WAP- A Song for Women’s Empowerment
Cardi B came firing out of the gates at the beginning of August with her new sexually charged single “WAP” featuring fellow female rapper Megan Thee Stallion. “WAP” explores the sexuality of women in an explicit, albeit entertainingly revealing fashion that drew many eyes and ears across America as the song made numerous headlines. Despite many rap songs from male rappers containing equally controversial and graphic lyrics (ex. Eminem’s “Drips”), what sets ‘WAP” apart from its constituents is the perspective it comes from along with the rejection of the normal status quo regarding women’s behavior. It’s a shocking yet wonderful composition that I believe ultimately puts women ahead in a time where women worldwide are using their confidence and strength to claim and solidify their rights.
If any artist were to involve themselves in the conversation about this topic, Cardi B arguably makes the most sense. As a woman who has never been shy to share her sexual desires and endeavors, Cardi B gives this track the authenticity it deserves while managing to not come off as catering to masses or selling out. Including another strong female rapper on the track like Megan Thee Stallion was a bold, yet genius move that adds even more legitimacy, impact and volume to the statement this song is making. Both women have a strong and confident flow with a delivery to match those characteristics, as statements like “I want you to park that big Mack truck right in this little garage” hit with the right amount of confidence and sexuality that definitively drives their point across.
Coming from the perspective of a male, I can certainly understand why many people are voicing concerns over this song as it’s not exactly something you would/should play at a backyard barbecue or large gathering. The lyrics certainly caught me off guard upon my first listen, but I must admit I was intrigued with how bold this track is. With a bouncy and catchy beat created by Ayo the Producer and Keyz, this song manages to embed itself in your brain for hours after listening. Immediately after you press play, you’re greeted by this mantra of “There’s whores in this house” that constantly fades in and out of the background of the track. While very direct and funny, it does serve as a short but accurate precursor to what this track has in store while adding a catchy “anthem”. As the track goes on, Cardi and Meg expertly exchange bars back and forth, utilizing clever wordplay and analogies.
Despite the technicalities of the track, what I find to be the biggest driving factor for this track’s influence is its place in newsrooms and everyday discussions. For some reason, the discussion centered around this track seems to put women in a light where they shouldn’t be allowed to discuss these topics when compared to men. This statement is especially true in regard to rap music, where countless male rappers can be heard glorifying sex and objectifying women for personal gain. I feel that in today’s political climate, a woman can make a song on just about anything a man can. Sure, some messages are better received coming from a man’s perspective, but the inverse can be applied to women as well. The topic of sex shouldn’t really be a gender-restricted one as pretty much everybody is capable of having sex and is therefore allowed a place in its discussion.
While Cardi B may be a bit of a controversial figure, I do think that she managed to hit the mark with this song; and I know I am not alone in thinking this, as "WAP" is currently spending its third consecutive week at the top of the U.S. Billboard 100 chart. The shock value and overall fun of the track are just some of the factors that I believe contributed to this song’s success. The message may not be exactly what people expected, but I think "WAP" will be one of those tracks that is in the discussion of most impactful rap songs for many years to come.
Written By: Michael Miserendino