Marquita Boom: The Professional Woman of Color Getter

Marquita Boom

We’re here with Marquita Boom founder of the yearly women’s music festival, Serafemme (with accompanying online community), weekly event promoter, and all-around It Girl of Los Angeles!

 

Marquita knows everyone and everything.

 

I’ve been getting event notices for her events for a while, so I finally decided to speak with the woman that does a little bit of everything in Los Angeles. I had to find out what motivated her to create the yearly queer women of color music festival, Serafemme, in West Hollywood and why her weekly parties have such a devoted following. “Serafemme started in 2005. I was frustrated by what I saw as a dismissive effort towards women and multi-cultural people” in music circles. It started out as a one day, six hour event and has grown to be a weekend long event that includes on-stage performances, a beach party, and workshops. Oh, did I forget to mention that the city of West Hollywood has been on board since the second year?

 

She began by throwing parties that, “took it up a notch”. Ms. Boom saw what other organizations were doing and wanted to “bring the best of everything” to her parties. Her goal was to create fun dance parties that, “looked good, felt good, felt safe, and were comfortable”. She even throws an annual party at the Dinah Shore through her company, Out and About. Lest you think she’s all about parties, let me clarify: Out and About also takes groups to art performances such as the Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre, sets up dinner meetups at fabulous locations, and schedules cruises. That’s a whole lot for one woman, no? Yes it is, but if she doesn’t do it who will?

 

Many organizations use Marquita as a conduit to find and attract women of color, which is fine, but, “there should be more outreach than just to get Marquita”. I concur. It’s easy to find someone with connections and utilize that relationship, however it’s harder for people to work to create and grow their own networks. Even from a business standpoint, creating direct relationships with communities is better than utilizing someone else’s network. Anyhoo…

 

This year’s planning for Serafemme is well underway. The usual location is being renovated, so the exact date hasn’t been set, however the festival usually tales place in August. She works hard to find the best talent for the festival. One of the ways she keeps her ear to the street is through the social community she created, “they talk about anything and everything. It’s very much a community”.  Women can join, create an account, and network with other women. I’m a member. It’s a really great way to expand your network. Post what you’re doing, add new songs to your profile, and make some new friends that you can meet up with at this year’s Serafemme festival!

 

Marquita’s take on Serafemme is this, “I created Serafemme because there is so much talent and I just wanted to showcase it. I’m a fan of Serafemme. Each artist is just as remarkable as the one before. Six straight hours of remarkable women. Everyone is extraordinary!” I can’t say that I disagree.

 

Create an account on the Serafemme online community to get updates on this year’s festival.

 

PEACE

 

 

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Kenika: The People’s Choice

Kenika

 

I’ve been a fan of Kenika’s since I heard All On My MySpace. She went at hating women and fake assed dudes. It was beautiful. She put out Diary of a Hood Chick a while back and she’s back in the studio recording her sophomore effort, as yet untitled.

 

The first thing you’ll notice about Kenika’s music is that it’s raw, aggressive, and brash. I mean that in a good way. I asked her why such a nice person would come so hard in her music, “I’m shit talking for the females. Everything I make isn’t for children to repeat, but I’mma get my shine on. I’mma make songs about relationships, my kids, everything”. We are dynamic people and I can respect that.

 

It all began in 7th grade at the lunchroom tables, “all the guys would be bangin’ on the table and rhyming”. After honing her skills a bit throughout high school, she did the remix, Bad Nigga and it got a lot of love in the Houston area, so she kept at it. In life, “there are two sides to every story” so Kenika has taken up the mantle for the ladies. Many people message her saying that her music is the truth. People even send her songs asking her to create a version for the females. Listen to All On My MySpace if you doubt. I know I have felt that way several times since creating a MySpace account.

 

Kenika is known for creating sly remixes of popular songs. She has explained what a dope dude is on Bad Nigga (a remix of Bad Bitch by Lil’ Webbie) and stepped to girlfriends and wives everywhere with her Side Line Ho remix (from singer Monica). She likens her train of thought to that of Lil’ Wayne, “if a song is out and it’s hot, go for it”.

 

And can we talk about the hustle? Ya girl put out Diary of a Hood Chick and sold it everywhere, and by everywhere I mean online, outside of clubs, in stores like Music Depot (where her album sold out twice), and out of trunks. “In Houston we hustle hard. It’s just in us” is how she puts it. It’s definitely not all fun and games, “I have a whole lot of respect for anyone that puts out an album because it’s day in day out, with recording and mixing and everything. It’s a grind. It’s not as easy as it looks”. Understood.

 

On top of being an artist, she has three little ones. She explains, “I’m a rapper, hustler, and mother. A mother first. I’m creating something good for my sons”. She’s after longevity saying, “I wanna do what others haven’t done, get in. I don’t wanna be a puppet or a sex symbol. No females tend to last”. Tell me we haven’t heard that one before. I’m thrilled that she’s coming into the game understanding its challenges and being willing to see it through anyway. She also made a great point about family that I want to make sure gets heard, “if you don’t like it, don’t fuck with it. Like I tell my kids, don’t be a follower, be a leader. What about the parent’s responsibility”? Indeed. I’m all about artists being responsible; however it’s also important for parents to take responsibility for shaping their children’s experience.

 

Let me get off my soapbox now and give Kenika the last word, “I totally appreciate all the love from my fans. I respond to MySpace myself and I keep it real. I’m the people’s choice. If they ask me to do it, I’mma do it. I get love and I give it back”.

 

PEACE

And It’s On! Battle at Sound Clash

The battle was ON at Sound Clash on Thursday. Folks came out swinging. The battle was about who could rock the crowd best so it was about the lyrics, the delivery, and the stage presence. The video gives you a taste of what it was like to be in the building. You mad the vid doesn’t show each MC’s whole song? Next time show up!

See you at Project Blowed every Thursday at 10pm.

I’ll be there.

PEACE

Miki Vale Wants You to Attend a Rent Party

We caught up with Miki Vale in San Diego this week. We chatted about her work with the Women in Hip Hop Conference in San Diego May 16th and 17th, her involvement with The (Sis)tem Collective, her upcoming mixtape: Rent Party, and why she loves Yo-Yo.

Listen to her music on MySpace.

PEACE

Invincible – Ropes

This video was banned because it talks about the issue of suicide. I want to make sure the voice can be heard whether you like it or not. These discussions need to occur.

Check it out.

PEACE

Project Blowed: A Lil’ Taste

Just got home from Project Blowed. I wanted to share some photos because it was too good to miss.

Round 1

Poetess vs. Vision
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Winner – Vision

B Fly vs. Madame Brown
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Winner – Madame Brown

Pookah Duke vs.
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Winner – Pookah Duke

Mack Mistress vs. Raven
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Winner – Mack Mistress

Round 2
Vision vs. Madame Brown
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Winner – Madame Brown

Mac Mistress vs. Pookah Duke
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Winner: Pookah Duke

Round 3

Pookah Duke vs. Madame Brown
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Winner – Madame Brown

Main Event
Queen Kandi Cole vs. Mislead
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Winner – The (Sis)tem! They both represented for the crew.

I’ll post the video tomorrow.

PEACE

Sunshine

so, i started this blog because i wasn’t feeling very represented as a women in hip hip. in the two weeks that this thing has been up, i have found out so much information, met so many dope DJs, MCs, event promoters, collectives, etc. that i don’t know what to do with myself. i want to take a moment to shout out some dope blogs that i’ve recently come across in hopes that you’ll expand your horizons as well.

Doorknockers

The Fembassy 

Hip Hop Congress’ Women’s Project

Thanks Be Yr Own Queero for posting the info about a new film, Say My Name, about women finding their voice.

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