Modern Geaisha speaks openly about her new Rap single “Hey Hey Hey”, which is related to the recent sexual abuse scandals embroiling actor Bill Cosby. She’s talented, smart and feels empowered artistically to express without fear her thoughts. Take a cup of coffee and read this interview with such a brave woman as herself!
1 — Were your friends and family supportive when you started your music career?
My career started in my head at about 5 years old and professionally when I was 7. With my parents’ permission and support, I began taking lessons in acting, singing, and dancing and soon after signed with a manager in New York City. I would say my acting career truly started with a series regular role on the TV series « Shining Time Station » with Ringo Starr when I was 8 years old while my music career has taken different twists and turns throughout my life, recording and performing songs for different shows and groups until finally last year I found the right producers for my own sound with my own message. This message is based on my own experiences, what I have witnessed around me, and what matters most to me in life and even with some controversial headlines, my friends and family are very supportive of my music and activism!
2 — What are your struggles as a female rapper?
I consider myself a female singer and artist who happens to rap sometimes in order to get her message out. There are many struggles in general as an artist in a saturated field and especially as a woman in the industry. It seems the main struggle is getting your voice heard and not selling your soul in the process.
3 — Which old and new artists do you admire in the Hip-Hop/Rap scene?
The artists I admire include Lil’ Kim, Salt N Peppa, M.I.A., Princess Nokia, Junglepussy… and to go out of genre a bit: Josephine Baker, Billie Holiday, Whitney Houston, Aretha, Bijork, Dolores O’Riordan, Sugarpie Desanto… I gravitate towards strong women with different vocal and emotional ranges as my own vocal training began with musical theatre, Jazz, and lyrical soprano styles.
4 — What’s the message you want to convey with the lyrics of “Hey Hey Hey”?
The lyrics of “Hey Hey Hey” certainly reference a specific situation but were written to denounce rape culture and victim blaming in general and to send the overall message that women and all victims everywhere are DONE being targeted and silenced. The message of the song is essentially to take back these words “Hey Hey Hey” used by a predator to disarm us and to use them instead to say to all predators:« “Hey Hey Hey”! You do NOT have the right to abuse us and justice will be served! »
5 — How do you think Bill Cosby would react when listening to this single?
I would prefer not to think of him at all, but if I must, I imagine that he would listen to my words and continue to be in denial of his despicable ways as he was for all of those 50 plus years that he spends victimizing women all the while simultaneously silencing and shaming his victims. To put it simply, he would react cowardly because he is a coward. And by coward, I mean that he is clearly not ready to face himself, much less his maker.
6 — Do you consider yourself a feminist?
By now there are many different definitions of the word « feminist » so I would say that one must be careful of identifying with the wrong one. For example, I personally do not agree with the extreme visions of feminism that hate and exclude men or blame all men for all things. However, by the very original and basic definition of feminism that states women deserve equality, I am definitely a feminist and always have been even before I identified as one. I believe in equality for all people regardless of color or gender, etc. and I don’t see how any woman could not believe in equality for herself and thus, identify as a feminist.
I am planning to release songs about things that move me and that I feel need to be said, or rather sung. Sometimes these subjects are more fun and inspire dance tracks and sometimes they are more serious and thought-provoking, which could inspire anything from spoken word to rap to dance as well. Some of these subjects include cyberbullying, colorism, self-love and the language of self, among other things.
8 — Why was the music video filmed in a club? How many people participated in this clip?
The music video was filmed in a club because I really wanted to emphasize how horrible things can exist and happen often right next to very happy events like a party. I wanted to show that in this world where laughter and happiness exist, so can abuse exist at the same time and even in the same place and in fact, right under our noses. There were about 30 friends of mine that came to participate in this video in order to help get this important message out there.
9 — We know you like the TV media as you have been part of it on many occasions. That said, what TV show would you love to perform your music? Why?
I have definitely enjoyed acting all of my life and have even continued to do some acting in French here in Europe, including several few roles where I sang as well as played a guest starring role. I would love to perform on Empire, Dear White People, Blackish, any show that would get my message out there!
10 — What advice would you give to other artists that are just starting their careers and are on a limited budget for their projects?
I really believe that anything is possible and all paths are different in this industry so I find it hard to give advice. With social media, everything is constantly changing and it seems that one can take more control over their career even with a small budget these days. My father always said : « You might as well ask for what you want because the worst someone can say is: No. » so I would just say GO FOR IT! because if you don’t try you will never know and the effort and the journey are the real wins, not success in the technical sense of the word.