Out Artists on the Rise

What do a gender-bending opera diva, an innovative guitar virtuoso and a queer electro-rap group have in common? They’re all part of our profile of 16 unique out musicians on the brink of stardom


The city that has given the world Eminem and Kid Rock has now blessed hip-hop fans with Detroit rapper Feloni, who describes her sound as “Raw. Definitely for the grown and sexy with open minds. I’m a Sagittarius…we are not afraid to say what we feel.”

Her openness about her lesbian identity has been what she calls an “interesting” experience. “I’ve had some people in the industry tell me that I won’t sell if I rap solely about ‘gay shit.’ I want to talk about life from my perspective. I tell people all the time that I’m not a rapper. I’m life’s witness, and I want to talk about what the black community is afraid to talk about. As Kanye West stated, hip-hop is homo-phobic. Inconsequentially, I’m also here to push the limits of hip-hop’s sexuality.”

Feloni turned to writing prose and poetry to deal with her mother being a victim of domestic violence, eventually using her mother’s karaoke machine to put her poetry to music. However, there’s no hint of spoken word on the track “Brand New,” which is more reminiscent of Missy Elliott—if she had half of Feloni’s swagger.

Feloni is currently finishing her debut album A Woman’s Revenge, which will be released on her own label Trak Diamond Records in the fall. “Brand New,” along with other tracks from her album can be previewed on MySpace at myspace.com/feloni.
Sophia Dorval

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