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Lil' Bow Wow This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

   Many teens fantasize about being a professional musicianand receiving the adoration that goes along with the job. Few have the talent,poise and charisma necessary to make this dream a reality. These luminariescapture the hearts of millions with their youthful spunk and magneticappeal.

The most recent teen prodigy is rapper Lil' Bow Wow. The14-year-old, raised in Ohio, has been rapping since the age of five. He soimpressed rapper Snoop Dogg - who coined the fitting moniker "Lil' BowWow" - that he was hired as his opening act

Lil' Bow Wow honed hisskills until rap artist and producer extraordinaire Jermaine Dupri made him partof the So So Def label. Dupri has shown a penchant for creating young phenomena,including Kris Kross, and has produced albums for many of the heaviest hitters inthe genre, such as Dru Hill, TLC, Usher and Mariah Carey. At just 12 years old,Lil' Bow Wow was eased into the studio and recorded over a dozen stellar tracksfor his first album, "Beware of Dog."

Lil' Bow Wow's flair forthe stage and gift for performing are now being showcased in front of millionsaround the world. His debut album has been a huge success, producing the smashhit "Bounce With Me."

The record is unique for reasons otherthan the age of its co-composer. The lyrics are completely free of profanitybecause Dupri wants Lil' Bow Wow to be a role model in rap.

Lil' Bow Wow'spotential is so limitless that he has drawn comparisons to a young MichaelJackson. Big things are expected of the rising young star.

Despitethe fact that Bow Wow is barely a teenager, Dupri has crafted a rap image forhim, blending the hardcore qualities older rap fans appreciate with traits thatteens and adolescents can associate with; Bow Wow sports flashy cornrows, yet aMickey Mouse pendant dangles from his neck.

Although Jermaine Dupri hasexerted a considerable amount of influence on Lil' Bow Wow, it would be incorrectto say that the young rapper has little talent and is just a figurehead. Bow Wowcan rap with the best of them, as he demonstrated on the Chronic tour. Magazinessuch as Rolling Stone have also been quick to compliment Bow Wow's fresh anddistinct sound.

Basically, Lil' Bow Wow has taken the music industry bystorm, and is the apparent forerunner of the next generation of hip-hop.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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