Megan Thee Stallion proves that she’s unstoppable with ‘Shuga’.

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1501 Certified Entertainment, 300 Entertainment

The cover of Megan Thee Stallion’s third extended play, ‘Shuga’.

Mason Montano, Music Editor

American rapper and singer-songwriter Megan Thee Stallion was born to be a rapper.

Her late mother, Holly “Holly-Wood” Thomas, was also a rapper and encouraged her daughter’s desire to follow in her footsteps, eventually becoming her manager in addition to her mentor, and Megan, who began writing her own raps when she was 16, would watch her dreams start to become a reality in 2013 after a video of her demolishing a male opponent in a cypher went viral on social media.

She soon became known for her freestyling abilities and quickly garnered a large following online, posting freestyles on Instagram before taking her career a step further when she independently released her debut mixtape, Rich Ratchet, in July 2016.

In September 2017, she dropped her debut EP, Make It Hot, and later signed to 1501 Certified Entertainment in early 2018, who released her second EP, Tina Snow, in July of that year, which spawned the viral hit single “Big Ole Freak”. The song became her first entry on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #65, and caught the attention of the general public as well as 300 Entertainment, who signed her in November 2018.

Tina Snow helped Megan build her reputation on the hip-hop scene as a fierce rap vixen who doesn’t shy away from sexually-charged lyrics, and this was demonstrated by her second mixtape, Fever, in May 2019. 

The record spawned the hit single “Cash S**t” with American rapper and songwriter DaBaby, which peaked at #36 on the Hot 100, and even further established Megan’s place on the mainstream music scene before she solidified it with the smash hit single “Hot Girl Summer” with American rapper and singer Ty Dolla $ign and the Queen of Rap, herself, Trinidadian rapper and singer-songwriter Nicki Minaj — a bop that remains her highest-charting song to date, peaking at #11 on the Hot 100.

Upon officially securing her status as a prominent new rap star, Megan Thee Stallion announced in October 2019 that her debut studio album would be released in 2020, and after dropping the lead single, “B.*.*.*.H.”, in late January, she revealed that the album, titled Suga, would arrive in early May, however, problems soon arose.

In early March, Megan and her management team requested a temporary restraining order against 1501 Certified Entertainment, claiming that they had signed an unfair deal with her and refused to renegotiate her contract. She alleged that the label took a “vast majority” of her earnings; specifically 60% of her recording income, 30% of her touring revenue, and 30% of her merch sales; and in retaliation, 1501 refused to let her release new music.

This ultimately led to Megan and her team filing a lawsuit, during which the judge approved the restraining order, thus allowing her to go over the head of her label and release Suga in early March.

While originally planned to be her debut album, Megan confirmed on Ebro in the Morning that Suga was actually an EP of songs that she liked from the recording sessions and that the album, itself, was still under production.

As an EP, Suga is an evolution of Megan’s signature sound with the same raunchy lyrics and audacious flow that she’s known for, and the record’s main themes include female empowerment, self-empowerment, and staying on your grind in addition to sex and love.

The lead single, “B.*.*.*.H.”, is a feminist flip on legendary rapper and actor 2Pac’s “Rather Be Ya N***a” and a commentary on toxic masculinity that sees Megan calling out an unfaithful partner for perpetuating double standards in their relationship, and the third single, “Savage”, is an unapologetic self-love anthem and a standout track that’s since gone viral on popular social media platform TikTok.

Other songs like the second single, “Captain Hook”, and the closing track, “What I Need”, showcase the rapper’s two sides, as the former is a sexually explicit bop about sexual freedom that also sees Megan clapping back at her haters, and the latter is a chill, laid-back R&B-esque jam about a strained relationship in which she expresses her love for her partner.

The most significant song, in my opinion, is the opening track, “Ain’t Equal” — a triumphant banger about working hard and overcoming adversity with vulnerable lyrics that reference the deaths of her mother and grandmother in March 2019; her negative critics and haters; the misogynoir that she’s been subjected to as a confident, sexually liberated Black woman in the music industry; and how in spite of everything, she still manages to beat the odds and secure her bag.

On top of being a full-time college student, Megan Thee Stallion is the next big thing in hip-hop, and with her debut album right around the corner, she’s proven herself as an unstoppable force on the mainstream music scene.

Suga is available now across all online and streaming platforms.

Stream Suga on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/6Lo6ylJg4qbFfxicPEOzMI?si=l24kPhOoTGSVO0BPxzeJuQ 

Watch the music video for “B.*.*.*.H.”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BF8TE5qsOCs

Megan in the music video for “B.*.*.*.H.”.