One of my best memories as a journalist was coordinating a photo shoot with Jacki-O, Jean Grea and Remy Martin for The Source magazine. Shawnna was supposed to be a part of the shoot but fell ill at the last minute. Nevertheless, it was nice to see women from different parts of the hip-hop map come together to make a statement of unity. We were in a lounge somewhere on the upper east side and it was kind of surreal to see the raunchy raptress Jacki-O helping this battle MC like Jean get her weave pressed just right and the three of them just being cool. No beef, no drama. A group even manifested a few months later.
The presence of women in the rap game is something I continued to discuss and tried to promote in some way after I left The Source. Even as an editor at Scratch I pushed forth the question of “Where Are The Female MCs?” (Sept/Oct. 2006) with an accompanying story by one of my favorite journalists Thomas Golianopolous.
A few years later I can’t honestly say that a whole lot has improved for hip-hop in general and for female MCs in particular. Remy is locked up, Lil Kim is out but she’s beefin’ with Biggie’s mom and the last thing we heard about Foxy Brown was her getting mixed up in Rick Ross/50 Beef.
So when I spoke with Jacki-O about her new album [click to listen] I took a few minutes to get her thoughts on the The First Lady (a woman many consider to be the Black Jackie O) and what women in hip-hop can do to change things.