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Funkdafied

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Album Review

The first album by a female rapper ever to sell one million copies, Funkdafied is a promising debut effort that finds da Brat still solidifying her style. She's a very good rapper without a strong identity of her own yet, and despite her own obvious intensity, she seems infatuated with the offhanded drawl of Snoop Doggy Dogg on much of the album. She's not just influenced by him, but cops recognizable inflections, phrasing, and vocal riffs, and producer Jermaine Dupri sometimes supports her with Dr. Dre-style G-funk tracks, most obviously on the single "Fa All Y'All." But even at its most derivative, Funkdafied has spirit. Repeatedly announcing, "I ain't no muthaf*ckin' joke," da Brat paints herself as a cussin', weed-smokin' badass bitch who can hang with the boys and beat them at their own game. Cuts like "Da S**t Ya Can't Fuc Wit," "Fire It Up," and "Give It 2 You" effectively establish her tough-talking persona, and the smash title cut is a breezy, laid-back party jam. On quite a few tracks, da Brat augments her Snoop fixation by referencing lines from '80s classics, almost as though she feels compelled to prove she knows her history; she can also rely a little too heavily on her catch phrase, "Brat-tat-tat-tat." But even if she isn't quite there yet, da Brat knows who she wants to be, and she has the talent and production to make the journey entertaining.

Biography

Born: 14 April 1974 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Da Brat was one of the first of a new breed of hard-edged female MCs to hit the hip-hop scene during the '90s. Although sexuality was certainly part of her image, it wasn't as important to her as it was to Lil' Kim or Foxy Brown; instead, Da Brat made her name as a tough, profane rhymer whose hardcore attitude and lyrical skills were never in doubt. Da Brat was born Shawntae Harris in Chicago in 1974, and started rapping at age 11. Still a teenager, she was discovered by producer Jermaine Dupri in...
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Funkdafied, Da Brat
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