Missy Elliott, Songwriter Hall of Fame

Missy Elliott

Missy Elliott, The First Female Rapper in the Songwriters Hall of Fame

Whether or not you’re a fan of rap music, you have probably heard of Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott, who is one of the most iconic singer-songwriters in the music industry. Not only is she a renowned songwriter, producer, and singer, she is also very much in control of the business side of her music career as well, mastering all aspects with commitment and dedication. From the time she first started writing and performing her songs, she has focussed on being the very best at her craft. To date, Missy has been awarded 5 Grammies and was the first female rapper ever to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Moving to the Music

Missy Elliott is not only known for her songwriting skills. She is also an awesome dancer, producer, rapper, and singer. Her songs “Work It” and “Get Your Freak On” and their videos, featuring Elliott and her high-energy dance crews bring the music and videos of her song to life. Through her music, she sends up-and-coming dancers a  message of empowerment and positivity that encourages them to keep moving to the music.

Building Her Circle

From the time Elliott first set foot on a stage, she began to build important relationships and a strong community which continue to bolster her career through the years. Friends like Janet Jackson, Madonna, Beyonce, JayZ, Katy Perry, and Tim Mosley (better known as Timbaland) are part of her small circle of friends who collaborate with her and help her to maintain the creative edge that has put her at the top of her game. And as famous and well-known as Elliott is, her shyness keeps her grounded as well. Her small circle of friends is who offers her support and guidance while working on her craft.

Learning to Take Care of Herself

When her career began to take off in the early 80s, she never looked back. Having grown up with an abusive father and a turbulent childhood, Missy remained focussed and driven as a way to move past her traumatic childhood. She clung to music like a lifeline and was determined to make the most of any opportunity that came her way. With the help of Sean Puffy Combs and Timbaland, she began laying the foundation for her future. Elliott was one of the very few women who made their way on their own terms. However; in 2008, Elliott’s hard-driving work ethic had to be put on hold due to dramatic weight loss and muscle weakness.

Diagnosed with Grave’s Disease, Elliott had to learn how to cope with a new reality. Much like her music career, Elliott took charge of her health problems and learned as much as she could about the autoimmune disorder that was threatening her career. By including a healthy diet, medication, and exercise, Elliott turned herself around. After several years away from the industry, Elliott re-emerged with a new outlook and renewed commitment to her music.

Reaching New Heights

Like other lyric writers, Elliott continued to relay a positive and powerful message through her music. Even when she had secluded herself from the public eye, Elliott continued to collaborate with other singer-songwriters like Jennifer Hudson and Katy Perry. In 2015, at Perry’s request, Elliott appeared with Perry at the Super Bowl, bringing down the house, which gave Elliott the spark she needed to entice her back into the spotlight. “Iconology” is Elliott’s first collection of songs to be released in almost 14 years. Released in August 2019, this album is the next step on Elliott’s musical journey. Even after being out of the music scene for many years, Elliott’s ability to meet and exceed the expectations of her audience is a testament to her talents and songwriting skills.

Usually, people who enter songwriting contests or songwriting competitions have the goal of becoming a better lyric writer and improve their songwriting craft. Some have to work to make their dream a reality. Elliott also had the drive to improve, and the tenacity to succeed despite setbacks and obstacles. She continues to hone her skills and keep improving. From her first musical group “Sista”, to her lengthy solo career, Elliott continues to evolve and transform into something legends are made of. Her induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame as the first female rapper goes to show how beloved she is as a rapper, songwriter, and overall, as an entertainer


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About us: Foxhedge Music is a management company and recording studio located in historic Leipers Fork. Our mission is to support and encourage songwriters. We believe they are the backbeat of Music City, while we continue to invest our time and resources in the Music City community. Through the Music City SongStar Songwriting Contest, we want to give songwriters a chance to have their music heard. We’re believers in creativity, chasing dreams and getting the chance to pursue your passion.

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