Lil Mama’s awkward moment where she joined in on Alicia Keys and Jay-Z’s “Empire State of Mind” performance at the 2009 Video Music Awards is probably one she would like to put behind her. Unfortunately, it is hard to let the moment die-off, thanks to social media and haters.
Just like her lip gloss, Lil Mama’s name has been “poppin” up in the headlines a lot more recently following what many considered to be derogatory remarks about others last month. Since that time, there have been talks of canceling the New York artist, but she says that’s not going to happen.
One fan who was under the impression that Lil Mama was canceled years ago took to Instagram to write, “I thought they canceled you back when you jumped up on stage with Alicia and Jay Z.” She responded, “You made a valid point. You’re opening statement (shaky n contrary to it) However, you made a valid point.” She went on to explain, “I entered this industry as a teenage black girl from Brooklyn and Harlem NY. These situations are with mature adults at least ten years my senior. I reached out in private to create an opportunity for communication and clarity. I haven’t heard back from either party yet. With that, continuously misrepresenting my brand in public won’t be tolerated.”
Although she has not heard back from either party, Lil Mama, born Niatia Kirkland, definitely knows how Jay-Z felt about the moment. Just days after the awards show, Jay called into Angie Martinez’s Hot 97 show where he revealed why Lil Mama’s actions did not sit right with him.
“To interrupt that moment for us, I don’t think that was the right thing to do.” He added, “It was a lot of planning that went into that performance. To disrupt that was out of line.”
This isn’t Lil Mama’s first time discussing the issue. In 2015, she told Complex that the backlash made her have suicidal thoughts. “It took a lot of mental strength, spiritual strength, and physical strength, not to want to hurt others, not to want to hurt myself.” She also says she lost out on other opportunities. “A lot of people felt like they didn’t want to take a chance on me with certain things because it might have made Jay-Z or Alicia Keys not want to work with them.”