CL may be the “baddest female Seoul city ever had” but if you aren’t a fan of K-Pop (Korean Pop) you probably have no idea who Lee Chae-rin aka CL is and why she should be on your radar if you’re looking for a little variety when it comes to female rappers that are at the top of the charts. CL began her music career as part of the K-Pop girl group 2NE1, an innovative hip hop leaning quartet that has gained a huge fanbase worldwide due to their amazing performances in sold out arenas, aesthetically pleasing music videos (with solid choreography to match) and incredible catchy music.
Each member has found success in different avenues of the entertainment biz but from watching their first video “Fire”, I knew that it was only a matter time before CL brought her superstar presence to the states. With Nicki Minaj currently residing as the Queen of Rap, a ton of female rappers gaining heat, and a world open to seeing a rapper of any color make it big (as long as they have the talent to back it up) we’re in the perfect time for an artist like CL to legitimately make waves in the music industry.
CL is easily a triple threat, an artist that can rap, sing, dance and put on a great show (think of the stage presence of Beyonce with the energy of Kanye West). Watching solo performances for tracks like “The Baddest Female” “MTBD’ and most recently her American debut with Diplo at Fashion event awhile back, it blows my mind that CL’s name hasn’t been buzzing in the music world sooner but with a debut album on the way by the end of 2015, I expect America to catch on sooner than later.
With the help of Scooter Braun, the man behind the success of Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande and hopefully Tori Kelly plus production and collaborations with EDM juggernaut Diplo, CL has all the right ingredients for a successful debut in America. Last week Diplo released a preview of what he’s been working on with CL in the form of the moody, trap-heavy cut titled “Doctor Pepper”. CL spoke to The Fader about what inspired “Doctor Pepper” and while this track isn’t groundbreaking it speaks to CL’s ability to make current trends her own and her sense of humor (She wrote the song after Diplo canceled a session on her so she could get home).
Featuring Riff Raff and OG Maco, “Doctor Pepper” sounds like these artists were vibing in a studio having fun, created a dope chorus and decided to make a song to go around it. CL takes the lead verse and a hook that oozes CL’s signature swag that can be found in her 2ne1 catalogue. Since I’m not fluent in Korean, I’ve become used to focusing on the music and the tone of CL’s voice whenever I hear her music so it was nice to hear her rap and sing completely in English. Riff Raff and OG Maco add to the trap element of the track and made me want to keep listening to “Doctor Pepper” after CL’s part was over.
I really hope that people can look past whatever stigma they have on what a rapper should look or sound like to be taken seriously. CL has proven her worth as an artist over the past six years and wanting to expand her audience should be applauded (maybe not applauded but I really want to see CL win guys). Let’s hope the debut rollout for CL is massive and she has what it takes to continue her success to the states.
What do you think of “Doctor Pepper” Let me know in the comments!
Buy Diplo’s “Doctor Pepper (Featuring CL, Riff Raff and OG Maco) on iTunes: HERE