Missy Elliott Makes History as Songwriters Hall of Fame's First Female Hip-Hop Artist Inductee
Get ready to lose control: Missy Elliott has officially made history!
The 5’2″ emcee, known by her Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott nickname, became the first female hip-hop artist to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame on Saturday — and honor that comes just three years after JAY-Z made history as the first male rapper to be inducted.
Elliott, 47, will officially join the 50-year-old establishment on June 13, in a ceremony at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City alongside fellow 2019 inductees Dallas Austin, Tom T. Hall, John Prine, Jack Tempchin and Yusuf/Cat Stevens.
“I want to CONGRATULATE all the AMAZING songwriters who have been inducted into the 2019 ‘Song Writers Hall of Fame,’ ” Elliott tweeted on Saturday, when the honor was announced. “Also those who were nominated because their body of work is AMAZING. I AM SO HUMBLY GRATEFUL to now be inducted also.”
“If someone says that you won’t ever make it or what you’re doing won’t work, don’t let that stop you,” she added, retweeting an older message from September. “Allow that to be your fuel (KEEP GOING). Sometimes you gotta BE YOUR OWN CHEERLEADER or HYPEMAN! Let them people doubting you get left.”
Elliott wasn’t the only one sending congratulations. Many of Elliott’s peers sent her their best wishes – including Songwriters Hall of Fame Chairman Nile Rodgers, who told CBS This Morning that Elliott was one of his “favorite writers of all time.”
“To me it’s important to have equality,” he said of her “amazing” history-making honor. “I’ve written with a lot of women songwriters, but not nearly enough.”
“You are our fearless leader. You cut through the thickets of the musical landscape and brought us to the futuristic, smooth, syncopated land of Missy. We love you, we cherish you and we need you,” wrote rapper Lizzo in a series of tweets. “Thank you for your dedication to craft and your 360 visionary prowess. You deliver every time! You gave us Bops, Looks, Choreo, Bars, Melodies, & ‘Break-the-Internet’ moments before there was an internet even break!”
“You are already in the Hall of Fame in the hearts and minds of the millions of people who love you and dance to your music and reference your videos and rock that finger wave!” she added. “I would not be me without you, Thank You.”
RELATED: Missy Elliott Reveals What It Was Like to Watch Michelle Obama Rap ‘Get Ur Freak On’ for Carpool Karaoke
On its website, the Songwriters Hall of Fame says it “honors those whose work represents a spectrum of the most beloved songs from the world’s popular music songbook.” Currently, “a songwriter qualifies for induction 20 years after the first commercial release of a song,” the say.
The list of inductees include Smokey Robinson, Hal David & Burt Bacharach, Bob Dylan, Carole King, Paul Simon, Billy Joel, Jon Bon Jovi & Richie Sambora, Elton John & Bernie Taupin, Brian Wilson, James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen, Phil Collins, Loretta Lynn, Van Morrison, Kris Kristofferson, Dolly Parton, Garth Brooks, Diane Warren, Stevie Wonder, Steven Tyler & Joe Perry, Leonard Cohen, Cyndi Lauper, Desmond Child, Elvis Costello, Marvin Gaye, Nile Rodgers & Bernard Edwards, Lionel Richie, Bill Withers, Neil Diamond, Tom Petty, Toby Keith, Max Martin, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Berry Gordy, Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, Jermaine Dupri, Kool & The Gang, John Mellencamp and many, many others.
Elliott burst on the scene as a solo artist in 1997 with her debut album Supa Dupa Fly, which came with the top 20 single “Sock It 2 Me.” Since then she’s released five additional LPs and a sea of hit songs — including “Get Ur Freak On,” “One Minute Man,” “4 My People,” “Gossip Folks,’ “Work It,” “Lose Control,” “We Run This,” and “WTF.” She’s also been a songwriter and producer for other artists, appearing on songs like “1, 2 Step” and “Lady Marmalade.”