During a time when female artists are taking over the rap game, Queen Key stands tall and proud. Hailing from Chicago, the 25-year-old arrives on the scene with relentless bars, catchy hooks, and honesty in her lyrics.
Aside from the fact that Queen broke the internet when she revealed she was pregnant with triplets, the rising MC continues to prove over and over again why she’s a forced to be reckoned with.
The star is excited as ever for her newly released Your Highness 3 project. Juggling being a mother to three babies and a bubbling rap career isn’t always the easiest, but Queen shines throughout it all.
REVOLT caught up with the star to discuss her new album, collaborating with G Herbo and Polo G, starring in her own movie Loud Burger, her new weed strain Keybo, being a Black woman in America today, and more! Peep the chat below.
Your Highness 3 out now! How are you feeling?
I feel great, period. I’m happy it’s out. It feels like a brand new day, shit. I’m most excited to have my music and my energy in the world, flat out. It’s been a long time coming. I haven’t really dropped since 2019 so the world needs my energy. I’m excited to see the effects of my energy.
I saw you celebrated back home. How was that release party?
It was bussin’! You already know. You haven’t never been to none of my parties Shirley, you don’t even know. It ain’t no party like a Queen Key party! Man, it was lit.
Were the triplets there?
Nah, they weren’t there. They can’t handle a Queen Key party (laughs).
Your Highness 3 is the third installment to Your Highness series. How have you grown since 2017?
I’ve grown a lot, in all ways. I got smarter, I got more patient. I grew experience-wise. I’m like a flower.
I love “Sneaky Tales” with G Herbo. Bring us back to when you made that record.
We actually did that a couple of months ago. That was my manager’s idea, he hit me. Me and Herb already have done a song. We already were going to do another song, I just didn’t know what. My manager told me, “Y’all should do that, then call it ‘Sneaky Tales.’” I’m like, “Bet, shit. All I need is the beat, I’m gone.” I did my part, I did the hook, then I sent it to him. He did his verse.
What was your reaction when you heard it back?
I was happy as hell. Period, he did exactly what I wanted him to do on that motherfucker.
What does that mean for Chicago?
That shows greatness. It means greatness. I can’t wait to shoot the video, turn it up even more.
I know you got another Chicago artist, Polo G, on the project.
Yep, I got Polo on there. Me and Polo, we made that song in person. We were in LA. We made “Movin Up” in 2019. We had went to the studio in LA, I had just landed. I was with this dumb ass bitch (laughs). He said, “Pull up to the studio,” I pulled up. We made that bitch on the spot. We’re going back and forth in the studio, recording our verses.
Were you both freestyling?
I don’t want to say freestyling, but it wasn’t like we sat there and wrote. We were going in the booth, coming up with some shit, laying that shit down. Doing it like that.
Is that one going to have a video too?
Yeah, I’m a very visual person. For the most part, I like all my shit to have videos because it’s me in the video. It’s fun.
I love the “What I Do” video, you get real personal on there. What were you going through recording that?
I don’t know if you heard my song “I Like Me Better,” but it was a “I Like Me Better” moment... When I make my projects, I be thinking, “What do I have and what’s missing?” Around that time when I made “What I Do,” I didn’t have any personal, slowed down, lyrical type song. The beginning part had just came to me, and I did it. I really don’t even remember, I just did it.
That’s how you record most of your songs right?
Hell yeah. It be certain words, I just get zapped with a song. Then I record that shit.
What was your vision with that video? I know your babies are in there.
It was amazing. The babies, they did so good. They’re some superstars. It was perfect. Everything, my whole team, everybody was on point. Everybody did their part. It was perfect. I had a great feeling about “What I Do,” and I still do. It’s lit, I love that.
Bring us back to when you and Tay Money made “Take Yo Man.” You guys sound great together.
I love Tay Money. We had made that in 2019 too. We dropped the video last year, literally right after I had my babies. It was amazing working with Tay. She came to Chicago, shot the video with me, all that. We shot it in an Airbnb. We had a big party, it was fun as hell. Tay cool, we really had fun in real life.
You have fire features on the project. What about Yung Baby Tate?
Tate too, I love Tate! Oh my god, I think I had got pregnant (laughs). I took this random road trip to Atlanta. I was in the studio with Tate, and I already had “2 Legit.” I had put a verse on one of her songs, then I said, “Yeah, you should put a verse on this.” She literally went in and did that shit quick as hell. It’s not like I sent her the song days beforehand, none of that. She went in, wrote that shit quick as fuck. Ripped that bitch!
What are your favorite songs on the project?
“What I Do,” “Flute,” “Soul,” “Be Like Queen,” shit “Sneaky Tales,” “We In Here.” Not going to lie, there’s so much shit in there. I love all them songs, but those are my top group of faves right there.
What do you want fans to get from the project?
I want them to get some real motherfucking music. I apologize to the fans, I apologize to the people. I be having y’all listening to all these weak ass people. I ain’t been giving y’all the game and the recipe y’all really need out here. Y’all know I got that real shit. Y’all know what time it is. Y’all listen to my shit, y’all gonna feel at home again.
Shout out to Lil Zay Osama. I know you got him on the project.
Period, shout out to Zay Osama. Another one — went in the studio, ripped that bitch. He even came up with the hook. He came up with the hook and I followed his cadence, followed his shit. We were in Chicago.
How did you guys tap in?
Really from Chicago. We already started following each other, just off the strength of talent. We were DMing about working. I had pulled up to a couple of different things. I came to his release party, we had finally met and then went to the studio.
Talk about making your debut as an actress in the film Loud Burger.
Yes! I’m starring in a movie called Loud Burger. It’s set to come out next year, it’s lit. Y’all gonna see a lot more of me acting. This is my first movie. I haven’t seen it yet, but I think I did good. For my first movie for sure, I did great. I’m super excited for the whole thing because I’m an actress too. It’s a super comedy. It’s the next Black classic movie, the next classic big comedy period.
Were you laughing while you were shooting?
Hell yeah, we were cracking up. We had a bomb. With me being the star, I was the leader of the pack. Even though sometimes shit happens, I made it to where we were a family vibe. I wanted everybody to feel comfortable. I didn’t want nobody to be shy. I wanted everybody to feel like they could really be themselves for the sake of the movie because it was a little thing that was mistaken. The camera crew, they didn’t know my strategy. They didn’t understand my strategy as much as me. Regardless of the fact, I knew what the fuck I was doing. I knew how I wanted those actors acting on my movie. I didn’t want no nervous motherfuckers in my movie. If that meant everybody in this bitch drunk, then that’s what it meant. It is what it is.
I bet y’all were smoking good too!
Girl, I had a whole office in that motherfucker. They had to have my weed, my liquor, the whole nine. People think Queen Key the rapper is a motherfucker? The actress? That bitch needs to go on timeout (laughs). Me as an actress, oh my God. The rapper Queen Key is damn near cool. The actress? That bitch is fucking crazy.
Speaking of actors in classic Black films, I know you filmed a little trailer for your new weed strain Keybo.
Yes, shout out Ice Cube. Ice Cube if you ever see this, I really want to be in the new Friday. You need to have a funny girl that’s not a crackhead. We were laughing at Felicia, not with her. You gotta have a funny girl. That’s me, period. I need to be in the new Friday. Go watch the Keybo trailer, I smoked that bitch.
How was it shooting?
It was so fun. I love acting, that shit was so fun. Especially with me directing, really having the vision and executing that bitch, that’s the ultimate fun for me. To think something then do it, then it does exactly what I expected and more? That’s the best fucking thing ever.
When did you get the idea for Keybo?
I had got the idea randomly a month and a half ago. It’s that long, I randomly thought about that shit. I’m telling you, I get zapped with these ideas. I don’t be remembering where they come from, I swear to God.
What’s special about your weed?
It’s that Keybo, man, it’s that knockout. It’s coming from the Queen. You might fuck around and start flying or some shit. There’s no telling!
What’re you excited for next?
I’m excited for everything. I feel brand new. It’s a whole new adventure. I’m excited for everything, period. Excited to keep unraveling, unfolding this project. Doing different stuff on it. New music, new movies, new ideas, everything.
What does it mean to be a strong Black woman in America today?
It means to handle your business no matter what, and just be, period. Have heart. Don’t be no goofy ass bitch. Be real, handle your business, don’t ever stop. At this point, that’s being strong. Keeping your head up, handling your business, period.
Anything else you’d like to let us know?
Get used to me, get to know me. Y’all really gonna fall in love with me, on bro. Shout out to @keyplusthree. I have three beautiful children, they’re triplets. Google me, do your research!
Where are the babies?
Girl, they’re up in there [points upstairs]. They’re playing... up in there having a ball. They be doing all kinds of stuff. They really love when I read to them. I got a whole little schedule for them. I actually used to work at a daycare, right before I started rapping. When I started rapping, I got my sister and my cousin jobs at the daycare. Now literally, my babies go to the same daycare. My sister and my cousin are the only workers, and that’s their teachers.
That’s so full circle!
It’s so full circle, it’s crazy. Even my first song I put out, I wrote it in the daycare while I was cleaning up. That’s God, that’s amazing.