Legendary rapper and actress Queen Latifah has broke new ground for women in the hip-hop industry after it was announced she would be the first female MC to be inducted into the 2023 class of the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress.
Every year, the registry selects audio contributions from successful Americans who have impacted culture through their work. The New Jersey native’s 1989 debut album All Hail the Queen was inducted into theLibrary of Congress’ National Recording Registry, making her the first woman in hip-hop to achieve the feat.
“The National Recording Registry preserves our history through recorded sound and reflects our nation’s diverse culture,” Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden told NPR. “The national library is proud to help ensure these recordings are preserved for generations to come, and we welcome the public’s input on what songs, speeches, podcasts, or recorded sounds we should preserve next. Her album showed rap could cross genres including reggae, hip-hop, house, and jazz — while also opening opportunities for other female rappers.”
The U.N.I.T.Y. rapper now becomes one of two dozen other artists who will have their place immortalized in the Library of Congress. Other inductees include Super Mario Bros. theme song, All I Want for Christmas is You by Mariah Carey, Gasolina by Daddy Yankee, Flashdance… What Feeling by Irene Cara, Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) by the Eurythmics and Madonna’s Like a Virgin album. They now join other recordings added last year, including A Tribe Called Quest’s The Low-End Theory, Wu-Tang Clan’s Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) and Alicia Keys’ Songs in A Minor.
Born Dana Elaine Owens, the 53-year-old has received numerous accolades throughout her illustrious career, including a Grammy Award, a Primetime Emmy Award, a Golden Globe Award, three Screen Actors Guild Awards and two NAACP Image Awards. She has also been nominated for an Academy Award and became the first hip-hop artist to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Congratulations, Queen! Thank you for paving the way for women in the generations to come!