Dee Barnes, a trailblazing hip-hop reporter and former host of the Fox music series Pump It Up!, says she’s fallen on hard times and experiencing “extreme financial hardship.”
“Standing in our own truth not the definitions or the expectations is powerful, and this is my TRUTH,” she wrote in the description for her campaign. “I am in the process of being evicted. This page was created as an emergency fund to stop the process and the subsequent legal fees.”
Despite deciding to go public with her personal struggles, she said she’s trying to stay positive.
“I know who I am, I know my worth and I know I’m not alone,” she added. “Everyone is dealing with their own different struggles. Some of us less fortunate than others. … I have the sincerest gratitude for your help and thank everyone for your love and support.”
Barnes confirmed on Twitter that the GoFundMe campaign was hers. She briefly spoke with Deadline on Tuesday night and said she was attending an event on black women and the #MeToo movement in Los Angeles.
A former member of the West Coast female rap duo Body & Soul, Barnes also was an on-air personality for Los Angeles radio station KDAY before Pump It Up! debuted.
She is credited as one of the first female hip-hop journalists in the country to host a national television show and interviewed the likes of Ice Cube, Queen Latifah and N.W.A.
In 1991, she was brutally attacked by Dr. Dre, real name Andre Young, at a Los Angeles music industry party while he was still a member of N.W.A. According to Rolling Stone, the rapper-producer assaulted Barnes because he was unhappy about a segment she did on Pump It Up!
Barnes filed a civil suit against Dr. Dre, who pleaded no contest to assault, and the two sides settled.
The assault was not included in director F. Gary Gray’s 2015 N.W.A biopic, Straight Outta Compton, on which Dr. Dre served as a producer.
The exclusion of the assault prompted Barnes to speak out and call the film “revisionist history” in an editorial for Gawker.
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