If you haven’t heard of Azealia Banks you will be hearing a lot about her soon. The 20-year-old hip-hop artist is a rising star that The New York Times profiled this week, in which she comes out as bisexual.
Azealia tells The Times:
I’m not trying to be, like, the bisexual, lesbian rapper. I don’t live on other people’s terms.
But by coming out, Azealia is furthering the notion that hip-hop artists can be both queer and critically accepted in the genre. With Nicki Minaj recanting on her bisexuality and Kreayshawn saying she was “an occasional lesbian” with later conflicting comments, females in hip-hop have seemed to use the girl-on-girl angle only when it is sellable and disposing of it when it’s more convenient to be seen as straight or asexual. (Both Nicki and Kreayshawn have commented they don’t have sex with anyone unless they are in serious relationships, and they both say that hasn’t happened for a long time.)
Like those artists, Azealia’s talent is separate from her sexuality, but it’s encouraging that she is open about her sexuality, especially as she is poised to be a chart-topper in the near future. Her single “212″ topped several best-of lists in 2011 and she just signed a deal with Universal Records, who will release her debut album this spring.
Keep your eye on Azealia Banks. Hopefully she won’t re-neg on her sexuality if it becomes more convenient to appeal to the masses.