Rolling Loud: The Female Artists at This Year's Los Angeles Hip-Hop Festival Were Inspiring AF

(Female audience attending Rolling Loud, Photograph by: Lydia Haug)

Rolling Loud festival co-founders, Matt Zingler and Tariq Cherif, threw yet another successful event in Los Angeles this weekend.

The festival, which started back in 2015 in Miami, has become the largest hip-hop music festival in the world—making its way from Miami to the Bay Area and Los Angeles. Since its inception, Rolling Loud wasn't known for including many female artists in its lineup and was even the receiving end of some backlash for it. But female artist representation has improved significantly over the years.

This year, the festival had seven great female artists take the stage, including none other than Cardi B. The "Ring" rapper became Rolling Loud’s first-ever female headliner, and we can’t stop smiling about it!

On the first day of the two-day festival, we witnessed the first female act of the weekend, Bali Baby. Born in Atlanta, Bali Baby is one of the few openly gay female rappers in the business. On her albums Baylor Swift and RESURRECTION, which both debuted this year, Bali Baby takes listeners on a journey through her unique rock n’ roll take on hip-hop music. Bali Baby was the third performer of the day and she owned every minute of it. She took the stage sporting a leather black bra and black cargo pants detailed with chains, straps, and skulls. She rocked green and grey hair, making us all want to experiment with our own hair and add some fun, vibrant colors in it this winter season.

Lolo Zouaï was the next female artist of the day and blessed us with her beautiful, angelic voice. Lolo immigrated to San Francisco from Paris with her family when she was very young. Her music is said to be influenced by the melting pot of San Francisco. “I’m from the Bay and I’m hella excited to be here right now," she shouted. All I can say is, we were hella excited to be there too!(Lolo Zouaï performing at Rolling Loud Los Angeles, Photograph by: Lydia Haug)

The audience couldn’t help but move their hips and vibe to her chill tunes. Her performance was captivating to say the least. She looked amazing in a pair of simple jeans with rips at the knees, a white tank top, and a pin-striped cropped blazer to finish the look off right. Lolo’s performance gave us all the feels and is definitely a female artist to keep your eye on.

Next up on Rolling Loud’s female artist roster was Yung Baby Tate. Tate has shared in the past that she began to make music at just 13-years-old. Her hard work and passion for music radiated off the stage through her whole performance on day two of the festival.

Tate proudly showed off her stunning curves in a red latex bodysuit and black-studded belt, topped off with rainbow boots and snow goggles just to add her own flare to her OOTD.

(Yung Baby Tate performing at Rolling Loud Los Angeles, Photograph by: Lydia Haug)

Tate gave countless shoutouts to the female audience members, saying, “I want to know where all my Rolling Loud ladies at!” and “I f*ck with girls!” It seemed as though she truly wanted all of the female attendees to feel connected with her and a sense of belonging. We loved the empowering, strong, women-oriented messages she gave the audience throughout her performance. Her musical talents are incredible, as she made the whole audience dance and cheer throughout the entirety of her performance.

We see big things in Tate’s future and can’t wait to see what she has in store next.

(Yung Baby Tate after interview with Her Campus, Photograph by: Lydia Haug)

After Yung Baby Tate’s performance, we hopped on over to the festival’s Zen Stage, to watch Melii. The Harlem rapper first blew away YouTube viewers by spitting bars on her remix of Cardi B's “Bodak Yellow." Reaching over 2 million views, she was determined to show the world that she was not just a viral sensation, but someone who deserves space in the hip-hop industry.

Melii has not only created smash-hit songs like “Icey” and “See Me," but also never shies away from showing how versatile she is as an artist. She creates bilingual raps that represent and celebrate her Dominican culture. Melii was glowing on stage in a white bodysuit and black thigh-high boots during her energetic performance.

A few acts later, we were blessed with Kash Doll’s presence. She came out radiating confidence in a crystal jumpsuit. The sun shined on her outfit and had her lighting up the stage like a goddess. Kash Doll has been featured on songs with Big Sean, Metro Boomin and more. Kash Doll and her dancers gave a spectacular, lively performance that left everyone shook.

(Kash Doll performing at Rolling Loud Los Angeles, Photograph by: Lydia Haug)

As the sun began to set, Saweetie made a grand entrance with her whole girl gang, who were looking fire in matching pink outfits. “Do I got any icy girls in the building?" Saweetie excitedly yelled to the audience. Together, the performance was seemingly flawless. Saweetie delivered many numbers, including her hit song “ICY GRL” and the crowd went wild. This song is nearly impossible not to move your body to and the crowd proved that. Saweetie and her girl gang seemed like they were having the time of their lives, and the audience was certainly feeding off that contagious energy. “All my icy girls I’ve had so much fun with you tonight," Saweetie said as she began to make her way off the stage. The audience was sad to see her go as her performance was so great and we all wanted more!

(Saweetie performing at Rolling Loud Los Angeles, Photograph by: Lydia Haug)

The night was capped by Cardi B and I’m pretty sure everyone was fangirling. Her performance had the most packed audience I had seen all weekend and everywhere I looked, people were chanting every lyric, word for word. She sang all of her hit songs, with her badass, fun personality that she’s so famous for. As the performance was going on, all of a sudden this giant (and I mean GIANT) flower arrangement was rolled out onto the stage and it read, “Take Me Back Cardi." 

Cardi appeared unamused and then all of a sudden, Offset walks out on stage. “I just want to tell you I’m sorry. In person. In front of the world. I love you,” he says. But Cardi wasn’t having it. She got him to leave the stage and then immediately went straight into performing her song “She Bad." Cardi absolutely killed it and turned the whole audience's attention right back to her. Whether the whole incident was planned or not, Cardi showed us how it’s done—don't take sh*t from anyone, stand your ground, and don’t let anyone steal your shine.(Cardi B performing at Rolling Loud Los Angeles, Photograph by: Lydia Haug)

As the festival came to an end and everyone started filing out of the venue, I reminisced on all of the amazing, inspiring female artists I had seen perform this weekend. Each gave me such a newfound appreciation for female hip-hop artists. They fight and work so hard to create a space for themselves in a male-dominated industry, which many don’t understand how truly difficult that can be. Each of the artists have been told by people that they wouldn’t make it and that they couldn’t achieve their dreams, but they are proving those people wrong. I appreciate all they do and the path that they are carving for other women who have dreams that no one else may believe in. Shoutout to all of the female artists I got to see this weekend, as well as all of the other performers at Rolling Loud Los Angeles this past weekend. You all are amazing and it’s been a crazy fun experience!