When “Baby Got Back” was released in 1992, it was met with mixed reactions from fans and mainstream networks for its lyricism and messaging. But according to boundary-pushing hip-hop artist Sir Mix-A-Lot, the song’s true meaning was hidden beneath its catchy hook.
“The song is about African American culture more than anything,” he told HYPEBEAST, explaining that his goal was to subvert traditional narratives about Black women and celebrate female body types that existed outside of mainstream media representation. “Black people got it immediately while simultaneously MTV was playing it thinking that it was just a song about butts.”
Celebrating the 30th anniversary of the song’s release, Sir Mix-A-Lot will release his debut NFT collection titled “BIT BUTTS” on May 9. The 6,666 unique, hand-sketched, colorful NFT collection of digital derrieres was made in partnership with metaverse-native studio META-X and its team of animation artists. While the “cheeky” artwork is a playful ode to hip-hop culture, a portion of each sale will benefit the Colorectal Cancer Alliance, a nonprofit raising awareness of colorectal cancer research and prevention.
WHATS cracking??? pic.twitter.com/Fo1NK7T5Js
— BitButts by META-X Studios (@BitButts) April 17, 2022
Countering mainstream culture comes naturally for Sir Mix-A-Lot, who has a deep interest in decentralized finance (DeFi) and believes in the wider goals of the crypto community.
“I’m not interested in making money,” he explained of his views on NFT creation and the broader Web3 ecosystem. “I think there are artists right now being held up because traditional avenues have always been hard to break into.”
On NFTs, Mix said that creativity in the metaverse is allowed to flourish outside of tightly-guarded conventional institutions.
“I love the fact that there are real artists who can now monetize their art without major backing,” he explained, drawing parallels to his own journey as a hip-hop artist. “I was on a major label and then I got off of a major label.”
“I was scared and it was like walking into the wilderness with a blindfold on,” he continued. “But I kept pushing forward and ended up being able to monetize my creations myself, control it, license it and work with bigger brands.”
For Mix, NFTs are an extension of this creative freedom, and he praised NFT artists and Web3 creators for bypassing traditional channels to create art and foster communities.
“They’re skirting something big,” he said. “I was skirting an industry — but they’re skirting around a system.”
“They show that the system can be irrelevant,” he added. “What I’m noticing about [Web3] is that he who has the power does not necessarily make the rules — I like the honesty and purity of that ecosystem.”