Patience is a virtue, and that’s worthy advice for both fans and artists. As certified hip-hop legend Lil' Kim told Billboard, there is an immense payoff to taking your time in the slapped-together SoundCloud era.
“Everything is a masterpiece to me; everything is a project I handle with delicacy and care,” Kim told writer Kathy Iandoli. “I don’t care if my fans say I take a little bit of time. I don’t wanna wait too long, because nobody’s gonna wait forever, but the bottom line is I don’t wanna give nobody no bullshit. Even if you didn’t like it, at least know I put my heart and soul into it. I didn’t just give you something to eat that I just bought from the store and put it in the microwave like you just said. I’m really cookin’.”
True to her word, Lil' Kim has paced herself exceptionally well. While “Nasty One” is the lead single off her first album in 13 years, the follow-up to 2005’s The Naked Truth, Kim has filled the past decade with four remarkable mixtapes. As a result, she has remained in our periphery, and not solely because of her veteran status and impact.
After the mad dash that was June's G.O.O.D. Music release schedule, wherein Kanye West abandoned perfection to a clear fault (see: Teyana Taylor’s sample troubles), hearing another hip-hop OG praise the process is a breath of fresh air. Twenty-two years removed from the release of her debut album, Hard Core, it’s altogether reassuring to hear Lil' Kim still passionate and excited about making and releasing music.
As the artist also points out, taking your time with your music is a show of respect for fans who, truth be told, can handle waiting a few extra months for a project that is truly resonant. Listeners can hear the clear differences in quality between a rush job and music that was made with a sense of urgency and dedication. Or, to complete her metaphor, there’s nothing like a home-cooked meal.
Whether or not Kim’s album will be a masterpiece remains to be seen, but her heart is evidently in the right place.