R&B Divas’ Nicci Gilbert Clears the Air On Rumors That She Was Fired, Says Issues With Syleena Johnson Began Last Season + Why She Created ‘Divas & Cocktails’

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Four episodes in, and the good folk at TV One are definitely keeping us entertained for season number two of R&B Divas. With two new cast members, we weren’t sure if these ‘divas’ would be able to pull it off, but after peeping the teaser and tuning in each Wednesday night, we’re sorta, kinda addicted. Recently, we caught up with Nicci Gilbert, co-creator of the show, at her No Ego Music studio, trying to get insight on this season. For starters, what’s the REAL issue between her and cast mate Syleena Johnson? And was she ever in jeopardy of being fired from the show? She also discusses the concept behind ‘Divas and Cocktails’ and whether or not the show has become ‘ratchet.’ Peep a few excerpts below.

On Creating R & B Divas: 

I actually created the show and I casted the show, I brought all the ladies on board and then I reached out to the Faith because I knew we needed an anchor and she was kind enough. Faith and I have been friends for almost 20 years. She is not about the BS, but when she saw that it was all pretty much together and she saw the sizzle reel–we actually co-funded the sizzle reel.


On The Power She Has As Show Creator:

People think we have the ability to go into the editing room and say, “Oh on take that out, no we don’t want that.”  If that did in fact happen it wouldn’t be fair to the other ladies who are our friends and our peers because you know I would be like “Oh, my teeth look so big right there; I look fat.”

So to stay neutral, I think that it’s best if we are on camera not to have the ability or the right to edit other people or be a part of that. We did see the first few episodes of season one and then after that I was like, “Oh okay, so this is why I didn’t see the other ones,” but again we do have creatively in terms of producing the show, I think everyone really produces their own story. You know what I mean?

On The Rumor That She Was Fired From The Show: 

Absolutely, positively none. I was never, ever–I have a really great relationship with TV One, a great relationship with TV One. TV one is the only entity that has the ability to say “you’re fired.” At the point that they say they’re fired, that is just basically them saying we don’t want to see you on camera anymore. Because in terms of me being fired as an executive producer and stuff like that, we got contracts to protect us from just a random firing.

On If She Can Have Cast Members Fired: 

First of all, I would never exercise that authority. Never in a million years because you know what, at the end of the day, I’m a business woman. And the only woman that I think should not be on the show is a woman who is just not adding anything one way or the other. And who doesn’t want to be there? But I would never. People have children and families and lives and that’s the reason I reached out to everybody. I’m not taking business to the personal level unless of course something happened to a degree where it was just like you know me or her. If it’s ever a me or her situation, then it’s her.


On Her Clothing Line Curvato: 

The price point on Curvato, because everything is pretty much custom tailored to fit right now, starts at about $150 and goes up to about $250. So I mean for a custom piece that is made for your exact measurements I think it’s a pretty decent deal….We will be a year in August. We launched during Mother’s Day weekend, so it will be a year mother’s day in terms of the birth of the idea so to speak, but the business itself which is an online business has only been around, we launched in August.


On Her New Online Show Diva’s and Cocktails: 

Ever since I was little, I was the girl that got all my friends together in the garage “Like hey yall we going to make up a routine, we going to get a song together.”  So I am always coming up with ideas and concepts and I have always wanted to do talk show; I told ya’ll I was an Oprah fan. So I have always wanted to do talk and I feel like Atlanta has become such a hotbed for really cool, creative projects and stuff. So I reached out to Rodney Perry and a group of really amazing women and I was like, ‘Hey, let’s do something that is Hot Topics, something that is sketch comedy and fun’. DivasandCocktails.com, every Wednesday right after R&B Divas at 11pm. So it’s kind of our Watch What Happens/Wendy Williams moment, unofficial but we have been getting some awesome feedback so I would anticipate we will have a network attached; fingers, toes and eyes crossed.

On Issues With Cast Mate Syleena Johnson:

We’ve had issues. Syleena and I have had issues since really and honestly before we started filming season one. And those issues you know–I’m a very loyal person. I’m loyal to a fault. I will give you the shirt off my back, I love hard and I’m committed to my friendships. And when a person comes into a situation and I see that loyalty is not reciprocated it pulls up red flag. Now there’s several times where I just decided to sweep it under the rug and give another chance.

I think it has to do with the fact that she has anger management issues. Those are issues I know for certain I don’t have. I’ve never jumped up and started screaming and cursing anybody out. So we’re nothing alike in that regard. In terms of being honest, In terms of being forth right, in terms of sort of you know saying… well honest is relative but in terms of just what comes up comes out and not being afraid of what you want to say I think we’re very similar. She’s from Chicago and I’m from Detroit.

On Being Concerned About The Show’s Direction: 

I’ve always felt like because we were talented singers and we were already dramatic, all of us with the exception of Faith and Latocha. Very dramatic people.The way we express ourselves. You know honesty dramatic, and I’m feeling like now it’s just the more ratchet you are, the successful you become. On my life and everything I love, I will walk away from it with a smile on my face before I allow myself to start screaming and yelling and cursing and flipping out. You’re not going to see that from me. And unfortunately because I decided this time. We will have all of those conversations about all of those incidents off camera and have them as friends.


Describing Her Cast Members In One Word: 

Angie Stone:











And here’s the full interview.

For all things Nicci Gilbert, follow her on Twitter @niccigilbert and tune into R& B Diva’s Wednesday nights, at 10 PM on TV One.




  • Miss AG

    1979??? Birth year???

    • Anonymous

      Nicci “Get your life” Tamar Braxton. Angie Stone is still relavent huntee in 2013… Never heard of you… cant remember what Brownstone sang…

      • Kay

        They made two songs probably around the 80’s so not sure what that 1979 reference was for Angie…and in my Janet Jackson voice “Nicci, what have you done for me lately?” Have several seats, Ms. Gilbert.

  • DIVA

    Don’t honestly see why Nicci dislike Syleena so much. Nicci was the one that didnt introduce Syleena last yr at the Essence Festival and I thought that was childish because no matter if you like her or not that was business. I also think that Syleena is a person that speaks her mind and Nicci can’t take that. Nicci want everybody to by down to her and Syleena is not going to do that so Nicci says that Syleena need anger management because she speaks her mind…really. Nicci is a bulley. I think Syleena is a great person from what I see on TV. I like her music. I think that Nicci is just jealous of Syleena. I also think Nicci need to stop acting like they in high school and trying to turn all the other ladies against Syleena. She lied to begun with when it came to saying Syleena & her sister are the ones that put the email. Nicci grow up.

    • Renee

      I have never encountered anyone as TWISTED as Nicci Gilbert. TWISTED, TWISTED, TWISTED. Did I say TWISTED???? This itch needs mental help ASAP. Lies, twists EVERYTHING, bullies, spread rumors and brings such negative energy but NEVER, EVER looks at the Diva in the mirror. Soooo fake and phony. I feel sorry for anyone that comes in close contact with this chick. Her brain in full of delusions. Seek mental therapy Nicci and work hard on your narcissism. We have to turn down the volume or turn the channel EVERYTIME this itch comes across the TV. Can’t stand watching her anymore. She’s so EVIL and must be destroyed or at least FIRED.

  • Anonymous

    I think Nicci Gilbert is ignorant as hell. I mean what has Syleena really done?

  • Nicci please

    1979? Is that a read for Miss Angie? Girl,Brownstone? Puhlease… You may have created the show but you are on the bottom of the list if we rank these Divas… Also leave Syleena alone. You look messy and jealous.

  • Wow

    Nicci, every Diva for themselves? Angie, Keke, Faith and Monifah dont need you! Can you please say no to the delusion pills… Lord jesus…

  • Cindy

    Nicci needs to have several sits. It’s like she just sit around and try to convince herself that she hates Syleena. I’m still confused as to why SHE is the one always attacking her and trying to turn the other ladies against her. The reasons she give (and it’s different every time she is asked) make no sense. Syleena is doing her thing and I think Nicci is jealous of that, especially with her being the executive producer of the show a.k.a. a star of the show.

  • DivaDamphyne

    If you can not get it together you need to get out of the way. It seems as if you want to be a good person, but your snake like actions are blocking you from achieving that. We only get to see but a moment of your lives. The moment you show is that of a spiteful, hateful woman. Stop it. Let God show up in you all the time.

  • Kay

    Not really liking Nicci Gilbert. Don’t know why she’s on the show since she has “lost her passion for music”. Isn’t this a show about singers? This chick is really delusional.

  • Christina

    Nicci appears to be the one with the anger management issues. This is why black women can’t exist as a cohesive unit . As long as there is backbiting and jealousy, things will never change. The only one who seems to have a problem is Nicci, she is spiteful and divisive. Sweetie, you’re not all that. You come off as aggressive and school yard bully. And you seem like a Syleena hater to the fullest..It’s really sad…you need a serious reality check, not a reality show.

  • Annette

    Niccolo is just being her
    If she and anyone of the Divas can’t get along who cares. Everyone is not gonna be able to get along, so what “Life goes on!”

  • Stacey

    I think Nicci is being really childish and ungodly toward Syleena..especially since Nicci got all chocked up at the A.I.D.S event and Syleena and the other divas went out there and supported her..but it is like it didn’t matter she just wants to hate her…grow up and be a real woman!



  • divafan

    Nicci is about the least self aware person I’ve seen who isn’t playing a character. At first I disliked her, but i wonder if maybe she is supposed to be the batsh** crazy one. No “reality” show is complete without the narcissist who brings the drama most days.

  • Anonymous

    nicci is hiding a secret.

    • Marsha

      Do tell…

    • Marsha

      Please tell us the secret.

  • stoney

    she is crazy and needs help. Why is she telling people they work for her. In short she works for us the viewers and sponsors. Sorry

  • 1960

    On the season finale (Nicci) tells Syleena (You work for me). Does she pay the salaries of the entire cast? Does she pay the cast saleries threw her Non-profit (Divas & Flowers)? Is (Divas & Flowers) a 501 (C)? & Is (Divas & Flowers registered in the state of Georgia?


    Nicci Gilbert is a HELLION. I have not ever seen such a negatively spirted, co producer, used to be a great singer back I n “1979” and suppose to be founder of Curvato. How does a person with all these blessings come a cross as the real devil spawn. Once upon a time I was a true fan of Brownstone but after watching this lady in action makes me say Brownstone who. I watched the show because it was the girl from Brownstone. I am highly disapponted as brownstone fan when I began to watch the show. Nicci Gilbert should have shown herself in better light. There’s no need to keep clawing at Syleena. Nicci Gilberts attitude is beyond “NASTY”!!!!!! And to get on TV and cry because of the things people have said her to her mother (a so rehearsed scene, not authentic feelings). These people only said the truth and in Nicci Gilberts case reality tv finally captured what’s real!!!!! Her nastiness.# in the words of Tamar Braxton,Nicci Gilbert have serveral seats

  • DeeTrulyBlessed

    I am so confused!! Nicci, Nicci, Nicci Please sit down an watch the show. Once your down watching please walk away. You said yourself before you start yelling, screaming….. you will walk away. In my Nicci voice “Oh but you did” every time you had a moment with the camera you were yelling.. You are doing too much at one time. Please do us all a favor an WALK AWAY!! You are the source of the foolery!!

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