MC Lyte: ‘Hip-hop Felt Like It Was Calling Me’

MC Lyte — born Lana Michele Moorer in 1970 — was a mere 12 years old when she wrote her debut single, “I Cram to Understand U (Sam).” Released in 1987, the track tackled the perils of drug addiction at a time when the crack-cocaine epidemic was exploding in the U.S. From the second she stepped onto the scene, the Brooklyn native established her voice, expertly rapping about topics that weren’t traditionally addressed by the genre — and certainly not by a female rapper. But MC Lyte has been blazing a trail since the onset of her career. In 1988, she became the first female solo MC to drop a

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