Nikki D, a seasoned veteran in the world of Hip-Hop, hails from the Bricks of New Jersey and has always been renowned for her candidness. In today’s era of heightened social media influence, her voice resonates more powerfully than ever before. She has scrutinized the current state of affairs, commencing with her critique of Ice Spice‘s assessment. The outspoken, pioneering MC has characterized the present generation of commercial artists as the “prostitution era of rap,” encompassing a multitude of contemporary talents like Megan Thee Stallion.
From Nikki’s perspective, her intent is not merely to cast blame, but to protect and guide her younger colleagues in the rap industry. Her extensive experience is a testament to this commitment. Nikki D indelibly etched her name into the annals of Hip-Hop during the late 1980s and early 1990s, notably as the first woman to be signed by Def Jam. Although she may not enjoy the same level of recognition as some of her illustrious contemporaries like Queen Latifah, MC Lyte, or Salt-N-Pepa, her undeniable influence has transcended generations and left an enduring mark on the culture. She has effectively paved the way for future female artists, leaving an indelible legacy in the process.
There’s a lot of tough love here. Our full interview is forthcoming.
AllHipHop: You recently made headlines and you got everybody’s attention including my whole team we were all passing this this messaging that you had about the “Prostitution Era” of Hip-Hip. Prostitution all because of a performance by Ice Spice which got everybody talking including yourself. Let’s talk about this era that you have called the “Prostitution Era.”
Nikki D: When I call it the prostitution era, I think it’s not think it’s simply for me what I see is when I saw the (Ice Spice) performance, right. I was home chilling sipping on some wine. I saw the the video online and I said “What is this?” I looked at it and Shorty’s (Ice Spice) dress was literally above her butt. And I was like nothing was out but skin a## like I was like but this is not the girl that I remember that put out
“Deli” this is not the girl that put out the other two, three or four
songs and I felt like she had kind of pushed herself into a place of no return. Now when you out there it’s like walking outside, butt-necked what else do we have?
Where’s the surprise? Where’s the mystery? Even Meg (Megan Thee Stallion) for instance. I loved Megan Thee Stallion initially. Meg had bars, used to freestyle…I’m not saying that the only way I could be pleased with you as a female rapper is that you need my approval, that you need to have bars, but at least there was some artistry there. There was some talent. There there was some rhymes. There was something. Because we didn’t ay the bricks for nothing – so you two could come out and turn around showing a##. And then every lyric is my P, my a##, my this my, my that. And they’re raised differently in this generation just in general just as people – not even as artists. Their skin is not tough. Like you can’t say anything about them. Prime example: Joe Budden. You do a critique on Drake’s album. Drake you’re a billionaire damn near but you start crying like crazy when Joe was like I don’t really like the whole thing and then you start to name call.
AllHipHop: He might have been hurt.
Nikki D: It’s okay for people not to like your music. It’s okay for people to have an opinion it’s not called hate it’s called I’m an individual and I like what I like what’s wrong with that? This generation I feel…like just toughen up a little bit more.
AllHipHop: To quickly paint the picture for folks because at some point this will be an old headline. So, Ice Spice came out Halloween weekend at Powerhouse Philly in a red dress – very tight as Betty Boop. It just didn’t fit. She kind of kept pulling it down and was very uncomfortable looking. She definitely looked uncomfortable and she was actually performing my favorite song from her, which is “Deli.”
Nikki D: That actually goes hard. Yeah “Deli” goes hard.
AllHipHop: It wasn’t her best performance I don’t know if it was the venue or the city or just her having an off night but it definitely wasn’t really her best performance. So now, Gen Z or millennials. That that generation yeah is now coming for you.
What are they saying?
Nikki D: Well first thing they say is and I always like to preference my own self with this when y’all come for me. I know I’m old -go. I know I had one big record. I know they don’t do it the way (I) used to do it anymore – go ahead. I know all that so again I just go back to y’all getting butt hurt y’all don’t know how to really take a punch or criticism. I put a little story up yesterday on my Instagram page and I was like they coming for me are they like, “First of all ‘You old’.” I tell you what you would be so lucky to get the age that I am and you would be so lucky to get royalty checks that I got just two weeks ago in the mail 30 years later from that one song. You would be so lucky to see all those things years later, you feel me? Necause what I did was timeless. I didn’t do trendy. I did classic.
AllHipHop (DJ Thoro): The problem is a lot of artists that try to bash start with the agism. They don’t do history so historically speaking when you were out that was going on but it wasn’t celebrated to the forefront how it is now. So you had groups a lot of people don’t know Easy-E put a group out called HWA – Hoez With Attitude. On Rap-A-Lot, there was a rapper called Choice and she was exactly how they’re rapping now. Again, it wasn’t celebrated it, was out. Master P had an artist called Mercedes. You look at the album cover guess what she’s doing…a## out, privates showing.
AllHipHop (Chuck “Jigsaw” Creekmur): The other side of it is that there was just a healthy balance going on.
Nikki D: There was a balance. That’s the problem. so you take this generation now, what’s the what’s the balance of of this? Where’s the Lauryn Hill’s, where’s the MC Lyte? Here’s the thing when you talk about that history, right? It was inappropriate [then], even though it was happening. Hence the reason why it never hit the forefront. They weren’t major acts. It wasn’t anything we as a people or we as a culture was celebrating. Put something out there that’s gonna be [a part of your] legacy. Put something out there that’s gonna actually push something off to your people right now we didn’t have.
At the end of the day, you wasn’t going to be on a big stage with that unless those big dogs brought you out, because you wasn’t going to sell records. You couldn’t play nowhere like that. For me it’s the manufactured Black woman.
AllHipHop: Who’s responsible for putting this content out? Because you’re being rewarded. If it’s not rewarded, they won’t do it.
Nikki D: Absolutely, if I’m paying you to be this person, you’re gonna be this person. Programming is everything and people don’t understand that that’s what marketing is. I’m gonna program you to like this image right here. I’m going to program you to be this person How many videos do you see online every day where girls are three, four, five six seven eight nine 10-years old turning around shaking their ass because this is what they see?
Even if their mother’s at work, this image is into their face right and it’s so much of it that now this is all we see. So when we have this idea of what the Black woman is today, we just look at the images we see.
Now do we need to see Michelle Obama [exclusively], no! Do we need to see Sistah Souljah all the time, no! Do we need to see the super righteous [woman], no. But we need balance we need balance and we don’t have it. We need to have a Lauryn Hill. We need to have a Queen Latifah. We need to have a Nikki D. We need to have a MC Lyte.
For the full conversation with Nikki D talking about her issues with the state of the culture, check out the video.