Exclusive: Latto Discusses Women’s Rising Influence in Rap Scene with ‘Unapologetic Energy’

Exclusive: Latto Discusses Women’s Rising Influence in Rap Scene with ‘Unapologetic Energy’


In an exclusive conversation with Insider, Latto shares her insightful perspective on the current rap landscape, where she firmly believes that women are at the forefront, empowered by their unapologetic energy. Demonstrating the strength of this sentiment, Latto achieved a groundbreaking milestone on Monday, securing her first No. 1 hit on the prestigious Billboard Hot 100 with “Seven,” a remarkable collaboration alongside BTS singer Jungkook on his debut solo single. The song’s success has been nothing short of phenomenal, already amassing over 100 million streams on Spotify since its release on July 14.

During the interview, Latto passionately highlights the powerful presence of female artists in today’s rap scene. She eloquently describes it as raw, uncut, and authentic, exuding a captivating “take-me-for-who-I-am” essence. Notably, the rapper recently partnered with Wingstop to introduce the Latto Meal, a limited edition offering featuring 21 wings, fries, and two dips.

The surge of female artists’ achievements is unmistakable, with Ice Spice, Coi Leray, Nicki Minaj, and Latto herself all securing top 10 hits on the Hot 100 since the start of the year. Moreover, these talented women, along with Coi Leray, Minaj, and Latto, alongside esteemed artists like Doja Cat, Lizzo, GloRilla, and Cardi B, also enjoyed top 10 hits in 2022.

Latto further delves into the phenomenon, attributing the admiration and support for current female rappers to their genuine authenticity. She specifically highlights the flourishing influence of Southern female rap artists, who fearlessly claim their space, unapologetically embracing their true selves and paving the way for others.

Asked about the newfound ability of female rappers to be unapologetic, the 24-year-old star, who recently clinched the award for best female hip-hop artist at the 2023 BET Awards, acknowledges the transformative impact of trailblazers like Lil’ Kim and Missy Elliott, who have laid the foundation for this empowering movement.

Latto’s journey to success began in 2016, when she rose to prominence as the winner of the inaugural season of “The Rap Game,” Jermaine Dupri’s now-defunct talent show. Despite turning down a record deal with Dupri’s So So Def label, the rapper made a strategic move and signed with RCA Records in 2020, leading to the release of two studio albums. Her latest album, “777,” reached an impressive peak at No. 15 on the esteemed Billboard 200 chart, featuring the smash hit “Big Energy.”

Notably, her collaboration with Jungkook stands as a defining moment in her career, marking her most significant hit to date. This achievement places her among an exclusive group of female rappers, including luminaries such as Megan Thee Stallion, Cardi B, and Missy Elliott, who have all achieved No. 1 hits on the Hot 100.

In an exciting revelation to Insider, Latto shares the details of her collaboration with Jungkook, disclosing that the K-pop star personally selected her for the record. Enthusiastic about the track’s potential, she embraced the opportunity to add her unique touch to an already phenomenal hit. Describing Jungkook as a kind, genuine, and humble individual, the rapper reflects on the enjoyable experience, while also acknowledging the passionate support from his devoted fan base, famously known as an army.

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