During the summer of this year, Cardi B released WAP featuring Meg Thee Stallion. It charted number one on the Billboard Hot 100 list for four consecutive weeks. In less than a week of the song’s release, it reached 93 million streams in the U.S., which makes it the most-streamed release ever, and it became certified gold at the time.
Although two female rappers have made this accomplishment, the song suggested explicit content; the song’s acronym means Wet *** *****.
Most women in mainstream hip-hop are usually overhyped because they normalize hyper-sexuality, while others who don’t, aren’t recognized. Many artists haven’t received success because sexuality isn’t a used tactic.
Angel Haze is an American poet turned rapper who uses topics such as rape culture, racism, childhood trauma, and homophobia in her music. Haze addresses them through her life experiences and used popular hip-hop beats to rap over. Her music caught the attention of many media outlets, and it gained her many fans.
Haze’s wordplay is incredible, and she didn’t have to be naked to showcase it.
Even though Haze grew popularity online, only one album called Dirty Gold in 2013 made it on the Billboards list for one week, and it didn’t chart in the hip-hop category.
Haze had problems with her then-label, because they pushed back the release date of the album. Atlantic records would not do that to Cardi B.
Haze never got the recognition she deserved because she didn’t over-sexualize her music or appearance.
American hip-hop artist Rapsody is highly skilled and uplifts Black women, expresses racial inequality and authenticity in her music. Rapsody does not use sexually explicit themes, nor does she have the highest record sales like Cardi B or Meg thee Stallion.
As a result, she is another overlooked artist.
Rapsody’s lyrics are conscious, not sexual. In her song Nina, she said, “I drew a line without showing my body that’s a skill.” It addressed misogyny and how deeply sexuality plays into hip-hop. She doesn’t have to show her body to let people know what her talent is.
Noname is an American rapper who had considered quitting rap due to the lack of support from fans, particularly non-white audiences.
In Noname’s music, she raps about police brutality, poverty, and equality, and more.
She doesn’t go for the trend of being displayed as a sex object. She ensures she goes above and beyond than most female hip-hop artists today.
Her name is not out there because people prefer hyper-sexuality but her music is not sexualized and she does not dress provocatively.
There are countless number of female hip-hop artists who don’t get the shine they deserve because they choose not to over-sexualize themselves in their music.
Hip-hop is filled with misogyny, and women’s record sales or success should be determined by that.
We’ve seen artists like Lil Kim, Trina, and Foxy Brown become very successful because they’ve used over-sexualized topics and are heavily praised for this.
What happens to the other female artists who want to talk about sex in their songs?
Female rappers who release lyrically conscious content are here to stay, and we need to support them to shift the focus on these over-sexualized artists.