Milwaukee native Lakeyah burst onto the hip-hop scene in 2020 together with her breakout hit, “Big Flexher,” introducing the world to one of many latest rap ladies out of the Midwest. At simply 22 years outdated, Lakeyah has solidified her place as a outstanding girl in hip-hop, rising at a time when rising stars like Latto, GloRilla, Doechii, and others are additionally placing on for ladies in hip-hop.

So far, she’s launched a handful of full-length tasks (2020’s “Time’s Up”; 2021’s “In Due Time” and Gangsta Grillz mixtape “My Time”; and 2022’s “No Pressure” Pts. 1 and a pair of) and hit singles, and has much more music on the way in which. She’s additionally a star on BET+’s “The Impact: Atlanta” actuality sequence, which appears on the lives of prime influencers like herself. With that title to her title, Lakeyah has excessive hopes for her future in hip-hop, as she’s nonetheless simply getting began.

In honor of hip-hop’s fiftieth anniversary, Lakeyah displays on how she was formally launched to the tradition, the artists who’ve impressed her, and what extra she hopes to see from hip-hop sooner or later. Trace: a femcee takeover. Learn all of it, in her personal phrases, forward.

How hip-hop first got here into my life is as a result of my mother did numerous listening to music. In fact, I really feel like everyone once they come throughout music — it is from their dad and mom or folks that they are round so much. I used to be at all times in the home with my mother, and he or she listened to numerous Wale and Rick Ross. I am telling you, these are my prime two male artists. After which, after all, I noticed Nicki Minaj. I believe the primary track exterior of “Itty Bitty Piggy” that I heard was “Right Thru Me.” I used to be like, my lady can sing, too? I am like, that is one thing I actually need to do. I might see myself doing it. Singing and rapping are two issues I am gifted at, so I can simply take over this lane and I can receives a commission whereas doing it — that is what I am gonna do. Nicki being genuine and actually caring concerning the bars impressed me. I like any individual that cares about lyrics, as a result of I began with poetry. So relating to that, I am tremendous severe about it, and he or she respects expertise. Any hip-hop artist that is doing that, I am like in love with it.

I simply love the people who paved the way in which. They’re tremendous essential for ladies like me, as a result of have a look at the trade proper now: so many individuals, so many kinds of illustration for every lady.

“The perfect world is female collaborations in the industry, for sure. More women taking over the spots that they deserve.”

I keep in mind final 12 months I did an interview and any individual requested me, “What do you see hip-hop being like so many years from now?” I used to be like, “I can just see so many females taking over.” We’re seeing that day by day — it is a new feminine artist popping out, whether or not it is rap or R&B, and he or she’s actually opening the lane for herself and conquering it. I simply love that, as a result of once I got here in — I have been doing this within the trade for 3 years now — it wasn’t as many individuals to look as much as. After I was doing it once I was youthful, like 15, I used to be discovering so many underground artists, feminine artists, that could not break via. Now it is really easy, and labels aren’t searching for feminine artists to interrupt. I simply love that.

Each time I meet a brand new lady, they’re so supportive of me. They inform me how lengthy they have been watching me, and so they need to collab. It is a lot love being proven, and I actually, actually f*ck with that. Since you by no means know. We already going via numerous stuff, whether or not it’s with labels or followers or feedback you gotta cope with on the web, folks’s opinions day by day. So whenever you’re with ladies which can be so supportive, it makes it a lot simpler to be doing this, and it feels enjoyable. Prefer it’s not a job day by day.

In an ideal world, the way forward for hip-hop could be no males, all ladies. Let’s simply get them out the door. The right world is feminine collaborations within the trade, for positive. Extra ladies taking up the spots that they deserve. Extra ladies CEOs having file labels. I might like to see that. All feminine excursions, sh*t like that. My headliner would undoubtedly be Nicki and Cardi B, and so they must do their massive one. I would combine it up with Summer season Walker and Tink, too, as a result of I would wish to stability that. After which add some new ladies to area it out, like Latto, me, Maiya the Don, and simply end out the present. Rock out.