From The Bay Area in Cali to Bushwick in Brooklyn, Artist Nappy Nina is standing tall above a lot of rappers in the game... male or female. And so yeah...we crushin'. <3
Sonically inspiring and futuristic, while still managing to sound old school. Listening to the new release from Nappy Nina's NAPTIME will put you in the mode for anything but the somber vibes of sleep. Tracks like "Yee Ain't Ready Yet" and "Love It Hun" showcase the MC's ability to rock a unique flow and glide effortlessly over a variety of production. Looking forward to hearing more from this young lady. Stay tuned.
BHNY: What can we expect from this album, collabos, sound, etc? What is your process?
NappyNina: The EP is entitled Naptime. You can expect a lot of shit talk, a lot of mouthpiece, some politics and of course some smooth boom bap. I got a couple collabs that I will wait to let ya'll hear before I tell you whose on them.
I usually take beats from homies first and then write to them. The first verse is always super easy for me. I record it and then sit on it for a while before I approach the second one.
BHNY: When and how did you start making music? Where did the musical journey take place?
NappyNina: I started making music in my 10th grade English teachers classroom, with my boy Ahb. He had one of the first iPods and had all the underground shit on it. He let me borrow it from time to time and when I heard people rhyming like that I knew that I had to give it a shot. Our teacher used to let us use her room during lunch to record. It was dope.
BHNY: Vinyl, Cassettes, CDs or MP3s... any preference?
NappyNina: CDs. I only had a tape player for a brief moment growing up, and only really remember my collection being wack. I loved CDs because they were the first thing that I really collected as a kid, I would stack them up and organize them In all types of different ways. They were the best.
BHNY: What was the first album you remember ever listening to?
NappyNina: I'm not sure about the first album I ever listened to but I remember the first album that was ever given to me. It was Destiny's Child "The Writings on the Wall." My pops gave it to me for Christmas, along with some fat speakers. It slapped back then, probably still does now.
BHNY: How do you believe music changed or evolved in the past 10 years? Is Hip Hop dead?
NappyNina: It ain't dead, but soon it's not gonna be for us anymore... Black and brown folks I mean. But we will and already have been coming up with something new. We always do and it will be ours until it's not... and so on and so forth.
BHNY: Name two things that inspire you music related and two things unrelated to music
NappyNina: Emcees with good mouthpieces inspire me daily. I'm all about that good rhymes scheme, that unpredictable shit that artists do. I'm also really inspired by melancholic music. That almost sad, almost hurting shit... that's what I turn up to. I'm most inspired by love... being loved, loving someone, trying to find love...all that shit.
BHNY: Who would people be surprised to find out you listen to or admire in music?
NappyNina: I love James Blake.
BHNY: Word up! Feel ya on that one ;-)
BHNY: Let's say you made a multi-million dollar music deal, the millions you were intended to get turn out to be tied to a cause or non-for-profit instead. Which organization do you choose to donate to and why?
NappyNina: Youth Speaks, a literary non-for-profit organization in the Bay. I'd give them bread any day because they provided a safe space for me to write and rap and perform, when no one else wanted to hear it. It provided me with a platform and with some of the illest friendships I have to this date.
BHNY: How do you feel about the current state of Hip Hop for Female MCs? And writers?
NappyNina: There's a lot of women with a lot of bars out there right now and it's hella exciting. I feel challenged and proud, and pushed daily. It's a good feeling.
BHNY: Ghost writing can be very taboo in the industry. How important do you feel it is for an MC to write their own rhymes & lyrics?
NappyNina: If an emcee doesn't write their own lyrics, I don't feel like they deserve that title. It's necessary in this craft.
BHNY: What is a big moment or defining point in your musical career and life?
NappyNina: I think the moment I am having now. Putting out my first solo EP, this is defining who I am as an artist... by my lonesome.
BHNY: Any advice for young girls & women who have dreams of becoming a Rap Artist?
NappyNina: Do it. Just pick up the mic and get out there. There is nothing to loose and the way is being paved for there to be just as many of us as there are male rappers... whatever that really means anyways.
BHNY: If music wasn't a career option, what else would you be doing?
NappyNina: Shit. Maybe some freelance journalism. Maybe not. I'd probably just be hopping from country to country trying to find somewhere to call home.
BHNY: If you could chill with any person dead or alive for a day who would it be? What would you be doing?
NappyNina: I'd chill with Assata Shukar for sure. We'd be burning and talking shit, and she'd be letting me take notes as I pleased.
BHNY: At the one of the Catch the Wave shows, your performance was raw and honest, hate to compare, but it brought back a time of pride for female MCs in the 90s.....Queen, Bahamadia, MC Lyte, Yo Yo...women who's talents could stand up against, even defeat, any male MC by far. Explain what Catch the Wave is & how it got started, for those that don't know? Any plans on more Catch the Wave shows?
NappyNina: Catch the Wave is a party thrown by myself and Norvis JR. We showcase beat makers and vocalists and anyone we think is dope really. It got started because Norvis and I wanted to do a show together and figured we would just throw our own. We will definitely be having some more in the summer.
BHNY: You were super live at that show....shit you rhymed over a dope live band playing instrumental grooves and beats. Your brother plays drums in the band, do you perform together often? The band element is something we have seen before, like with world famous The Roots, but is still somewhat of a rarity in Hip Hop. Is this a format that you plan on continuing?
NappyNina: My brother actually plays keys in the band...shoutout to young Miles. And the drummer Sho, is also like a brother to me. Miles and I just started performing together last year... but I love it. They are my boys and I wouldn't trade them for anyone.
I am going to play with my band and my DJ Ahb in every venue that allows.
Or in every city that provides us with enough bread to get all four of us out. [laughs] It's my favorite format. Hip Hop was meant to be played live.
BHNY: So of course, I have to ask now...What is your preferred method of collaboration, Live Band or Beat makers/producers?
NappyNina: Hmmm. I have a soft spot in my heart for beat makers, probably because I always wanted to be one myself. I love the musicianship of the live band, but there is just something about collaborating with beat makers that is untouchable to me.
BHNY: Tell me more about the the upcoming Show in March and what is to be expected?
NappyNina: I'm having an EP release party on the 14th. It's gunna be real chill, Three talented homies are having sets that night as well. Langsto, Jon Bap and Ahbs, I'm gonna be playing some new joints as well as some old ones with my band, The Sons and it's just gonna be a good ass time.
BHNY: Peace & Love. **Check the HANGOUT section of the website for the flier to the EP release party.