When Rae Sremmurd unleashed their viral hit “Black Beatles” featuring Gucci Mane, it became the soundtrack to the viral dance, the Mannequin Challenge, and even landed a freestyle from Nicki Minaj, who flipped the script for her own remix titled “Black Barbies.”
Throughout hip-hop and R&B’s past, women have breathed new life into a male artist’s hit and vice versa, like Chris Brown’s “Deuces (Remix)” feat. Andre 3000, Drake, T.I and Kanye West.
Billboard revisited some throwback cuts that got the same treatment below.
Childish Gambino, “Rolling in the Deep”
While Adele wails on the original about her failed romance, Gambino takes on a different narrative and taunts his ex-lover about her new “Michael Cera knockoff” and keeping up with his ex’s tweets. Gambino has also covered the R&B gem from Tamia titled “So Into You.”
JoJo, “Marvin’s Room”
Despite taking a hiatus due to legal woes with her former label, JoJo continued to churn out new music and prove her lyrical growth from giddy pop-star to mature young woman. Drake’s vulnerable drunk dial-ready track “Marvin’s Room” took on many adaptions from the male perspective of Chris Brown to the female responses Teyana Taylor and JoJo released.
Drake even praised JoJo’s remix in an interview with Paper, saying, “In JoJo’s case, she actually took the time to write really potent new lyrics. It was really shocking, I think, for her audience since throughout her career she’s been kind of stereotyped as this teen pop star and then she comes out with this different kind of substance. It’s very rare that people take your song and do it over like that.”
Kanye West, “Drunk in Love (Remix)”
Beyonce went from “Crazy in Love” with her husband Jay Z to “Drunk in Love” off her self-titled effort. Queen Bey also enlisted Yeezy for the official remix, where the rapper gets raunchy and spits about his bedroom affairs, leaving nothing to the imagination.
Sevyn Streeter, “Say It”
Sevyn Streeter praised Tory Lanez for his now platinum hit and tweeted that she “might have to flip it and give the female response.” Keeping true to her word, Streeter laced her soothing vocals onto the sensual ballad and assured her lover that she “give no f–ks” about his money because she has her own.
Nicki Minaj, “Down in the DM (Remix)”
The Queens-bred MC is never one to shy away from spitting fire on any track and after Yo Gotti detailed his flirty social media endeavors (as well as his crush on socialite Angela Simmons) on the original, Minaj hopped on the remix and recalled her own inbox antics. Packed with salacious rhymes and a reference to her blip of a feud with Miley Cyrus (“Miley, what’s good?” she tapped), the remix soared to No. 13 on the Hot 100, Yo Gotti’s highest spot to date.
Beyonce, “Love in This Club” Part II
Usher’s 2008 slow jam became an instant club banger but when Beyonce took the Polow da Don-produced beat for a twirl on the remix. Dig deeper through YouTube and any Hive member will find that Bey also flipped 50 Cent’s own 2003 club smash “In Da Club.”
Keyshia Cole, “Never” Feat. Eve
The R&B songstress issued her own response to Luther Vandross’ 1981 feel-good jam “Never Too Much.”