Miss Raisa is a talented rapper, who doesn’t shut up and who freely expresses herself about any topic that boils inside her, that reaches her, or simply because she feels like it. With a long career in writing, including two books and a few singles, she has conquered the ears of many with her music. Today we interviewed her for G13 Magazine so you can know a little more about her.
How did Miss Raisa start?
“It started by accident… Miss Raisa started by accident without realizing it at the age of 14 writing weird things badly written and very crappy but at that time necessary to be able to express herself, right, and find a little bit of who she was as a little human being who didn’t know where she was or what her place in the world was. So writing things beyond music because I didn’t even know what I was writing, they were just little stories or poems. I’ve always liked Sant Jordi, the celebration that is so cool in Catalonia because of the symbolism of the legend and the fact that it celebrates books and literature as well, and when I was a child I used to participate in the Sant Jordi contests at school and it was like an opportunity to share what I was writing. I wrote stories that I made up and I always won roses and prizes at school so it was like a sign from life… that… you could do it!
Then it was over time, I was consuming a lot of music and one time a mate at school asked me ‘do you just listen to music or do you write as well’ and it was… I have no idea about writing music ‘why not’ and… trying it out he helped me a bit with that… listening to a beat and trying to write something over it and it was such a cool experience of saying… how cool to be able to channel my emotions and turn them into a musical product! Something that you can listen to and feel afterward beyond what those emotions bring up in you. It was like something magical for me and very therapeutic above all. But I never wanted to be an artist because it was out of my reach… it was for people who had the resources and time to dedicate to it. My situation was to study, study, study and get a job to get out of the shit and it was my top priority at that time and… I have done it… it was in my free time that I would say “I’m going to write a song! I’m going to ask him to pass me a beat he has around and see what I can write on top of it. With the resources you have you try to do what you can.”
Did you ever rescue any of the old poems from when you won the Sant Jordi contests?
“Not that old but I wish… I would have been very excited, what I do remember… the year my father passed away I didn’t tell anyone about that time because it was super dark for me and super sad, the worst time of my life. For Sant Jordi that year, I made a story that not even the people at school knew that my father had passed away… I could not talk about it with anyone because I started to cry and I died there in my tears and I remember writing a story about a girl that I don’t know what about her father… and always those girls I talk about are always me in reality.But well, one takes refuge talking about third persons many times because it is very hard to talk from the first person, because sometimes I even get to the point of self-deception in my brain and self-protection and so on and so on that you say… fuck! How many traumas I must have inside. And well, I remember presenting the story, I won again that Sant Jordi but I couldn’t go on stage. They said by the title of the story and you knew it was your story and you went out to pick the rose but I remember that when that happened to me I couldn’t go on stage. I dared to present that story, plus you had to read a little piece of that and I… I die, I die… and I didn’t go out, but I don’t remember other stories. I remember this one because I remember it was very hard for me to be there in the audience, to know that it was my story and I pretended like I didn’t know anything, it’s not me.”
And now look where you are, also relating hard, personal personal things of your own and in front of people on a stage.
“Yeah, it’s just that actually, Imane Raissali, she’s a very shy girl. I’m shy in my day to day life, I go to a restaurant and I’m always telling my partner ‘you order, you order’. I die of embarrassment for silly, day-to-day things. Then I’m on a stage and I say ‘self-motivate my daughter because there’s no one pulling you right now’. Pretending a security that maybe you don’t have. I’m a bit of a sniffer dog, I have to walk around the stage, look at all the wiring, make jokes, if there is contact with the people I’m closest to, to find my point of trust and those are the ones I’m going to look at during the whole concert.
Each one does like her strategy to lose that fear and break that ice. I also do a lot of humor and make an asshole because it breaks the tension… and laugh at myself all the time. If I laugh at myself you can laugh because I already know that I have made mistakes in this, this and this and I know that my faults are these and my virtues are these, I know myself very well. So when you know yourself well and you laugh at yourself and you know what you do and what you don’t do, you can’t be offended if someone else tells you because you already know it.
So it’s really cool, because I come in, I’m nervous at that moment, I start goofing around and I say ‘excuse me if I forget a line but I have juvenile alzheimer’s’ and people are already ‘this chick is an asshole, how cool’ and you stop being a diva diva and you become a close chick, a close artist, a humble diva and that’s cool.”
What inspires you in your lyrics? Above all to speak openly because I see that you go straight to the point, you don’t make up, you are clear..
“I am inspired by life itself. I think that situations that happen to us every day, minimal or more important situations that could happen to all of us one day. I want to reflect, it happens to me a lot that… ‘what about this topic man?’ and I write a sentence or two and I don’t realize, I’m rolling and… I go on, and the next one, and the next one… and I’ve already made a whole song in a quarter of an hour just for a sentence and another sentence… and I’m spinning… for me it’s like talking to myself and I talk to myself a lot, both alone out loud and… I have blogs written on my phone or recorded videos of ‘man, I saw such and such’. … or I feel like this, and why do I feel like this?… and as I’m talking to myself I’m finding the answers a little bit. Really everything we have inside us is simply asking ourselves the right questions, because they are more important than the answers.
I realize what interesting things we have here and things we don’t even know… blocked memories, frustrated thoughts that many times we don’t want to question so as not to find something that makes us uncomfortable. But that reflection is so beautiful! Uncomfortable, I love it.
That is why I speak openly, because I am not surprised by anything, I am very predisposed to be contradicted with arguments because I am willing to open my mind and see things from different perspectives but to generate dialogue; let’s talk. I think that we human beings are intelligent, we should encourage more dialogue, shouldn’t we, and not close ourselves so much in that each one of us has the absolute truth because it is not true. There is no such thing as absolute truth, everything is relative, even what you believe to be such, another person according to his perspective may say he sees totally the opposite.”
Are people ready for your message?
“Well, I think that people who are minimally predisposed to see beyond their reality are. I don’t go with a ‘listen to me’ speech either. I believe that people have our tempos and our moments, I don’t like to force anything. I believe that everyone has their own moment to learn things and that they come at the right time, just as we don’t force a small child to mature quickly, we understand that there are processes and we have to respect them too. There will be people who will not understand my perspective right now?
I think it’s nice to understand and empathize with each other even if you don’t see it the same way, don’t you? I respect you and I understand your point of view, I understand how you feel and I understand what you are saying.
I don’t know if people will be ready or not, because people, as my daughter says, are many people. So, the people around me understand and I don’t need more, honestly, as long as I am convinced of my values and my beliefs I think it is more than enough. I go to sleep and I sleep satisfied and I sleep without regrets and I sleep happy… and people, well, each one will find it little by little”.
How do you perceive urban music and the space you have made for your music?
“Urban music… I actually listen to all kinds of music. Another thing that defines me a lot is that I never hear anything. I live in my mental bubble, I’m a very locally focused person. Happy, but numb. So I don’t know what’s going on in the world in general, I know a few things that I see around but I don’t know the evolution of urban music either. I do a lot of things but I don’t do any of them well, so…” (laughs) “I like to tell the truth, I don’t consider myself a talented girl. I have the talent of being able to multitask.
I’m convinced that my attitude is what has been leading me down a path of having opportunities like this festival, really. When you are a kind, nice person, when you are ready to learn from everything around you, from the people around you… when you are aware of your ignorance, your virtues, your flaws… then I think that attitude is very important in life because you make people want to surround themselves with you, people want to count on you for festivals, for events. Talent is very important but much more important is the behavior you have with others, the way you treat them, the values you have… values is the key word I think for life in general and attitude… giving off those beautiful vibes, that light, I think that’s what gives me opportunities in life. Because I have surrounded myself with very talented people many times who eat their snot. What does it mean? That in the end talent often does not lead us to success but rather how we manage our environment a little bit and in the end being smart is not having a lot of information but adapting to your environment.”
Will we have Miss Raisa’s album soon?
“I have never released an album, have you noticed?”
Do you feel like making an album? Because maybe you don’t feel like it and we are asking you a silly question.
“It’s a very good question and I really feel like it. But for me it’s very difficult to combine all the lives I lead in one, including the life of a mother, the life of a student, the life of a worker, the life of a freelancer, the life of a pregnant mother, I’m pregnant… and in the end the world of the artist is very unstable, you have little time to really create something consolidated and something long term, something more elaborated. Why? Because you are so dependent on being able to live in the artistic world that many times you either have economic support or family support to help you have this free time to have a month to lock yourself in a studio and create, or it is basically a very difficult task. And I try, and I have so many things written and so many lyrics and I promise you that even singles, it’s hard for me to release them… because otherwise it’s a book. Last year I released two books in the same year which for me was super intense that year… my daughter went to school for the first time and it’s like combining a thousand things that all make me very excited but realistically we have 24 hours a day. I don’t have a record label, I don’t have a manager, I don’t have anything… I do everything myself, because I have decided.
I prefer to control what is mine than to have it in the hands of others because I believe that no one will take my project and the emotions and values that I want to transmit in what is mine more seriously than I do. I don’t want to be manipulated, you know? I don’t want anyone to talk about things that I have not said or put things in my mouth that I have not said because in the end it is not Miss Raisa, it is other people managing Miss Raisa and I don’t want to be a puppet of anything, I want to be able to survive, I want to live peacefully doing things that I like and when I feel like it. I release music when I have time and when I really feel like it, I don’t follow the parameters of the music industry which is to release a single per month, to be constantly uploading to social media… because I value much more other things in my life.
I’m running away from being a slave to the internet because it’s not me and I don’t feel comfortable and I can’t maintain that consistency every day. I’m looking for my strategies, my ways but I know I’m not made for that rhythm. I want to be the owner of my life”.
Here we have had Miss Raisa, pure, sincere and real, we say goodbye to her and look forward to seeing her again!
G13 Club is a private social club for medical and recreational cannabis users based in Barcelona. It is also a space for musical and artistic development that promotes a multitude of activities focused on the expression and exhibition of urban, hip hop, reggae and skate culture.