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2017 has been a big year for Cardi B. She topped the Billboard Hot 100 Chart with megahit “Bodak Yellow,” which went platinum; her first studio album is forthcoming (no set date yet!); and last Friday, she got engaged to Migos’ rapper Offset. For the Bronx-born rapper from humble roots, it’s not a stretch to compare her rising star to that of the late Tejano singer Selena Quintanilla, but some disagree – and vehemently so.
The offending comparison appears on Migos’ hit track, “Motor Sport,” on which Cardi B and Nicki Minaj collaborated: “Let me wrap my weave up, I’m the trap Selena, Dame más gasolina,” she rapped, referencing Daddy Yankee’s 2004 hit single “Gasolina.”
Protests blew up all over Twitter: “Cardi B needs to not compare herself to Selena or think she’s a different version of her period. No, not all, total different walks of life,” one user tweeted. Others were no less harsh:
But, not everyone hated on the rapper’s identification with Tex-Mex queen: “Cardi B is the trap Selena….if we’re being really real,” one fan tweeted.
The hip hop artist, whose real name is Belcalis Almanzar, was born to Trinidadian mother and Dominican father. She rose out of poverty and an abusive relationship by becoming a stripper at 19, eventually building a name for herself on social media and landing a spot on VH1’s Love & Hip Hop: New York. She quit the show after two seasons to focus on her music career, nabbing a reported multimillion contract with Atlantic Record earlier this year.
She made history with her first single “Bodak Yellow” under the powerhouse label, becoming the first female rapper in 19 years to top Billboard‘s Hot 100 without an accompanying act since Lauryn Hill in 1998.