Allison Samuels

Stories by Allison Samuels

  • Root, Root Root For The Losers

    The Los Angeles Clippers, the NBA's perennial doormat, may not be ready to compete against the stellar Los Angeles Lakers on the floor. But the Clippers, who play in the Staples Center, just like the NBA champs do, are aiming to take on Shaq, Kobe et al. for the affections of L.A. basketball fans. This season the Clips have launched an ambitious new marketing campaign that casts its players in stark contrast to the league's prototypical self-promoting, sneaker-and-soft- drink-selling stars. Its TV ads, titled "Believe," are a tribute to old-fashioned values like loyalty and teamwork--and, above all, a paean to the fans. Various Clippers, exhibiting a defter touch than they've ever shown on the court, proclaim: "I believe in you, the basketball fan"; "I believe me and the guys are ready to play for you"; "I believe you deserve more than 100 percent."This novel tack has been enhanced by full-page newspaper ads and ubiquitous bus posters. And while the team can't boast about its record...
  • Badu Back On The Throne

    Erykah Badu has been accused of it all. Accused of being way too righteous, accused of getting too carried away with her religious philosophies (just get her going) and accused of being way too weird. But it wasn't always that way. When she first emerged on the scene in 1997, the girl from Texas with the head wrap, the mass of honey-colored dreads and the doe- like eyes gave music a New Age, funkified jolt it hadn't felt in years. Her light, edgy voice and Terry-McMillan-novel-come-to-life lyrics brought millions to her throne. She came back the next year with a classic live album that introduced us to a no-good man named "Tyrone,'' and then she took a break. While she was away, Lauryn Hill, Macy Gray and Jill Scott took up residence, but now Badu is reclaiming her spot with her second album, "Mama's Gun.'' A feel-good mix of rock, blues and soul, it captures the fire and spirit of Badu with such catchy tracks as "Booty'' ("your booty may be bigger, but I still can pull your ni-ger"...
  • Bigger, Stronger, Faster

    One by one, they've left the field. First John Elway in a blaze of Super Bowl glory, then Steve Young in a haze of concussions and, finally, Dan Marino with every passing record but no ring. When Troy Aikman and Brett Favre retire soon, it will mark the end of, arguably, the NFL's greatest quarterbacking era. But already a new class of quarterbacks--bigger, stronger, faster, more mobile and more likely than ever to be African-American (eight of 31 teams have had black starting QBs this year, an all-time high)--are ensuring that the NFL is in good hands. And making the biggest impression is Daunte Culpepper, who has, at season's midpoint, led the Minnesota Vikings to an NFL-best 7-1 record.At 6 feet 4 and 265 pounds, Daunte, 23, is the largest quarterback in NFL history. He has played quarterback since a youth-football coach saw him gathering up footballs downfield and hurling them back effortlessly. "I've never thought of my size as a hindrance," Culpepper says. In fact, it's his...
  • Basketball's Bad Boy

    It's 1:30 a.m. in a small recording studio in a seedy South Philly neighborhood where NBA superstar Allen Iverson and his boys are laying down tracks for his debut album, "Non Fiction." After 30-minutes of nonstop rap, Iverson, dressed in oversize jeans, a black T shirt and matching do-rag, orders a break to talk with a reporter about his musical venture. But when his pals don't quiet down, the NBA's quickest point guard erupts in a fury as explosive as his first step to the hoop. "Motherf-----r, don't you see me doing a motherf-----g interview? Shut the f--k up, you bitch-a-- motherf-----r. That's what's wrong with y'all a---s. That's why you ain't got s--t."Iverson's crew is stunned into silence, embarrassed to be dissed so publicly. If the Philadelphia 76ers star can disconcert his own posse, it's hardly surprising that his rookie rap song--with its disdain for "bitches" and "faggots"--has distressed so many, from the NBA to the NAACP. While the album won't be out till next year,...
  • Cool Like That

    After 15 years in the rap game, LL Cool J knew he'd have to keep it real in a hip-hop market overrun with new faces. So he holed up in his grandmother's basement in Queens, N.Y., just like he used to do when he was a fresh-faced kid in a Kangol hat, and began writing the slickest, most arrogant raps he could think of. The result, a CD called "G.O.A.T. Featuring James T. Smith," is LL's best work on the mike in years. "I had to move back to New York to write this album because I'd been in California too long,'' says Smith. "I was doing the Hollywood thing so much that it affected my sound and the stuff I was saying.''That Hollywood thing has been Smith's successful run in TV and movies ("Any Given Sunday," "Deep Blue Sea"), the area where he's put most of his focus of late. But acting was never supposed to eclipse what made Smith a household name in the first place. "Music keeps me honest and connected to the streets. Hollywood can make you forget that it's not about a fantasy world....
  • 'We Have The Power'

    To get a sense of the issues facing black professional women, NEWSWEEK invited a handful of prominent "sisters" to talk about life: Cheryl Mills, the former deputy White House counsel and current vice president at Oxygen Media; Mae Jemison, former astronaut and current director of the Jemison Institute at Dartmouth; Debbie Allen, director, producer, actress, dancer; Lisa Sullivan, founder and president of LISTEN Inc.; Ananda Lewis, MTV host; Amy Holmes, political commentator, and Tracey Kemble, HBO producer. Excerpts: ...
  • The Color Of Funny

    After the premiere, there is a party. But it's only after the party that anybody really parties. Welcome to the after-after party. It's a Monday night in Los Angeles--actually, it must be Tuesday morning by now--and Eddie Murphy, Keenen Ivory Wayans, Prince, Arsenio Hall and an army of Cristal bottles are holed up in an extravagant hotel suite high above Universal Studios. They're celebrating the premiere of "The Nutty Professor II: The Klumps." More than that, though, they're celebrating an electric moment for black comics in general. It's been an uneven summer for Hollywood at large--seen anything great lately?--but black comedians have been triumphing at the box office right and left. Martin Lawrence kick-started the summer with "Big Momma's House" (which has since made $120 million). Wayans delivered "Scary Movie" (now up to $130 million). And Murphy's own "Nutty II" recently had a $42.7 million opening weekend, a personal best for the actor. At the after-after party, the old...
  • Periscope

    What rapper Juvenile needed was a little extra spending money. What he got was a major hassle. He was in San Diego last Wednesday, taping a segment of "SoCal Summer," MTV's beach-house show. At about 9:30 a.m. he and two business associates stopped by an outdoor cash machine in the exclusive Del Mar area. Then, Juvenile, a.k.a. Terius Gray, tells NEWSWEEK, here's what happened:As he was about to make a withdrawal from his Merrill Lynch account, local police showed up and questioned why he and his record mates were in the area. The conversation grew heated; Juvenile entered the bank to find someone to vouch for him. When he couldn't, police detained his group in the back of a squad car--for several hours. It wasn't until police could check out their story--they called Juvenile's hotel and MTV--that the group was released.Juvenile suspects Merrill Lynch called the police after seeing three black men with tattoos, baggy pants and diamond jewelry outside its building. Merrill Lynch...
  • 'Who Is Jill Scott?' Here Are Some Answers.

    Have you ever seen Michael Jordan dance?" Jill Scott asks. Scott knows what it takes to get The Jumper moving. Her album "Who Is Jill Scott?" is the first one released by Hidden Beach, Jordan's new record company. "Who Is Jill Scott?" is a shimmering collection partial to songs--"Long Walk," "Love Rain"--that celebrate new love. With her lush, jazzy vocals and neosoul sensibility, Scott, 28, sounds like Billie Holiday crossed with Erykah Badu. In fact, Scott wrote the hit song "You Got Me," which won a best-rap Grammy last year for Badu and The Roots. The Philly native badly wanted to record the tune herself. "I was upset at first, but then I was like, 'Sister girl, wait a minute. The first song you write wins a Grammy and has a Grammy-winning singer. Stop tripping'."
  • The Doctor Is In The House

    How do you know when you're truly the man? How about when the your the mayor of Los Angeles buys your mansion? That's what happened to Grammy-winning rapper-producer Dr. Dre this April, when Mayor Richard Riordan paid almost $3 million for Dre's five-bedroom Victorian. That's not the only precious real estate that Dre controls. His 1999 album, "Chronic 2001," still hovers near the top of the Billboard charts after more than 30 weeks, where it was eclipsed by Dre's own protege, Eminem. Add to that his superhot "Up in Smoke" tour (this week's stops: Boise, Indianapolis and Columbus), and you begin to think that his popular theme song, "Dre Day," is something of an understatement. It's looking more and more like Dre's Year.Considering the year (or two) he's just come off of, that's pretty amazing. His previous album, "Dr. Dre Presents the Aftermath," was disappointing--in fact, so disappointing that it took Dre two years to put the pieces together again and head back into the studio....
  • A Whole Lotta Lil' Kim

    BEING A HIP-HOP DIVA HAS some non-negotiable requirements. You gotta rock the ice (i.e., sport diamonds), you gotta wear the designers (Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci) and, most important, you gotta have the hair. Missy Elliott and Mary J. Blige won't leave the house in less than impeccable diva form, and on this hot Sunday afternoon in Los Angeles, they're here to support their girl, Lil' Kim, by appearing in Kim's new video, "No Matter What They Say." In their frostily air-conditioned trailer, they're playing Michael Jackson's "Off the Wall," downing banana schnapps and laughing like schoolgirls at a dance as they await the arrival of another partner in crime, Toni Braxton, who's running late and calling constantly to find out who'll be doing her hair and makeup.Still, even with so much diva-tude in the room, no one outshines the Queen Bee. Lil' Kim strolls in wearing her favorite outfit--next to nothing--and the brown-girl fest is in full effect: hugs, kisses, admiring glances at new...
  • A Season Of Shame

    As he turned 25 years old last week in an Atlanta courtroom at his own murder trial, football star Ray Lewis wasn't looking much like a hero. Wearing a sober suit, he scribbled notes on a yellow legal pad and talked to his defense team, barely glancing at his two codefendants just 10 feet away. It was a humbling posture for Lewis, who last season had another great year for the Baltimore Ravens, leading the league in tackles, making the All-Pro team, enjoying a new $26 million contract. He'd been swaggering then, hitting the clubs in a full-length mink coat and a much longer limo, surrounded by worshipful friends. But the night of the Super Bowl last January, outside a club called the Cobalt Lounge, there was a confrontation and two men died. Lewis has pleaded not guilty. A defense attorney asked one prospective juror what his initial reaction was when he saw the news reports. "I said to myself, 'Oh, no--not another sports figure.' It was just something I was tired of."So is...
  • Critical Moment

    Our Opinionated Guide from One to Five StarsMUSIC ...
  • Hipper Than Hip-Hop

    Rapping may be the only thing puffy can't do. Rumor has it that after the dismal sales of his last album, Sean (Puffy) Combs might quit performing altogether. Although he isn't commenting, others are. "Something always suffers when you try to do too many things, and I think he realized that it's time just to focus on producing," says competitor Dr. Dre. Or on one of the other slashes in his job description. Last week the rapper/producer/restaurateur/designer was nominated for fashion's equivalent of the Oscar. His eponymous Sean John line presented its first collection of actual menswear--dripping with '80s-style excess--only two months ago. Irrational exuberance rules: his cashmere pants and floor-length furs have made him a favorite to win at the American Fashion Awards on June 15, which would put him on an elite list that includes Isaac Mizrahi, Anna Sui and Todd Oldham. At least he's in good with the style police.
  • Joan Lunden Says 'I Do'

    Why the quickie marriage last week between Joan Lunden, 49, and her beau of three years, Jeff Konigsberg, 39? The summer-camp owner presented Lunden with a ring--literally on a silver platter--over dinner on April 8, and they were married just 10 days later. She denies it, but the timing could have something to do with Regis. The former "Good Morning America" co-host is reportedly in the race to replace Kathie Lee, and being happily married with children could boost her chances with the "Live" producers. Lunden already had the kids--Jamie, 19; Lindsay, 17, and Sarah, 12--from her first marriage. At least Lunden wouldn't talk too much about their potty training.
  • The Next Big 'Thong'

    Being cheeky hasn't hurt Sisqo's career. Propelled by his ode to the female posterior, "Thong Song," his debut album has sold more than 2 million copies. MTV declared the tune--in which telling a woman she "got dumps like a truck" is high praise--its official spring-break anthem. The single is so hot that last week Sisqo announced he would tour with 'N Sync this summer. But the next day, he seemed ready to pull out. "I'm the best," he said. "I don't need to open for anybody." That was news to his people, who evidently called their blond bombshell to settle him down. By the end of the day, Sisqo was back with the boys. Guess all that platinum may have gone to his head.
  • Shaq In The Battle Again

    Last season Shaquille O'Neal kept to a well-established routine. In the evening, after recovering from the rigors of practice, he would head over to a local high-school gym and work on free-throw shooting, his Achilles' heel. Later, the Lakers' superstar center would plunge into the social whirl at a local hot spot or a celebrity party. And in the morning, Shaq would flip on a Jay-Z CD and make a phone call to the NBA brass to gripe about the beatings he was taking on the court and how the refs weren't doing anything about it.This season, only the free-throw ritual remains. Shaq has cut back on the carousing, the result of an ultimatum by new coach Phil Jackson to what was one of the league's most notorious party teams. And he's halted the phone calls, too. "I'd call, but nothing ever changed," says O'Neal, who is still just 28 and in his eighth pro season. "So I'm serving notice. I don't want trouble in the playoffs. But I'm going to come at people the way they come at me, and it...
  • A Whole New Racquet

    Will Venus Williams retire at 19? Last week when her outrageous dad said she might leave tennis to focus on her education and investments, people laughed. "I wouldn't take anything he says too seriously," said top player Lindsay Davenport. Even Serena Williams said she expects the sister act to continue. But a source close to Venus says, "She has very little desire to return and has made that clear to her family. She's never really had the passion for the game her father would have liked, and now that she's in fashion school, she's found her true passion." Teens are fickle. Fashion could go out of fashion.
  • Bopping Right To The Top

    Getting hurt may be a lucky break for artists. Just days after 'N Sync-er Lance Bass twisted his ankle during a "Saturday Night Live" performance, the group rocked the music industry by selling 1.1 million copies of "No Strings Attached" its first day in stores--and went on to sell a record 2.42 million for the week. That's more than double the Backstreet Boys' old record of 1.13 million. No doubt Britney Spears is hoping her "Oops!" will translate to big numbers, too. On March 18 the teen needed four stitches after a camera bopped her on the head during a video shoot for "Oops!... I Did It Again," the first single from her forthcoming album. Her mother posted a message on the singer's Web site saying that Spears was bleeding from the head and speculating that she'd suffered a concussion. "These are the times that I worry most!" wrote her mom. "I worry about those freak accidents that seem to occur when you work crazy hours." Britney was up and performing that night, but maybe she...
  • Rap's Ultimate Outsiders

    You'll see lots of big-name rappers on the Grammys this week, but the one who outstripped them all in 1999 didn't get a single nomination. So Wednesday night Juvenile, whose CD "400 Degreez" sold 4 million units, will work Rochester, N.Y.--taking the stage, as usual, by leaping out of a giant Plexiglas Rolex. Last month he got one nomination at the American Music Awards, but was passed over as a presenter. The New Orleans-based Cash Money Records click--including Juvenile and Lil Wayne--had to be in L.A. that weekend anyway (to do "Soul Train"), but they skipped the Dr. Dre and LL Cool J parties and chilled at their hotel in the Valley (read: Siberia) shooting craps. Not sulking; just staying out of trouble. They're rap's ultimate outsiders--and the biggest deal in the business.Cash Money's owners, Baby and Slim (Bryan and Ronald Williams), started peddling CDs out of a car in 1997. Last year, with 7 million albums, they outsold rap's premier labels, Bad Boy and Def Jam, thanks to...
  • Their Burning Love

    Looks like Lisa Marie Presley is a sucker for a serenade. Elvis's daughter, 32, is engaged again, this time to singer John Oszajca, 25. It's her third attempt at harmony with a musician. Before Michael Jackson, she was married to bassist Danny Keough, the father of her two kids. There could be another Jackson connection, a song on Oszajca's debut album. The title: "I Might Look White."Imagine the possibilities: Brett Favre returns to the field after Deion Sanders steals his woman, coach Mike Shanahan gets "kidnapped" right before the big game and players wielding their seats give new meaning to the term getting benched. According to the WWF's Vince McMahon, it could be a reality by this time next year. Last week the wrestling kingpin announced plans to muscle his way onto the football field, creating his own NFL rival, the Extreme Football League (XFL). The league will have teams in eight cities, and play a 10-week season starting after the Super Bowl next year. For now, the master...
  • Nothing But Garnett

    Kevin Garnett is a gifted mimic. He steps off the basketball court and seconds later is on a rollicking roll, from the late rapper Tupac Shakur to a dead-on Tony Montana, the Al Pacino mobster in "Scarface," to quick riffs goofing on his Minnesota Timberwolves teammates. No one is ever safe from Garnett's barrages, except his mom. She calls regularly from back home in Mauldin, S.C., with the most... uh, helpful suggestions on dealing with the rigors of NBA life. "When I hurt my ankle this season, she told me to eat tomato soup," says Garnett. "I'm like, 'Ma, how is that going to help?' But then you know what I did, right?" Of course: Kevin heated up the soup.Since he arrived in the NBA five years ago, Garnett, 23, has been heating up the basketball court too. Each season the seven-footer has upped his scoring, rebounding and assists, establishing himself as the most versatile big man in the league. He can hammer the ball inside or throw a feathery pass in the lane, and this season...
  • Battling The 'Whitewash'

    It's often said that the entertainment industry is driven only by the desire to make money, but that is plainly untrue. It is also driven by the desire not to lose it. As soon as the fall TV shows were announced last summer, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People attacked the networks for underrepresenting minorities both in front of the camera and behind it. NAACP president Kweisi Mfume called the fall slate "a virtual whitewash" and led a six-month campaign, threatening to picket, to boycott the networks and their advertisers, and to seek federal intervention. Last week NBC suddenly got religion, and announced a plan to generate minority jobs. ABC followed quickly. As for CBS, the network had long been planning exactly the sort of program the NAACP was agitating for, Steven Bochco's inner-city hospital drama "City of Angels." The show boasts many skin tones—and very few whites. In the second episode, an arrogant surgeon tells the hospital's new medical...
  • In The Eye Of 'The Hurricane'

    Denzel Washington may make almost $10 million a movie, but he's not afraid to take a punch. When he took on the role of Rubin (Hurricane) Carter--the real-life middleweight contender imprisoned for 19 years for a murder he didn't commit--Washington trained as if he'd been given a shot at the title. He lost 44 pounds, and spent day after day taking punches: "I put my heart and soul into it. We were doing a lot of the full-body boxing, which I loved, but I began getting headaches and memory loss--that was a problem. It's a tough sport. I knew that already, because I know [Tyson] and Ali. But I can't give it up. It's addictive."Washington gives a heavyweight performance in Norman Jewison's powerful movie "The Hurricane." Jewison, who also directed Washington in his breakthrough role in "A Soldier's Story," claims that by the end of filming he couldn't tell the actor from Carter himself: "He had his walk, the way he spoke, the way he carried his body. This role is probably his best work...
  • Jamie Foxx Gets In The Game

    In Oliver Stone's football saga, "Any Given Sunday," Jamie Foxx plays a third-string quarterback who gets his big break when the two men in front of him get injured. In real life, Foxx benefited from a similar stroke of someone else's bad luck. Stone had originally cast hip-hop impresario Sean (Puffy) Combs in the role. When Combs pulled out--because of scheduling conflicts, the filmmakers insist--Foxx was ready to strap on the jock as "Steamin'' Willie Beamen, an upstart with a golden arm and a swollen head. "I played football in high school and that attitude is there from the very beginning,'' says Foxx, 32, whose real name is Eric Bishop. "Puffy's loss was my gain."The good fortune seems to be holding. Foxx gives a winning, charismatic turn in "Sunday," and the film just had the biggest opening weekend of any movie in Stone's career. Before this stormy meditation on race, money and testosterone, Foxx was known for his light, raunchy comedy, both in his eponymous WB series and his...
  • Rap Takes Another Big Hit

    At first Jay-Z insisted he didn't want a party for his new album. Then, about a week and a half ago, one of the world's biggest-selling rappers suddenly changed his mind, and by last Wednesday night his people had made it happen: rented New York City's Irving Plaza nightclub; lined up a deejay and background vocalists for Jay-Z's performance; printed up personalized tickets for such guests as Puffy Combs, Busta Rhymes, Eve, Russell Simmons and Lil' Kim. Great party. The host, in baggy jeans, Phat Farm shirt and a blinding diamond necklace, did snippets of some slamming songs from the album "Vol. 3--The Life and Times of Shawn Carter" (his real name), to be released on Dec. 28, and the beats bumped loud enough to rattle the champagne glasses. "There was no commotion, and the performance was off the hook," recalls the rapper Juvenile. But there was this one thing. Damon Dash, co-owner of Jay-Z's Roc-a-Fella Records, grabbed the mike, yelled "F--k the bootleggers" and exhorted the...
  • Doing It Without The Man

    It's a classic NBA one-on-one: a coach, Phil Jackson, with his reputation as the league's reigning genius, vs. a star-studded L.A. Lakers team that has played like a remake of "Dumb and Dumber." Since Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant arrived in L.A. three years ago and began their "who's the man?" duel, the Lakers have been the most disappointing team in the NBA. The two superstars were unwilling to talk off the court and incapable of communicating on it. As a result, the Lakers have bombed in the playoffs, including 4-0 sweeps by Utah and San Antonio the past two seasons. Swept away in the process were two coaches. But Jackson is clearly the man now. And by the end of last week he had kick-started the formerly brooding and feuding Lakers to a 5-2 record. With six championship rings from his Chicago Bulls tenure, bolstered by a five-year, $30 million deal, the new coach far exceeds his players in stature. "Jackson knows how to win so there's no more excuses," says O'Neal. "If we can...
  • The Doctor's In The House

    When last we saw Dr. Dre, the producer who helped to invent gangsta rap with N.W.A back in the '80s, he'd become a kinder, gentler rapper. His eclectic, adventurous 1996 CD "Dr. Dre Presents the Aftermath" featured strings, Supremes-like vocals and appearances by obscure aspiring rappers; on the video for the single "Been There, Done That," a tuxedoed Dre did a slinky tango. And guess what: the CD sold only a fourth as much as Dre's hard-edged 1992 "The Chronic," the rap album of the decade. "It just didn't work out the way I planned," says Dre, a.k.a. Andre Young. "I had people my mom's age coming up to me saying, 'Oh, I really liked that tango dance song.' That was cool, but that's not who my peeps are. That's not who made me successful. So I knew I had to come back to where it all began."This week Dre's peeps will get the album they've been waiting for. "The Chronic 2001" has irresistible grooves, the old lowrider funk, the b----es-and-hos rhetoric (exhibit A: "You Can't Make a...
  • Bad Vibes At Cable's Bet

    The week the hit film "Three Kings" opened, three of its stars--George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg and Ice Cube--made the talk-show rounds. Clooney did Leno, Wahlberg did Letterman and Ice Cube did "Live From LA"--a new show on cable's Black Entertainment Television. Cube, the rapper and actor, decided to make the black-owned network his first stop because it's the sole place on the dial where African-Americans can see "us and only us," he says. "We need that because we don't get it anywhere else.''At a time when blacks and others are decrying poor minority representation on mainstream TV, BET offers an alternative. For nearly two decades, it's been the only network exclusively aimed at black America. Founded and owned by former congressional press secretary Robert Johnson, 53, BET has grown from a fledgling netlet into an empire valued at $1.5 billion that reaches 90 percent of black cable households. But despite the lack of color elsewhere on TV, BET's viewers and employees have become...
  • Eve, The First Lady Of Rap

    Rapper Eve Jihan Jeffers likes a good dare. When she was in the ninth grade, a schoolmate dared her to dye her hair blond, and Eve couldn't resist the challenge. "I was like, I can do that--no problem," remembers the 20-year-old Philadelphia native with a roll of her eyes. "I did dye it and went to school the next day and blew everybody away. I've always been that girl--the girl who was going to do what she was going to do no matter what."A few weeks ago that girl, with her cropped, still-blond hair, did what no female rapper has done before when her album "Eve" entered the charts at No. 1. While her climb to the top may seem as if it happened overnight, Eve has been around for a while. "I was a stripper for a minute and made some good money, but I knew that wasn't me," says Eve. "A lot of my friends were, like, 'What are you doing? You got talent on the mike. Put it to use'."After high school, Eve concentrated on her writing and rhyming, and eventually came to the attention of rap...
  • More Bounce To The Ounce

    When they showed 24-year-old rapper Juvenile the video for his new hit single "Back That Azz Up," he gave it the accolade du jour: "That s--t is off the hook!" The video--basically, women shaking their rear ends--is subtle only in its coyly misspelled title. But MTV has it in heavy rotation, and young America's chanting along: "Call me Big Daddy when you back that azz up." Wait, get your mind out of the gutter. Juvenile says, "It's just like saying, 'Let me get another look'."This is the latest coup for Juvenile (Terius Gray), New Orleans-based Cash Money Records and the bass-heavy Southern hip-hop called bounce music. The label's founders, Ronald and Brian Williams, once sold albums out of their car. Juvenile made his living by capturing alligators at $50 a pop. ("You just need a stick and some rope.") Now his debut, "400 Degrees," has hit the pop top 10, and Cash Money, also home to the Hot Boys, is the hottest rap label in the country. "I'm a little surprised," says Juvenile, ...