From Vine to dominating the entire rap scene, Cardi B’s 2018 debut studio album, “Invasion of Privacy” is now Spotify’s most streamed female rap album in history, with over 2.8 billion streams.
Cardi B, whose real name is Belcalis Marlenis Almánzar, made her Atlantic Records debut in the summer of 2017 with “Bodak Yellow,” a spin-off of Kodak Black’s “No Flocking.” And from that moment on, there was no doubt that she was rap music’s next big thing.
The track, which later became her lead single off her debut studio album, Invasion of Privacy, dominated Billboard’s Hot 100 chart for three consecutive weeks, making her the fifth woman rapper to ever do so. Now, no more than three years later, Cardi B has become one of the most influential artists of the decade.
Virality and influence have always been strong suits of Cardi B. Before launching her music career, and even before she was on VH1’s reality show Love & Hip-Hop: New York, Cardi B amassed an audience through social media platforms like Vine and Instagram.
Her candid, unfiltered Bronx-infused personality gave her a likeability and sense of relatability, which attributed to her quick rise to the top.
When she began rapping, it was clear her bold and matter-of-fact tone translated well into the music. Her combination of having a strong understanding of what work’s on social media, along with the audience she had already built, and her natural aggressive rap flow, together was a cocktail made for success.
In only the year and a half since it’s release, Invasion of Privacy has broke records that had traditionally taken artists with much larger discographies, industry support, and audiences, years to break. The 13-track album, which blends influences of rap, trap, and Latin music, had all tracks featured become certified gold or higher by the RIAA.
Not only does that make Cardi B the first-ever woman to do so, but also makes Invasion of Privacy only the third album to do that in the digital era. The 27-year-old rapper ever won a Grammy for Best Rap Album.
Cardi B’s influence goes beyond music. It’s seemingly everything she does becomes a news story or a trending topic on social media. Looking at her Social Blade analytics, Cardi B has gained 2 million followers on Instagram in just the last 30 days.
On average, her growth each month sits at just under 1 million. From rigorous touring schedules, residencies at the top night clubs like KAOS in Las Vegas, endorsements from brands like Pepsi and Fashion Nova, to movie features like Hustlers, Cardi B is one of the biggest insights into pop culture exploitation and virality.
According to an Instagram live stream in October, Cardi B is putting out her sophomore album, titled Tiger Woods, in 2020.