First off, I’ve been MIA-- as in “missing in action”. My last and only post was in March of this year (wtf). I think I got intimidated by the idea of doing this thing called blogging. I didn’t want to be a “blogger” and was afraid that whatever I put out would be so damn basic. Well, fuck that. So… I’d like to apologize to myself for even thinking that I could be basic. Now that THAT’s out of the way, let’s talk about some bad ass WOC artists I’ve been listening to on repeat.
So the other day I was telling one of my BFFs (what up SinD!) all the artists I’ve been listening to lately, and I noticed a commonality between them all that I wasn’t even aiming for in my listening habits: They are all women of color (YAS) experimenting with sounds that are literal music to me ears, and omg the lyrics, don’t even get me started! They are so damn honest and relatable that I feel like they’re talking directly about my shit. Ok, yes I get that that’s the point of making music, the relatability of it, but these ladies are talking about things that women have rarely sang about in songs, in a raw and real way. They are talking about sex openly, being honest about their feelings, and just doing them. I feel like they’re doing whatever the hell they want, and it speaks to me. It’s got me excited.
...And let me preface that I’m NOT any special kind of music connoisseur. I listen to the radio like anyone else, and would never label myself any kind of music snob. BUT I love interesting sounds and discovering new artists.
OKAY, so Jessie Reyez just dropped an EP album this fall titled ‘Being Human in Public’ and it has been on hella repeat since. Her voice is so raw and magical, and gets me ALL in my feelings (sorry Drake). I’m singing (at the top of my lungs) her seven anthems with lyrics like “You ain’t scared to fuck but you scared of being lovers…” (from “F*** Being Friends”) and “I dodge dick on the daily” (from “Body Count”). It’s seriously hard to pick a favorite track because I keep discovering lyrical gems in each song that just speak to me.
Jarina De Marco
I legit thought I discovered Jarina De Marco after dropping into a rabbit hole a couple weeks on IG but no. Her song “Release the Hounds” was featured on the Starz series “Vida”, and I freaked the fuck out when I realized that. Her tracks are infused with feel good vibes and glitter, and legit have me bouncing around wherever I listen. I especially love “Bilingual”, which is about re-entering the dating world after ending a relationship. As a single woman in L.A., navigating sometimes (ok mostly) shitty dating waters, Jarina de Marco is like a BFF instructing me not lose hope and “don’t be falling for the first one that you see, you can try them all but keep all the receipts” (so you can return them, get it?). Anyway, 2019 looks like a great year for De Marco, as the Dominicana should be dropping an album in the beginning of the year, and I can’t wait.
I also discovered the magical Dounia on IG (I guess all that scrolling is not a complete waste, right)? I saw her featured in a sponsored ad, and thought she looked cool, so I jumped on Spotify to listen and have been hooked on her since. First I got lost in her album “Intro To”, as her new one hadn’t dropped yet, and let me tell you, it felt like she was talking right to me. She’s got a voice like honey that lulls you while speaking on real shit. “So Cool” is my JAM, with relatable lines like “hey look I’m so different, watch me fight all my instincts for you, I’m so cool. Hey look I’m so different, watch how well I’ll handle distance for you, I’m so cool”, like fack! What woman (or man too I guess) hasn’t fought their instincts so as not to come off needy etc? If you don’t relate, teach me your ways! Lol.
Moving on to her latest album “The Avante-Garden”, I gotta say it’s hella refreshing to hear her stick to her original sound with the same frankness she had in her first. “Rich Girl Mood” with Kehlani is literal mood. Raised in Morocco and Queens, NY, it’s like Dounia knows how to express all my feelings into sick witty lyrics. I feel so understood.
So another bestie (I see you Liz Lopez), put me onto Amber Mark, and damn am I grateful. To many Mark is a modern day Sade. If my actual soul was cool and could sing and make music it would sound like Amber Mark, I swear! She brings in all these international sounds that are simply chill and groovy with albums “3:33am” and her most recent “Conexão”. “Love Me Right” and “S P A C E” are my two favorite songs from her, because they’re all about the tug-o-war and frustration found in relationships (at least for me), because damn sometimes I need attention and other times I need you to leave me alone, and sometimes I feel like that at the same time. ANYWAY, Amber Mark is on repeat when I need a chill vibe, I want to shimmy to my feelings and sip some gin. Yes, that’s how cool she is.
So there you have it. These are the 4 bad asses that’ve been the soundtrack of my life lately. I really hope I inspire you to give them a listen. Also if you have some bomb ass music recommendations please comment below or simply slide in the IG DMs! I’m always looking for stuff under the radar :)