Prediction: LunchMoney Lewis has a big summer ahead.
His debut single, Bills, a shout-out to workaday folks hustling to make money, is moving up the charts faster than the swipe of a credit card.
Born Gamal Lewis, the North Miami native is stepping into the spotlight — last week’s appearance on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Kimmel comes to mind — after cutting his teeth in the music biz helping write songs for such pop acts as Jessie J (Burnin’ Up), Fifth Harmony (Bo$$) and Juicy J (Scholarship).
So how did this peppy ditty — released in February on Dr. Luke’s label with Sony Entertainment, Kemosabe Records — come to be?
Digital Access For Only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
“I literally just started scatting the melody to the first verse and throwing words in there,” the L.A.-based Lewis told USA Today of the song, produced by Ricky Reed, best known for Jason Derulo’s Talk Dirty. “We were all just throwing it against the wall. The song kind of wrote itself.”
Talent runs in the family. The Miami Beach High grad’s half brother Abebe Lewis is a local producer; dad Ian and uncle Roger Lewis of the reggae group Inner Circle wrote such classics as Bad Boys, the theme for Cops (most recently featured in the Mall Cop 2 movie) and Sweat (A La La Long).
“We call ourselves Jamericans; we have Jamaican roots but were raised in America,” says Abebe. “People know about the Marley family but not necessarily the Lewis family. We are out there, too.”
Abebe, 38, runs Circle House Studios, specializing in remixes with major artists. The location is kept private due to previous paparazzi issues. “It got a little crazy,” Ian says, laughing. “That was my first experience with all that stuff.”
Both Ian and Abebe are super proud of LunchMoney. And big bro thinks he knows the appeal of the 27-year-old’s chart topper.
“Hey, everybody’s got bills, you know?”
Al and Nancy Malnik opened their sprawling Palm Beach mansion on Sunday to a slew of VIP locals. The Make-A-Wish Southern Florida lifetime benefactors hosted their annual garden party to give a taste of what’s to come at the MAW ball come November. Gala chairman/Forge titan Shareef Malnik announced that this year’s theme will celebrate the mystical world of mythology. In attendance: Shareef’s fiancée Gabrielle Anwar; reality star turned man about town Fabian Basabe (Filthy Rich: Cattle Drive) and former Real Housewives of Miami cast mate Adriana De Moura.
Speaking of RHOM, Andy Cohen got the lowdown on what’s up with a few of the ladies, whose show was axed after three seasons, thanks to his Watch What Happens Live! guest Lea Black. Appearing to promote her first book, Red Carpets and White Lies, the philanthropist answered Cohen’s rapid-fire questions about her former costars. What we gleaned from her answers: The marriage of Joanna Krupa and her husband, Romain Zago, is in fine shape; Black, the so-called Mayor of Miami, “never” sees Alexia Echevarria; and Lisa Hochstein’s baby (via surrogate) is due Aug. 1.
If you bump into Elle Macpherson around town, don’t ask what’s in her bag. In an interview with the Evening Standard, the supermodel admitted that she carries around a pH balance urine tester kit. She told the UK publication why: “I believe that most ailments come from having an acidic body. The body’s pH [aka power of hydrogen] value tells you how acidic or alkaline your body is, and many nutritionists say that having an alkaline body helps defend against sickness and disease.” P.S: You too can get a dip stick at your local pharmacy; low pH readings — below 7.0 on a scale of 1-14 — are considered acidic; high pH readings — above 7.0 — are thought to be alkaline.
A REAL PRINCE
See Prince Royce in the flesh when he appears at 11:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. Thursday at the Corral Terrace Sprint store, 8650 SW 24th St. The bachata singer will present a donation of $10,000 to ASPIRA of Florida, a nonprofit helping Hispanic students, on behalf of the telecommunications company. The Prince will not be signing autographs or taking pictures — no time. Later he’ll appear at the Latin Billboard Awards at the BankUnited Center in Coral Gables.