Monie Love on Why 'Transparency' Is Key to Her New Series 'Monie In The Middle'

Monie Love on Why 'Transparency' Is Key to Her New Series 'Monie In The Middle'

Published Thu, May 11, 2023 at 4:00 PM EDT

Hip-Hop icon Monie Love is set to launch her new series, Monie In the Middle, on RockTheBellsTV this Friday (May 12).

The series follows Monie and her two daughters, Cali and Layna, as they share their unique insights on love, life, fashion, and of course, music. Ahead of its premiere, Monie discussed everything from the importance of being transparent, to how her generation of women rappers helped pave a path for women in Hip-Hop who came later.

Check out the interview with Monie, who's also set to perform at the 2023 Rock The Bells Festival in August, below.

Monie Love, Monie Love,

This series is really going to be inspiring for women, and give voice to the day-to-day issues we face. Why was it so important to launch the series with your daughters and to share that perspective?

Because the girls have been on my neck for years about it, they really have [laughing]. They've been on my neck for years because we have the same talks that are in the show. We actually have these talks at any given time, usually on a Sunday around the table for breakfast because that's something traditional that I do. And sometimes in the evenings, we have tea and I'll do like a cheese and fruit and crackers platter. We'll sit, and we'll have tea, and we'll eat crackers and cheese, and have these conversations. So every time we do that, the girls are always like, 'Mom, we should actually really do this because nobody gets to see this side of you.' And they're like, people could really learn a lot from these conversations and apply it to themselves and get insight, or even just relate. And I was like, 'Yeah, yeah, we're going to do it, we're going to do it.' I'd never do it, never get to it, it was always on the back burner. So this was the year that they both equally nailed me to the cross and was like, 'You're gonna do it this year, mom. You've been saying you're gonna and you haven't. So now we're going to do this.' And that's what really prompted it to happen this year.

Your conversations seem really natural and honest, which is nice.

They prided me on being transparent. They were like, 'Good job, mom.' Imagine that! I'm getting pats on the back from my daughters on some... 'Good job, mom.' Good job at being transparent and stuff, you know? So, it's going to be interesting, the feedback, as far as people that have never seen me in that environment. You never get to see me as a parent having life conversations with my children. I've never done that before. This is the first time. So my girls are pretty proud of me.

Without giving away any spoilers, what did you learn about your daughters that maybe you didn't know before doing the series, and did they learn anything new about you?

One of the really big takeaways that I learned from doing this show with the girls is there are for sure elements of their childhood that they wanted to elaborate on and didn't at the time. And they did elaborate on those things during the show. So I've taken away that, you know, there was some sensitive moments during their early teens, for both of them. They actually felt like I was being dismissive, but it turns out that they've learned I was being really super protective because I was afraid of certain things penetrating their world. So it was kind of like a learn, learn situation for all of us.

We came away from doing this show extra bonded, and having an extra piece of respect for each other, all of us. It was really a big healing process. The girls will tell you, I usually speak more than I listen. And I did a pretty good job listening more than I spoke this time.

What do you hope viewers take away from this series?

The beautiful thing about this show is that it is going to touch an array of age groups. And it is going to be a heck of a lot of moms in my bracket that have daughters in my daughters' age groups who are gonna be sitting and watching this. I really hope that they can watch together. I really hope they can actually engage in some of these conversations while they're both watching, while me and the girls are giving our spiels. That's really what I hope is taken away from it. I hope that moms and daughters can watch together and relate together.

You don't often see women in Hip-Hop talking freely about the topics you discuss in this series.

I think that my generation in Hip-Hop is the first generation that kind of kicked down the taboo door of starting families, of having children, of actually being pregnant because it was kind of hidden. When I was pregnant carrying my first child and then when Salt-N-Pepa were pregnant, you know, we kind of gave off the vibes of.... and? Yes, we're pregnant... and? Not saying we were the first ones, obviously, shout out to Sha-Rock, she was pregnant when she was performing on stage. So obviously not the first to be on stage performing while pregnant, but I would say certainly the first to be absolutely unhidden and unapologetic about it, which leads to the Cardi Bs coming out in the middle of the performance, pregnant and unashamed. It kind of had a natural progression to get to that point, of which I do feel like we were a part of, absolutely, Salt-N-Pepa, myself. So I think seeing us actually sitting and engaging in life conversations as well as fun conversations, as well as industry conversations that are clearly, directly connected with Hip-Hop because that's who we are and that's where we come from, is refreshing.

You're performing at the Rock the Bells Festival this year. Without giving any spoilers away about your set, can you let us know what we can anticipate?

One of the biggest things I enjoy about being in this industry is the creative process and the performing process. I really enjoy being on stage. I'm like a kid in a candy store. It's the same high energy every single time I get on stage. It is me being completely reverted back to being 18 years old again. And I really do mean it, because I do a hell of a lot of running up and down on stage that I probably shouldn't be doing, because when I get back to the hotels, I usually have to rub down with tiger balm or something [laughing]. But I am absolutely an excited kid on stage, high energy, every time. So I'm looking forward to delivering that at Rock the Bells on August 5th in Queens.

Monie In The Middle is available to watch on RockTheBellsTV on YouTube every Friday at 12 pm ET starting May 12.

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