Singles & EPs
With precision flows and pop-friendly instrumentals, Vava emerged as one of China's predominant rap stars in the late 2010s. In addition to amassing a loyal fan base as she rose up from underground rap sensation to mainstream pop star, Vava began regularly winning in rap categories at award ceremonies as her fame grew. Her blend of street swagger and pop accessibility was showcased on releases like her 2017 mixtape 21.
Vava was born Mao Yanqi in 1995 and grew up in the Sichuan province of Southwest China. She started pursuing music at age 18, dropping out of high school and singing in bars while she worked on writing her own material. While growing more connected in China's underground hip-hop circles, Vava began making bids for mainstream recognition, eventually appearing on televised competition shows like Voice of Dream and The Rap of China, often making it to the semifinals or beyond. In 2017, she released her 21 mixtape. The project included the song "My New Swag," which skyrocketed Vava's exposure when it was featured in the 2018 romantic comedy Crazy Rich Asians. Now often being referred to as "The Rihanna of China," Vava was a veritable rap star. She signed on with Warner Brothers in 2019 and later that year released the album Mao Yan Qi. ~ Fred Thomas