When it comes to her past, Cardi B is an open book. The rapper has often talked about growing up in the Bronx and how much work she put in before breaking out into mainstream. But one aspect of her life is oftentimes scrutinized due to the misogyny attached to the line of work: stripping. However, Cardi is an expert at shaking off critics who try to discredit her former job. In part, it’s stripping that allowed Cardi to earn enough money to start making moves in her rap career.
Cardi recently sat down for a conversation with Mariah Carey for Interview Magazine where they chatted about music, Cardi’s daily routine, and her past. Speaking about her time stripping, Cardi said the experience made her feel “on top of the world” because she was one of the most-requested dancers:
“The stripper attitude is, ‘I’m not ashamed of being a stripper because a lot of these b*tches don’t have sh*t. A lot of these b*tches don’t have a place to stay, don’t have no car, can’t afford this, can’t afford that. Y’all out here f*cking n****s for free, but y’all shaming me because I’m shaking my ass? Y’all hoes be showing y’all f*cking bodies on social media, and y’all not getting paid.’ That mentality stuck with me. I felt like, ‘You’re judging me, but I’m making more money than you.’ I felt like nobody could shame me for being a stripper. When I started stripping, I was making probably $500 a night. As I got bigger, I was making $2,000, maybe $5,000. When I got really popular on Instagram I was making $7,000 to $10,000 a week. I felt on top of the world. I felt so untouchable and so sexy, because there were rappers that all these girls lust over who would come to the strip club and request me to go to their section. They would request me. If I’m so trash, why are these guys requesting me? I’m getting paid for my looks. Nobody’s going to spend money on you if you’re ugly.”
Elsewhere in the conversation, Cardi said that, although she has a big personality, she still can get quite nervous around other celebrities. “A lot of celebrities invite me to places, but I’m really shy,” she said. “We’re doing this over the phone, but if it was in person, I wouldn’t be able to look you in the eyes. That’s how nervous I get around celebrities.”
Read Cardi and Carey’s full conversation here.
Cardi B is a Warner Music artist. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.