Is 2019 the Year of Viral Female Rappers?
I got these hoes mad
They ain’t know I was really gon’ do this rap shit for real, for real
If I had a crystal ball and could foresee the future of hip-hop for a female rapper in 2019, I would see Instagram influencers—because when you start off posting funny videos of yourself or sexy photoshoots, you suddenly have an “in” as an artist. Yes, that sounds crazy, but the end of 2018 seems to be the open door for viral models or comedians to release tracks that preemptively suggest albums will be dropping in the new year.
However, let’s take a step back… Maybe this all started with Cardi B, who before becoming the “I Like It” Bardi Gang leader in under one year, was a reality star on Love & Hip Hop: New York and a viral sensation known for her hilarious no-holds-barred Instagram videos. In 2017, she dropped”Bodak Yellow” and reigned as the next best female rapper (and maybe even the best) to Nicki Minaj. While she’s not the first to pave the way for female rappers, Cardi might as well have been the first in her lane.
So, who’s next in line?
Now here we are just days away from 2019, and LightSkinKeisha released her new single titled “That’s Just the Bottom Line.” The 24-year-old Georgia native has over 900,00 Instagram followers and started out by posting funny videos and skits just like Cardi B. Back in 2015, she posted one of her first viral videos where she dons braces and jokes about interactions with men. Today, she’s posting twerk videos on her page of fans dancing to her new song off of her upcoming album, That’s Just the Bottom Line.
However, she’s not the only one capitalizing from a loyal following. Danielle Bregoli, also known as the “Cash Me Outside” girl who became famous after appearing on Dr. Phil’s show, is now doing music too. In 2016, she was featured on the show with her mother who hoped that Dr. Phil would mediate and repair their broken relationship. During the taping, she angrily addressed an audience member, telling her that she could catch her outside if she wanted to fight. That moment and phrase turned into a viral sensation, and Bregoli milked the fame. She’s now Billboard Music Award-nominated rapper for her single, “These Heaux”— just wow.
According to an interview with Paper magazine, nineteen-year-old Dallas, Texas born rapper named Cuban Doll became Instagram famous for posting pretty pictures that gained a lot of attention. With now 1.5 million followers, she’s hoping to transform all the attention into record sales. Her current mixtape, Aaliyah Keef, has already gained traction from songs, like “Playa” and “Bankrupt,” and she’s hoping that her fans “feel her” beyond the Internet presence.
“My pictures would go viral, just having photoshoots and stuff, getting my hair done, just being pretty. And then everybody would want to copy me, get my hairstyle or want to get what I’m wearing.” — Cuban Doll, Paper magazine
The 26-year-old Tabatha Robinson from The Bronx is a former Bad Girls Club and Love & Hip-Hop cast member who is also following in the footsteps of Cardi B. She also just started rapping last year, and currently has 1.6 million Instagram followers. Her new EP, Life in Plastic 2, doesn’t steer too far away from the other ladies on this list—with singles like “Life In Plastic,” as well as cover art showing her body being worked on by a surgeon. *sigh*
While I’d like to leave this list hopeful that all these new breakout female rappers are going to change the game in the music industry next year, however, I can’t help but feel like they are all duplicates of Cardi’s success. Although, maybe these ladies are setting a new standard for artists to get discovered? Will 2019 be the year of viral rappers, or will these artists only make enough buzz to entertain their followers?
— Charmaine Griffin