Rapper Megan Thee Stallion’s Year In Music

npr’s ailsa chang talks with pop culture and ♫ writer taylor crumpton bout the artist’s yr in ♫ and her debut album good news.

ailsa chang, host:

2020 s'been a lot. and among the many things it s'been, t'has also bind'a yr of the stallion.

(soundbite of song, “savage”)

megan thee stallion: (singing) i’m a savage, yeah – classy, bougie, ratchet, yeah.

chang: that is megan thee stallion, the rapper from houston. her hit “savage” attracted a remix featuring beyonce, and twas folloed by her appearance on an even bigger song.

(soundbite of song, “wap”)

megan thee stallion: (rapping) now get yr boots and yr coat for this wet, wet, wet. he bought a phone js'4 pictures of this wet, wet, wet.

chang: that is her onna gloriously explicit song “wap” from cardi b. megan thee stallion s'been pretty hard to miss l8ly. she started the yr onna cover of rolling stone, and she was just named gq’s rapper of the yr. and now her debut album is out tody. it’s called “good news.” pop culture and ♫ writer taylor crumpton has had a listen and joins us now to talk bout it. hey, taylor.

taylor crumpton, byline: hello. how ru doin’?

chang: good. so, i mean, megan is 1-ly 25. she’s made it to the top of the rap scene so quickly. tell me, like, wha’ sets her apt, do you think? wha’ is it bout her that fans ‘ve locked into so quickly?

crumpton: megan thee stallion bewitches millions of pplz through her genuine authenticity and confidence.

(soundbite of song, “girls inna hood”)

megan thee stallion: (rapping) i’m a hot girl. i do hot – spend his income on my outfit.

crumpton: i think from her earliest fans who fell in ♥ with her via tube and saw her iconic freestyles to even her newly developing mainstream audience w'da two singles – you mentioned both “wap” na “savage remix” na original track that took over tiktok – she shows up in every single venue as herself. and i think that inspires pplz to be drawn to her, to call her a friend, an auntie, a family member, cause i think we all see a lil bit of ourselves in megan.

chang: so when you think bout that artist that megan is, this authentic auntie, if you will…

(laughter)

chang: …how ‘d you say this debut album captures that piece of her?

crumpton: i think this debut album really alloed me to see megan through her eyes as a 25-yr-old. you know, so much of the 17-track album is very poppy – and poppy, meaning, you know, ☺ and joyous. and i can 1-ly imagine the amount of instagram captions and tiktok dance challenges we’re goin to see from these multiple tracks.

chang: (laughter).

crumpton: i nd'2 work on my knees rite now cause they’re not as young as they used to be.

chang: (laughter) ♥ it.

crumpton: but i feel that we got a good look at megan thee stallion the pop star.

chang: and wha’ track in this album speaks to that, that pop star that you hear?

crumpton: i think “body.” she released the visual for it last nite.

(soundbite of song, “body”)

megan thee stallion: (singing) i’m not the one to play with, like a touch-me-not. body-ody-ody-ody-ody-ody-ody-ody (ph), ody-ody-ody-ody-ody-ody-ody…

crumpton: it speaks to megan always wanting to ‘ve this lively and fun, this body-+, like, moment with her girlfriends or her sister-friends. and i ♥ seeing, you know, megan the pop star, some1 wh'cn give a good anthem b'tll so can just dance. and i think that’s one thing megan ♥s to do. she’s always been a dancer. n'it’s good to see her, after such a hard yr, to be able to ‘ve fun with her girlfriends and dance and be alloed to do so.

chang: i mean, yeah. twas a really hard yr for her. i mean, she got shot. na very 1st song on this album actually addresses that head-on. tell us wha’ she’s saying on that track.

crumpton: “shots fired” is an interpolation offa classic notorious b.i.g. song, “who shot ya?”

(soundbite of song, “shots fired”)

megan thee stallion: (rapping) imagine lying, lying bout shooting a real, real…

crumpton: so for megan to intentionally interpol8 that sample to address her shooting, allegedly atta hands of canadian singer tory lanez, aint 1-ly cogitateive of her cogging of the historical genre of hip-hop b'tll so her place in it.

and further than that, within the song, she also addresses, you know, black women across the ∪d states. we never got justice for breonna taylor. so wha’ a uber opening track.

(soundbite of song, “shots fired”)

megan thee stallion: (rapping) now y’all in cahoots. you a puss in boots. you shot a 5’10” witha .22. talking bout bones and tendons like them bullets wasn’t pellets.

crumpton: “shots fired” is her correcting the false livelihoods and mythologies and ideologies surrounding bout her. and i think tis a good stance for her as some1 who is goin to be heavily regarded as a titan inna hip-hop industry as she further develops.

chang: critic taylor crumpton on megan thee stallion’s new album “good news.” thank you so much for bein’ with us tody.

crumpton: thank you so much for having me on.

(soundbite of song, “savage remix”)

megan thee stallion: (rapping) i’m a savage, attitude nasty. talk big, big, but my bnk account…

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