Guys, White Girls Can Rap Too, and VH1 Proves It
Remember when the New York Times posted another micro-trend article about how there was a movement of white female rappers "challenging hip-hop's masculine ideal?" Well Ryan Seacrest totally just read that article (okay, probably), and now he's producing a reality show for VH1 that will follow a group of white female rappers as they try to break into the business. And it's certainly a hard one to break into for white women — a female white rapper's career is usually rife with questions of racism or credibility. Many of the stereotypes that sexism perpetuates about white women — they can't be aggressive, they're only sexual objects — also keep them from being taken seriously as rappers. These are the women who did end up "making it big," more or less, sometimes to mixed results.
Started from the...Kreayshawn was a successful music video director when she finally made a video for her own song, "Gucci Gucci." The video went viral, and Kreayshawn got a million-dollar contract out of it.
Test of cred: Once Kreayshawn released her album, Somethin 'Bout Kreay, it became pretty evident that she wasn't actually good a rapping, and "Gucci Gucci" was actually co-written with the rapper Speak. Plus, her association with V-Nasty, another white rapper who's a frequent user of the n-word, is pretty problematic.
Now: Kreayshawn was able to pump both swag and babies out of her ovaries, and seems to be focusing on motherhood for now.
Started from the...Iggy Azalea dropped out of high school in Australia to move to the United States and pursue her dream. Her southern-rap style caught the eye of T.I., who signed her to his label Grand Hustle Records.
Cred test: Azalea's caused a controversy over a lyrics that contained "runaway slave...master." She's since apologized for the lyric, but the incident still haunts her career.
Now: Azalea released her first album, The New Classic, to mixed reviews and huge profits.
Started from the...K.Flay was a suburban Stanford Univeristy college student who wrote her first rap as a parody of misogynistic, materialistic rap songs. Realizing she actually enjoyed it, she embarked on a career as a rapper.
Cred test: K.Flay comes from a pretty privileged background. She didn't grow up on hip hop, so she doesn't have a lot of knowledge or respect for its history.
Now: Her latest album, What If It Is, was released in August,
Image: Zack Sheppard, Flickr
Started from the...Lady Sovereign started loading her songs and videos online when she was 15 while living in public housing in England, which has its own unique hip hop scene in grime. After releasing a few albums, she become something of a one-hit wonder in the States with her single "Love Me or Hate Me."
Cred test: Lady Sovereign's biggest problem has been her success. After she got signed to a major label, her albums just didn't have the same bite.
Now: Lady Sovereign hasn't released an album since 2009 and is currently on hiatus.
Started from the...Kitty Pryde made a name for herself while still in high school in Florida while putting rap songs she made for fun on her Tumblr and eventually making a mixtape. Once she made a video for her song "Okay Cupid," she blew up online.
Cred test: Kitty is a controversial figure. She has nothing resembling a traditional rap flow — her pace is slow, almost slurred, and she often doesn't rhyme. Many accuse her of ripping off the "cloud rap" aesthetic of groups like Odd Future and Main Attrakionz.
Now: It's just "Kitty" now, and she just got off a tour with rapper Danny Brown. She's currently reading up on her rap history and trying to work on her music.
Image: Jeremy Perez Photos, Flickr