Akua Naru is the new name in hip-hop world. Her first album “The Journey Aframe” was released in the beginning of 2011 and became very popular among people who enjoy jazzy hop. Smooth tunes and acute lyrics are the distinctive characteristics of Akua Naru’s songs.
First of all, I would like to know some information about you. All I could find is the fact that you live Germany.
I am originally from New Haven, Connecticut-USA
Could you tell me, how did you decide to become the music artist?
I don’t believe that the decision to make music was a conscious choice. I feel that I had always had the natural inclination to write down my thoughts in poetic form. After a while, i began to recite those poems...Those poems would often rhyme and before you know it I was rapping. I was a little girl, maybe 6 or 7.
Wow! That's really impressive! And how did your parents react on the fact that their daughter writes poems?
My family was very very supportive. My Mom, of course, thought it was adorable and she tried to create every opportunity for me to share my work with others. When it was clear to them that I was interested in rhyming, they were very supportive. My Mother taught me that if I wanted to rhyme then I should work to be the best at what I do. We used to have concerts in the backyard where I would rap with my cousins and we would invite other people in the neighborhood to come and see us. They had to pay a quarter to get in. Now that I think about it, it really makes me laugh. It was a great time.
It's so great. Because not all parents support children's art skills.
I am lucky. My Mom is my biggest fan.
Awesome! And what music did you listen in your childhood and teenage time?
I grew up listening to soul music--blues, jazz, r&b, funk, gospel, reggae, hip hop.
Ok, I see. And what modern female artists impress and inspire you nowadays?
There are many. Lauryn Hill, India Arie, Jill Scott, Jean Grae, Medusa, there are too many too list.
So, you live in “hip-hop life” all your ages. That really impressive. Now I'm not so awfully questioned why your album is so cool. As I see there are a lot of great reviews on it. Music critics really like it. Your album is full of smooth jazzy tunes and awesome lyrics. How long have you been working to make such great material?
I started working on the album in November 2009. We worked on it for a year. Of course, in order to write the songs I had to live and have experiences which in turn became the music. Those experieces definitely came out of the last couple years of my life, which led up to the point where we began conceptualizing the album.
There's a song on your album titled “The World Is Listening”. As I understood it's devoted to the topic of woman and music. Is it hard to be a girl in a hip-hop world?
The song is definitely dedicated to the Female Hip Hop artists that have contributed greatly to hip hop music and culture. It’s just a fact that female rappers have not been supported like their male counterparts. The issues that we face are different.In terms of being a woman in hip hop, I definitely do think that it is more challenging. It’s just a fact that female rappers have not been supported like their male counterparts. The issues that we face are different. Of course, then it is difficult because this is what we are up against. At the same time though, I feel that there are a lot of people who have been supportive and are ready to hear female voice in hip hop. Enough is enough.
And what plans do you have for 2011? Are you working on new songs?
I am working on the next album at the moment. I am always working to create music. This year I am planning to do more shows with my band as well.
Wow! I'm glad to hear that. As I noticed on your web-site, you’re going to give some shows in United States.
I am from the States so it’s more like a homecoming to me. I began there.
Ok, and how long do you live in Germany?
I’ve been here in Cologne, Germany for 3 and a half years.
Did you go there because of music or any other circumstances?
I believe that fate led me here. I met a special person that invited me to come here. I came, fell in love with the city, and decided to stay.
And how can you characterize modern German hip-hop scene?
There is a nice hip hop scene going on out here. People here love good music and they come out to support what they like. There is definitely a lot of love for hip hop music and culture. There are lots of b-girls and b-boys, grafiti artists, super dope producers and emcees.
And are there any differences from american performers?
There are definitely differences. I cannot say that all of those differences are culturally based. I think performers are different from one to another. The art itself is the same though. That’s what I love about the power of hip hop. You can go anywhere in the world and you will find people rocking and representing it.
And the last question. Would you like to say anything to your listeners?
Russia is definitely listening!! peace.
Interview was made by Sergey Kaplichniy.
Exclusively for musicserf.com
You can listen and download for free two releases.