Vanessa at Feministing asks for some female MCs and I wanted to add my two cents. Way too often women who can really rap get stuck in supporting roles in the songs we get to hear. There’ll be that moment when you think, “wait, who was that, go back to her,” but the song has already moved on. Vanessa brings up M.I.A. who, although she can get any given group of hipsters busting imaginary shots at birds flying overhead, is not really hip-hop. Here are some female MCs who don’t get nearly the attention they deserve:
– Byata who was on a track on Wu-Tang Clan Meets the Indie Culture and Bronze Nazareth’s severely underrated album The Great Migration. Her story is pretty incredible and everyone should go read it on her site in the biography section while you listen to her music.
– Jean Grae who’s probably the best-known of the three, with a couple of her own albums. She’s done tracks with too many people to list and her forthcoming album (titled Phoenix for all you X-Men fans) is being produced by the excellent 9th Wonder.
– Last but not least is my personal favorite Dessa who has yet to record her own full-length album. She’s a member of the Minneapolis-based Doomtree Collective, has a new book of poetry and has the best verse on the best track of my favorite album of the year – P.O.S.’s Never Better which is embedded at the bottom because it’s just that good. She started out doing spoken-word and lists among her influences Dave Eggers and Lauryn Hill. A girl after my own heart no doubt. Plus she raps about the financial crisis. Seriously, check that P.O.S. track.
So here’s to getting the best female MC’s in the game out of the supporting roles and into the limelight.