This year has proven to be one of resurrection for many an artist who maintained a high-priced condo in the land of “Throwback Thursday” and “Flashback Friday.”
Ja Rule and Ashanti have unveiled plans for new music, tour, and a film. I’m not sure who asked for any of that, but hey, “Always On Time” was a big deal a decade or so ago. Likewise, Will Smith and the legendary DJ Jazzy Jeff have announced plans for a tour next summer. My auntie and your uncle will be in thang, lit like bic. We can’t leave out Puff Daddy, who sometimes goes by Diddy but suburban moms only know as “J.Lo’s ex-boyfriend” and his looming new album. And of course, there is Janet Jackson, who thus far has enjoyed quite the celebrated return.
Yet, on June 28, 2015, the world received a fantastic and still very flexible look at what could be, only we haven’t heard much since then. To that end, one wonders: Can we get a Lil’ Kim comeback going? I want it and I want it now.
Lil’ Kim has not released a studio album in 10 years. She has released three mixtapes within this period – 2008’s Ms. G.O.A.T., 2011’s Black Friday and 2014’s Hardcore 2k14— but those don’t count (or at least should not). To me, those represent Kim’s decline which included distributing albums via PayPal, feuds with Remy Ma and Nicki Minaj, along with Kim’s noticeably altered physical appearance becoming a major distraction.
Nonetheless, when she performed alongside Puffy at the BET Awards, Lil’ Kim reminded me that above all, she is a great performer— arguably one of the best hip hop performances, male or female. Kim has been actively performing across the country for some time now, proving that not only does she still have it, she might be able to give us more with better material.
Note: I am saying with better material, which means quality producers that can give her the sort of production value her studio albums made us accustomed to hearing. So, we have to get producers like Pharrell on board (the “How Many Licks” remix is an under-appreciated gem) or some hungry youngins’ itching to reach wider audiences (like Kanye West at the time he worked on Kim’s sophomore album).
As far as her appearance goes, Kim looked lovely at the show and has been looking the best I’ve seen her in years. That’s as good as it’s going to get, so let your old photos go and accept where we are today. Now, that butt of hers has expanded into cartoonish measurements. But you know, if Kimberly Jones wants to make her butt cheeks as big as a Scion xB and live her life as Black Betty Boop, that’s her choice. Frankly, I don’t care anymore.
I just want Lil’ Kim to get another chance at creating new music and adding to her legacy.
There are many reasons for others to share my wish. One, Janet isn’t going to be talking about oral sex or the water pressure levels of her vagina anytime soon so aging freaks like me need a viable alternative. Lil’ Kim is still dedicated to sex talk, so by all means, Timbaland, email her a nice beat.
Two, she deserves this. If not for Lil’ Kim dropping gems like The Notorious K.I.M. album, there’s no way the likes of Eve or Nicki Minaj would have managed to successfully straddle the line of pop and rap. This can be the world’s atonement for that.
Three, I’m pretty sure a new Lil’ Kim album would net us another new track featuring Missy Elliott.
Four, it would presumably get Foxy Brown to make her way back to the studio, too, since she always had a thing for following Lil’ Kim’s lead.
Lastly, there remains a dearth of female rappers.
Next year, Hardcore will turn 20. She should tour in celebration of that feat and then release a new album. I see the potential here. If you don’t, just remember that there are people waiting for a Lauryn Hill comeback. We all have dreams, y’all.