Ocala, Florida-based hip-hop outfit StreetSmartz101 recently unveiled the music video, “Queen’s Anthem,” a song celebrating female empowerment.
“Queen’s Anthem” follows on the heels of “Tray Stay Open” and “That’s My Dog,” two single giving notice to the music industry there’s a new hip-hop dynamo making waves.
With incisive lyrics, like “Tug of war. Do what I can, need you on my side / Leadership. Use your brain, they so far behind / Independent, that’s what got me blowing up your line / Your open mind. One of a kind. Yes you’re so divine,” StreetSmartz101 extols the role of women, essentially the foundation of everything worthwhile.
That idea carries over into StreetSmartz101’s philosophy of family first, along with their brand. As G shares in the interview, “No individual is greater or bigger than the STREETSMARTZ101 brand.”
Opening on a heavy trap beat topped by oscillating synths, “Queen’s Anthem” combines the muscle of hip-hop with whooshing droning accents and tight, deluxe rapping flows.
The video depicts the tour de force presence of women, applauding their independence, power, confidence, and resolve despite all obstacles.
Muzique Magazine spoke with StreetSmartz101’s G, asking about how he got started in the game, his influences, and how StreetSmartz101 keeps their sound fresh.
How did you get started in music? What’s the backstory there?
Basically, music has always been my first love. I got a drum set for Christmas when I was 5 or 6. Ever since then, I couldn’t get it out of my soul. As I got older, my nephews fell in love with it also. After serving an 8-year sentence in federal prison, I told myself it was time to share our story as a family unit. We decided to put our pain, joy, and mistakes into our music. Therefore, we are introducing to the world STEERTSMARTZ101.
Who is in StreetSmartz?
STREERTSMARTZ101 is a family group. The members are G, Dappa Fresh, TR, Skeem Mi, Nickel Bag Polo, and B Jones. No individual is greater or bigger than the STREETSMARTZ101 brand.
Which singers/musicians influenced you the most?
I love all music that inspires and impacts its listeners. I love Sam Cooke, Ron Isley, The O’Jays, etc. Rap-wise, I don’t have enough time in the day to list them all. Lol. Creatively, I love Kendrick Lamar, Bruno Mars, Anderson Paak. The list can go on and on.
Which artists are you listening to right now?
I’m listening to Silk Sonic at the moment.
As StreetSmartz101, what’s been your biggest challenge so far?
Staying consistent and keeping everyone focused on the goals we have set for ourselves. The old saying is “Everybody wants heaven, but no one wants to die.”
How do you keep your sound fresh and avoid coming across as derivative?
We tend to stay in the moment. We believe that if you stay focused on what YOU are doing, you don’t have time to worry or copy anyone else.
What is your songwriting process? Do the rhymes come first, or the music?
It all depends. When I work on a track, sometimes the song tells me the topic. And at times, I can build a song by hearing the words and melody in my head.
Why do you make music?
I make music because it’s a part of me. I don’t know what I would do if I couldn’t make music. Lol.
What was the inspiration for your new single/music video “Queen’s Anthem?”
We all decide to be a part of something special. Since we all came from a woman, that’s a Tupac line btw. We just wanted to show some respect to the builders of society.
What do you want people to take away from the video?
They should take away that STREETSMARTZ101 acknowledges and respects all women in today’s world.
Where was the video shot and who directed it?
I can’t lie. It was shot by me. G. Lol. Let’s leave it at that, Lol.
How are you handling the coronavirus situation?
My sister is recovering from Covid. I’m thankful that she was seen in time before it got worse. That really hit home for us. The whole pandemic has given us time to reflect on what’s important.
Looking ahead, what’s next for StreetSmartz101?
After the “Queen’s Anthem” campaign, we are dropping another single called “Black Tears.” This song will change the world, so I hope that everyone receives it with their hearts open. We will continue to give our fans music that will last for a lifetime. So, stay tuned and stay connected with STREETSMARTZ101.