Cardi B has been working hard to climb the ladder of prestige and success—and now, all those long nights and early mornings are paying off. Making history with her anthem “Bodak Yellow,” Cardi was the first solo female rapper to top the Billboard Hot 100 in almost 19 years. And, when “Bodak Yellow” held the number one spot on the Billboard Hot 100 for three weeks, it made history as the longest running number one record by a solo female rapper—ever. Cardi beat out legend Lauryn Hill, whose hit song “Doo Wop (That Thing)” went number one for two weeks back in 1998.
Incredibly talented, the whole nation knows the words to the Bronx Native’s song now. But there’s a lot more to the former reality star than “money moves” and Love & Hip Hop. We dug up one of our old interviews with Cardi to catch you up.
1. Cardi had a “degular life” growing up.
She told Global Grind in 2016, “I had real good parents. They had regular, poor jobs… they’re real good people. I was just raised in a bad society.”
2. She tried the college thing.
“I went to college, or whatever, but I got kicked out when I was eighteen. I was [practically forced] to move in with my ex-boyfriend, my first boyfriend actually,” she told us. She made another attempt at college, but couldn’t balance class and her job at the supermarket. She’d also started stripping as a means of getting by.
3. She’s a victim and survivor of domestic violence.
She alludes to her ex having been a thief and woman beater. “Every girl, I think, always wants to move [in] with their boyfriend. Until you’re living with them…and they start stealing your little shmoney and you can’t eat and then you start getting beat,” she explained.
4. She harbored stripper shame.
Cardi described to us the first time she stepped out on stage as an exotic dancer. “I was scared and I felt a little ashamed.” She said she was thinking, “Oh my gosh, I’m degrading my mom. I’m degrading my dad. This is so crazy. I’m showing my whole body.”
“Everybody’s looking at you…for two or three months, I just felt so out of it but it’s like oh damn, how can I stop? The shmoney is good,” she added with a chuckle.
5. She can cook!
“Yes I can cook, but I hate cooking. I hate it. I hate the process, but I love how my food be turning out!” she told us last year.
Watch Cardi’s full January 2016 interview below. Cues: “I don’t gotta dance, I make money moves!”