How Normani Overcame Feeling Like an "Underdog" After Being "Overlooked" in Fifth Harmony

Normani is coming into her own after years of feeling overlooked as a member of Fifth Harmony. Now, ahead of the release of her debut solo album, the "Wild Side" singer knows she's "the s--t."

By Samantha Schnurr Aug 11, 2021 2:25 PMTags
Watch: Normani Reveals She Felt Overlooked While in Fifth Harmony

Normani is a multiplatinum star, but she hasn't always felt that way. 

One watch of her latest music video "Wild Side" and "underdog" is hardly the first adjective that comes to mind when thinking of the powerful performer. But, as she shared with Allure, being bullied as a kid took a lasting toll. "I've always felt like the underdog," she said, "in anything that I've ever done."

While the 25-year-old multihyphenate is harnessing her many talents now as a solo artist, it seems she wasn't fully able to during the years she spent making music as a member of Fifth Harmony. "I didn't get to really sing in the group. I felt like I was overlooked," she told the magazine. "That idea has been projected on me. Like, this is your place."

Well, as Normani has since made clear with her own hit tracks, her place is at the center of a stage. Simultaneously, she's serving as an example to the world of why Black women should never be generalized. 

Necessary Realness: Normani Channels Her "Wild Side" In New Music Video

"My purpose in this work that I do is for other people that feel like they have Black women figured out. There's so many layers to us, there's so many textures, there's so much that we're capable of doing," Normani said. "Yes, I can throw ass. But I can also give you a proper eight-count, and I can do ballet, and I can do contemporary dance. If I want to sing this pop ballad, then you're going to love it! While you see my Black face!"

Taylor Hill/Getty Images

If anything is evident from her new song—and its sizzling music video—Normani is unapologetically doing things her way now. 

"I just felt this sense of me coming into my own," she said of the song, the lead single for her upcoming debut solo album. "I feel like a woman now."

And certainly an underdog no more.

As she told Allure, "Now you all are finally going to be able to see me tap into that awareness—that I know I'm the s--t."

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