Battle rap and rap beef have a history almost as old as hip hop itself and we can all thank a 14 year old Queensbridge girl by the name of Roxanne Shante for being the catalyst that lit up hip hop’s battle rap trajectory.
Shante’s success and recognition were sparked by her response of U.T.F.O’s hit Roxanne,Roxanne a track about being snubbed by a girl in the neighborhood. Shante went toe to toe with U.T.F.O and flipped the narrative of the pursuit into a freestyle dubbed Roxanne’s Revenge and it’s really all history from there. Fourteen year old Roxanne Shante’s track went on to sell over 250,000 copies and sparked one of Hip Hop’s first feuds.
Netflix’s highly anticipated biopic on Roxanne Shante chronicles not only her rise to fame in Hip Hop but also gives insight into Shante’s personal coming of age struggles and issues she faced with her family growing up in the Queensbridge neighborhood of New York. The film starring Chante Adams, Nia Long and Mahershala Ali premiers exclusively on Netflix on March 23rd.