Casandra Elizabeth Ventura (born August 26, 1986), known mononymously as Cassie, is an American recording artist, dancer, actress and model. Born in New London, Connecticut, she began her career as a result of meeting record producer Ryan Leslie in late 2002, who later signed her to NextSelection Lifestyle Group. During this time, Diddy heard "Me & U" in a club, and Leslie convinced him to partner his Bad Boy Records with Leslie's NextSelection imprint for the release of Cassie's debut album.
Cassie's self titled debut studio album was released in August 2006, peaking at number four on the Billboard 200 chart and features the Billboard Hot 100 top three hit "Me & U", which became a major hit in 2006. She began work on her second studio album in 2007 releasing three singles; "Official Girl" featuring Lil Wayne in August 2008, "Must Be Love" featuring Diddy in April 2009, and "Let's Get Crazy" featuring Akon in August 2009, which all failed to chart in the USA, in late 2009 Cassie signed a record deal with Interscope Records. On April 11, 2013 Cassie released her debut mixtape RockaByeBaby, which was promoted with the release of "Numb" featuring Rick Ross and "Paradise" featuring Wiz Khalifa.
Apart from music, Cassie is signed to modeling agency Wilhelmina Models and One Management. Cassie has modeled for Calvin Klein one and has been featured in magazines including GQ and Bust and becoming the face of ASOS 2013 spring collection, Cassie has appeared in adverts for Delia's, Adidas, Abercrombie & Fitch, Seventeen, and a commercial for Clean and Clear. Cassie is known for being a style icon due to her "edgy style" and "feminine" and "sophisticated" fashion. Cassie is also known for setting the trend among women of shaving their hair, after Cassie shaved hers in 2009 influenced by punk. Cassie cites Kate Moss as her style influence. Cassie has also ventured into acting; she made her film debut in Step Up 2: The Streets (2008).