EXCLUSIVE: Meet Hip-Hop’s Next Big Thing Nitty Scott, MC

EXCLUSIVE: Meet Hip-Hop’s Next Big Thing Nitty Scott, MC
Tommy T Photography

If you’re a hip-hop fan, you may already be familiar with the genre’s latest heavy hitter: Nitty Scott, MC.

This year alone the half-Puerto Rican, half-African American artist has been called the next big MC and a woman you should know. And when Nitty’s not creating new music, working on a video project for her mixtape The Art of Chill, or preparing for her NBA All-Star Weekend performance, where she’ll be opening for Drake, she’s emailing fans about mental health and bringing up issues of sexism, sexuality and sexual orientation during interviews with New York’s Hot 97.

This is a lot for any artist, but especially for a 24-year-old working without a manager or record label support. Somehow, the Michigan-born, Orlando-raised and Brooklyn resident is doing it (and killin’ it!), making her an inspirational Latina and all-around badass.

Take a read and find out for yourself:

SEE: The Best Latina Rappers of All Time!

When did you first start rapping?

I started rapping at 14. I was attending an art school in Central Florida as a creative writing major. At the time, I was more into poetry and short stories. I made the transition from poetry and spoken word to rap when I began putting background music for my poems. I started thinking about the rhythm, the beat, and I realized what I was doing was songwriting. Shortly after, I made my first homemade mixtape.

When did you know that you wanted to pursue a career in hip-hop?

Hip-hop was, at first, a creative outlet for me to express myself. After graduating high school, I was en route to becoming a journalist. I was studying journalism at John Jay College and interning at the New York Daily News. But I was just in love with rapping; it was my passion, what I loved to do for fun. Then people started telling me that what I was creating made them feel good, too. That’s when I thought maybe I can do this for others, have fans and perform for people. I always had a place in my heart for activism, and seeing how well people were receiving my mixtape, I thought this is how I will make a positive difference and affect people’s lives, much in the same way my favorite artists did that for me.

What are the social justice issues you care about and want to discuss in your music?

A lot of different things. Mental health is a big one, women’s rights, domestically and internationally, capitalist mentality, spirituality and self-discovery.

What do you hope your music can accomplish?

On an individual level, I want what most artists want: to find themselves through their art, express themselves uninhibitedly and be able to make a living off of that as well. Once the music takes me where it needs to, I want to break into more philanthropic, humanitarian efforts. Music is the medium and the vessel that will carry me to the level of influence I need to make the world better, as cliché as it sounds. In the scope of my culture, I want it to bring light to the experiences of Afro-Latina women growing up in this generation, really be one of the people who help fill a void and represent us honestly and with nuance.

Are people responding positively to this?

Yes. I received a message on Facebook as well as a letter from a girl who attended my show in Chicago. She expressed that she had lost her will to live and passion for life and no longer thought she wanted be here. When she heard “Still I Rise” and “Nobody Knows,” where I explore topics like suicide and I express the possibility of conquering that, that the answers are within us and that all is not doomed and dark, she told me she received that message right when she needed to and that it breathed life into her and motivated her to try to heal.

Knowing that my music inspired someone to seek out the help they need, whether through people they trust, therapy or medication, and helped them want to feel better and get better, that’s what makes the difficulties and vulnerabilities of what I do worth it. When I put my soul out there for those to judge and criticize, which they do, there are people who find comfort in it, and that outweighs those sacrifices and reminds me that I’m doing exactly what I need to be doing.

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