interview: georgia anne muldrow discusses her evolving sound, inspiration, and her new rap album
By Sound Check
August 4, 2015
Georgia Anne Muldrow is a neo-soul electro artist hailing from L.A. She is calling her own shots as the co-founder of the record label SomeOthaShip Connect, started in 2006 with her husband and fellow artist, Dudley Perkins. After both working under the Stones Throw record label they decided to cut ties and take charge of their own lyrical destinies. Georgia released her first rap album: ‘A Thoughtiverse Unmarred’ earlier this summer. Full of light, intuition and the fighting spirit of Black Panther, the mother nurtured us with this album while giving us a rap album with all its gutsiness. She talked to AFROPUNK about the evolution of this album, her inspiration and personal sense of style.
By Priscilla Ward, AFROPUNK Contributor
When did you first become interested in music?
I think it started when I was in my mom’s belly, I liked what they were doing and I liked what I heard. But I think when I figured out I could get tone out of something that’s when the fire was lit.
How has your family influenced you?
It was ingrained in me to never commit to an instrument that my parents did. It was the sense of rebellion and not wanting to commit to anything personally. However not wanting to disappoint them was something I had to break through, it brought a lot of pain. My parents showed me Coltrane and it changed me forever.
What keeps you inspired?
I guess it’s the same things with reading—courageous shit that lends to it’s own originally. A lot of people feel like they have to have their shit in order for me to like it. Erica Brown, Merrian Johnson and Polly Barret are inspiring. But I’m also inspired by a lot of nonmusical things like people.
Tell me about putting together your first rap album?
Declaime (a.k.a. Dudley Perkins) is the organizing force within my record-making process. The whole idea was his. I wasn’t even sure if I’d be able to do it! He’s the one that helps me cut through all my bullshit and get back to the work of being an intentional recording artist.
Can you tell me a bit more about working with your Husband and Chris Keys to produce this project?
Declaime and Chris Keys both gave an incredible amount of support to this project. I didn’t have to worry about a thing while creating it. I felt like both of them were really in my corner. Still do. Chris Keys is someone I really do respect as a musician, his angle is very original…flips time signatures and everything. When we went up to the Bay to visit him at his studio…it was clear through his taste in audio gear, good vibes and serious hands on the keys that the cat knows exactly what sounds he is going for.
How do you feel your music contributes to movement building?
I’ll never know, only time can tell. I know that we have spiritual needs, people of color have spiritual needs and our music needs to contribute to our black experience.
What do you believe your place is within the movement?
It’s kind of hard for me to say what my place is within the movement. I would love for more people to get the courage and speak what they are feeling. I would fully diminish the rewards, verse the corporate structure verses vetting on the corporate structure. I would love to see the whole reward and less of the patting on my head. It needs a lot more of what is in the heart. It’s about a movement of the heart and the mind, and the music plays second to all of that.
How long did it take to put together this album?
It didn’t take a lot of time actually. Making sure I’m on task and not losing the energy. I did this record 3-years ago, my son was 3 years old. It took like a week in a half because I was allowed the space and time to really go in like that.
How has being a mother changed your music or has it taken it to a different place?
I’ve been a mom for a while. It’s the same things. It’s a continuation of what it means to be a wife, and I’ve been a wife for 10 years. It’s further helped me to value life here on earth. I use to have a sarcastic glazed look at the world. You can’t change yourself and you are just stuck into the hell of your own habits, there is no drug and being responsible for young humans and nothing else can fill that place.
Where would you like to take your career in the next 5-7 years?
I would like to see my people smile on me, make the life of my children easier—so they don’t feel like they are at a lost for support, even if they want to strike it out on their own, that stuff will be so tight that it can really contribute to that stuff as well, you can’t do it alone.
How is the music industry changing?
The landscape of the music industry is changing so. I think there is a campaign to make it less than what is.
How have you faced any issues because of your image?
There have been a lot of things, people saying that I need an image consultant, people saying we are too revolutionary. I’m just saying what people are thinking in the streets. I think it’s that kind of thing. Being told I’m too black for TV. The distancing from people feeling like people are scared of me sometimes, it’s not us it’s what we represent.
So you spoke a lot about the devaluing of black art, how have you have Personally had to deal with this?
It’s something that I pray I never learn to deal with. To be in the full throes of expansive declaration is all I ever wanted for black music. We deserve that…at least that’s what the universe tells me. Black folks got a way of birthing new ways to do it. And it reaches humanity if they can just give it up and learn from it.
What can we expect from you next?
Featuring on great records like Declaime’s ‘Southside Story’; (available now. Also produced by Chris Keys as well as the precursor to this project), ‘Ceremoni’ by Kriswonetwo (out this fall), Declaime’s ‘Young Spirit’ (release TBD) is the best work I’ve ever done as an album producer and engineer. ‘Ms. One Fantastic Voyage’ is a production compilation as a part of the Ms. One series that got a good chunk of our collaborative family on it. I would like to collaborate with more female emcees and producers who are so Ultra Boss. And more work with Jazz and Funk Titans, as it were. Oh yeah, and Dudley’s helping me piece together this new fangled modern industrial R&B album…features some incredible producers…and a lil bit of auto tune…cause Vocoders are my friend.
* Priscilla Ward is a writer whose work has been featured on Health.com, Youngist.org, as well as in Essence and Ammo magazine. She’s obsessed with natural hair, bell hooks, sandwiches and really cool art shows. You can find her tweeting about running one moment and being black the next @Macaronifro
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