Truth Hurts likes it dirty. The leggy singer/songwriter--whohas been tagged as the first lady of Dr. Dre's revamped Aftermath Records--is no novice to clawing for attention int he crowded playground of pop/R&B princesses. When the good doctor signed the classically trained veteran to Aftermath in 1999, he quickly renamed Shari Watson (once "Shug" of R&B group Shug & Dap) with her current name. " Dre likes to keep it ugly under all circumstances," Truth explains.

During downtime at a photoshoot in Los Angeles' Miahaus Studios, the St. Louis-bred Truth--whose sound can be best described as Aretha Franklin sparring Grace Jones--explains he no-holds-barred attitude. "I don't do watered down R&B," she stresses, wearing a skintight leather-and-lace number that shows just how serious she is.