A Look Inside the Rapper's Family, Relationships, and His On-Screen Search for Love
Flavor Flav (real name William Jonathan Drayton Jr.) is an American rapper best known for co-founding the hip hop group Public Enemy (along with Chuck D), which became one of the most important rap acts of all time.
Outside of music, Flavor Flav has enjoyed a long and successful career on television: he starred in multiple reality series, including Strange Love and Flavor of Love. He has also appeared in films and been involved with multiple businesses.
But what about Flavor Flav's life off the record? Read on to learn about the star's children, his relationships, his search for romance on Flavor of Love, and his amazing career.
Finding Fame with Public Enemy
Flavor Flav had a talent for music from a young age; he started to play the piano at just five years old, sang in his church youth choir, and played guitar and drums. Music started to shape his future when he became friends with Carlton Ridenhour, better known as Chuck D, at Adelphi University. Flavor Flav collaborated with Chuck D on Chuck's hip-hop radio show, and in 1985, they founded Public Enemy.
Their first studio album, Yo! Bum Rush the Show, was released in 1987, but it was the following year's It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back that transformed Flavor Flav and Chuck D into major stars. Public Enemy achieved further success with albums like Fear of a Black Planet and Apocalypse 91... The Enemy Strikes Back.
How Many Children Does Flavor Flav Have?
The rapper has fathered eight children over the years. Flavor Flav welcomed his first three children into the world with former partner Karen Ross: a son, Shaniq Drayton, and two daughters, Jasmine Drayton and Kayla Drayton.
After being in a relationship with Karen Ross, Flavor Flav started dating Angie Parker. He and Angie Parker had three children: a daughter, Dazyna Drayton, and two sons, Quannah Drayton and William Drayton. He later married Liz Trujillo, and the seventh child of Flavor Flav was born soon after: a son, Karma. He also has a son named Jordan.
Flavor Flav Finds Love on The Surreal Life
While his relationships with Karen Ross and Angie Parker were well documented by the media, Flavor Flav's love life gained more attention than ever when he started dating Hollywood star, Brigitte Nielsen. She's an actor, model, and singer best known for appearing in the films Red Sonja, Beverly Hills Cop II, and Rocky IV. She was also married to Sylvester Stallone for some time, and performed alongside him in the hit film Creed II.
Flavor Flav met Brigitte Nielsen on the third season of VH1's reality series The Surreal Life, which aired in September 2004. Flavor Flav and Nielsen were just two of the celebrities taking part in the series, along with New Kids on the Block's Jordan Knight and comedian Dave Coulier.
Flavor Flav and Nielsen started a relationship that continued in Strange Love, a spinoff of The Surreal Life. Strange Love focused on the couple exclusively across 11 episodes, though Flavor Flav and Nielsen split and went their separate ways at the end. After this, another successful show starring Flavor Flav was born: Flavor of Love.
Flavor Flav and Flavor of Love
Flavor of Love followed William Jonathan Drayton Jr. on his search for new love. While he is best known for his work in the hip-hop group Public Enemy, Flavor Flav won a legion of new fans across three seasons of this hit reality series.
In Flavor of Love, Flavor Flav shared a mansion with 20 women who wanted to win the hip hop legend's heart (and, ultimately, the show). His former girlfriend Brigitte Nielsen appeared in the first season to offer Flavor Flav assistance, along with his mother. However, he decided against entering a relationship with any of the women who had won the three seasons of Flavor of Love, and chose the mother of his seventh child instead.
Flavor of Love was so successful it spawned three direct spinoffs: I Love New York, Charm School, and I Love Money.
What Other Ventures Has Flavor Flav Embarked On?
Flavor Flav has achieved a lot in his life since he found fame with Public Enemy. But not all of his successes involve music or reality television: Flavor Flav has also been associated with various enterprises. One of the most famous was Flav's Fried Chicken, which launched in Iowa in 2011.
Flav partnered with Nick Cimino to open the restaurant, after Nick's brother Peter had used Flavor Flav's chicken recipe at his own establishment. They then aimed to launch a national franchise of restaurants, but Flav's Fried Chicken was shut down before other branches could be established.
The hip hop star later established Flavor Flav's House of Flavor, in Las Vegas, in 2012, then launched Flavor Flav's Chicken & Ribs that same year.
Flavor Flav Today
Flavor Flav's career has evolved in fascinating ways since he found fame with Public Enemy. As an actor, he has voiced the character of Father Time in the children's TV series YooHoo and Friends. He also played Bigfoot Kevin in Bigfoot Littlefoot, Papa Skwaught in Dr. Fubaluous, and played the Time Keeper in Nite Tales: The Series. He released his self-titled solo album in 2006, and has made guest appearances on tracks by Anthrax, Ice Cube, Moby, and various other music acts.
Fans may also have seen Flavor Flav's role as Calvester Hill in the sitcom Under One Roof, which ran for 13 episodes, and in various music videos for artists like 2 Live Crew and Micayla De Ette. Flavor Flav has also been a guest judge on Cakealikes, appeared on The Eric Andrew Show, and featured on two episodes of The Wendy Williams Show.
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