The ‘Sisterhood Of Hip-Hop’ Cast Names Their 5 Favorite Female Rappers
Oxygen's new upcoming reality show, Sisterhood Of Hip-Hop, follows five female MCs as they attempt to navigate the highs and lows of the music industry with the ultimate goal of finding success in the generally male-dominated realm of hip-hop. Produced by T.I., the show features the talents and lives of Bia, Brianna Perry, Diamond, Nyemiah Supreme and Siya as they try to follow in the footsteps of the greats that have come before them. Earlier today, we introduced you to the whole cast; but as this is a show all about the ladies and their specific battles within hip-hop, we also asked all five MCs to list their five favorite female rappers of all time. From Missy to Kim, Lauryn to the Queen, click through each gallery to find out who tops the cast's list. Hint: there's only one woman to make every top five. —XXL Staff
Bia's Five Favorite Female Rappers
I know this sounds kind of wrong, but most of my favorite MCs are male. But I don’t want to put a bunch of males in a category of females. I loved Foxy Brown growing up.
I loved Lauryn Hill growing up because I like to sing, too. I look at her as an inspiration because to be able to do both is kind of not so easy. Definit
I love Nicki. I liked Nicki since her freestyles. I fell in love with the Nicki that was rapping over industry beats like “Warning.” That’s the Nicki that I always [loved]. The Come Up DVDs. I was just like, “Oh my God. I love her. I want to be like this."
I love her, too. She’s cool. I love her because of course growing up she was, like, so street. People assume that being from Boston there’s no street in Boston. There’s a hood everywhere. As soon I saw Eve, I was like, “Oh my God." She was just the shit. But then when I met her—this is why I really liked her—'cause when I met her, her in person was just as awesome as [she was as] a rapper. She was so humble and so sweet. Look, she’s just kickin’ light and she’s just a great person. Giving advice. Yeah, I really like her. She was just great. I wish everybody that you meet in the industry can be like that.
She was the one back then. If anyone says they didn’t obsess over Lil Kim at one point in their life, they are lying. Guys and girls. Males to females, we all loved her. Everything from hearing her lyrics down to her style back then. Just who she was running with. Junior M.A.F.I.A., the whole squad. It was so ill. I love old hip-hop more than the new hip-hop, like everyone. I’m stuck in the '90s.
Brianna Perry's Five Favorite Female Rappers
Just working with her, she’s a legend, an icon, a game changer. So just to be signed to her for that time period, I felt like I learned so much just having her in my life.
I just recently met Eve and it was just so inspirational. I’ve always loved Eve. I loved her whole demeanor as an artist and how she stood up against the guys and she was just so defiant. The pit bull in a skirt with her whole look and then moving to TV then fashion. My record “I’m That Bitch,” I hear Eve’s “Who’s That Girl” in my head every time I listen to it.
Just being from [Miami], that’s my family. Just watching her grow and stay at it and stay passionate.
I loved her more for the different avenue she went down. She has her own TV show now and how she works in production. How she’s been so successful in movies and how she's transpired to become a Cover Girl, these are all things that I aspire to do one day.
Lil Kim and Foxy Brown
I can’t limit it to just five. Every woman that has come before me, I have respect for. Just to break down the door and actually have a platform in hip-hop is so difficult. You have to be very strong, so any woman that has come before me and successfully done it, I bow down to them. I have much respect for them.
Diamond's Five Favorite Female Rappers
I love her style. I’m very artsy and I haven't had a chance to show that to the world, visually, how I dream or how I view myself. I’m not the type that’s going to do the same old videos. I’m always trying to be creative. She breaks all the barriers with that.
I can relate to them. I can see I can do a duo with another female rapper because I came from a group with another female rapper. The things from girl power to just turning up and mobbing.
I love her. She’s been a mentor on two occasions. She's just so amazing, from having her own production, TV show, and [being] a writer to having her own talk show. That’s who I want to be one day. Being in Set It Off... I love everything about her.
She broke the barrier of sexiness. She shows that a rapper can be overly sexy. I feel like me becoming more of a woman and my Puerto Rican, side we're very sexual, and not even sexual but just freaky. Like, when I hug my sister, I might slap her on the butt. [Laughs] Just because you're a rapper don't mean you can’t be sexy. So at times I feel like I’m a damn model, and one day I might put my heels on and might tell my mind I’m a model, [and] fuck rapping. [Laughs] Just from her coming on and showing she's hardcore and can hang with the dudes and be on the block. I come from that, because of the whole Crime Mob era, and her fashion sense. Just everything about her, I love the way she thinks. It’s positive. She’s always been a great mentor to me.
Nyemiah Supreme's Five Favorite Female Rappers
I love just how she was so hardcore when she came out. She was the only girl on Ruff Ryders. She held her own weight. She had her own hit songs.
Just 'cause my mom bought the Notorious K.I.M album and I [was] singing all the bad songs that I [wasn't] supposed to be singing. I fell in love with Kim for that.
I love her performance and her freedom; just from all the stuff she talks about in her songs. Whether it's sex, to being silly and flirtatious. I love her openness with that.
She's fucking dope. I love her aggression and tremendous amount of confidence in whatever she does. Whether it’s her image or her lyrics. I admire that.
She had those songs that were reality and being real with yourself and whoever you are. She gave a lot of people that thought to check themselves before they go out looking at everyone else.
Siya's Five Favorite Female Rappers
Let’s take it back. I think I’m compared to the Bo$$ a lot. She was gangster. She was just so gutter. The Bo$$ was raw. Back in the day, she was spitting harder than niggas. So raw with it. Baggy clothes with the bandana. Drinking the 40 in the videos. She had bars. I don’t know what she doing now. Last I heard of her, she was sick or something like that, but yeah she’s dope.
Lady Of Rage
I really respected how she held her own when she was fuckin’ with Dre and all them. “I rock rough and stuff with my Afro Puffs,” you know what I mean? She was just giving it to them. Her flows, her deliveries and her cattiness was dope.
Super talented. She’s an innovator. She wasn’t afraid to do things differently and that’s why I respect her so much. She was so cool with it. She put out records and it was playful. Some of it was lyrical. She knew how to balance it very well. She really did a good job of hip-hop when she was rocking out. Missy Elliott is definitely an icon. She’s up there with the greats as far as if we are just talking about female MCs. Yeah, she’s up there. She paves the way for it to be okay for people to try something new and not be afraid of the outcome musically.
I actually spent time with Kim—a few times actually—'cause somebody who used to manage me was a good friend of hers. On a personal level, Kim was just so sweet and so honest. She wasn’t afraid to speak her mind. Musically, she was just nasty with it. The shit she talked about. Me, personally, I don’t get down like that. She did and she made it okay for women to be up in the club, deep throating the dick. [Laughs] It’s hard not to respect it because she came from that era of Biggie. She was riding with Biggie and where I am from, I’m from that side. It was just cool.
I actually met Eve recently on Sisterhood Of Hip-Hop. She’s an amazing woman. Just hearing her talk about how hard it was to be in the industry as a woman. And then how she set the tone as far as being a role model and a female MC, role model. With that record “Love Is Blind,” you weren’t hearing females talk about shit like that. That’s a very touchy subject, but she wasn’t afraid to attack it. I think her honesty in her records made her very relatable, which is similar to me because everything I talk about is truth.