s Way, represent a bit of a decline from the 150,000-ish base that’s turned out for the Brooklyn punchline master’s four previous releases in their respective first weeks. I doubt Fab cares too much about that, though: This being a slow week, 99,000 was still enough to win him his first No. 1 debut on the Billboard 200.

Here’s where I note that, yet again, Michael Jackson’s Number Ones was the actual top-selling album in the country this past week, with another 114,000 units shifted, but it didn’t count for the flagship Billboard 200 chart because it’s too old. It’s getting to the point where it’s more surprising when MJ doesn’t outsell the Billboard 200’s No. 1 — which is funny, since up until the week of Jackson’s death a catalog album had never accomplished that feat in Billboard history. I hate to keep harping on this point every Wednesday, but the fact is that Michael Jackson’s greatest hits continue to show the kind of chart legs that precious few new releases can muster these days. In fact, Number Ones has now sold 1.37 million copies in 2009 — more than any other album this year save Taylor Swift’s Fearless, which stands at about 1.5 million. And so the asterisks march on.

Returning to the Billboard 200, the only other top-20 debut this week came from Ashley Tisdale, whose Guilty Pleasure sold only 25,000 copies, less than half of the 64,000 her debut notched two years ago. No one ever said life after High School would be easy, did they?

What do you think of this week’s chart numbers? The comments section awaits below.

More from EW’s Music Mix:
Demi Lovato tops albums chart, but Michael Jackson outsells her
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