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Released: 2021

Features: Cardi B

With Lizzo and Cardi B’s track “Rumors,” we’ve got a fierce narrative of self-love, individualism, and an unabashed embrace of sexuality and body positivity. It’s a confident clapback against detractors and gossips, tightly packed into a smooth blend of pop, funk, and hip hop. The song encapsulates the artists’ rise to fame and the inevitable spread of rumors and criticism that followed.

Opening with the line “They don’t know I do it for the culture, god, damn”, the song kicks off with Lizzo asserting her commitment to shift societal norms and uplift marginalized communities. In the face of criticism over her posts and appearance, she maintains, “All the rumors are true, yeah.” This statement serves as a head-on brash response to the tittle-tattle spreading in her name, embracing the rumors rather than denying them, a clever tactic flipping the narrative to her favor.

Lizzo’s lyrics “Had to cut some hoes loose, yeah / NDA, no loose lips” reference legal maneuvers to silence those who might feed the rumor mill, while Cardi B’s verse confirms the rumors about “Fake ass, fake boobs, yeah” but denies the allegations that her success is artificially inflated “Cardi ain’t popping, no, that’s a machine.” The word ‘machine’ here is likely alluding to the music industry ‘machine’, indicating she’s not a product of industry hype but instead a self-made success.

The track also covers more personal aspects of their life with lyrics like “My ex-nigga, he blew it / Last year, I thought I would lose it.” These lines empower themselves by validating their emotional journey as part of their personal growth. Also, the line “Black people made rock ‘n’ roll, yeah” is a straightforward nod to the oft-unrecognized contributions of black artists to the genre.

Furthermore, the chorus, with its catchy line “Realer shit is going on, baby, take a look around,” urges listeners to focus on the bigger issues in society instead of being preoccupied with petty gossip. It showcases their strength and resilience, exuding an unwavering self-confidence that is both infectious and inspiring.

Lastly, it’s worth noting that “Rumors” is more than a song; it’s a statement of defiance and an unapologetic proclamation of self-worth in the face of public scrutiny. It’s about two women who have transformed the rumors and criticism surrounding them into a potent expression of their identity and artistic prowess.

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