Hip hop has always had its share of female participation and throughout the decades, we witnessed how chameleonic female rappers (like their male counterparts) adapted to the development of Hip hop music, courtesy of MC Lady E...
Messages of female empowerment in its early days soon gave way to lyrics that exude sex along with the image to match. Somewhere on a spot on the map of South East Asia, 23-year-old Sarimah Rohman is set to prove she doesn't need the latter to be a credible female MC. Better known as Lady E, her commitment to make "good music with a positive message" accompanied her status as a local female rap artiste for the past five years. Her public performances (headlined with her self-described 'aggressive' and 'girl power' brand of music), ranging from the stages of the Esplanade courtyard to the screens of Suria, propelled her name in the local music scene.
Recently she took a step further and released her self-produced mini-album, simply titled Lady E. Her determination to define herself as a recording artiste took her four years to conceive the project. Like many other musicians in Singapore, time and funding kept her from entering the recording studio.
She also wanted to get the right people to work with on her music and now she feels that she was able to deliver a better quality of music this way. "I wanted to make good songs so that the listeners will be satisfied with what I'm doing," she explains. And these songs owe a lot to her creative process where she finds it easier to come up with the lyrics first and eventually supply music to the words.
Boredom and emotions fuels her inspiration to write but, she admits having junk food certainly helps as well! "Normally when I'm bored (or depressed/sad/ happy), I'll just sit down and start writing, planning my thoughts and stuff; eating tidbits at the same time!"
Although Lady E (which has three tracks in English and three others in Malay) shows off her bilingualism, there's no denying that she better recognised for her music in her native tongue. She credits the support she gets to her "catchy songs" and the fact that she is a solo female rap artiste, quite a rarity in this part of the world. Her choice to be effectively bilingual with her music wasn't something she initially planned for.
"I started out with more music in English but I didn't expect that there would be an interest in the Malay market as well. Rap music in Malaysia is growing bigger now," she commented. While she does have the Malaysian market in mind, she isn't overlooking the majority English speaking listeners in Singapore either. Her head-bobbing new single 'No To Bounce' was featured on 987FM Home, a radio program dedicated to homegrown music talents, and she is definitely looking to work for more exposure to further establish her versatility. "I want to try my best, which ever way I can manage, to get my music heard," she sums up.
And yeah, she also doesn't rule out the possibility that you may find yourself, well, bouncing to her track when you're in a club someday, but for now I guess we'll just have to stick to the typical sex -induced staples of Hip hop.