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RISING STAR: CARDI B

RISING STAR: CARDI B

A hit single? CHECK! A high profile romance? CHECK! Budding acting career? CHECK! Style Icon? CHECK! Consistency? YES PLEASE!
Image: Maury Phillips/Getty Images for BET)
From the moment she was introduced to us on Love and HipHop: NY, there was no denying the probabilities of her being the breakout star from the ENTIRE franchise. But, who would’ve guessed the 24 year-old would serve as a “how to” blueprint to a hub of retired muscians who throw tables and chairs aching for a comeback in the industry? I am pretty certain Mona Scott, the show’s creator, did not anticipate this stripper-turned-insta jokester-turned-urban rap queen’s cosmic rise to prominence!
Image: Billboard

Belcalis Almanza,  known to us and her legion of fans as Cardi B, is America’s biggest female hip hop artist out right now with the #1 urban record in states, according to Billboard. With 2 mixtapes under her belt, it was her breakout single, Bodak Yellow which catapulted her to superstardom by becoming the first record by a solo female artist to reach the top 5 on the Billboard Hot100 chart in 2017.

Bodak Yellow Single Artwork
There’s a pretty simple formula behind the star’s ubiquity – brand consistency! She is fully conscious of WHAT her brand is and WHO her audience is. “Cardi engineered Instagram fame into reality tv fame into a popping music career” – FADER Magazine.  From her early days as a digital jokester on Instagram to her current status in pop culture – one element of her tetris block remained consistent – her personality has been her selling proposition from day 1.
Image: Complex
She told Beats1 radio DJ  Ebro Darden, “When Instagram started doing videos, I did not think I was doing anything spectacular, I was just being myself and a lot of people started following me for that.” It is that same ethos we see permeating throughout her entire brand scope – this girl is consistently consistent. She makes her audience feel like she’s their everyday “home girl” which makes it easy to root for her. She does not use her struggle/come up story for convenience but carries, owns it throughout. Cardi is relatable, fun and does not take herself too serious. She is young,  she is quirky, funny and unapologetically HERSELF.
Cardi at the Laquan Smith Presentation at NY Fashion Week
A proposition and innate strategy which not only steers you to enjoy her music, but also be fond of her personality (something which we collectively saw augment Rihanna’s brand into the global juggernaut it is today) and brands/industry spectators are taking full notice of this freshman. Her eminence in social media, reality tv and music has earned the L&HH alumni a cover on the highly esteemed FADER magazine, a feature on Billboard magazine, VIBE, Fashion Bomb Daily and PAPER magazine to name a few. Cardi has most recently signed a rumored 7-figure record deal with Atlantic Records, joining the record stable’s array of superstars such as Bruno Mars, Ed Shereen and Wiz Khalifa. The lucrative deal will see the Bodak Yellow maestro release her debut album early 2018.
Image: FashionBombDaily
In addition to dominating worldwide charts, her colossal rise to fame has seen Cardi B showcase her acting chops, starring alongside Gabriel Union on BET’s highly rated show, Being Mary Jane, which received good reviews from critics and fans of the show. Not only has she managed to garner supporters sonically, she is also winning the hearts of high fashion enthusiasts – working with renowned 22- year old stylist to the stars Mikiel Benyamin, who decribed the superstar’s style as “Bad, Bougie and Gangster”. Their collaboration has seen the style maverick dominate sidewalks and red carpets donned in notable fashion brands, translating to permanent features in fashion publications traditionally and on digital spheres.
Image: FashionBombDaily
With her rumored engagement to rapper and Migos member Offset, a much talked about performance at the 2017 VMAs and a budding acting career, one can only anticipate interesting brand alignments from the Bronx native. We eagerly await Cardi’s next money Move!
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