Only those living under a rock with their ears plugged would have been able to escape Cardi B's global takeover. Cardi's singles are topping the charts and she's featuring in new hip-hop tracks by the day. She dominated the Grammys by performing a remix of "Finesse" with Bruno Mars, and her album, Invasion of Privacy, even broke Apple Music's record for the most streamed album ever as of 2018. But who is this "Bodak Yellow"-rapping, Taylor Swift-dethroning, seemingly-come-out-of-nowhere star? Do you want to know why people love Cardi B – the new queen of rap?
It's not hard to find a reason: Cardi B's been plugging away in the music industry, the social media sphere, and the world of exotic dancing for years, but there is so much more to this superstar sensation. For one, she definitely wants you to know she's from the Bronx.
Before Cardi B was smashing records with "Bodak Yellow," she was plugging away as an exotic dancer after being let go from an Amish supermarket in downtown Manhattan. Becalis told Complex in 2015 that the manager of said supermarket encouraged her to turn to stripping as as means of making money after firing her. Beclais said:
When I got fired from there I was like, “What am I going to do?” The manager from the Amish Market place said, “You’re so pretty and you have such a nice body. Why don’t you go across the street and work at Private Eyes?”... He was really cool with the manager over there so he helped out. I went and it was just so amazing to me. In one day I made more than a week’s pay. But I felt a little bit of shame. I imagined my mother shaking her head. Disgraceful. I had to survive, though.
Cardi B is often described as a social media star turned chart-topping rapper, and many believe her mammoth following on Instagram helped her claim the number one spot on the Billboard chart. Cardi's Insta following clocks in at the double digit millions and it's been said that her branding skills and social media savvy helped her knock Taylor Swift's "Look What You Made Me Do" off the top spot in 2017.
After clocking up a huge Instagram following, Cardi B turned her sights to reality television. In December of 2015, Cardi B appeared on Season 6 of Love & Hip-Hop: New York, and also appeared on Season 7. Her fantastic screen presence earned her a whole host of fans but Cardi announced that she was leaving the show in December of 2016 via her Instagram, so as to focus on her music career.
"Bodak Yellow" is now the longest running solo female rap #1 in Hot 100 history.— chart data (@chartdata) October 9, 2017
Not only did Cardi's "Bodak Yellow" have the distinction of dethroning Taylor Swift's "Look What You Made Me Do" from the top of the Billboard chart in late 2017, it broke a ton of records along the way. "Bodak Yellow" made Cardi the first female rapper to top the charts, without a feature, since Lauryn Hill and "Doo Wop (That Thing)" way back in 1998. Not only that, but the track tied with the aforementioned Taylor Swift song for the longest running song by a female artist at the top of the charts in 2017. And as of October 2017, "Bodak Yellow" was the longest running solo female rap song in the history of the Hot 100.