The industry wasn't as friendly as she expected.
Long before she living in luxury in London as a superstar wife and step-mother, Eve was a west Philly girl with hip hop dreams. The First Lady of the Ruff Ryders knows what it was like in the late 1990s and early 2000s as a rising woman in rap attempting to etch out her space alongside men who doubted her talents. Because she knew how difficult it was for young female artists to make headway in a lane that was paved particularly for male emcees, Eve naively thought that the ladies of hip hop would band together and form a camaraderie. According to the "Tambourine" rapper, she was wrong.
"There definitely weren’t a lot of females out there, and the labels were basically trying to make you get naked,” she told The Guardian. Yet, she was impressed with Ruff Ryders who weren't interested in making her a sex symbol. She said they told her, "We like who you are, we’re not going to try and change you.’”
"Before I’d met anybody, I always thought of [female rappers in the industry] as this sisterhood," Eve added. "I thought we were all gonna be friends. It was not like that. I’d see [Lil] Kim and say hi, and she’d be like: 'Get the fuck away from me.' Not verbally – you could just tell what she was thinking. But I was in a bubble and it never felt like a competition. I loved Missy [Elliott] and Kim but I never wanted to be them.”
After six years of silence, Eve recently returned to the rap game with a hot new single, "Reload," featuring dancehall artist Konshens. You can check that out here and let us know what you think.