G Is For Gangstas and Girls

Men aren’t the only ones who can spit bars

Are you tired of listening to rappers like Drake and DaBaby over and over again, and want quality hip-hop with less testosterone in it? Do you want music that’s strong, smart and sexy, all at the same time?

Rap has evolved drastically since its rise in popularity in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s. The stories of struggles and hardships, combined with samples of jazz and disco, laid the foundation for old-school hip-hop. And the “golden era” of hip-hop spanning from the late ’80s into the ’90s took the genre to even greater heights, introducing many of the artists who would come to be considered some of the game’s OGs and GOATs. Along with notable acts like Public Enemy, NWA and Snoop Dogg, female rappers have been in the same discussion of legend status.

Missy Elliott stands out as one of the best ladies to ever do it. Her debut album in 1997, “Supa Dupa Fly,” made waves within the hip-hop community, selling 1.2 million copies in America and peaking at number three on the Billboard 200 chart. Since her introduction into the rap game, Missy Elliott has always had a flair to her that made her stand out from the crowd, specifically her smooth vocals and colorful wordplay. Her takes on the battle of the sexes and demands for respect within the genre have served as an inspiration for some of today’s female rappers. She can serve as a powerful figure for change, but she also knows how to turn the heat up and get dirty—Missy knows what it means to have range.

Each of her six studio albums have received critical praise for their punchy lyrical content and outstanding production by Elliott’s long-time friend and collaborator, Timbaland. Missy Elliott embodies what a modern female rapper should be: strong, sexy, intelligent and an advocate for equal treatment in a male-dominated field.

Nowadays, women are a lot more prevalent in the hip hop scene. Some of the biggest names include Cardi B, Doja Cat and Megan Thee Stallion. Megan Thee Stallion in particular stands out from the crowd. In a way, she serves as a modern day Missy. Though a lot of Megan’s lyrics are more sexual than Missy’s, a lot of her songs are about being a strong woman. Her song “Hot Girl Summer” took over the summer of 2019, becoming the anthem for women across the nation, inspiring self-confidence and empowerment.

Whether it be about getting money independently or being the best rapper in the game, Megan Thee Stallion knows how to flow with a beat and “drive the boat.” Though she has yet to release a studio album, her debut mixtape, “Fever,” was received with overall positive reviews. It debuted at number 10 on the U.S. Billboard 200, which has been the seventh female rap project to reach the top 10 in the past decade. Her recently released EP, “Suga,” also reached the top 10. It’s safe to say that Megan Thee Stallion is a force to be reckoned with and is just getting started.

The world of hip hop is constantly changing, but one thing that will remain constant is a strong female presence. From Lil’ Kim and Remy Ma to Nicki Minaj and Iggy Azalea, women will continue to leave their mark on hip hop. Though their sounds and messages aren’t the same, each brings their own style to the rap game. Don’t be surprised if more women blow up in the coming years; artists like Rico Nasty, Saweetie and Kash Doll have already made a name for themselves and are on the verge of breaking into the mainstream. With the start of a new decade, more new acts will rise to the top of the charts, and you can be damn sure that women will be leading the pack.