Cardi B's long anticipated album Invasion of Privacy premiered Friday (April 6). Ahead of the release, the Bronx rapper sat down with Beats 1's Ebro Darden to discuss the album, rumors, and getting a stamp of approval from Ms. Lauryn Hill herself.
Here are 9 things we learned from the interview.
For Cardi, the success didn’t happen overnight
Despite the widespread success of "Bodak Yellow," Cardi says the overall success wasn’t so instant for her. "It didn’t happen so fast because a lot of people see the impact of 'Bodak Yellow,'" she said. It was actually a two-year grind of the star hitting up radio stations in different cities, promoting and booking her own tours, and investing in herself. Considering herself a realistic person, she admits that she thought it was never going to happen. She put a deadline on her goals and even thought about quitting. "Money is getting wasted," she said. The expectations of fame, however, we’re instantaneous. "The fame, responses and expectations did hit me fast. Nobody gave me a warning that it happens like this," she told Darden.
She really is all about "making money moves"
With the influx nature of fame, Cardi admits that she is constantly securing the bag. "With the way the Internet is set up, you might do one thing that people don’t agree with. You might do something that people don’t agree with or understand -- and boom, all of a sudden, your popularity is gone. Everybody is against you," she said. "I’m gonna get this bag because I don’t know if it’s going to be here tomorrow," she continued. Later in the interview, she tells Darden that she has no qualms about chasing money. "Sometimes that bag be calling and I want that bag," she said. "A magazine call me and I cannot help to take the opportunity."
She was excited to work with other Latin artists
Cardi was recently announced as a performer for the Billboard Latin Music Awards. In her Beats 1 interview, she admitted that she couldn’t believe that other top-charting Latin artists wanted to work with her. She recently collaborated with Ozuna on his single "La Modelo" and was honored. "Ozuna’s music used to make me cry. For him to want to collaborate with me, that means so much." Invasion of Privacy also features singers Bad Bunny and J Balvin on the track "I Like It" -- once again, she was taken aback. "These are guys at the top of their game. They were mad humble, thanking me. According to Cardi, the feeling was mutual. "No thank you," she said to them in response.
She cleared up a few rumors relating to her relationship, pregnancy speculation, and beef with other female artists.
Despite what’s on the rumor mill, "Be Careful" is not actually about her relationship with rapper Offset. "I was talking about things that I relate to," she said. "I heard the record before I was even in love with Offset," she continued.
She also addressed the rumored Nicki Minaj beef and was quick to shut it down. "It’s really Internet made up. Fans and people really want to see that happen because it’s really entertaining to see people beef." She went onto praise the "Super Bass" rapper. "I already said she’s an amazing artist. I already pay my respect to her. I did videos before jamming to her songs. What do people expect? Y’all want me to say something bad. I’m not falling for that," she told Darden. She even addressed the missed opportunity of them appearing in the "Motorsport" video at the same time, citing differing schedules. "Nicki just couldn’t shoot that day. People made a lot of theories," she said. "People try to put this pressure and expectation on me and try to compare me to other women. It’s like, I never asked for that shit. I came in this game trying to make money."
On the baby rumors, she simply said, "If it arrive or if it don’t arrive, then you gonna know what the f--k is going on."
She admits that she can’t give all her energy to what tabloids and the Internet say.
"I can’t address the rumors. I’ll go crazy addressing all the rumors. On top of that, I have been so open to people about myself. But people cannot expect me to open [up] about everything. Certain things have to be private," she said. Referencing her album title, she stakes a claim to her right to a private life. "You cannot invade my privacy, I’m not a damn animal at the zoo that you can just see everything."
She was super nervous performing at the Grammy’s
Cardi took the stage with Bruno Mars to perform their "Finesse" remix. She was apparently so focused that she didn’t see any of her famous colleagues cheering her on. Darden said that he saw "Hov, Beyonce, Diddy, and Nas" watching and standing up for the star. But Cardi used a common stage fright technique of picking a blank spot in the crowd. "I wasn’t trying to look at the crowd because I was so nervous... I’m going to focus. If I see them, I might pass out. I didn’t want to forget no moves." She also admits that she didn’t want to disappoint Bruno Mars. “He is a perfectionist and we did rehearsals every single day for a whole week,” she said.
She was relieved and honored when Lauryn Hill approved "Be Careful"
Cardi's single "Be Careful" interpolates lyrics from the Misseducation of Lauryn Hill hit "Ex-Factor." When asked about the moment that Ms. Lauryn Hill heard the song, she admits to being nervous. "If she didn’t approve it, it a no-go for it," she said. After Hill gave the go-ahead, excitement set in. "Not only was I relieved, I was like I cannot believe Lauryn Hill approved this record. For her to approve, it was the biggest stamp to it. Nobody could talk shit about this record to me because the sensei approved it."
The album and its collaborations are exactly what she wanted
"I am so grateful for everybody that decided to be on my album because as an artist, I know how busy artists are. For them to take the time and do it exactly right. Everything came out how I wanted it to come out. Perfect hooks, perfect verses. It was just like 'Jesus loves me, I must have done something right in my life,'" she said.
When Cardi released the tracklist for Invasion of Privacy, she revealed that there would be some surprises. One of those was a feature from Chance the Rapper. "I felt like he was so perfect for the song. It’s really positive, really energy, something really different for me. He was very easy to work with," she said. The rapper also consistently pursued the collab with SZA. Despite the CTRL singer’s busy schedule, she made a promise to Cardi that they would collaborate, which resulted in the closer on Invasion of Privacy, "I Do."
Now that the album is out, she’s relieved
"It’s a big weight off my shoulders. I feel confident and I’m also very nervous. It’s my first time doing it. It’s like ooh, it’s finally out," she told Darden.
Check out the full interview below.