Blemme certainly is no stranger to harnessing the powers of good rhythm and better talent in their rap efforts. Their recent EP, VOL. 1, is a well-balanced display of classic wordplay that dance and tessellate effortlessly with well-mixed beats to keep listeners on their toes. More importantly, it’s a presentation of a story, their story, as a collective of queer black women, their voices reaching new sonic wavelengths that the people truly need to hear.
Hometown: New York (Sekai), Boston (Merci D), Los Angeles (KEE)
Favorite de-stress activity?: Writing!
How do you identify?: Queer and Trans Rap Group
SOULE: What inspires you to create?
BLEMME: We create because the world tells us that our voices, in this world, should lie limp, our dreams of liberation dimmed. We create because we are MORE than dead bodies in motel rooms, more than sheets stained with blood as bodies tilt to the heavens! We create because we search for autonomy through rhythm. We create because we refuse to allow people to tell our stories for us. We create because we love music!
Who is your greatest inspiration?
First and foremost, we inspire each other. Some of our other inspirations include: Nicki Minaj, Foxy Brown, Kendrick Lamar, Leikeli47, Trina, Azealia Banks, Missy Elliott, Busta Rhymes, and others.
Which of your songs would you say embodies your “story”?
Our song blkNblu! It shows the growth of each of us individually and collectively as music artists. Also, it exemplifies a little bit of what each of us has to offer artistically.
How do you use music to heal others and yourself?
Music is a great form of meditation. Allotting the time to focus on yourself is what makes the process so beautiful. We speak to Queer and Trans experiences, which are not portrayed in the mainstream. We use music as an outlet–as a way to process things we experience in the world, including and not limited to racism, homophobia, transphobia, and femmephobia. As for each person individually, music is a way to communicate our emotions when no one (wants to) understand.
Why should we listen to you?
Three reasons. The first is representation. It is important that Black Transgender femmes and Black Queer femmes have the opportunity to have our voices heard in a genre that has been dominated by straight-cis men, and women, for the last half-century! Secondly, we write our shit! Ghostwriting has become an epidemic in contemporary Hip-Hop, creating a consumption based culture that strays from tradition in order to acquire (POP)ular esteem. Lastly, we are creators and conceptual intellectuals. In the words of Beyoncé, “you know (we) give you life!”
What upcoming projects are you working on?
While we are all in different parts of the country at the moment, we’ve each been writing, playing with new sounds and looking forward to collaborations with other artists. We are also in the process of getting our lead single from our debut project on streaming services.
Where can we get updates on your newest projects?
For more information on how to support Blemme & their creative vision, follow them on Twitter and Instagram @blemmeofficial & check out their work here.
Photography work in this article was done by Sackona Fitts.
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