Campus Life

Frost 2019: Interview with Justina Valentine

by Sulvey Polanco

#GIRLPOWER.

Justina Valentine is a renowned name in the rapping industry and a fan-favourite star on MTV’s Wild ‘N Out. Though Justina exudes confidence, it wasn’t easy to get to the position she’s in now.

Justina Valentine on stage
Photo by Brandon Ferguson

 

The American rapper pretty much does it all. From rapping, freestyling, singing, songwriting, modelling and even being a fan-favourite star on MTV’s Wild ‘N Out.

But, how did she get to the position she’s in? What struggles has she faced in order to become as successful as she is today?

Check out all Justina has to say here:

 

How different has it been for you, as a woman, to get recognition in the rapping industry?

According to Justina, she “pretty much began rapping straight from the womb” dealing with hardships from then on.

You see, it’s not always easy to strive in a predominantly male industry. Justina explains she had to work extra hard to be in the position that she’s currently in, but she believes herself to be much stronger because of it.

“As women, there’s always another obstacle, hurdle, or layer that we have to get above,” Justina explains. “I really had to cut my teeth and grind for every step of the way. I didn’t know anyone in the industry, so it’s definitely a game changer being a woman.”

 

With all the struggles that women face in the entertainment industry, is there hope in the industry changing to be more inclusive of different genders and ethnicities?

“For different ethnicities, genders and sexual orientations, I think slowly but surely the industry is becoming more inclusive, but it doesn’t happen overnight.”

Despite the timeframe, any small steps that go into making the world a more inclusive place matter so greatly. With so many great talents like Justina herself, it’s important for them to get the proper recognition they deserve.

 

How do you handle the stereotypes placed on women and still remain positive?

“Being someone who’s out there and very visible on social media, I had to grow a really thick skin. People will try to tear you down with words and hateful comments, but your skin has to get so thick that these things need to bounce off of you.”

The Wild ‘N Out star has faced her fair share of criticism being a public figure in the media, but she doesn’t let it get to her.

She states, “The only way you won’t be criticized is if you are nobody and do nothing. If you want to be somebody, don’t pay attention to those criticisms.”

Being in the public eye has its negatives and positives, but Justina remains strong through them all to continue thriving at what she loves to do.

 

You’re often compared to Eminem and even referred to by many as “Feminem.” How do you handle being compared to such an iconic name in the rapping industry? What makes you different?

“I take it as such a compliment and a blessing. Eminem is one of my biggest influences and favourite rappers, it’s such an honour.”

With all the talented people out there, it’s important for people to stand out and be unique to themselves.

Justina explains that what makes her different has nothing to do with being a Caucasian, female rapper, but instead her rapping ability itself.

“I’m the only female that can come off the top of the brain and freestyle the way I do. Not only keeping it to one gender, I’m one of the only rappers, male or female, that can rap the way I do. I went up to Sway in the Morning and was one of the only 3 rappers that were able to complete the 5 Fingers Of Death.

“I think the title Feminem was given to me because I write my own content, most people don’t, and because of my off-the-top freestyling. This comparison is such an honour, I love Eminem.”

 

Justina Valentine Singing
Photo by Brandon Ferguson

 

She finishes the interview by professing her love for Canada and her love for Drake.

Justina Valentine continues to impress us all with her rapping, singing, and freestyling. She has really proven to us all that she is her own unique person and will keep on thriving despite those trying to tear her down.

Keep on rapping and inspiring women to be the best that they can be, Justina.

You go girl.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.


Check out Wild ‘N Out’s new episodes starting February 1st.

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