All Articles Tagged "Kreayshawn"
Just days before Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded was released, noted music writer Jon Caramanica wrote an op-ed in The New York Times calling Nicki Minaj “the most influential female rapper of all time.” Sparking discussion, many took to social networks to voice their disagreement. Why? Because in making the all-encompassing statement, he discredited legends such as Salt-n-Pepa, Lil’ Kim, Missy Elliott, MC Lyte and the slew of other female MCs that not only paved the way, but are still influential today.
It’s no secret. Within the world of hip-hop, rappers gain power and influence by dissing or boasting their individual appeal. But let’s be honest… nothing under the sun is new, so while Minaj is extreme in popularity, sound, look and influence there are a number of new stars who could possibly outbox the hip-hop heavyweight. Madame Noire believes that championship belt is still up for grabs, so we’re showcasing the best lyrical pugilists in the game—tale of the tape style:
The wretched N-word. Still used by any and everybody when it shouldn’t be, still holds a painful and offensive meaning. But if you ask rapper Trina, aka “The Baddest B****,” it’s not something people should be getting worked up about anymore. We’ve got bigger fish to fry.
In an interview on 106 & Park recently to promote her new video, “Red Bottoms,” when asked what she thought about Bay-area white female rappers Kreayshawn and V-Nasty using the word (which has been a heated discussion since Kreayshawn jumped into the spotlight earlier in the year), she didn’t see the need to get heated over something she sees as being…small.
“I don’t see what the big deal about it is. It’s a matter of respect, if you’re not being disrespectful, if you’re not doing it in a racist way…I’m not really the person that care’s too much about all that.”
She goes on to say:
“It’s so much more serious stuff going on in life. Let’s worry about voting for Barack Obama for president again. I don’t think the N-word is such a big deal, we’ve been saying it for years, decades, white, blacks, Hispanic, Jamaican, Haitian, Chinese whatever. It is what it is, we didn’t create it, we didn’t start it and we’re not going to be the last to say it. It’s going to continue on and on and on so we just need to focus on what’s important.”
I’m not a fan musically of any of the women mentioned in this here post, but in a weird way, I can somewhat feel what Trina is trying to say. We do have bigger and better things to worry about than what a barely-out-of-adolescence white female rapper lets come out of her mouth. However, I don’t see how it hurts to stand up and say that it’s best if Miss Krey-Krey and her V-whatever friend don’t use the word. I think the less we care and the less we speak out about it when we can, and in Trina’s case, when we have a platform to do so, we wind up pretty much saying it’s absolutely, positively okay. I don’t care who says it, if I hear it, even in a “non-racist way,” it makes me cringe. I have no control over what words people use in the comfort of their own home, but hell, I would definitely prefer if people weren’t so accepting of the word that they’re saying it and screaming it to one another out in the streets. It’s soooo embarrassing and disrespectful that it’s not even funny, and if you ask me (though you didn’t), not only do these women mentioned need to stop, but these rappers out here in general need to start cutting it out with the N-word. So sorry Trina, but I still think it’s a big deal. But then again, I wouldn’t expect someone who holds pride in calling themselves a “Bi***” to feel me on that…
What do you think?
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Bahamadia is arguably the most underrated female hip-hop artist of all time. I’m not just saying this because she happens to be from my neck of the woods, but because she is truly a gifted and authentic lyricist who could drop a solid 16 bars without trading on narrowly defined definitions of what femininity is suppose to be. But no song captures the spirit of Bahamadia more than “Commonwealth (aka Cheap Chicks),” which pays homage to “ordinary females around the way, so-called cornballs, commonwealth broads, broke broads who still want to get their little shine on with short dockets who ain’t frontin’…” In that grossly underrated song, Bahamadia manages to flip the script and remind us that style isn’t just for those who can afford it, but rather those who have the attitude and are creative enough to make something work out of nothing.
Yet in the blogosphere, there are sites that, instead of marveling at the creativity of these commonwealth chicks, often slap them with labels of being ghetto or acting raunchy. It seems to be acceptable to make fun of black girls and women with the skittles “taste the rainbow” weaves and the homemade designer label, knock-off prom dresses. Through our constant ridicule and condemnation of these “stricken by poverty chicks,” we send the message that their creations and creative contributions have no value – other than to shame the black race – and should be shunned from the larger black community.
That is, until a white girl does it. Then it becomes cute and hip. Case in point: Kreayshawn (pronounced Cri-shon), an overhyped white female rapper, who has become a viral sensation. She appears to represent a new wave of hipsterism, which has been infiltrating the hip-hop scene as of late. In her latest video, “Gucci, Gucci,” she, along with her White Girl Mob, swaggers through Cali streets with an asymmetrical haircut, big door knockers and a troupe of young black men bouncing around in the background – for color of course. There is plenty of talk about stealing basic bitches, smoking blunts, and keeping her hand on the pump.
However, what are notably absent from her video are black girls. It’s as if they don’t exist in this swag-out world. Writer Moya Bailey points out on the blog, “The Crunk Feminist Collective,” that “The objectification of black women as a lyrical trope is what makes Kreayshawn interesting. Look at this white girl who talks like a black man! Isn’t she awesome?” Taking Bailey’s point further, what Kreayshawn is doing is taking what is probably the most debatable image of the black woman – one that we have yet to fully accept – and co-opting it for what she calls “white girl swag.” By any standards, this called is cultural appropriation, the act of adopting some specific element of another culture, including religious, language, and forms of dress and social behavior.
In many instances of cultural appropriation, these acts of co-option adopt the colorblind ideology, which not only justifies the presence of the non-member of the culture, but it also aids them in removing whatever racial, social and culturally-coded meaning that happen to be embedded in that cultural element they are using. In other words, it’s all fun without the social commentary or context. We’ve seen it with Bo Derek and her golden blonde cornrows, Gewn Stefani and her Harajuku girls and Madonna with just about everything she does. Now, we may just be witnessing it again with Kreayshawn.
According to her bio, Kreayshawn, born Natassia Zolot, is a native of East Oakland and was raised by her single mother, a former member of a Garage punk rock band, The Trashwoman. Though she paints this hard knock story of being one of the few white girls in an urban environment, she delivers nothing on wax that actually challenges the perception of being white in such an environment, nor does she bring anything new to the table. In fact, she regurgitates the same tired images that we’ve seen millions of times on television. Usually, one might be grateful that a pop artist seeks inspiration from elements that are usually associated with the African American community. I may have felt that way about Kreayshawn had it not been for the inauthenticity of her image, and if her performance didn’t reek of a modern day minstrel show.
Charing Ball is the author of the blog People, Places & Things.
Just in case you missed the memo, use of the n-word was recently approved for white girls. Well, at least in the Bay Area.
Kreayshawn, a white female rapper from Oakland, California, has taken the Internet by storm with her catchy anti-consumerist anthem “Gucci, Gucci.” The self-proclaimed swag assassin and her crew (Lil’ Debbie and V Nasty) known as the White Girl Mob have launched a “movement” of sorts. Hailing from the hard, impoverished streets of East Oakland, they exude and speak all of the ratchetness mainstream hip-hop has become—bitches, n*ggas, blunts and other destructive ways of dealing with crappy childhoods and depression. I would be lying if I said these girls didn’t have the swag they claim, decent flows and infectious style. For artistry, they get the nod; for thinking they have been cleared to say N-Word n*gga, well…There lies the problem.
Who gave the thumbs up for white girls to openly say the n-word? Read the rest of this entry »
Read the rest of this entry »