Following the emergence of rapstresses Iggy Azalea and Azealia Banks, the rap game is unleashing its feminine side in full force. Save the Lil’ Kim and Nicki Minaj comparisons. VIBE.com plants a crop of up- and-coming femcees for your playlists who are sure to leave more to be desired after first listen. --Adelle Platon
Females On The Rise
The first lady of the Taylor Gang is more than just a pretty face. In fact, most are caught off guard once they hear the gritty lines Lola Monroe delivers on every track she jumps on.The self-proclaimed “Underground Queen” and artist formerly known as Angel Lola Luv transitioned from being a model to a rapper. She’s seasoned with years of experience and a handful of mixtapes since 2009, collaborating with the likes of Jadakiss, Trina, Gangsta Boo and Soulja Boy. Even if the 25-year-old was beat out by Nicki Minaj in 2011 for BET’s Best Female Hip-Hop Artist, her alliance with Wiz Khalifa may mean big things for 2012.
Also known as the Young Rich Bandit, Brianna’s newest single “Marilyn Monroe” channels her inner blonde bombshell. With a rap arsenal of relevant punch lines, a face that rivals a top model and vocals that can carry a tune and spit freestyles, the 20-year- old has been making music since she was nine. She made her first notable appearance on Trina’s “Kandi,” off 2002's Diamond Princess. Her 2011 Face Off mixtape showed off her swag and has received nods from Rick Ross, Pharrell and Wale. Put an ear to her remix contributions on “Niggas in Paris,” “Headlines” and “Stay Schemin” and you can hear the mainstream potential. She said it best when she rapped on her tape intro, “Sleepin on Bri, better get up out your slumber.”
Audra The Rapper
Even if you’ve never heard her work, you will never forget her septum piercing. The bella bull charged on to the music scene at 13, eventually releasing her 2010 mixtape The Miseducation of Audra which was enough to elevate a Twitter conversation with Rick Ross into a flight to Miami. She brought class to the game with her tape, showcasing a maze of verses that navigate listeners through the different dimensions of Audra. She pays homage to Lauryn Hill on “Double Standards," which contains a sample from “That Thing” to speak on feminism. “Ain’t It Funny” is a nostalgic look at her struggle through her career, juggling three jobs to become an artist. Audra’s lyrical messages resonate with a wide audience.
The Bo$$tress makes sure you know she’s in the building. She bursts onto a track and packs rap punches throughout her mixtapes. See Nina live and her stage presence commands attention. Her 2010 tape Nina B: The Remember Me – Pay Attention Edition brings the Brooklyn flavor and draws inspiration from Jay-Z (“Hottest Chick in the Game”) and shows the femcee’s ability to draw more verse-atile portraits (“Picture This” featuring Skyzoo and “Dream Killers”). Her most recent single “X-Men” off the 2011 The Bo$$tress 2: The Bitch Is Back tape brings Kay Slay and Donny Goines along for the visual and shows a comic book version of Nina B as in a battle of the exes and next’s. She also has an upcoming collabo with Action Bronson in the works for the new year.
G-Unit has aligned themselves with a female powerhouse. Precious Paris proved her independence in her Bad By Myself mixtape dropped in 2010. Her hardcore edge merges the streets and sexy together. Hailing from Southside Jamaica, Queen, Paris met fellow Queens native 50 Cent as a writer, contributing vocals here and there but was signed as talent to the G-Unit subdivision Ryder Gang at the top of the year. Fif shouts her out as the artist responsible for the line “I need cash for my kitty kat” on their collaboration “Kitty Kat.” With a debut album cooking, Paris is prime and ready to dominate in 2012.