If you’re going to be a success in the rap world, you’re going to have to be a fighter. More so if you’re a female rapper, and even more so if you’re one from Ottawa, Canada. Just as well Mischa knows exactly where to lay her punches, because she fits into every single one of those categories. The Canadian hip hop artist has dropped her most recent single, ‘G2G’, accompanied by a music video which sees her spitting bars in the middle of a boxing ring. Lisa got a chance to speak about her latest release.
There’s a good reason boxing is a recurring metaphor in hip-hop videos. When you’re under the lights and in the heat of battle, it’s just you, your wits and skills, and the power of your punch. Mischa doesn’t look like she’s got the goods – she’s wearing a long pink skirt in the clip – but once she opens her mouth she leaves you in no doubt about her quick thinking, and fleet-footedness. Likewise, in the video for ‘G2G’, we see Mischa backed on the ropes…until she isn’t; once she breaks free, woe betide anyone who gets in her way.
Mischa sees the huge mic in the ring, and with an aggressive delivery she cuts down anyone who stands in her way. Aggressively rhyming, her song could be aimed a partner who simply isn’t making the grade, or it could just as easily be targeted at slower, less talented (presumably male) vocalists who won’t get out of Mischa’s way.
‘G2G’ is the latest release for Mischa, including the sassy ‘Woke Up’, a collab with fellow Ottawa singer-songwriter Baëbe Ruth; the exquisite ‘Cruise Control’, and ‘Alpha Barbie’, which is a statement of purpose and mission from an emcee whose time has come.
You can find out everything you want to know about Mischa and her music here. Watch the video for ‘G2G’ below.
Lisa also got to chat too Mischa about her music and new single, ‘G2G’. Check it out!
Heya Mischa, thanks for speaking to us! Your new single, ‘G2G’ dropped last week with a hard-hitting music video set in the boxing ring. As a female rapper, do you feel you’re in a fight against male rappers (the shackles in the clip would suggest so), and if so, what is your go-to punch in order to win the bout?
Thanks for taking the time to reach out and chat with me! To touch on the “G2G” music video and your question: yes and no. The music industry lacks the representation of womxn, and it can be tough to be heard over the numerous male voices that are often looked at as the ones dominating the Hip-hop scene. It’s not so much of a fight against the male rappers themselves, as it is against the system that has instilled these disadvantages from the beginning of time. The amount of male rappers that I personally listen to, support, and/or know, have a great respect for women in the industry pursuing their craft, but it goes into the depths where a lot of business bodies in the industry will actively look to pin other females against one another, or make it seem as if there can only be one top female in the industry. The “G2G” music video represents me being ‘held back’ by anyone or anything that doubts or underestimates me. The toxic negative energy that continuously speaks into the moves I make, and actively tries to take me down a notch, if I take one step forward. It’s the way that if I take on a venture with a fellow male colleague in the industry, he gets all of the respect and praise for this venture while I get looked at as tagging along on the side-lines, meanwhile I’m the one who is navigating the opportunity in a major way. It’s the lack of respect that is given to me when I’m working with people in a business music setting, and that can range from the pay I’m receiving, the title that’s assigned to my job description, or being told that I’m overreacting when all I want is the same respect that I treat everyone with. “G2G” is breaking free from all of that, and coming to the realization that saying ‘I don’t need you,’ to all of these toxic industry people is the knock-out punch, and best decision that I can make. I’ll always be in my corner, but these people come and go in abundance. This is only the start of my journey.
The Canadian rap scene isn’t one we’ve heard much about before; can you tell us a little bit about it, and what got you into this style of music? (by the way we’re loving all the Canadian references in the track – and also “Norton anti-virus” made us smile!)?
There is such a myriad of styles that fall into the Canadian Hip-hop scene, and it’s so wonderful to see that contrast amongst a genre and culture that has greatly transitioned over time. Toronto gets looked at as the hub of Canadian Hip-hop, but what a lot of people don’t seem to realize is that the talent in Canada goes above and beyond Toronto and the GTA (greater Toronto area). Being an artist based out of Ottawa, I find that we have such a diverse group of people that are navigating through Hip-hop in a way that either honors the culture, or strays into a sub-division of the genre. Either way, it’s great to see what we offer, and I find that Ottawa itself is often slept on as a whole. We are the capital of Canada after all.
Your single, ‘Woke Up’ was released in collaboration with Baëbe Ruth. How important is it, do you think, for women artists to support each other? Do you feel a certain camaraderie with other women artists?
I think it’s crucial, and unfortunately due to the system that’s put in place, a lot of womxn think that there can only be one on top and it sends them into defense mode. Thankfully, the amount of womxn that I know in the industry that keenly support one another, is truly amazing. I believe that the support starts within each and every single one of us, and when one of us wins, we’re all winning. I love to see my fellow womxn industry moguls shine, and as we further progress in this new wave, more are coming out of their shell to have their voice heard.
Who do you count as among your inspirations musically? What about life in general?
Musically, I’ve always been inspired by Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, and Drake. Young Money is the reason that I got into music and focus so greatly on my word play. I began freestyling to instrumentals as a teen, long before a career as a musician even grazed my mind, and I’m forever grateful to find a group of great emcee’s as such to further allow me to explore Hip-hop as a culture and see the roots that go back to 1520 Sedgwick Avenue. In life, I’m inspired by the people that I surround myself with, and I find that’s the key to living a happy and successful life. Whether that be fellow musicians, Hevve, Dominique Gorley, Vante Poems, Jonny Brown, J Morris, and Quest, or my mother, sister, and father, the lessons that I’ve learned over time with these individuals have shaped me to be the person who I am today. This includes the person who is continuously looking to grow and evolve.
If you could start all over again, what, if anything, would you do differently, and why? What advice would you give to your younger self, or indeed someone else starting out right now?
I honestly wouldn’t change a single thing. I am a firm believer that my journey is the one that is destined for me. This is what’s written in the stars, and the path that I’m meant to be on. Being a very spiritual person, this means that I graciously welcome in the highs of the journey, and accept the lows of the journey as well. If I were to give advice to my younger self or anyone else beginning this journey, it would have to be: ‘Don’t be afraid to voice your opinion. Your voice matters, and never be coaxed into keeping your voice down.’
Finally – and I ask this of everyone I interview – What question do you wish someone would ask you in an interview, but nobody ever does?
I would say ‘What is the best way for your listeners to support your art directly?.’ – and to answer this question, there are various ways that everyone can listen and support my career as a Hip-hop artist. Sharing my links on their social media or directly to their friends and followers is a huge step. It’s so appreciated every time I see someone repost my content, and to be genuinely excited to share my craft with others. Other ways to support are by buying merchandise, attending live performances when possible, and ultimately buying my music directly from my BandCamp. (www.mischaofficialmusic.bandcamp.com). This ensures that the money that’s made from my artistry directly goes right back into my music in an impactful way. Also, pre-saving the song on Spotify or Apple Music before it comes out increases the chances of the track being picked up for an editorial playlist, and helps me get a coffee’s worth of royalties to brighten my day. All of these ways are greatly appreciated, and help me further pursue the depths of the music industry while being heard.