G.L.A.M.: The 23-Year-Old Rapper to Watch
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE
Because lady emcees need another heyday.
By Charlotte Buchen
Rapper G.L.A.M. has stepped up to the mic at a fair share of cyphers, or rap battles, enough to build a sizable following. Now, everyone is waiting for the album. But it’s not easy for a lady lyricist to break into the mainstream in 2016, certainly not compared with the ’90s when female artists such as MC Lyte, Salt-n-Pepa, Digable Planets’ Ladybug, Lauryn Hill and Queen Latifah reigned supreme.
These days, major labels are signing fewer female acts than ever. And that Grammys category created in 2003 for best female rap solo performance? It was eliminated just two years later, in 2005. But 23-year-old G.L.A.M. isn’t deterred. She is self-producing her entire album and defining her own image. She doesn’t want to be put in any “box” — meaning, please love her for her “good lyrics and music” (hence G.L.A.M.), not just her gender.
Born in Oakland, California, raised in Los Angeles, and now living in Brooklyn, New York, she has all of hip-hop’s iconic geographical boxes checked. Even better, she comes from a hip-hop family; and her mom and manager — rapper Nic Nac — is showing her the ropes. We followed G.L.A.M. from the hip-hop heartland in Bed-Stuy to the gloss of YouTube studios, where she was working on her latest video.
Give a listen, check out our video and hear her take on the challenges of being a lady lyricist in a field dominated by macho men.
- Charlotte Buchen, Charlotte Buchen is a filmmaker who recently returned from living in Qatar to join OZY's video department. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, Current TV, Newsweek.com and PBS FRONTLINE/World. She loves the ocean, a good story and live music. Follow Charlotte Buchen on TwitterContact Charlotte Buchen