A star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame was unveiled today honoring Ashanti for a career that has included a string of hits and eight Grammy nominations.
Longtime collaborator Ja Rule and actress Tichina Arnold were among those joining Ashanti at the ceremony at 7060 Hollywood Blvd., near The Hollywood Roosevelt hotel.
Ashanti was a guest vocalist on the rapper’s “Always on Time,” her first Hot 100 number one single and his second. She was featured on Ja Rule’s 2004 song “Wonderful,” which peaked at fifth on the Billboard Hot 100.
The star is the 2,718th since the completion of the Walk of Fame in 1961 with the first 1,558 stars.
The ceremony came five days after the 20th anniversary of the release of her self-titled debut studio album, which earned her a best contemporary R&B album Grammy and was ranked 100th on Billboard’s list of the top 200 albums of the decade.
“Ashanti” debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 and first on the R&B/hip-hop albums chart with first-week sales of 504,593 units, the biggest first-week sales for a female artist’s debut.
Ashanti received four other Grammy nominations in 2003 — best new artist, which was won by Norah Jones, best female R&B vocal performance for “Foolish”; and twice for best rap/sung collaboration for “Always on Time”
and “What’s Luv?”
Ashanti received three Grammy nominations in 2004 — best female R&B vocal performance for “Rain On Me,” best R&B song for “Rock Wit U (Awww Baby)” and best contemporary R&B album for “Chapter II.”
Born Ashanti Shequoiya Douglas on Oct. 13, 1980, in Glen Cove, New York, on Long Island, she was first noticed by Irv Gotti, a co-founder of Murder Inc. Records, because of her vocal skills and was asked to pen hooks for his rap artists and to perform with them in duets. Ashanti was first featured as a background vocalist on rapper Big Pun’s 2001 single, “How We Roll.”
Ashanti’s acting credits include portraying Dorothy in the 2005 sports drama, “Coach Carter,” the 2005 made-for-television movie, “The Muppets’ Wizard of Oz” and appearances on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Sabrina, the
Teenage Witch,” “Army Wives,” and “American Dreams,” portraying Dionne Warwick.