DREAM GIRLS – NYC Interviews: Boshia Rae-Jean
My name is Boshia Rae-Jean and I’m from Orange, New Jersey.
What do you do?
I’m a femcee, songwriter, and entertainer.
Talk about style, who or what are some of your style influences?
Some of my style influences would have to be Queen Latifah, Grace Jones, Erykah Badu and Lauryn Hill.
What role does music play in your life?
Music is my oxygen, my way to express my journey and even the future. Without music I would be incomplete.
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Do you think style and music interplay with each other? If so, how?
Yes, of course style and music interplay with each other like an artist having a unique music style or genre. The artist’s clothing often expresses their musical style because they are unique in their artistry so most artists create that lifestyle through fashion and their unique trends.
How would you define style as it relates to hip-hop culture?
I would define style as it relates to Hip-Hop culture as a way of showing a lifestyle: how to dress, how to eat, where to go etc. Style in Hip-Hop culture is now pop-culture because it was and still is unique.
Who are some of your favorite hip-hop artists or groups?
Some of my favorite Hip-Hop artists and groups, are Queen Latifah, Salt N Peppa, Thee Satisfaction, FON, The Fugees, Lauryn Hill, Nas, Yaseen Bey (Mos Def), Rage Against the Machine, Talib Kwali, Kendrick Lamar, MC Lyte, Canibal Ox, YoYo, Missy Elliot, Tribe Called Quest, Q-tip, Lost Boys, Naughty By Nature, Yoyo, Monie Love, 2pac, Eminem, Childish Gambino, Big Krit, Melo X, Moruf, Kid Cudi, and EVE, and much more.
90’s hip-hop – what are some thoughts that come to mind: artists, groups, style, aesthetic?
Well, for one I’m a 90’s a baby so that’s simple what comes into mind is the essence of Queen Latifah in her rap career, and the Pioneer of a style all her own. A lot of innovators, lifestyle makers and entrepreneurs arose in Hip-Hop the 90’s. In ’89 we fought the Power with Public Enemy and Healed Our Self with KRS One; Big Daddy Kane, Freddie Foxx, Harmony, Kid Capri, LLCool J, Mc Lyte, Ms. Melodie, Run D.M.C, and Queen Latifah. We intertwined the jazz in the instrumentals and for the most part kept it real by having a message to educate the youth. The aesthetic in the 90’s was about being in touch with your history and roots. I think a lot of Hip-Hop in the 90’s continued what MCs did in the late 70’s and 80’s. The 90’s also had that raw and rebel attitude that the late 80’s started.
OK, so Jazz is the start of it all for me musically. I’ve indulged in Classical composers of course for learning purposes. Some may feel Classical began the musical journey of Jazz, but that is untrue. Jazz is a soulful tempo switching sound with flavor. When I was eight years old I starting playing the Classical clarinet so Jazz was a must know. Scott Joplin is an innovator of his time creating one the first forms of Jazz, “stride piano.” Another all time favorite, John “King” Oliver, was a revolutionary creole jazz-man, you could say. “Struggle Buggy” gives you a New Orleans vibe which I’m in love with. As far as sound goes for “Struggle Buggy,” it’s a form of soulful expressionism. There are some current Jazz artists I really think are rising Jazz stars. Hiromi has a Classical take on Jazz fused with her Asian roots and Matana Roberts does the same with her Chicago take on Jazz. Both are a really good representation for the future of Jazz music.
What are your thoughts regarding the relationship(s) between jazz and hip-hop?
The relationship between Jazz and Hip Hop is the music and texture of some Hip-Hop and Jazz match perfectly. Jazz and Hip-Hop are relatives in tempo, in culture, in sound, lifestyle, and most of all the revolution that took place within both genres. Although Hip-Hop is a baby compared to Jazz, it is important to learn wisdom from your elders to know where you are going and Jazz schooled Hip-Hop.
What are your thoughts regarding style as it relates to jazz culture?
Style in Jazz culture had a big part to do with the times and the music of course. Like I was saying Jazz is the oldest so of course the style was sophisticated and experimental because that’s all Jazz was. Jazz culture created so many trends and styles musically and in fashion that are still done to this day.
What do you think about the shaolin jazz project?
The SHAOLIN JAZZ project is revolutionary. Its what we need as a modern culture to educate the people and educators. I also appreciate the originality of the project. It is a forming piece of our new history to come.
Lastly, what are some of your upcoming projects and how can people find out more about you?
My Kick-Starter for my non-profit organization Weinfinity “Empowering Women All Over The World” will be releasing this summer and visuals from my new project “A Mother’s Nature” will be dropping all summer so stay tuned. You can find all of this content via my site and other social media www.boshiamusic.com and contact me via twitter and instagram @boshiaraejean.
To see part 1 of the DREAM GIRLS – NYC Summer 2014 photo shoot click here.
To see Part 2 of the DREAM GIRLS – NYC Summer 2014 photo shoot click here.
To see the SHAOLIN JAZZ T-Shirt Melanie’s wearing and our full range of SHAOLIN JAZZ Apparel click here.