Interview: GloRilla is here to stay | New

The wrestling rapper archetype no longer wrestles. You could say that Yo Gotti, a persevering journeyman from Memphis, Tennessee, fell victim to regional bias; the industry was only willing to accommodate so many rappers from Memphis, an unsexy, mid-sized city and transit hub. But Gotti has kept his nose to the grindstone, releasing 11 albums over a span of 25 years, and now look at him. He’s a label boss stuffing literal bags of freshly printed hundreds.

Gotti is building or has built a sort of rap empire. The following people respond directly to Gotti: Moneybagg Yo, Blac Youngsta, EST Gee, and Mozzy. If that wasn’t enough, Gotti in mid-July added a name to the CMG roster that stood out as highly abnormal. Unlike many of her label mates, GloRilla is not a hustler in her thirties whose demeanor betrays years of strife. She’s a spokesperson for the ratchet among us.

According to GloRilla herself, she had no conception of the YouTube algorithm. She wasn’t trying to go viral, let alone become a girl power icon. But that happened after she dropped “FNF (Let’s Go),” her brotherly cacophonous tune. Built around a hard-nosed piano loop, “FNF” rejects feminine norms in favor of “jumping at red lights” and “twerking over headlights.” The hook is an irreverent homage to the “redeemed friends” of GloRilla.

GloRilla identifies so strongly with her hometown – Memphis – that she posts under the IG handle @glorillapimp. (That’s a Project Pat reference.) And even before “FNF,” she was a locally acclaimed artist. “Just Say That,” his “new” collab with local crunkster Duke Deuce, is months older than commonly believed; the song “took a minute to drop because [Duke Deuce] had to clean it up,” GloRilla says. “FNF”, however? Quite another thing. It’s an irrepressible pop sensation. Without it, GloRilla might never have found herself aboard Yo Gotti’s sleek private plane, clutching a bag of cash.

On the heels of the release of his new single and video for “Blessed,” BET.com spoke with the rapper about fame and music.

Your signature song, “FNF (Let’s Go)”, is now a must-have on some platforms. Did you foresee the song becoming a TikTok staple?

No, I really didn’t have TikTok in mind. I’m really not a big TikTok user.

I have always understood that “FNF” was a hymn to feminine camaraderie and friendship. Is this a fair description?

You could say that. It’s a type of empowerment anthem. This is ratchet.

The visual of “FMF” took on a life of its own; it has been viewed tens of millions of times. What is it about you and your friends that captivates audiences so much?

I feel like it left because we were authentic. We’re not really getting dressed; we were just having fun, being ourselves, you know what to say? There aren’t really many people representing hood women and ratchet women. We were just in the video having fun, doing what we normally do, and people like authenticity – the realism to her.

BET.com: You recently signed with Yo Gotti’s CMG imprint in a very triumphant way. I’m curious about the optics of that. Who came up with the idea of ​​the private jet and the bag of money?

GloRilla: Yeah, that was Gotti’s idea. I don’t know – I think we’ll end up shooting the video. I don’t know if we’ll end up taking the jet or anything like that. It really surprised me. We pulled over and the next thing you know…

BET.com: Where are you from in Memphis?

GloRilla: For example, I don’t call it North Memphis – people who aren’t from Memphis call it that. Me and Gotti are from the same area. He calls it North Memphis; I call him Frayser.

BET.com: Yo Gotti is, of course, local rap royalty. Did he play an important role in your upbringing?

GloRilla: When you think of Memphis music, you think of Gotti, you know what I mean, and Three 6 and the others. It was the face of Memphis when you think of rap. They had the city in a chokehold, and you can’t go to the club without hearing some Gotti songs. So he was an important factor growing up.

BET.com: When I think of pioneer female rappers from Memphis, two names that come to mind are Gangsta Boo and La Chat.

GloRilla: I feel like they paved the way for female rappers worldwide. It was the two rappers here! It wasn’t just Memphis. It was, like, everywhere.

BET.com: Speaking of Three 6, the Migos-style triplet flow goes back to Lord Infamous. Does Memphis get enough credit for essentially inventing rap as we know it?

GloRilla: I don’t know exactly what to say about this because I feel like a lot of people do learn about the Memphis music scene. Memphis has a lot to do with rap, like, we have our own sound; nobody looks like us. So I don’t know if Memphis gets enough credit, but I feel like most people know.

BET.com: The new CMG compilation, gangster art, indicates that you are an exciting group of artists. Your contribution to gangster art is called “Tomorrow”. What other songs do you like there?

GloRilla: I love “Steppas”. I like “Major Payne”, I like “Gangsta Art” and I like “January 1st”. They are my favourites.

BET.com: You’ve been endorsed by a whole host of industrial giants, including some highly visible female rappers. Which co-signs stand out as particularly significant?

GloRilla: I am grateful to everyone in the industry that I grew up listening to, or listen to daily, who reached out to me or sent me direct messages, telling me inspiring things. Latto do it. cardi [B] do it. Saweetie is still texting me. I’m not talking directly to Megan [Thee Stallion] again, but every time I look up, she’s dancing to my song. I haven’t had a direct conversation with her yet.

BET.com: Think back to the peak of the year – January or February. Did you imagine yourself becoming so famous so quickly?

GloRilla: I don’t envision it happening that fast, but every year since I started rapping, I’ve been like, “Aight, this is the year it explodes.” When I’m on Facebook and see all my old posts, I always say something, like, to that effect. I knew this would happen; I didn’t know when.