In 2000, a 21-year-old rapper from Miami made a bold proclamation: she was the baddest bitch. Period. On her debut album, “Da Baddest Bitch,” Trina made it clear that she wasn’t going to put up with shit from anybody, especially not from a man. Her songs are filled with empowering swagger, boasts about her sexual prowess, and reminders that most men are only good for getting you money and getting you off.
16 years later, and not much has changed. Trina is still the baddest bitch around, and there isn’t a fuckboy alive she can’t take down.
Calling yourself a bad bitch is so popular now, but you were calling yourself “da baddest bitch” over a decade ago – do you see yourself as a trailblazer or someone who was just following in the overt girl power of the time?
I think I was just ahead of my time. When I came out with that, the whole baddest bitch thing, that whole attitude was just about being fierce, being determined, and going after what I wanted. I didn’t really care about anything else. I was fearless. I didn’t take no crap from no guys. So it was just that effortless feeling.
Now, I mean, it’s funny to me when I hear everybody saying it it’s like, wow, that is way over a decade ago, and now everybody wants to be a bad bitch.
Trina’s Been The Baddest B*tch Since Before You Knew the Term
How do you think the music industry has changed for women who own their sexuality since you first came up?
I think it has drastically changed. I would say that in hip hop, R&B, pop, the whole music genre, when it comes to females, they are a lot more expressive, a lot more sensual, a lot more open now. You know, you see all the women that are out. Everybody’s daring. They’re not afraid to be sensual, to be themselves, and be real sexy.
I think it’s a great thing that women are empowering themselves and becoming more dominant when it comes to how they carry themselves.
Women can have a really bad habit of competing with each other, like there’s only space for one of them to actually “make it”. How important do you think it is for women to support each other, especially female rappers?
I definitely think it’s important to support one another, but there’s not a lot of support though.
I just think that when it comes to women and it comes to competing, it’s kind of like a cliche thing. I don’t know if people think you know, there’s only one queen who runs the universe so there can only be one artist who’s on top of the throne, but you kind of have that attitude. You know, that’s the wave that everybody rides.
But you can still be that one person who reaches out. Who supports. I feel like the whole game is about just trying to be the best, but not necessarily where you’re competing with each other, but competing with yourself. It’s trying to be the better than you were on this album than the last album or just trying to bring out the best person inside yourself regardless.
What’s your favorite line you’ve ever written?
My favorite line I’ve ever written? Wow, that’s hard. [laughs] There’s so many.
It’d probably be on the new record that I have. It’s a record dedicated to my Mom called “Dear Mama.”
It was one of those things where I was going through this whole thing with my Mom. She wasn’t feeling real good so I was in a very downward spiral. I got into the studio and I was basically saying, I’m out here out here living my life and you’re still trying to hold on. This feeling I feel from her has drove me to start drinking and drinking got me going crazy. I just can’t see myself in a clear view without her being okay.
So it’s like one of those things I was pouring out emotion, but it’s not just a line on a record, it’s real life. Like I’m in the studio, but the whole time I’m in the studio and I’m writing this record all i’m thinking about is my mom not being okay, she’s in the hospital. And i just went through this whole bad pivotal moment and it came out on the record.
Are you as bad of a bitch as you come off in your songs?
Oh, badder! [laughs]
It’s kind of like half and half, you know though? Because I have this very tough exterior, this very strong part, and then there’s this real soft, mellow kind of like funny, relaxed side of me, so it’s like a mixture of the two. I think when I’m not working and I’m just being my regular self around my friends and family, it’s the softer side cuz I’m just being myself. I’m natural. It’s not about the music or the industry. I think that when I turn on, I’m in the studio and I’m working or performing, the real bad bitch comes out.
We all use the word fuckboy constantly, and yet everybody seems to have a hard time articulating what it actually means. You have a song called fuck boy – how would you explain it?
I would just say, it’s just a dude who’s a douchebag. Like you just corny, you just can’t get it right. You can have a good situation and you still wanna act crazy, do dumb stuff. You cheat and you lie, you doin’ malicious things and it just makes no sense. And you don’t really get it right until the person that you’re with steps, and that’s when it probably comes to mind like, “whoa, I done messed up.” But at that point, it’s late. You’re a fuckboy. You didn’t do what you needed to do when it was there. So that’s my explanation for what it means. No explanation, no second chances, you gotta go. It just didn’t work.
How do you want to be remembered – like what do you want your tombstone to say?
Sincerely yours, baddest bitch. [laughs]
Interview by Maria Pasquini
Photography by Robin Thompson
Hair by Laura Kemp
Makeup by Michele Parker
Styling by Shaq Palmer