Bodak Yellow: The Day I Became a Cardi B Fan

I’m the hottest in the street
Know you prolly heard of me
Got a bag and fixed my teeth
Hope you hoes know it ain’t cheap
And I pay my mama bills
I ain’t got no time to chill
Think these hoes be mad at me
Their baby father want a feel

I don’t know how I felt about Cardi before I watched this video. I never really thought about it. I never watched Love and HIp Hop so unlike her day 1 fans, my knowledge of Cardi B has been peripheral at most. I’ve heard soundbytes. I know she rhymes. I saw her on an episode of “Being Mary Jane” last season and I was definitely amused by her performance. But I didn’t know who she was, or feel who she was until I heard Bodak Yellow.

I clicked on the video this week and let me tell you, the last thing I ever expected was to be moved as fuck. The economy, directness and purpose of the bars she lays on this track are astounding. She’s not doing anything more than what is true to Cardi B. She doesn’t say anything unnecessary. She just says who she is and what she does and how not to come for her.

Now she say she gon’ do what to who?
Let’s find out and see, Cardi B
You know where I’m at
You know where I be
You in the club just to party
I’m there, I get paid a fee
I be in and out them banks so much
I know they’re tired of me
Honestly, don’t give a fuck
‘Bout who ain’t fond of me
Dropped two mixtapes in six months
What bitch working as hard as me?
I don’t bother with these hoes
Don’t let these hoes bother me
They see pictures, they say goals
Bitch, I’m who they tryna be

…..Where’s the lie?

I can’t find it.  And the beat is so hot, the video so sexy and watchable. How she looks exactly like that tiger in the video though? It’s like her spirit animal!

Most of all, it just made me want to know more about Cardi B. Yes, she talks about the consensual exchange of sexual favors for goods and makes it sound empowering without a hint of humiliation towards either party. She also talks about paying her mother’s bills, so she cares about family. And she’s a real rapper, not a pop one. She invests a lot in her looks and I’m not hating on that at all but she also puts a lot into her work as a rapper because her rhymes are tight and there is more than a little substance there. It’s like when Drake, who can also be a bit superficially preoccupied (aren’t we all?) talks about taking care of his team and his family and how the maintenance of that community means as much to him as making it big and staying there.

This weekend Souls Sistah Series got together to “Talk ish” about Amber’s Rose Bush, Rev Al’s thirst trap and Cornrow Kenny (Not Kendrick. Just watch it. LOL!) Though we did not discuss Cardi B., I’m certain we will get around to her and her bloody shoes and money moves soon. Until then, enjoy our shenanigans.


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