Female Super Group Red Rover
For an incredible moment the top four spots on Billboards song charts were held by black women. Doja Cat remixed Say So with Nicki Minaj for the #1 spot and Megan Thee Stallion got Beyonce to really join forces on her Savage remix. This is the best time for women in hip hop and R & B in recent memory and it got me thinking…we might be due for a supergroup album. Let’s take those two songs and start them as team 1 and team 2 adding whoever makes sense and see what we end up with.
Team 1-Megan Thee Stallion and Beyonce
Who makes sense to fill out the team? First name: Rapsody. Her flow is the smooth organic opposite of Megan’s riotous energy and her soulful 9th Wonder sound suits Beyonce’s tastes and capabilities perfectly.
Second pick: Syd. Makes very seductive, muted yet catchy, soulful music about hooking up. A wonderful arranger of music and creator of grooves that Beyonce and Rapsody would flourish with but can talk that “come over tonight but don’t stay” talk that Megan can really vibe off of.
Third pick: City Girls. This adds another layer of toughness style and assertiveness. You can’t pass up a chance at having this Miami duo merge playa content with Megan. We all need that.
Fourth pick: Lizzo. This team needs to not have a muted mid-tempo identity (Rapsody and Syd kind of do). Lizzo is going to bring the party, she has a huge voice and an even bigger personality. That energy can push Beyonce to another place. I dig.
Fifth pick: Kehlani. The obvious strength is this gives you a dream team of vocal ability with Syd, Lizzo, Kehlani, Beyonce but even more than that…Kehlani finds a way to make everything personal. On Megan’s newest album Suga she sings the hook on Hit My Phone with heart and authenticity. On any song that is hers you believe where she is, you believe the song means too much to her to lie. That’s huge for this team.
Sixth pick: Noname. building on the heart and authenticity of the Kehlani pick we maximize on all fronts by adding this Chicago compatriot of Saba and Smino. She can go deep and heartfelt on songs like Casket Pretty so putting her with Rapsody will yield really interesting lyrics to parse but she is also funny and great when the beat opens up so mixing her in with Lizzo Syd or Kehlani won’t be an issue. Adds real depth and builds on the lyrical strength this team already has.
Seventh pick: Kamaiyah. West Coast through and through works well with Kehlani, really likes songs that bounce (Kamiayah and Megan both have songs that redo TLC classics to great effect). Kamaiyah has titanic shifts in mood. When she is frustrated she breaks out ten songs that put you right there and when she throws a party on a track it’s my morning alarm for months. Might be the one last addition that bridges all the other selections.
Team 2-Doja Cat and Nicki Minaj
When they get the second turn who is the best addition? My recommendation: Janelle Monae. Janelle, Nicki and Doja on songs together is an exciting prospect. None of them have ever entertained the notion of making a hum drum uninteresting track. They share a stylish many-hued identity. This would add even more adrenaline to the sound and a heck of a voice willing to weird with the best of them.
Second pick: Leikeli47. She makes exciting anthemic danceable music with dirty drums (she produces it) and raps like Kendrick circa Section 80.
Third pick: Kali Uchis. Another showstopping voice with a unique versatility in making different forms of pop . She can go from rocking Latin pop/R&B to funk to working with the Gorillaz and never miss a beat. All tool singer.
Fourth pick: Rico Nasty. The same way City Girls NEED to rap with Megan, Rico Nasty NEEDS to rap with Nicki Minaj. In a few short years Rico has elevated herself by pushing her music into an almost punk space of raw shout rap. It’s something she does better than most and something Nicki has always loved doing.
Fifth pick: Kodie Shane. Lil Yachty’s capability with melody but six or seven times the actual rapper and craftsman. Every song she makes moves with dynamic style. She can come off the bench and fill the box score.
Sixth pick: Dawn. Over these post-Diddy years she really has become a MASTER of dance music in all forms. An iconic talent at making songs that top shelf power pop and bounce intelligently. This is an important characteristic of the team that she shares with Shane, Leikeli47, Nicki, Doja so it all works. She has a better ear for this genre than Nicki and can set the right table for her talents.
Seventh pick: Jhene Aiko. An old soul in the model of Sade someone who makes calculated moves and never puts out bad material or takes a left turn into territory she isn’t good at. I think of her skill set very in line with Kehlani on team 1: superb voice, heartfelt personal lyrics that always take you somewhere and clear incremental growth. Every team needs someone like this who is so good at being themselves and so consistent that everyone else feels safer and more empowered because of it.
P.S. If you think these groups are too big you ain’t fun! I want it to be an embarrassment of riches. A gargantuan flex. If you think I left Rihanna off or forgot her your losing it. Rihanna ain’t joining any group ever and in your heart of hearts…you know that.