Albuquerque Hiphop Artist,Wake Self, Has Something to Say:

“Dear world. It’s so upsetting to me

that the economy has turned misogyny

into a revenue stream.” -Wake Self

Wake Self is a hiphop artist from Albuquerque New Mexico making waves. Check out their song, below, titled “Malala. ” This song, featuring singer Blu Samu, is packed with sharp social commentary about the treatment of women in the rap industry and in the media. Fellow New Mexico friends, you may see familiar New Mexico scenery.

 

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Beyoncé’s “World-Stopping Music Video”

The internet is exploding with praise for Beyoncé’s new music video calling it “world-stopping” because people are stopping what they’re doing to watch it over and over. I know I’ve watched it over and over. I’m mesmerized by the incredible imagery, amazing dance moves and shattering baseline with kickass lyrics. But even more than that, this video is beyond awesome in how she celebrates being a black woman. As Ashley Weatherford, a New York editor, put it, “There’s often talk of what it means to be ‘unapologetically black,’ and this video is the blueprint. Lyric by lyric, she celebrates blackness.”  And specifically, it’s clearly an anthem for women. New York editor, Rembert Browne, said it too: “…the song’s so clearly for women.” (Which doesn’t mean guys can’t appreciate it too, because, let’s face it: Everybody’s going to love it.) The video also provides thought provoking imagery of the New Orleans hurricane disaster and the issue of police brutality. I could go on and on about how powerful and amazing this video is.

Leon Neyfakh from Slate.com said, “Beyoncé’s Surprise New Single Is Both a #BlackLivesMatter–Inspired Protest Anthem and an Absolute Jam”

This music video is in a complete category of it’s own: It defies all expectations of mainstream music. I love Beyoncé and this music video is absolutely incredible. 

Check it out for yourself:

Female Musician Suggestions

I don’t know about you, but I love listening to ladies rockin’ out. Here are some of my personal faves, roughly categorized. Most of them are still pretty unknown. You can be a hipster about it, if you want, so when they really blow up you can say, “I knew them before they were famous!” Click on the green links to sample songs of theirs. And check them out on Spotify or youtube and see what you think.

 

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TacocaT (Photo credit: Kyle Johnson, Portland Mercury)

Rock 

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Grimes (Photo credit: Tommy Chase Lucas)

Electronica  

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Crooked Still (Photo credit: Album Cover. fanart.tv )

Folk

  • Crooked StillI could listen to their whole album while I garden.
  • Brandi Carlile. (Of course, the one and only.)
  • Shook Twins. I saw them live! Even better. They use this old fashioned type of microphone to get a unique, echoey sound.

Hip Hop 

  • Psalm OneGaaahhhh, she’s so good. Her alto-bass voice is
  • soothing and kick-ass at the same time.

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    Psalm One (Photo credit: What a Movie Audiotree Live. Youtube)
  • Ana Tijoux– Chilean rapper, who I knew, before her song was on Breaking Bad. (Yes, I’m being a hipster about it.)
  • InvincibleShout out to Bresnin for introducing me to her!
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Robyn (Photo credit http://hificartel.com/images/robyn2.png) Check out this article about the power of Power Posing like Robyn: http://nextshark.com/why-women-in-business-should-power-pose-like-robyn/ )

Pop

  • Salute, by Little Mix. One of the rare times I switched on the modern, pop radio channel turned out to be a success when I discovered their song, Salute.
  • Robynthe swedish pop singer with top U.S hits. Gotta love how she dances like she don’t give a sh*t.
  • La RouxI remember jamming to Bullet Proof on the dance floor at a “club”. I use club in quotes because, let’s face it; it’s Montana.

Punk

  • The Distillers. Their album Coral Fang is hands down, one of the best punk albums out there, male or female.

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    Kathleen Hanna of Bikini Kill (Photo credit: Ebit Robberts, NYtimes.)
  • Bikini KillHave you seen the documentary on Netflix called The Punk Singer yet? It’s about Kathleen Hanna of Bikini Kill, the punk rocker who brought second wave feminism to the forefront.

Other Epic Genres

  • Amanda DivaPoetic, rhythmic rapping. She’s on Spotify.
  • Sea OleenaMellow bath jams.
  • Sylvan Esso. Play It Right, amma right? 
  • Santogold. Have you seen that Youtube video where a solo, hippie guy is dancing at a festival and ends up starting a massive dance party? Yep, he was dancing to Santogold.
  • Nina Simone. And of course, my list would not be complete without the amazing Nina Simone,
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    Nina Simone (Photo credit: Album cover. fanpop.com)

    who’s career really took off after she performed piano at Carnegie Hall and progressed to become the infamous Jazz singer we know her as today.  (1. See below for source.)

 

1.) “What Happened, Miss Simone?” Documentary on Netflix. Director Liz Garbus. June 2015. Web. July 2015.

The Talented Rapper, Ana Tijoux

Speaking of hip-hop that raises women up, I give you, Ana Tijoux.

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Her music holds a place in my heart for several reasons. Her lyrics, her subjects, her beats and her unique voice. But also, I’m enamored with how I first came to know about her music. In 2010, I was living and studying in Chile and I was talking to a friend of mine about how it’s a bummer there is a shortage of women rappers out there. And he said,

“Oh you haven’t heard of Ana Tijoux yet have you?”

He also introduced me to her earlier stuff when she was a part of the great hip-hop crew, Makiza. But my favorite song of hers remains this one:

(You might even recognize this song from an episode of Breaking Bad where the track gained a lot of fame.)

Another reason I especially love her music is because of this engaging experience. When I taught in Rwanda, I introduced the students to Ana Tijoux’s song “1977” and they loved it. The French speakers especially caught onto the Spanish and it ignited a further interest in the language and an interest in women as rappers. When exams came around, I posted this picture of Ana Tijoux that says: ‘Ana Tijoux says, ‘Buena Suerte con el resto de sus exámenes!‘” Which means, “Good luck with the rest of your exams!

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And the students posted this paper next to it as though it were Facebook. Haha, so sweet.

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One of Tijoux’s latest songs, titled “Antipatriarca” has especially empowering lyrics:

“…Tu no me vas denigrar, tu no me vas obligar” (You’re not going to denigrate me, you’re not going to force me)

Tu no me vas a silenciar tu no me vas a callar (You’re not going to silence me, you’re not going to shut me up)

No sumisa ni obediente ( I’m neither submissive or obedient)
Mujer fuerte insurgente (insurgent, strong woman)
Independiente y valiente (independent and valiant)
Romper las cadenas de lo indiferente (break the chains of indifference)
No pasiva ni oprimida (Neither passive nor oppressed)
Mujer linda que das vida (beautiful woman who gives life)
Emancipada en autonomía (emancipated and independent)

And this song is just plain badass: