Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott has a word of advice for artists feeling the pressure of crafting their sophomore album: Experiment!
The Supa Dupa Fly artist has more than two decades of hits, and experience re-inventing not only her style, but also music. The aforementioned album was her 1997 debut. Since then, Elliott has continued to move the needle forward by experimenting with her sound. As a result, she has often contributed to setting music trends.
“During the Supa Dupa Fly era I had no idea that it would change the spectrum of hip-hop,” Elliott told Billboard in a past interview. The certified platinum album went on to sell over one million copies. “The sound the world heard during that album, Tim and I had been doing that sound many years before the world heard it. So to us, it’s just what we were doing. It was our sound. We didn’t listen to radio or watch TV back then so we didn’t know we were creating a sound unheard of because we weren’t listening to anything else to compare our sound to.”
Her second album, Da Real World, was equally as successful. But for most artists, crafting a sophomore album comes with the stress of either making or breaking a career. Despite her success, that reality is not lost on Elliott. Hoping to encourage artists, she tweeted that artists should trust their gut when it comes to their music.
“Sophomore albums are a very pivotal time for artists!” she began. “Your sophomore album be stressful but it’s the best album to experiment on! Don’t be afraid! Becuz if you play safe you will be boxed in & its hard to get out because your fans get used to that 1 sound.”
In a follow-up tweet she continued, “Secondly! Dear artist listen closely! Go with songs you feel you should drop not what everyone else suggest! You the artist must feel it yaself because you are the one that have to sell it & convince ppl it’s hot. Go with your gut! Fearless.”
Secondly! Dear Artist Listen CLOSELY! Go with the songs you feel you should drop not what everyone else suggest! You the Artist must FEEL it YASELF🙌🏾because YOU are the one that have have to SELL it & CONVINCE ppl it’s HOT🔥 Go with your GUT! Fearless💯
— Missy Elliott (@MissyElliott) July 6, 2022
In 2019, Elliott made history when she became both the first female rapper inducted into the Song Writers Hall of Fame, and was awarded MTV’s Michael Jackson Video Vanguard award. As for why Elliot is willing to share free game to artists? It’s simple. “Let’s see who will be wise enough to absorb this knowledge like a sponge and apply it to their work! pay attention I also learned from the greats.