Michel’le Toussant is an R&B recording artist and songwriter who will forever hold a place in music history as one of the most important female voices in the history of the West Coast Hip Hop Movement. Signed to Ruthless Records as a teenager, her label mates included pioneers such as Eazy E, NWA and the D.O.C. Unlike the gritty, hard hitting rap music previously produced by Ruthless Records, Michel’le’s melodic, yet powerful vocals offered an amazing contrast on her debut album “Michel’le” which was produced entirely by Andre “Dr. Dre” Young and Executive Produced by Eric “Eazy E” Wright.
A native of Compton, CA, it’s clear that Michel’le had her own unique vision of combining the street influence of urban culture, r&b / hip hop music and intertwining it with sultry vocals and powerful lyrics. Her voice was unquestionably one of the most unique instruments ever heard in music, a high-pitched speaking voice and a beautifully aggressive singing voice. Michel’le was discovered by Dr. Dre, then a member of World Class Wrecking Cru, who at the time needed a female vocalist on what became one of their biggest hits “Before You Turn off the Lights.” Continuing her pursuit of a career in music, Michel’le signed with Ruthless Records.
Ruthless Records made History when it released their first Urban Contemporary project, the self titled “Michel’le” which went platinum selling over 2 million copies, and garnering several hit singles including the now classic “Something in My Heart,” “No More Lies,” and the funky anthem “Nicety.” She brought together rap music and soulful R&B in away that no one had ever done before. Clearly ahead of her time, her dynamic voice and electrifying performances were the launch pad for several other urban influenced vocalists such as Mary J. Blige, Faith Evans, or Lauryn Hill, who all had strong ties to Rap, and Hip Hop music. Michel’le was definitely a force in the music industry during her time with Ruthless Records. With a move to Death Row Records she recorded a second album, but she chose to put her career on hold due to creative differences with the once prominent music label.
Now the mother of two, in the midst of true career resurgence – she has new music on the horizon, a book in the works, voiceover projects, and performances across the country; she is making her move back into the spotlight. Her first major endeavor was joining the cast of the TVOne reality show “R&B Divas LA”, where she quickly showcased her fun loving personality, and witty humor, making her an unexpected fan favorite. Michel’le who has been termed appropriately as “One of the true, West Coat Urban Music Icons”, is preparing to share her story the only way she can, from her unique and singular point of view. She will let her fans into her world in a way she has never done before and allow her fans to see the highs and lows of being the First Lady of West Coast Rap.