It's difficult for new artists to break in the age social media age. It seems everyone believes they're a tweet away from hitting it big, and you can't blame them. They could be right.
But the sheer volume of new music and visuals is untenable for people who simply can't make the time. Music listeners and lovers are inundated with so much that many of us default to avoiding anything until it's generated significant buzz.
Artists have caught on to the game. They smart ones know they have to make their entrances unmissable.
Princess Vitarah's "Nigerian Pussy" cut through the noise with a provocative title, simple lyrics, and vibrant video. On first look, you'll think it's a parody. She shouts out our her homeland while flanked by off-beat backup dancers. But Princess Vitarah is dead serious. And when you look closer, you see she's put a new spin on the swag anthem.
For Harriet talked to the Nigerian-American rapper about making a viral sensation and the difficulties of being taken seriously as a new artist.
-Some might take this video and song as a joke. Is it meant to be tongue-in-cheek?
This song is definitely not a joke. It's meant to be taken seriously. Because of the nature of the song, I think some people will find it tongue-in-cheek anyhow. But thats okay because my music is art and art has to be open to criticism and response.
-You've chosen some interesting subject matter. What's the inspiration behind “Nigerian Pussy”?
The inspiration behind Nigerian Pussy is based on my life and my observances so far about how far men will go for good pussy. Nigerian Pussy is not just about having tight pussy, it's about a certain level of swag and being able to get what you want from a man without having to try. That's why my lyrics say "But I never let you hit, I let you buy me shit, then I leave you with your blue balls, sitting in a fit." This song is empowering women to know that their pussy is tight and that they don't have to give it up in order to get what they want from a guy.
-Who are your musical inspirations?
My favorite rappers are Kanye, Drake, Olamide, and Young Thug. I love Kanye because he's a creative genius. Everything he does is brilliant. I like Drake because of his lyrics. His songs always make sense and his flow comes so easy. Olamide is one of my faves because I love his "I don't give a fuck" attitude. You have to have that type of attitude when you rapping and not let negativity get to you. And Young Thug is just a G. I love his swag.
-Women don't get a lot of sex anthems. Why do you think that is?
Women don't get a lot of sex anthems because a lot of girls are afraid to talk about sensitive issues. They'd rather sing about being in love or boring subjects, but I think it's important to have those sex anthems so that women can be comfortable with their sexuality. There's nothing wrong with believing that your pussy is the tightest and being confident with your sexuality.
Being Nigerian affects my artistry by making me be really creative and expressive with my music because Nigerian culture is known for being colorful, warm, and expressive. From the way I flow on the beat, to my dressing, to my hair, you can see my Nigerian roots clear in my music and it affects my artistry by making me to be original and unique. Being Nigerian also affects my artistry because I travel a lot, so I'm able to take in a lot of different cultures. I can blend Nigerian and American influences into my music easily so that it has a wider appeal and more people can jam to it.
-Why do you think so many have responded to this song?
Many people have responded to this song because it's new and fresh and because it's really raw. The lyrics are blunt and there's nowhere to hide. The response has been polarizing. People either hate it or love it. But either way they are forming an opinion. Everyone who listens to the song or watches the video has something to say about it. It's mostly positive, but there are those who disagree. I think the response is so overwhelming because people have been waiting for a female artist who is bold and confident and not afraid to speak her mind in the music industry.
-Do you worry that some might not take you seriously because of the video and the song's subject matter?
I don't worry about not being taken seriously because my music has already been reviewed and applauded by some of the top music magazines in the US, Nigeria, the UK and many other countries. They believe that this song and video will bring the spotlight back to female rappers because there hasn't been a hot new female rapper in a long time. A very long time. But that's okay cause Princess Vitarah is here.