Everything seemed so different and promising for Kreayshawn a year ago. The Oakland, Calif. native had an incredible amount of buzz and press once the world saw the visuals for her undeniably catchy single, "Gucci Gucci." It even led to a reported seven-figure deal for the Minnie Mouse ears-wearing rapper, who appeared primed to capitalize on all of the attention.
But as the months passed and 2012 rolled around, the world heard very little from Kreay outside of some short-lived feuds with other artists, failed directorial duties, and one of her foul-mouthed friends. It would take almost a year for Kreay to release her second single and, finally, she dropped her full-length debut, Something 'Bout Kreay.
As you might have heard, the album sold extremely poorly in its first week, moving a mere 3,900 units. Upon learning this, we looked into all of the factors that could have caused this for some insight as to why Kreay's career received such a huge blow.
"Disses" Nicki Minaj, Backpedals Days Later
Date: May 31, 2011
What Happened: In our Who Is Kreayshawn? feature, which arrived shortly after "Gucci Gucci" went viral, the pint-sized Oakland rapper got to taking shots at fellow female MC Nicki Minaj. Kreay made it clear that she didn't mean any disrespect, but she went on to say Minaj's "message is to be a Barbie—to be plastic, to be fake, to all have blonde hair."
As you can imagine, the Barbs came out in full force with plenty of vitriol. And a little more than a week later, Kreay clarified her comments in an interview with Billboard:
"I'm not hating on anybody. I'm not coming for anybody's neck. I say one thing about Nicki Minaj that's not a diss at all and you have Nicki Minaj fans barking at me," Kreayshawn says. "I love Nicki's thing, she's independent and a powerful woman."
N-Word Debacle With V-Nasty
Date: July 22, 2011
What Happened: Kreayshawn's close friend/rapper V-Nasty shot her pal in the foot when she was seen using the N-word. Again, she's white and her justification of using the term, which can be seen here, didn't exactly win her any new fans. While it's obvious that Ms. Nasty and Kreay are two different people—and the latter insists she doesn't use the N-word—it led to some confusion for casual listeners who believed it was in fact Kreay dropping the bomb.
Kreay cleared it up in our cover story months later, though, when she stated the following: “I’ve never said it one time in my motherfucking life.”
Disses Rick Ross In A Freestyle, Starts Short-Lived Beef
Date: August 8, 2011
What Happened: In a freestyle on Cosmic Kev'sCome Up Show, Kreayshawn spit over Nicki Minaj's "Did It On Em" beat and quickly started yet another controversy with the following rhymes: "You tryin’ to play me like a boss?/You faker than Rick Ross." She said it was taken out of context, but she then revived the "beef" during a Ustream session with V-Nasty during which she stated, "Can Rick Ross even find his dick?"
This led to a confrontation between Rozay and Kreay's camps at the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards, after which the boss made the quite the threat to the Bay Area native. He said he couldn't wait to "slap the shit out of whoever carries her bags" and called her a "little bitch."
In our cover story, she claimed the following: “I didn’t know that we were still on Ustream. It was just me goofing off with friends. I don't have any problems [with Rick Ross], but I can see how it looks that way.”
Red Hot Chili Peppers Scrap Her Video for "The Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie"
Date: August 18, 2011
What Happened: Kreayshawn was set to direct her biggest music video to date when the Red Hot Chili Peppers enlisted her for "The Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie." But when the visuals actually came to light, Kreay's version didn't make the cut. In an interview with MTV, frontman Anthony Kiedis refers to her version as "failed" and says they scrapped it because it was "dark" and "dank" and "not really fun or anything." Instead, they went with "the opposite of that" and jammed on a Venice rooftop.
Underwhelming Live Performances
Date: August 18, 2011
What Happened: Live shows can be a (slight) kiss of death for certain artists who haven't had the time to refine their performance chops. And that's just what appeared to happen when Kreayshawn took the stage at New York City's Highline Ballroom.
Complex contributor Jeff Rosenthal wrote in his Village Voice review of the concert that it was "better than no concert I've ever been to, and I've been to a lot." He also noted that "[b]eing at the Highline Ballroom last night gave me Vietnam flashbacks to her show one month ago at The Box, an endless nightmare that lasted fourteen minutes."
Rosenthal's issues with the show?
"She rapped as if on training wheels: "We'll put you in the trunk, the white girl trunk," over an invisible snap beat—a shitty trapeze artist without a net. Her shoulders were sunken, her chin hid her neck, blasé glazed over her eyes. Kreayshawn rapped like Silkk the Shocker, talking over her doubles at a different speed than they'd been recorded."
No Album in 2011
What Happened: Despite garnering a slew of buzz through 2011 with "Gucci Gucci" and numerous high-profile interviews and features, Columbia Records failed to capitalize on that and let the year pass by without an album release. Instead, her debut, Something 'Bout Kreay, would drop in the third quarter of 2012, a time far removed from when "Gucci Gucci" went viral and she was gracing magazine covers.
Explains "Prairie Doggin'" and Calls Lana Del Rey "Slit My Ankles" Music
Date: March 2012
What Happened: This was less a failure and more a WTF moment for then-22-year-old Kreayshawn. In an interview with GQ, she's quoted as physically depicting what it's like to be "prairie doggin'." In other words, she showed the reporter how a prairie dogs peeks out of its hole, which is similar to when you really have to take a dump.
In addition to that, she took the following shot at Lana Del Rey: "What is this depressing shit? I'm going to slit my ankles."
Waiting 11 Months to Drop Second Single
Date: May 22, 2012
What Happened: 2 Chainz spit a guest verse on Kreayshawn's second single, the off-the-wall "Breakfast (Syrup)." This was obviously a great look for Kreay, as Chainz was appearing on damn near every big track on the radio. But what hurt the potential hit power of "Breakfast" was that it came an astonishing 11 months after "Gucci Gucci" was initially released.
Waiting Another Two Months to Drop "Go Hard (La.La.La)"
Date: July 24, 2012
What Happened: It would take another two months for Kreayshawn's next single, bad girl-anthem "Go Hard (La.La.La.)," to arrive. But like the preceding single, "Breakfast (Syrup)," this track too failed to chart, though it at least arrived with a clever video. She also performed it on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, along with "Gucci Gucci," which looked to give Kreay's then-upcoming album a push.
"Something 'Bout Kreay" CDs Only Available at Hot Topic
Date: September 18, 2012
What Happened: The release date for Kreayshawn's proper debut album finally arrives and ... well, good luck finding it anywhere. Those fans looking to purchase a physical copy were shit out of luck unless they felt like hitting up their nearby mall to stop by Hot Topic. The pseudo-punk shop was the only brick-and-mortar store to carry the album in its first week.