This year marks the 50th anniversary of hip-hop, with a legendary DJ Kool Herc party in the Bronx on August 11, 1973 commonly cited as its glorious moment of inception – and we're marking the occasion with a special edition of Music Week.
Here, Lady Leshurr tells Music Week about five legendary female MCs that inspired her…
“Foxy Brown was the first female rapper I heard that mixed patois with her American accent, which I could relate to as I’m Caribbean. It just brought so much new flavour to the table and set her apart from every other artist at the time. She bridged a gap between dancehall music and American hip-hop and I’ve never seen it done so gracefully before.”
“Missy Elliott is the reason why I dress the way I dress and the reason why I like to let the lyrics speak instead of the body. Her visuals, delivery and creativity are so inspiring!”
“Nicki Minaj is inspiring because of the hustle, the grind and how she manoeuvred in the industry creating her own lane, building a business and using personality to gain fans all across the world.”
“For me, Ms Dynamite was the first British female that I discovered and looked up to, with a blend of hard-hitting lyrics and catchy melodies. She created her own sound and style, and didn’t really curse or use profanity – another inspiration as to why I don’t swear in my music.”
“Lauryn Hill will always be the GOAT. There is nothing she cannot do. Her vocals, lyrics, substance, delivery, even down to playing instruments, she just really is music. I’m inspired by how delicate and innocent Lauryn was when she first entered the scene and her growth was incredible. She will always have one of the most iconic albums in the world that changed history and created a new generation of positive, influential female artists.”