Maliibu Miitch has got everything going for her in the rising-rap-superstar department. The South Bronx native is everything, and many majorly agree. Miitch consistently gives the press something to talk (and rave) about. Also publicly showing love? Impressive AF answer: Her favorite rappers, Nicki Minaj and Foxy Brown. The legendary latter calls Miitch “Baby Fox,” and, as seen in the “Maliibu Miitch” Google search results (and basically just all over the Internet), she’s received a plethora of head-turning Foxy Brown comparisons. As for Minaj, well, she’s shouted Miitch out via social media several times, and even played the emerging emcee’s in-your-face bop, “Bum Bitch,” on a recent episode of Queen Radio.
Miitch has a penchant for showing rap queens love, with the proof going back to 2017, when she released Top 5, an EP that featured Miitch remixing and putting her sublime spin on five hits from Lil’ Kim, Lauryn Hill, Eve, Missy Elliott, and Brown. Women-empowerment has been a constant theme throughout Miitch’s life and career, from launching her very own women-only label years ago to her catalog of killer work thus far. Advice: Listen to the catchy-as-hell “Give Her Some Money” and watch its (must-watch) music video, which focuses on strippers, waitresses, and artists on their everyday hustle. Miitch knows a whole lot when it comes to grinding, and is no music biz newbie. She’s scored a few major label deals—her first with Ruff Ryders at the age of 19—but Miitch, who just turned 28, would often find herself clashing with the male label-heads whose vision of how to market her was, well, not at all her. In true authentic artist form, Miitch was not having any of that mess. Those aforementioned unfortunate experiences paired with her dizzying youth (being in gangs, drug-dealing, dropping out of high school, modeling), ultimately resulted in growth as an artist and making her who she is today. It’s all about that bass-y-toned flow—which is sometimes crazy, sexy, cool, sometimes downright explosive, and always confident. Paired with her punchy pen game and bewitching visuals, it’s no shocker that Miitch has many Stanning as of late. Oh, and her subtle-but-sexy ‘90s-y personal style is also very much on-point.
But don’t confuse all of the praise as clickbait hyperbole. Maliibu Miitch is the full package replete with lots of caution tape and a WARNING: NOTHING FRAGILE INSIDE sticker. “I bet they never wanna see Miitch again,” she assuredly spits at the end of “The Count,” her fucks-free, feminist reimagining of Biggie’s “Ten Crack Commandments.” It’s more than a great pre-gaming-friendly song—it’s a How To Demand Respect From Men and Never, Ever Be Fucked With Gutsy, Girl Power guide, and it highlights Miitch’s signature startle-then-slaughter spitting style. (Yes, I just made up that term, and I’m proud of it.)
Well, I was more than excited to see Miitch naturally working it for the camera at our shoot on the Lower East Side. Post-shoot, I sat down with the pint-sized, super-bubbly Miitch, whose high-pitched speaking tone is unlike the menacing baritone that she serves when rapping. Throughout our convo, she was full of loud laughs, giving off sweet and sunny vibes like, well, Malibu, California. But let’s not forget about Miitch, who you really don’t wanna cause any problems with. (Miitch, she told us, came from the movie Paid In Full, where the Mitch character, played by Mekhi Phifer, is a flashy drug dealer.) From the get-go of our chat, it was as clear as a (Maliibu) sky that this is no carefully-crafted persona. It’s just who she is: A lovable, filter-free, real-ass unfuckwithable queen. Which all makes sense, especially if you believe in Astrology—the “super Pisces” Miitch does. (Pisces are known for their creativity and their strong emotions, after all.) Miitch also talked about the importance of women sticking together, her love for New York City tap water, Forever 21 and Fenty Beauty, and how she’ll always be “the hood girl next door,” even as her star continues to blast off at a furiously rapid speed, akin to the lyrics she fearlessly fires away.
Happy belated birthday! Are you into Astrology? And if so, how Pisces are you?
I am! I’m all about it. I’m super Pisces. Pisces are super emotional. Like, when I’m happy, I’m super happy, but when I’m mad, I’m crazy mad. We’re a very creative sign. I’ve always been more hands-on and more creative my whole entire life. I was never about the school life. To learn something, I gotta figure it out. I gotta see it, I gotta hold it, I gotta find out for myself.
I always say, you can tell a person is a Pisces because they often seem stoned, even when they’re not…!
It’s so true. I’m always in La La Land. For no reason, I’ll just be standing there, almost like a little space cadet. I’m not gonna lie!
You’re currently featured in a big ass Forever 21 digital billboard in Times Square. I love and I am a proud Forever 21 fan… So cheap and so cute!
No, forreal—especially that clearance rack! The stuff is so cute and affordable. I’m cheap! That’s one thing about Pisces… It should say in our horoscope: A cheap ass bitch. I am always looking for a bargain.
You’re a true New Yorker. Born, raised, and still living in the Bronx. Where else do you shop in the city?
I be going to thrift shops. Us New Yorkers, we live for a thrift shop.
Now that you’re in the spotlight, do you ever feel like you have to “step it up” and be dripping in luxury labels?
Not at all. I don’t wanna ever be that artist that gets too bougie-looking. I still always wanna look like the hood girl next door. I’ll do it in photo shoots; I’ll be super glamorous and all of that. But I love my sweatpants and my t-shirts and my tank tops and my wife-beaters and my crop tops. I will die with a crop top on my body!
It seems like there’s a lot of pressure, especially in the pop star world, to outshine one another with the wild outfits and the mega-glam.
I’m so over it. I don’t believe in looking like I belong straight out of a spaceship. With all of the ‘90s girls, simple was always more and better—being simple and just cute with your lip gloss, you know? I miss those days when that was okay. Now it’s like, if your face ain’t beat to the Gods, if your face isn’t contoured to the Gods, you might as well not go outside. I miss the days when it was just super regular.
Whose style are you into these days?
I love me some Rihanna. How she mixes street styles with high fashion. That’s what I wanna do; I always wanna be like that. I wanna still look like the hood chick from next door, but when I do photoshoots and when I go to events, I wanna be super glamorous. How back in the day used to be. Still sexy, but classy… and still down. It still feels like you’d see Rihanna chilling at Popeyes, wearing a full beautiful ass dress. I always wanna give those vibes.
You’ve been all about women empowerment from the start. Your 2017 EP, Top 5, paid homage to and featured five remixed hits from female rap icons and it really got your name out there. Has this always been important to you?
I started my own label when I was 21 and it was an all-female label. I always been like that. Because I know what it feels like to be the only woman in an industry with nothing but guys in a studio session, and they’re trying to write for you, they’re trying to dress you, they’re trying to tell you how to be a woman. It’s just a mess. I always felt like that if there was more females in the industry, a lot of stuff I went through would not happen anymore. If there was more female engineers, more female DJs, more female writers in these sessions, then the guys would understand. Like, What? She writing that herself? Let me leave her alone, let me get out of here. I’ve always been about female empowerment. I am so happy with all of the female rappers that are coming out now. There’s so many good ones that are writing their own stuff. It gives us more ammo because these guys swear they can write stuff about females better than we can.
Your speaking voice is quite the juxtaposition from your signature, deep rapping tone. And in your older music, you rapped in a much higher tone. What made you make the change?
When I first started rapping with my higher-pitched speaking voice, the guys weren’t really feeling it. I wanted respect from guys because I grew up with a bunch of guys—I grew up with a ton of gangs when I was younger. So, I put my voice a little bit lower on my version of Lil’ Kim’s “Crush On You,” and then I totally went for the deep man voice on my remix of Foxy’s “Get Me Home.” The reaction I was getting from guys, they were actually fucking with it. And I got an even bigger reaction from the females. I was like oh, alright! I think people weren’t hearing what I was saying when my voice was higher-pitched. Now the tone I’m using, it’s deeper and relaxed. It’s giving you that ‘90s feel, you know? It’s not pretty. I think that for so long, that’s what was getting people so fucked up. They thought that female rappers had to come in with that cute baby voice. No! This tone? It’s grown and sexy.
You seem so bubbly! But then, when you rap, it’s like “Oh, wait a minute…”
That’s what my boyfriend was saying the other day! “Yo babe, you always throw somebody off. Every time you talk to someone, you’re all bubbly. But then, that shit switch left!” It’s so funny. I will beat somebody the fuck up! Do not play with me. At all.
Noted! LOL. Let’s switch it up for a second. Please spill it re: your skincare and makeup routine.
I drink New York tap water and I mind my business. That has a lot to do with it—I’m not stressing myself out with anyone else’s bullshit. And I just been using a lot of Fenty. My skin color is very weird—I’m mixed with Vietnamese and Filipino, so that’s a whole ‘nother thing, and then I’m black too. Every other day, I’m waking up a new color! Fenty has so many different colors. Rihanna’s been getting me right. So yeah, I drink my tap water, I mind my business, and I use Fenty.
Do you wish to run an empire one day too?
I’ma have my own makeup line, my own clothing line, my own… everything! I used to want to model before I rapped. One day, I wanna walk down the Victoria’s Secret runway with the big angel wings, and then, out of nowhere, I just wanna pull out a mic from my angel wings and bust out in a rap. I wanna perform while walking down the runway.
Nicki Minaj has been showing you love. How does that make you feel?
I’m so grateful and thankful that Nicki Minaj shouted me out. Nicki Minaj only shouts out the best. Like, you have to write your stuff, you have to rap that shit with no vocals behind it. She’s the epitome of a female rapper; she does it all. So when she comes off of her throne and says hi to you or says anything to you… It was crazy.
And OG rapper Foxy Brown calls you Baby Fox! That’s all pretty damn major.
I love it and embrace that shit. They only show love to the same liking to them. You have to write your own stuff, be a boss ass bitch, don’t wait on no man to do anything for you. Everything I strive to be, they were and they are. So I love it. Especially Foxy calling me Baby Fox.
Can we expect a future collab…?
I gotta be patient. These are OGs! I’m not gonna bother them when they’re talking to me, I’m not gonna be like “Hey, lemme get a feature!” Even though I wanna say “Hey, by the way…” every time!
If you were a part of a females-only song à la “Not Tonight (Ladies’ Night Remix)” but with today’s rising rappers, who would you want on it?
I would love to have Megan Thee Stallion. She’s so sexy and beautiful. She writes all of her stuff; she’s just a boss ass bitch. And I’d have Kash Doll. And Asian Doll—I love me some Asian doll. She’s so fiery and she will deck a bitch! I love Princess Nokia, too.
So, finally, I must ask: Where’s the damn full-length album!?
Soooon! I had to get rid of my whole management, which is so good because they were just bringing me down. But it’s coming soon. I have a new song dropping, and you’re gonna love it. A new video and everything. And I just shot a video for “Chyna White,” too. I’m more like an old school artist. I do everything myself. I’m just minding my own business, I got a better team which I’m so happy about, and now everything is happening. I’m super excited. So, look out!