XXL released its much-ballyhooed, annual list of Freshman rappers yesterday, and as usual, opinions and debate spread like wildfire as hip-hop fans weighed in on the picks the magazine tabbed to have big breakouts in the coming year(s). One notable aspect that underlined the big changes the culture has undergone recently was the inclusion of three females rappers to the mix, the most of any list since its inaugural issue.
By selecting Megan Thee Stallion, Rico Nasty, and Tierra Whack, XXL co-signed the impression many rap fans have had that women are breaking into the game at a much-higher rate than ever before — and that they deserve to be recognized and touted as much as their male counterparts. In fact, there were so many that popped up in the last few years that some observers felt that the list didn’t recognize enough of them.
So, here’s a list of the female rappers that could have made the list — and wouldn’t surprise anyone if they make the list next time around. The methodology was simple: We simply chose from the list of available candidates on XXL‘s own Vote For The 10th Spot webpage. We’ve already highlighted the invasion of the dolls, so they were skipped in favor of the artists who haven’t gotten as much shine of late. Rappers like BbyMutha, Doja Cat, Leikeli47, Noname, and Tommy Genesis were left off the available list, so we had to leave them off of ours, but they should definitely be in the discussion.
Staten Island native Abby Jasmine is as much a social media personality as she is rapper, filling her social media with comedic skits, off-the-cuff memes, and impromptu freestyle videos that had bubbling all through 2018, including catching mentions on Complex’s Everyday Struggle. Her EP Trap Mom is out now via Cinematic Music Group, featuring the underground hit, “No Hook.”
Bali Baby hails from Jacksonville, North Carolina by way of Atlanta and has been steadily building her fan base with a series of well-received mixtapes, including three in 2018: Bali Blanco, Baylor Swift, and Resurrection. Possessed of a wicked, dark sense of humor balanced with a playful, pastel lightness, Bali is one of the few rappers who is open about her sexuality. Her latest single, “Swiper No Swiping,” is menacingly funny freestyle that highlights her gift for snarky wordplay.