Houston rapper Megan Thee Stallion’s sexually charged lyrics and nonstop confidence meet with a pop sheen that consistently delivers commercial hits. The rapper found local success shortly after she began performing in 2016, and the rest of the world caught on soon thereafter. Several one-off tracks led to 2017′s Make It Hot mixtape and 2018′s follow-up project Tina Snow. After she and Normani contributed the track “Diamonds” to the 2020 superhero film Birds of Prey, she landed a pair of number one hits, first a Beyoncé-featuring remix of her own track “Savage” and then her feature on Cardi B’s “WAP,” one of the biggest and most talked-about singles of 2020. Her first studio album, Good News, was released in November of 2020 and debuted at number two on the Billboard 200 charts. The next year, Megan released Something for Thee Hotties, a compilation of freestyles and unreleased material, and followed it with the guest star-packed, lyrically introspective Traumazine in 2022
Born Megan Pete in 1995 and raised in Houston, Texas, she grew up the daughter of rapper Holly-Wood (aka Holly Thomas) and was listening to Southern rap staples like Three 6 Mafia and Pimp C from a young age. She was writing her own raps by age 14 but didn’t make serious moves until she posted a series of video clips on social media a few years later. Her first official single came with 2016′s “Like a Stallion,” and her presence on the Houston rap circuit was solidified by decimating all opponents in local freestyle competitions.
Sexually explicit lyrics and effortless flows became signatures of her sound, and after the less-widely distributed 2016 mixtape Rich Ratchet, she released the singles “Pull Up Late” and “Stalli (Freestyle)” in 2017, the latter of which had an accompanying video that would be viewed millions of times. The seven-track EP Make It Hot arrived that same year and a slowed-down “chopped” remix version of the EP followed the next. Megan’s fame grew quickly, and as she gained more fans and followers, she signed with 300 Entertainment in 2018 and released her most consistently produced work to date with the ten-song Tina Snow. The late 2018 collection featured a cameo from Memphis rapper Moneybagg Yo and production from Concept P. The project caught on, and a video for single “Big Ole Freak” was streamed millions of times within months of its February 2019 release.
Fever, arrived in May 2019, complete with features from Juicy J and DaBaby. The album hit number ten on the Billboard 200, further cementing Megan’s rise. After she and Normani contributed the track “Diamonds” to the 2020 superhero film Birds of Prey, she landed a pair of hits with the attitude-driven “B.I.T.C.H.” and “Savage,” both of which appeared on the EP Suga. Later that year, Megan released the singles “Girls in the Hood” and “Don’t Stop,” the latter of which featured rapper Young Thug. The rapper’s most crucial appearance of the year, and up until that point, in her career, came with her contributions to “WAP,” a collaborative track with Cardi B released on August 7, 2020. “WAP” was a maelstrom of sexual imagery and intense vulgarity, and immediately became a worldwide hit. Deemed by many 2020′s “song of the summer,” “WAP” charted at number one in multiple countries, was certified platinum several times over, and was streamed hundreds of millions of times.
After a wealth of EPs, mixtapes, and charting singles, debut studio album Good News finally arrived in November of 2020. The album was a star-studded celebration of sex, wealth, and power, featuring cameos from SZA, City Girls, Popcaan, Lil Durk, and many others, as well as a remix of “Savage” featuring Beyonce. That remix would become Megan’s first number one hit, and the album itself peaked at the number two position on the charts. The following year she released several singles, including “Thot Shit,” which became a Top 20 hit, and in November of 2021, Something for Thee Hotties was released, a compilation made up primarily of freestyles and some unreleased songs from the archives. The collection also included “Thot Shit,” as well as several new skits and interludes featuring Juicy J, VickeeLo, and Dino BTW. Something for Thee Hotties was released as a gesture of gratitude for her fan base, and the album reached the number five position on the charts. More collaborative singles arrived in 2022, including “Lick” with Shenseea and “Sweetest Pie” with Dua Lipa. She also released the track “Plan B,” which hit number seven on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. Later that year, she released her third album Traumazine. Focused lyrically on trauma and her struggle to overcome it, she welcomed a slate of guest artists that ranged from Lucky Daye and Jhené Aiko to Key Glock and fellow Houstonians Big Pokey and Lil' Keke. ~ Fred Thomas