For years, the Best Female Rapper category at the BET Awards has always been dominated by Nicki Minaj, the same way Lebron James has dominated the NBA Eastern Conference; probably because, just like the East, there was not much competition to nominate. Outside of Nicki, female rappers have not really been that plentiful in hip hop and it has reflected in the Awards show barren category. However, this year has changed dramatically. This year Minaj will be joined in the category with Young M.A.,Missy Elliot, Remy Ma and Cardi B. While these artists obviously hold as much clout as Nicki, they still might be able to take the crown.
How the hell could that happen? Think about how music is consumed in the past few years. Nicki is the only one on the list with a strong solo album discography, but today’s industry is surviving off artists dropping singles, mixtapes and a few mentions of wild publicity. Young M.A. and Remy Ma have contributed to two of last summer’s biggest anthems with “Ooouuuu” and “All the Way Up”. “All the Way Up” was off the long-awaited collaboration project between Remy and Fat Joe and also marked the Bronx native’s return to rap after serving a prison bid. “Ooouuuu” was the song that launched Young M.A. into the spotlight and almost landed her a Hennesy endorsement. Cardi B shocked everyone with her mixtapes, Gangsta bitch Music 1 & 2, which were primarily found on sites such as Datpiff. More shock came when the former Love and Hip Hop New York star landed a record deal with Atlantic Records. Missymight not have been as active, but in this category she is the certified legend, who has been working on a much anticipated comeback.
It kinda makes you wonder will Nicki be able to retain her obvious crown. She has not been absent per se, but musically it feels like she is not really in that space. This year she has made somewhat of a n appearance in rap when she dropped 3 new songs. including “No Frauds” featuring Young Money cohorts Lil Wayne and Drake. Of course this was slightly in response to the feud that her and Remy Ma seemed to get caught up with in March. She was also featured on the DJ Khaled R&B posse cut “Do You Mind” that set the airwaves on fire for a little bit. Needless to say she maintained some enough relevancy for this particular award.
But these artists are coming in with a momentum of freshness. Nicki Minaj is an established rap artist and also, probably the only established female artist in that manner. It’s time for some new faces to come out, and not only give her a run for her money, but also add some credibility to this part of the genre itself. That was evident to her beef with Remy earlier in the year, which inadvertently put a spotlight on how scarce the rap game is on notable female rappers. If either of these artists beat Minaj (which might not happen realistically), it could probably boost the female rap environment a little bit more as far as fan interest and competitiveness.