Hands down. This was the summer of Young M.A. The young Brooklynite has been on the ears and tongues of the biggest names in Hip-Hop, courtesy of her hit record "Ooouuu." However - before Nicki, Beyonce, French and Remy got it - it was the streets of New York that was pushing the song in every car, headphone and even boom boxes. The streeets love M.A. and have for quite some time. She's been a beast if you have been following for the last year and some change. Last year, AllHipHop helped promote a highly-touted, sold out concert at Webster Hall, but by then she had been selling out shows all over the city. Now, with a certified hit, Young M.A. stands to be the latest major force in Hip-Hop. Check out this interview with the youngest in charge, where she talks about rhymes, Brooklyn, thots and even her sexuality.
AllHipHop.com: This is your first interview with AllHipHop so speak on yourself as an artist.
Young M.A.: Well, I’m Young M.A. Straight outta Brooklyn. I’ve been rapping since I was 9 years old. I’m the hottest artist out, female. No, I’m the hottest artist - period. I was known as this freestyle spitter that did the Chiraq beat and killed it. And it got a crazy buzz on the internet and went viral. A few critics critiqued it, but the love was crazy. Now, I got a record that's going state to state, town to town, club to club. A lot of people thought I was just gonna do the freestyle thing. But I had to hit ‘em with the club bangers. I’m letting ‘em know I’m versatile.
How hard is it for you to stay as an individual. You have a unique space, especially for New York?
I thought it was hard at first until I had to be myself, you know? Give the world me. I didn’t want to come out as what the industry wants you to be. I just became comfortable with myself. Once people believed in it and seen it, they were like “she’s dope.” I don’t like to follow nobody. When I do music, I like to think of a sound and just do what I feel at the moment. I guess that’s how I set myself [apart] from everybody else. This is something new, something fresh.
Lets talk about Brooklyn. The legacy of Hip-Hop and Brooklyn is ridiculous. Queen would probably argue that, but Brooklyn got a lot. You are really representing. What are you thinking about Brooklyn right now as far as Hip-Hop is concerned.
I actually like what Brooklyn is doing now. We coming together a little more than before, making that stamp again. I was always for it thought. Brooklyn was getting back on the map even before it was “this thing” like Brooklyn Unified. I was already telling my bros, “We gotta get Brooklyn back where it needs to be.”
That's what made me do the whole Brooklyn (Chiraq posse song). I guess that's what really woke people up. You know how that go and now I guess this record “Ooouuu” came out, a lot of people been coming my way. And wanting to work with me. I just had to make that stamp on my own without feeling like I needed a guy to bring me out. I had to make that stamp on my own.
Was it hard for you to make a record like that because I'm used to hearing the ones where you are beastin’.
(Laughs) it's crazy because I was actually writing it on some like” this be one of those records when I just have fun.” I just want to rock out and not think too much about bars in saying the crazy punchlines.
This is one of the records I just want to feel good on. I can do it all. I'm trying to let people understand I'm not just a freestyle artist. It's like I make songs with this record. It's like I'm letting people know, "Shorty is a beast but she can also loosen up a little bit." This is something you can rock out in the clubs and be comfortable with your drink and all of that. And when I wrote it ,I was really “smacked” recording it. That's why it's such a calm sound, but it's a turn up at the same time. It's actually one of my favorite records.
You know me - I love you lyrics. So, I want to know your approach to writing is. And how important that is to you.
I'm the type of person, I write off my emotions. I write what I feel at the moment. Sometimes you know you have your days with writers block. There are some days when I can't think of nothing. Or sometimes I feel like I'm repeating myself. And that's when you gotta step away and got away or go through something to open up your mind. It's very important for me to have or say the right stuff for putting together things the right way. I don't like to say what somebody else said. I try my best to to try find something that nobody ever said before. Will put it in a way nobody said it before. That's definitely important to me.
How important is the legacy of Brooklyn to you? We were talking on the way here about BIG, Big Daddy Kane, obviously Jay Z, and a bunch of other emcees. Does the legacy mean anything nowadays?
Meaning for me or them being the legacy?
You being another step in the legacy.
Oh yeah! Absolutely! Why not? Yeah!
I feel like people are from different places, they have different influences…
It's a lot of people tell me I'm going to be one of those legacy parentheses emcees. Right now I don't see it because it's so surreal to me. But for people to actually tell me that, that's an honor to me. For people to tell me “you're going to me one of those..next to BIG.” One of those...females. It is important to me to have that title in the future, absolutely.
Why you so hard on the ladies? I'm like she's like a dude with it.
I be hard on ‘em?
I think so. No?
What you mean? Say for an example.
(Somebody in the background says lyrics.)
Oh. “I don't open doors for no whores”? But he said the ladies. I'm talking about whores. I'm talking about the hoes, the thots. A lady...if a lady carry herself like a lady,then I’ll definitely opens hat door for her. If you don't carry yourself like a lady, I can't respect that.
That sounds like [vintage] Ice Cube or something. Whatever walk of life you may be, people gravitate to that. Is that important to you, to represent your [sexual] orientation or is what whatever to you?
It's whatever. It's my lifestyle. I don't feel like it's something to be trying to stand for. I don't like people to look at me like I'm the gay rapper. I don't even like to be put in that box. I just need people to look at me like an artist that does music and does great music.
Don't get me wrong, there is a little percentage of people that may look at me that way. 75% of the people don't even being that up to me. They just like “I f**k with your music. I think you dope.” Besides me being gay or dyke or whatever the case is, I don't feel like it should be something important that it puts me in a box trying to say "You're a lesbian rapper." Don't get me wrong, I love all of my people - my gays, my bi's. Of course I'm going to represent for them, but I don't want to be stamped as that. We all people, you understand?
Do you ever have fans that come up to you and say “Oh you helped me…”
Absolutely. All the time. I see it a lot on my social media and in person, a lot of people come up to me and cry tears. Just telling me they love me...thank me. You know what I'm saying? To me that's my whole purpose, just to influence people and give them those high spirits.