MC Lyte

Hip-Hop Recording Artist, Actor, DJ, & Model

“Most of all, what I've learned is I need to share what it is that I know. And it's the whole reason I've done what I've done for as long as I've done it. It's that I'm able to use what I know in order to help someone else grow. And that's exactly what happened on Sisterhood of Hip Hop.”

MC Lyte is an American rapper who first gained fame in the late 1980s, becoming the first solo female rapper to release a full album with 1988's critically acclaimed Lyte as a Rock. She has long been considered one of hip-hop's pioneer feminists.

MC Lyte (born Lana Michelle Moorer on October 11, 1970) was one of the first female rappers to point out the sexism and misogyny that often runs rampant in hip-hop, often taking the subject head on lyrically in her songs and helping open the door for such future artists as Queen Latifah and Missy Elliott.

MC Lyte

Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, Lyte began rhyming at the age of 12, which eventually led to a single, “I Cram to Understand U,” which led to a recording contract with the First Priority label.

MC Lyte's debut full-length, Lyte As a Rock, surfaced in 1988, while a follow-up, Eyes on This, followed a year later. Both discs are considered to be the finest of the rapper's career, especially her sophomore effort, which spawned the hit single “Cha Cha Cha” (peaking at number one on the rap charts) and the anti-violence track “Cappucino.”

Lyte turned to Bell Biv DeVoe's writers and producers Wolf & Epic for her third release overall, 1991's Act Like You Know, a more soul music-based work than its predecessors and in 1993, issued Ain't No Other (the album's popular single, “Ruffneck,” earned a Grammy nomination for Best Rap Single and turned out to be the first gold single ever achieved by a female rap artist).

MC Lyte

By the mid-‘90s, Lyte had relocated to a new record label, Elektra/Asylum, issuing such further releases as 1996's Bad As I Wanna B, which featured a duet with Missy Elliott on the track “Cold Rock a Party,” and 1998's Seven & Seven, which included further guest appearances by Elliott, as well as Giovanni Salah and LL Cool J, the latter of which produced the track “Play Girls Play.”

In addition to her own albums, MC Lyte has teamed with other artists from time to time, including Atlanta's Xscape on the Soul Train Award-winning “Keep on Keepin’ On” (a track that also appeared on the Sunset Park soundtrack and became Lyte's second gold single), and has tried acting, appearing on several TV shows, including such comedies as Moesha and In the House, plus the crime drama New York Undercover.

Lyte has also put aside time to become active in several social projects/organizations, including anti-violence campaigns, Rock the Vote, and AIDS benefits. In 2001, Rhino Records issued the 16-track career overview The Very Best of MC Lyte. Lyte then mounted a comeback in 2003 with Da Undaground Heat, Vol. 1.


Quick Facts

Birth Date:
October 11, 1970


  • She began rapping when she was twelve years old.
  • She has two brothers, who formed the group Audio Two.
  • She has worked with Brandy on several songs.
  • She had a role on the sitcom In the House.
  • Honorary member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Inc.
  • MC Lyte was the first female Hip Hop artist to receive a Gold record (certifying over 500,000 units sold).
  • MC Lyte
  • MC Lyte
  • MC Lyte

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