In the days of Web 2.0 – you know you’ve made it when someone attempts to imitate you on Twitter. Bajan singer Shontelle fell a brief victim to an identity thief – or should I say, twief – on Wednesday evening. Coincidently enough, Ms. Layne stopped by The Ralphie Radio Show on the following day.
“This was not the first time,” revealed Shontelle. “We literally had to call the Twitter people and freak out, ‘cause we’ve like, submitted for verification so long ago. I guess it takes a minute, ‘cause there’s so many people they have to verify.”
The impersonator used the Twitter username “ShontelleLayne_”, simply moving the underscore from the real Shontelle’s handle of “Shontelle_Layne.” When Layne looked at the fake account’s timeline, she was shocked to find that this person began “tweeting” at Solange Knowles (singer, Beyoncé’s sister) and Rorrey Fenty (Rihanna’s brother) amongst other people.
As of late Sunday evening, Twitter had yet to verify Shontelle’s account. By “verifying” an account, Twitter places a notification in the upper right corner of the page, so that visitors know the account belongs to the person who they claim to be.
Of course, Layne didn’t need the Twitter incident as a sign that she’s making it in the entertainment industry. Surely opening up for Beyoncé overseas could help that argument. Layne opened for Jay-Z’s husband for about a month on the “I Am…” tour overseas. Shontelle entered the trek with the expectation that she wouldn’t even meet Beyoncé face-to-face, however the headliner proved the opener wrong on that thought.
“I just get this message, ‘Shontelle, go to Beyoncé’s room’” she recalled, noting that immediately she believed that something was wrong. “When I got in there (Beyoncé) was like, ‘No, I just wanted to like, hang out for a bit, because you know, you’ve been on this tour with me, and I haven’t really gotten the chance to tell you thank you for being on the tour, I haven’t really gotten the chance to tell you how talented I think you are.’”
Shontelle’s feelings immediately switched from scared to shocked – one of the biggest pop stars in the world went out of her way to pay Layne high compliments on her singing, stage performance… even videos. From the sound of Layne’s recollection, “stunned” may be an understatement.
Part 1: Twitter, Beyonce, Thanksgiving Day
Part 2: “Licky”, Rihanna, New CD
“I’m like, ‘You’re Beyoncé, why are you telling me this?’” said Shontelle. “Like, is this real? They couldn’t even get me in the room at first… because I was shaking,” she admitted, although Layne insists she wasn’t star struck as much as she was nervous about the meeting’s purpose.
Shontelle also admitted on The Ralphie Radio Show that she’s nervous about an upcoming event – the “T-Shirt” singer will take part in the halftime show in Detroit at the Lions/Packers game on Thanksgiving Sunday. Layne, along with other Universal Motown artists, will perform classic Motown hits in Motown. Shontelle would not divulge which song she is covering.
“If you watched Sister Act 2… you can take a hint from that,” she teased.
In addition to the performance, which will air to a national and international audience on FOX, Shontelle is preparing a new LP. The album is slated for a 2010 release, and Layne will only confirm collaborations with Mr. Hudson and Akon. The first single is a dance infused record called “Licky” – which Layne insists is inspired by desserts.
“Licky” isn’t the only new track from a Bajan artist – as Shontelle’s friend, the aforementioned Rihanna, is back with “Russian Roulette” and “Hard.” A week and a half ago, Rihanna appeared on 20/20 with Diane Sawyer to tell her side of the story. Layne told me that the interview was tough to watch.
“Honestly, it was like watching your little sister do a piano recital for the first time,” she said. “I was nervous. I was a wreck.”
The singer thought her former Cadet partner handled the situation on camera well.
“I thought she did great, actually,” remarked Shontelle. “And she said a lot more than I even thought she was gonna say. I’m really proud of her… I just want, them both really, to grow from this.”