Salt-N-Pepa’s Cheryl James Says She Was ‘Asked to Have an Abortion’ for the Sake of Her Career

Salt-N-Pepa‘s Cheryl “Salt” James makes a bombshell revelation about how she was treated as a young mom in the music industry in the Tuesday (May 9) episode of the Tamron Hall Show, and Billboard has an exclusive first look.


In the clip, Hall asks the pioneering hip-hop duo for their thoughts about having it all as women in music — particularly in the face of critics telling women they can’t balance motherhood with having a successful career.

“They still sayin’ that?” quips Sandra Denton, aka Pepa. “And that was why we are true to who we are. They could recognize ’cause we wanted to be moms and we was moms. We said, ‘We can do it’ and whatever came my way, I handled it, which was taking the good with the bad … ’cause someone has to do it! When they think it can’t, they panic, the labels and people. ‘Oh my god, how are you gonna? The sales! Sales, sales!’ But you know, we did it.”

Denton’s bandmate James then chimes in, telling Hall, “They do get scared. I don’t think I’ve ever said this out loud, oooh Tamron! I was actually asked to have an abortion — I won’t say by who — but to your point, yeah, you just have to know that it’s something that you’re capable of handling if you want a kid and you want to have a career. And it’s definitely harder.

“Having my daughter, besides finding Jesus, is the best thing that I’ve ever experienced, my kids,” she continues. “Like, I needed that lil’ baby in my life, you know? She kept me company on the road.”

Nowadays, as Hall points out, the Grammy Lifetime Achievement honorees can look at something like Rihanna’s recent Super Bowl Halftime Show performance while visibly pregnant and recognize that their stance helped make a difference for future generations.

Salt-N-Pepa’s hourlong interview about the struggles and triumphs of their careers, the 50th anniversary of hip-hop and more will air on Tamron Hall Tuesday (May 9). Check the show’s website for local air times.

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