Some argue that hip-hop had many origins. First in jazz, in the form of pop singing and rhythmic speech patterns. Later, at the disco, in a last-ditch effort to battle modern anti-black and gay skeptics, the music formed a sonic alliance with funk and ushered in a new era. Hip-hop not only gave birth to a world of black geniuses and pioneers, who would later be recognized as the founders of an entire political movement that is constantly studied from coast to coast, but also laid the foundation for the fusion of genres that we enjoy today. , across musical spectra around the world.
It is with this understanding that heads like me can appreciate the ever-evolving nature of rap music and the unique forms it can take depending on where its creators and members live. The Dominican Republic, for example, has a seething generation of young female MCs shamelessly exploring new spaces and helping popularize local music such as dembelk… Women like Geilen La Moyeta, Tokisha, and Jay Noah not only broaden the range of rap music, but also shatter the heteronormativity of yesteryear in a reckless style.
Pay attention to the inherent Caribbean roots of hip-hop and enter Red 6xteen… Her petite 5’5 ” is almost unassuming at first glance, but she towers over her competitors in songs such as “La Moneda” where she cleverly presents herself as “tu version femenina del messiah,” or the coming of the woman messiah. Originally from Los Frailes, Santo Domingo, the 21-year-old trusts the likes of J. Cole and Irresistible as some of her biggest influences, but anchor herself in the trap, derivative of workout music. Drill is a distinct style of trap music that originated in the south of Chicago and has become popular in recent years.
Rarely, if ever, do we encounter drilled women, much less the likes of Red: black, Spanish-speaking and bisexual. In a country and industry historically riddled with racism and homophobia, Red finds his personal hideaway in a sinister subgenre and sinister teachings. “When I want to express myself passionately and straightforwardly, I turn to the musicality of the drill and what it can give me in the lyrics,” she told Popsugar.
If Red is any indication of where hip-hop might go in the black diaspora, it’s clear the door is open for a more powerful and androgynous Hispanic presenter of the future. Her latest audiovisual film, “ZAZA”, advertised as her official introduction to the game. In an exclusive interview with KristenBellTattoos.com, the young Dominican artist shared her musical influences, the state of music in the Dominican Republic today, and what she hopes to see more from Dominican artists like herself.
KristenBellTattoos.com: Tell me a little about what it was like growing up in your family?
Red 6xteen: The best definition I can give is mature. Even at such a young age, I was very clearly aware of what I like and what I don’t. What I wanted and didn’t want. I was well aware of my responsibilities at home. It is the type of life experience that shapes your character.
PS: Who inspires you the most? Whose work has influenced you?
P6: I feel inspired and 100 percent motivated by J. Cole. He’s not Dominican or Hispanic, but he really reflects how much he is in love with the life processes he goes through when creating his music. His confidence and swagger in the industry is something I would like to radiate myself.
PS Who is your audience? Who are you making music for?
P6: The hood inspires me every single day. With the most mundane things like kids from all over the world playing outside or our teteos at night. I’m from Los Frailes, and where I’m from, those downstairs always go upstairs.
PS: What was your experience as a young woman in the hip-hop spaces that you do?
P6: This is my ability to express myself. Here I can freely express that part of myself that does not want to be noticed, because “I am not a girl.” I can literally deal with my anger by expressing myself, and in turn, help others identify with it. On the one hand, I want people to stop underestimating me for being a woman. On the other hand, I understand that a person in my place will have to work three times more to achieve any position.
PS: How would you define the state of music in the Dominican Republic today?
R6A: I think that this is my country and our music is presented in places where previously there could only be certain types of music. We are now taking our roots further by learning from the mistakes of the past, as well as from the victories of artists with great experience today.
PS: What are you hoping to see more from Dominican artists like you?
P6: Liberty. We need more of this. I feel that some of us are finally making some kind of movement, but not having full autonomy over ourselves as artists. We need the freedom to truly speak to our audience.
Image source: Laura Morales
Meet Red 6xteen: The Dominican Drill Rapper Going For Her Crown, Originally Posted on KristenBellTattoos.com Latina