The job of an MC can be a tough and demanding occupation. You need to be able to be quick-witted, while being able to control the crowd and capture the electricity in the party. While challenging, if you’re a success, you can reap the rewards. The support of an entire community of people, fame and fortune are some of these benefits. Male dominance of the genre has made it tough for females to break into this lane. If a female is good though, she has the potential to drive in new waves of fans. Where there was once a Lil’ Kim or a Foxy Brown, there now is Nicki Minaj, who seems to hold a monopoly over the female rap game.
Gena Joye Robinson looks to change that. Otherwise known as Yaya Gabbana, the Boston-bred songwriter/artist, has released her new mixtape, Who the F*#k is Yaya Gabbana? where she challenges listeners to check out her music and see why her buzz is growing by the day. The title of the mixtape is a bold declaration of who Yaya Gabbana is, and what she is about as an artist. Inspired by her favorite rapper, the late Stack Bundles, Gabbana describes her style as more relateable as a female MC than others out there.
“I think I’m different because I keep it real, and I’m more down-to-earth, like I talk about things that more people can relate to. Nicki, when she started, she was more relateable but now she’s more commercial with it. So I feel like I’m more relateable to everyday girls than she is,” Gabbana said with no hesitation. “I have songs that touch on a lot of different subjects where some girls can relate to and where some dudes can relate to. I have a variety of different songs that all types of people can relate to."
On her journey to success, Gabbana has opened for the likes of Styles P, Fred the Godson, French Montana (who she lists as an artist helping to keep the east coast rap alive), and Onyx but still cites Stack Bundles as the biggest influence on her career as an artist. “He was from the same projects that my best friend lived at and my grandmother, so I saw how he made it out and got signed, so I’ve always respected him. That’s my favorite rapper. He always grinded, he always had mixtapes out like every month. His work ethic was crazy.”
As for future projects, Gabbana has plans to work with some other artists and producers along with some traveling, “On my wish list, I want to work with everybody. I want to definitely work with Meek Mill; he’s doing his thing right now. Young Savage out of Philly, he’s killing it right now. I want to work with everybody as far as Rick Ross, Nicki Minaj - I don’t discriminate. I was just talking to my manager about making a trip to ATL. I definitely want to make moves out there because that’s what’s poppin’ really, if you want to get your name out you have to go down South.” With her debut single “My City” already making waves and a new single on the way, “Squirtin’ On,” Gabbana has an onslaught of new music ready for the public to enjoy and is molding herself into an artist to check out in 2012.
Yaya Gabbana's new mixtape, Who the F*#k is Yaya Gabbana?, can be found on Datpiff.com. Follow her on Twitter at @iamyayagabbana.Mos Jones can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, through his website http://onebrothertoanother.com, or on Twitter at @MosJones.