Editorials: Why Cardi B is The ‘King of New York’ & Maybe The ‘Queen of Rap’
Like Cinderella, Cardi B’s rags to riches story is an American Dream, what could be more royal than that?
For 15 years and maybe more, rappers like: Diddy, Lloyd Banks, French Montana, Maino and even Fabolous have dropped hit songs about “bringing New York Back”. Even Jay Z sang about New York.
The entire debacle has been going on for so long with various artists believing they could return the birthplace of hip hop to its original glorious realm. The entire idea might have seemed ridiculous till CARDI B’s INVASION OF PRIVACY album, which portrayed New York once again as the home of the hottest, brightest and biggest superstar in rap.
Everyone who knows Cardi, knows that she is well-aware of her stature. She recently featured as a guest on Lil Yachty’s new single, “Who want the smoke?”, and the 25-year-old rap lines had everyone talking. She raps: “The fur on my shoulder mink. Tell me what Hov would think. I get money, I am the king of New York. And I rock a sew-in weave.” That line of Cardi’s should not be questioned because she is entitled to her opinion.
An opinion that is clearly visible and undeniable after the Bronx woman is the first ever female rap artist to earn two Billboard Hot 100 No. 1 singles. The doubt sets in anytime anyone different from Biggie Smalls aspires to claim the throne to NY RAP, there’s always a feud. It’s a well known belief that if you do not write your lines, you could never conquer rap, no matter how good you are. A predominant rule in the city of NY.
Now the question here is this: Did Dr Dre who has had the help of ghost writers during his entire career, not drop classic masterpieces which shaped musical history? Would you dare say that G-Eazy is not a force to be reckoned with from LA? Can you even argue for any rapper other than Drake being the biggest start to come from Toronto?
Whether or not Cardi B is responsible for writing every single letter on her debut album barely makes any sense into this discussion. What exactly makes one qualified and good enough to be considered the King of New York? In my own opinion this should be based on three factors: Glamour, Content and also “New Yorkness”. Cardi B has managed to fill out these pages hands down.
Not only is Cardi B the first female rap artist in history to have two No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100, she also holds the record for the most consistent entries on the chart ever by any female artist (13 entries). Despite this, it is not just chart success that makes Cardi’s who she is right now.
When NBC saw late night host Jimmy Fallon’s ratings begin to slump, they called Cardi to save the day. Before Cardi, a woman had never hosted or co-hosted The Tonight Show; after, Cardi has the media falling towards her. Cardi’s personality is big and so infectious, she also dominates any conversation whenever she’s invited as a guest star on a record. “The trap Selena” easily has the most memorable verse on Migos Gold-certified single “MotorSport,” and her appearance on Bruno Mars’ 2x Platinum “Finesse” has helped the single rise to No. 3 on Hot 100 billboard.
This is not necessarily out of technical superiority, though she certainly doesn’t lack skills when it comes to finding the pocket on any given beat, but rather the huge and unique mount of swag she brings to a track. This same skill set is what has allowed Cardi to borrow flows made famous by other rappers, completely overshadowing them in the process.
Sure, Kodak Black birthed the flow Cardi employs on her summertime smash single “Bodak Yellow”— the title directly references as much—but after landing at No. 1 on the charts and becoming 6x Platinum-certified, Kodak’s influence has been relegated seriously. Cardi B shines so brightly, she’s practically impossible to outshine on any level. Regardless of whether you like her music or not, there’s simply no debating that she is a superstar.