Doja Cat along with Lizzo, SZA, Stallion and H.E.R. are young black women taking over hip hop and R&B. Most people know Doja Cat from Tic Toc, but her new record Planet Her shows that she is a talent that will be in hip hop and R&B for years to come.
For me, the track that best embodies everything I love about Doja Cat is the first track Woman. Lyrically, Doja Cat is defining what it means to be feminine and that she is here to be counted. Much of Doja’s work involves sexuality and overt sexuality, which is a bit of a throwback to Madonna and the ground she broke with her lyrics and stage shows. Lizzo, Stallion, Cardi B and Doja Cat have taken that one step further and talk about sex once only evident in male hip hop. These artists are reclaiming that and exposing its the underlying misogyny around why men are allowed to say these lyrics, while women are not. In Woman she sings abotu women being mothers, tomboys, princesses and sexual. All of these aspects are feminine and one is not more important than others.
This inclusive definition of femininity frames up Doja’s larger point with her music as she pushes gender boundaries. It is quite fitting that Woman is the opening track on this record as it educates the listener in what Doja sees as feminine. Moreover, her ability to move from soul, to hip hop, to reggae inspired verses highlights the inclusive nature of the track. Moreover, she sings about how people, men mostly, pit successful women against each other to watch them fall. This is especially evident in the music industry where women artists are often compared to each other in this “there can be only one” style. Doja is calling that out, which brings more attention to all the successful women artists in 2021.
Musically, Doja Cat uses some infectious AfroPop with a jazz base and various forms of percussion. This creates a driving beat, which is contrasted nicely with some jazz keyboard and largely reflects contemporary R&B arrangements. Take all the vocals out of the track and you can still groove to it for hours. It is the percussion, bongos and African drums that really drive the track and bring it together.
This track shows that Doja Cat is here to stay and is someone you have to take seriously. I love the lyrics and how effortlessly Doja can move between different musical genres. Woman is a great introduction to her work and I suggest you have a listen as soon as possible.
Listen Dojo Cat’s Woman