Since its beginning, the rap industry has been predominantly male. But more and more women are moving center stage, bringing a feminine power to the industry. Artists such as Tierra Whack, Rico Nasty, City Girls and Noname are showing they can not only create the same sounds as their male counterparts, but can bring greater creativity and variety of sound to the rap genre as well.
I’ve come to believe that a lot of male rappers have adopted the same sound. In my opinion, artists such as Rich the Kid and Famous Dex haven’t brought anything too original to the genre, and a lot of their beats and melodies blend together in similarity. No hate on any male rappers, there are a lot of them out there who are extremely talented and produce great work, but I think it’s time for women to step up and fill in the spotlight.
Last year, Tierra Whack brought a unique new variety to the genre with the release of Whack World. Whack World, along with her music released since then, has displayed a completely distinct sound. She has a wide range of vocal intonation that allows each of her songs to sound different from the last; her vocals range from upbeat and lighter in “Pretty Ugly” to softer and deeper in “Dr. Seuss”. Her project carried the genius of condensing every song into a minute’s length, along with the accompaniment of an eccentric short film with concepts and visuals, all bringing a fresh perspective to the rap genre.
Rico Nasty’s more aggressive trap-like music has proven that anything men can do she can do, perhaps even better. Her most recently released album, Anger Management, shows how powerful she can really be as a female artist. Her voice is assertive, filled with bold and somewhat hostile energy. Similar to Rico, City Girls are another female rap group that produce more assertive trap-rap and prove that female artists can also bring aggressiveness to the genre. The production of strong and forceful sounds brings a lot of empowerment to women. Lyrics by Rico and City Girls especially portray the female body with confidence and independence; their vocals establish that they’re tough women who can function fine without men. I think it’s exactly the energy the rap genre needs.
Noname is another artist who is equally as talented, but produces a sound completely independent from Whack, Rico and City Girls. Her music is softer, lighter and more chill. Her sound is very distinct to her, and her lyrics touch on important societal issues. A lot of her lyrics carry a lot of weight to them, and she is able to express them with a soft and gentle yet stern flow. Her music shows that she’s more than just a rapper, but a poet. She carries a special liveliness in her mellow voice.
If you were to compare “Hungry Hippo” by Tierra Whack, “Cheat Code” by Rico Nasty, “Act Up” by City Girls and “Song 32” by Noname, there would be a significant distinction between each song that highlights each artist’s authentic creativity. These female artists, along with honorable mentions Junglepussy, Princess Nokia and Leikeli47, are creating fantastic content that is truly steering women into the limelight of the rap industry.
Cover Photo: Pattern