There’s no other way to put this: This is a big deal.
Global hip hop superstar Lil’ Kim announced today that she’s entered into a partnership with superbad inc., a California-based cannabis brand that bills itself at the highest levels of quality and integrity in the industry. The Grammy winner says she’s diving into the cannabis marketplace with the singular goal of advocating for and empowering women in the overwhelmingly rich, white, male-dominated business.
“Cannabis is something that I’ve been interested in for about two years now,” the rapper said Friday at MJBizCon in Las Vegas. “I’m just blessed to be able to enter this space with Carlos [Dew, founder] and superbad inc.—I mean, it’s just a perfect fit because the goal here is to empower every woman to be a bad bitch.”
Lil’ Kim, whose birth name is Kimberly Denise Jones, has had a long career filled with myriad successes (selling 15 million albums and 30 million singles worldwide for starters), but also some headline-grabbing lows (she spent a year in prison for perjury in 2005 and her experience was documented in the BET docu-series “Lil’ Kim: Countdown to Lockdown”).
But the Brooklyn native’s influence is undeniable as she’s consistently ranked near the top of any number of influential “best of” hip hop lists including VH1’s “100 Greatest Women In Music” all-time coming in at No.45, making her the second highest ranking solo female rapper.
Not only widely regarded as a legitimate fashion icon, Lil’ Kim has been a pioneer for decades in her relentless advocacy for women to feel comfortable with their femininity and sexuality, long before female empowerment became the norm in the music industry (Formation, anyone?). Her partnership with superbad inc. is entirely consistent with her life’s passion of inclusivity and impacting change for women and girls.
“Everyone would look at making a lot of money as being successful,” Lil’ Kim said. “But, for me, that doesn’t necessarily determine success. Someone can rob a bank and have a lot of money, right? My thing is the steps you take to become successful. Look, if by next year everyone is screaming my brand, and we’re the hottest commodity on the street—and we’re also making money, obviously—even if we don’t get to our goal, but we’re on our way, well, that’s success for me.”
Her cannabis partner couldn’t agree more. “Lil’ Kim is an icon,” said Carlos Dew, superbad inc. CEO. “She’s one of the first women of rap to be hardcore. I’m excited she has joined superbad inc. This partnership signifies the union of two great minds coming together to join forces to empower women. Our goal is to integrate cannabis, advocacy, music and fashion. Stay tuned, Lil’ Kim’s cannabis products are coming soon. The best is yet to come.”
The six-time Grammy-nominated artist known for her chart-topping collabs with the likes of Missy Elliott, Christina Aguilera, Pink and Mya (“Lady Marmalade”), The Notorious B.I.G. (“Crush on You”), 50 Cent (“Magic Stick”), Mary J. Blige (“I Can Love You”) and many more is also excited about her collab in an upcoming Christmas film, “Miracle Across 125th Street,” she’s co-starring in with Nick Cannon, whom the rapper says is not only her best friend but also her current manager. “Nick’s taking me to the next level in my career,” she said.
Though superbad inc. nor Lil’ Kim would commit to a date for the launch of a branded cannabis line, the superstar is more than a little hopeful about her future. “In five years, I’m going to be super blessed to be able to keep getting younger and younger,” the recording artist joked, laughing. “Oh, and I’m going to be a billionaire times one hundred.”
Is the cannabis industry ready for Lil’ Kim’s patented brand of brash hyperbole? It’s going to be fun finding out.