With the recent rise of women who happen to be rappers, there was obviously going to be different sectors of women who rapped about sex, getting money and stealing people’s man. But, did we ever think we’d get all three in one song? Acts like Rico Nasty, Megan Thee Stallion and City Girls have become some of the top rappers currently, from using the mold of scamming men out of money and sex to get what they want. They have all provided non-traditional women empowerment anthems that also make the ladies want to shake their ass while, convincing a man to go broke to afford them.
Though, one half of the City Girls – Free JT- is currently incarcerated for committing fraud the duo has landed their biggest hit to date with the scamming national anthem “Act Up.” The duet rose to prominence during the summer of 2018 after being featured on the song of the summer “In My Feelings” by the king of the beige boys Drake. Once that cut blew, it was only up from there. City Girls began to chart with their debut mixtape “Period.” The Miami based duo, who are signed to Atlanta based label Quality Control, quickly followed that up their debut album “Girl Code” releasing in Nov. 2018, after JT was imprisoned. The album spawned singles “Twerk” featuring Cardi B, where the top 20 women from the #Twerkchallenge got “flewed out” to be featured in the video.
It wasn’t long after the “Twerk” video that another single that had already been released with a video began to blow up. From the first line of “Act Up” it was an apparent that this was an unavoidable hit. The first line goes, “Real as bitch, give a fuck bout a nigga,” BITCH WHAT WAS SAID? The line immediately makes listeners do a double take to make sure what they heard was correct. The song divulges about the usual City Girls topics of getting rich men to adhere to their enormous monetary requests and sex, to only end up broke and alone, honestly it’s a whole mood. What’s ironic, and apparently incredibly funny is that this entire song -except for JT’s final verse- was written by a man. A man named, Miles McCollum also known by his stage name, Lil Yatchy. Yatchy rose to fame in late in 2015, with his autotune heavy ballad about a one night stand appropriately titled “One Night.” Yatchy is a QC label mate of the City Girls and has literally provide every woman with their 2019 theme song.
When news hit the e-streets about Yatchy’s writing credit which, he divulged about in an interview with Kerwin Frost – legend- everyone went absolutely bizerk. No one could believe that Yatchy wrote lines like, “Stripes on my ass, so he call this pussy Tigger.” In his interview he claims he said no homo before laying down the track. What’s baffling is that people found this to be amazing or shocking. In reality some of our favorite female empowerment anthems have been written by men. There’s not a day that passes by that R&B singer Ne-Yo lets us forget that he wrote “Irreplaceable” sung by the queen, Beyoncé. Pop hit machine, Max Martin, wrote the 2004, Billboard #1 smash hit “Since U Been Gone” by Kelly Clarkson, and thats just one of his many number 1’s sung by female artists. And lastly, the 1964 hit “Respect” sung by Aretha Franklin was written by the late soul singer Otis Redding. Men have always had a role in writing the music that empowers women.
In reality this comes down to simple statistics. According to womeninmusic.org, across all regions of music -production, songwriting, performers, etc.- the industry is divide 70/30 with the higher percentage being men. While the numbers are incredibly discouraging it is a true reflection of what our working society still looks like. An applause is definitely warranted for the women who perform these songs. But, the disparaging numbers show that there is still a battle to be won to get more women involved and actually employed -on every level- within the industry. There are so many women that create incredible music, are strong, sound-minded A&R’s and managers that could be helping to shape the careers of current and future stars who do not have the opportunity to work because there isn’t any representation of themselves in executive positions, and that is a shame. At this point, it would take allyship from men who are higher up to get more women in positions to affect change. Which is happening but, at an incredibly slow pace that could be improved.
No one is naive enough to not believe that, what could’ve been shocking about Yatchy’s situation was the vulgarity of the song however, that seems to be more attributed to the times we are in rather than the actual act of writing. Yatchy seems to have a knack for writing good music for his label mates and because of the success “Act Up” don’t be surprised if Yatchy garners more writing credits for women.