For DJ Premier’s new EP celebrating the upcoming 50th anniversary of hip-hop, the pioneering producer handpicked a lineup of rappers known for their lyricism including Nas, Lil Wayne, and Run the Jewels. Preemo also paired up seasoned MCs Remy Ma and Rapsody on the track “Remy Rap,” which finds both women letting out frustration about being underestimated in a male-dominated industry.
Remy in particular spits with a fire in her belly, calling on female rappers to level up and expressing resentment for her pen game being questioned. After coming up as part of Big Pun and Fat Joe’s Terror Squad and later marrying fellow rapper Papoose, misogynists have long credited her sharp rhymes to the men in her life. “They know that my pen is crazy but they don’t wanna give me that,” she raps. “Every time I spit some shit, they saying that it’s really Pap.”
Meanwhile, Rapsody is laser-focused on breaking down why she’s “on a different tier,” spitting punchline after punchline while dropping references to Lauryn Hill, Kirby, and DaBaby. Rather than getting caught up in negativity like her Bronx counterpart, though, the North Carolina native takes the honor of landing a Preemo track as an opportunity further show off the talent that fans and peers have long recognized.
That’s not to say that there’s anything wrong with either approach. Half a century into hip-hop, women are still being held down and pitted against each other. The culture as a whole has taken major steps, but there’s so much more that can be done in the next 50 years.
— Eddie Fu
New Music Editor