Indonesian rap star RAMENGVRL returns with another self-empowering single, “Ain’t No MF,” featuring H1GHR Music’s pH-1.
“Ain’t No MF” offers RAMENGVRL’s signature swagger, exploring gendered expectations in her conservative upbringing in Jakarta and as a female Asian hip hop artist. “Labels wanna sign me / I just say how much money / The way they tryna copy me and put it on somebody,” she raps assertively.
While hip hop—and the music industry in general—typically rewards success (and the hustle for it), an overt celebration is deemed acceptable if not expected for macho male rappers, but not so much for female rappers. In Asia, especially, women who achieve as much do not always merit the same appreciation; and if they do, are thought of as a byproduct or an extension of someone else’s (often a man’s) accomplishments.
RAMENGVRL’s new single celebrates individuality, even if they think the occasion doesn’t call for it. “It’s a feel-good track full of bravado and straight-up attitude that is about celebrating yourself. I know music can make you feel like a bad bitch even when you’re feeling down or had a bad day at work, and this song is it. Whoever you are and whatever you do, there ain’t no MF like you,” she says in a press statement.
In the same vein, pH-1’s assist compliments RAMENGVRL’s tongue-in-cheek style, referencing Kanye West and Taylor Swift (Imma do what kanye did to taylor like it’s my show) and making it known that he’s always on top of his game.
On working with RAMENGVRL, ph-1 says, “I enjoy collaborating with artists outside of Korea. It really broadens my perspective as an artist to see so many different talents around the world” and describes the track as “a bit of a playful yet aggressive energy, which I love.”
This is not the first time RAMENGVRL challenged conventional standards. Last month, she shared “I’m Ugly,” which flips the script on naysayers. She said then, “What I want people to understand is that, if people say you’re ugly or they’re commenting on your body, your face, or whatever, f*ck them. Coz look at us! We get comments like that any time of the week but we still get our bags, we serving looks, we laugh it off, we had fun. None of those standards matter.” Go get your bag, girl.
Watch “Ain’t No MF” below: