Missy Elliott Reveals Mary J. Blige, Queen Latifah, Diddy, Salt-N-Pepa Mentored Her

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Despite being praised as an innovator, Missy Elliott never ceases to pay respect to artists that helped pave the way for her success. The Virginia hitmaker’s classics are imprinted across several genres. Missy is hailed as one of the greatest to ever do it, and in her chat with Forbes, she spoke on the importance of helping the next generation of artists. She came into the industry at a young age and knows what it’s like for rising stars. “There’s nothing like having the support of someone,” said Elliott.

“I had people like Mary J. Blige and Diddy tell me what to do and how to be a go-getter, a hustler, be consistent and be different. Things you need in this industry.” She added, “A lot of times, it’s not as easy as it looks. People only get a chance to see the glitz and glamour and don’t know what it’s like to go through things behind the scenes. So, when you have that mentor, it’s everything, especially someone who has already been on that walk. It’s very important for me to be a big sister to those coming behind me because I had Queen Latifah, MC Lyte, and Salt-N-Pepa be that to me.”

Read More: Chlöe Sings Aaliyah’s “One In A Million” For Missy Elliott Grammys Tribute

We saw several pioneers join together for an epic performance at this year’s Grammy Awards. We’re celebrating Hip Hop’s 50th Anniversary, and Missy shared why women in Rap are instrumental in the genre’s success. “Women have played a big part in what we call Hip Hop in this culture,” she said. “These women are my friends, and we don’t just come together when it’s time to perform. We speak on the phone and hang around each other, but I’m never in such a relaxed, comfortable space. I always think about how these are the same women that I looked up to and still do.”

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“They have kicked down the doors for all the women you see today in 2023. Even if the women that are out now may not be familiar with all of their records, they have to know that these women are the reason they’re able to be on many of these platforms.” Salt-N-Pepa made Missy “want to be an emcee.” She called them “the whole package” and the main reason Elliott “got into rapping.” Hopefully, more of our favorite artists will continue to mentor aspiring entertainers.


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