Watch Stichiz spit out her rhymes as the sole female in the song “We Dem Zoes” alongside Mecca AKA Grimo and Grimass. Yeah, she can hold her own. Born in Ottawa, Canada, the award-winning, hip-hop artist, radio personality, and community leader was raised by Haitian parents in Miami.
So without much ado, check out PART TWO of my interview with her. CLICK HERE if you missed PART ONE.
Kreyolicious: There’s Stichiz the artist, and Stichiz the radio personality. But, there’s also Stichiz the community leader who inspires a lot of girls. Who is the person who’s inspired you the most in life?
Really, my mom and sister they are just amazing human beings. And it may sound corny, but truthfully, Jesus inspires me when I read the Scriptures. How he treated people even in the midst of persecution and doubt from others, and knowing that there is a heaven. That’s inspiring and motivates me to do better and walk in purpose—according to his plan.
Kreyolicious: There are lots of girls out there who feel helpless and hopeless. Girls…women with degrees who can’t get jobs. Women who feel like their lives aren’t going anywhere…those who are facing age milestones and their lives are nothing like they thought it would be. What would you like to say to them?
For anyone [going through those types of situations], I would just say, “Don’t give up!” One of the things I truly believe is, if you are still breathing then God still has a purpose and plan for you. My advice is always to pray and ask God to guide and give me wisdom in what he wants to do. I may want to do something, but it may not be my calling but…there is something ten times better already set for you and me. Staying around positive and uplifting people is also very important. Your support systems are the people who will encourage you to keep moving forward when you feel like you want to give up. And honestly, whether you’re ten-years-old or fifty-two-years-old, when something is built in you and assigned for you to do, it will happen just stay prayed up and focused. Your time will come. Have faith, and believe that it will. Something that keeps me uplifted is Hebrews 11:1…that first line, “Now, faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
Above: Hyper-active in her community, the hip-hop artist and radio personality/community leader talks to youths during a OIC South Florida summit. Photo Credit: OIC South Florida
Kreyolicious: And what specific advice would you like to give to another female who wants to work in radio?
I would really encourage trying to get an internship, that will allow you to get your foot in the door and learn various positions. If an internship is not possible, reach out to a radio personality, and try to connect with them, be humble and show that you really want to learn. Of course, not everyone will help, but you never know they can give you pointers and some personal advice. Another option is finding a job within a radio station even if it’s not in programming or particularly being on air…Get your foot in the door. Pray and just work your way up honey.
The number one thing you need is a short air check—which is a recording of how you sound. Make your own personal show. I would definitely recommend whatever station you are interested in that you listen to that station and understand the format and create your aircheck based on what you hear on the station. If it’s about two minutes and maybe thirty seconds…that should be enough. Understand how the personalities are talking out of songs and into songs. Know your craft. Also, there are so many internet radio shows. Try to connect with someone who has a show on line and learn a few pointers or start your own show there as well. Possibilities are endless.
Kreyolicious: Do your parents have any misgivings about your having a career in radio and in hip-hop?
Not really for radio. My mom always says that she pictured me having my own show mainly on TV…[Laughter]But for music you know, they did. [Laughter] Being raised by Haitian parents, of course…being an artist/rapper was not something they wanted to hear about…especially since I was a little kid I talked about making a difference in my community as a lawyer/congresswoman/artist. It was really my sister who had my back consistently, I would be 12-years-old performing at events/clubs with grown men, coming home really late. My parents were not particularly happy with that.
But you know what I never forgot the day, must have been the grace of God, both of my parents came to one of my shows, and once they saw me perform…They were in complete shock! After that show, I saw that they really believed in me and were finally rooting for me. My sister really made them realize though that I was doing good in school, involved, and would rather go perform or record then go out and party! I don’t think I will ever forget that moment!
Kreyolicious: Is finding inspiration for your art easy?
Thank you sweet baby Jesus YES!!! I think mainly because my inspiration comes from life itself, a lot of it is my life, could be relating to the majority and the minority of our world! I plan to continue to make music that can be relative to anyone’s life, because once you can relate you can appreciate and that’s pretty much all I ask.
Kreyolicious: The perception in hip-hop, the impression in pop music is that brown-skinned girls don’t have it easy.
I remember hearing people say, “If you’re light, you’re alright. If you’re black, get back.” Well, I am what some have called dark-skinned, brown-skinned, [or] whatever is clever. At the end of the day, all black is beautiful! This is actually a serious perception that I have personally seen. [The darker the skin, the] lower the self-esteem of young girls and boys both consciously and many unconsciously. To be honest, this is something far deeper than just music and hip-hop. I’ll even stretch it a bit and say that this perception connects with the divide and conquer ideology theory. Ohh lawdy, you’re about to have me get deep in here. [Laughter]
Kreyolicious: Where do you hope to take your career?
Nowhere but up…honestly! I want to create a different sound of music. I want like many artist I know, to go back to the essence of what it means to be an artist. Loving, appreciating and understanding your craft the gift that God blessed you with, and having a real purpose. My goal is to be able to touch people positively from across the globe. Simple answer. [Laughter] The sky is the limit…Anywhere there are people! I hope to be able to spread the message and somehow help cultivate a new generation!
Above: Stichiz poses with two supporters.
Kreyolicious: You have a song “Anale”, that’s sung partly in English, and partly in Creole. Do you think it’s important for artists straddling the two identities to perform in Creole?
Well…really it’s kind of a given if you are an artist and you’re promoting yourself as a hip-hop Creole artist and you never cut a record where you’re not spitting in Creole at all or people never hear you performing in Creole at all, that pretty much defeats the purpose of tagging yourself as being a hip-hop Creole artist. That’s like an artist saying they are a reggaeton artist, but never speak a lick, line, bar of Spanish in their songs.
Nevertheless, I do not believe just because someone is of Haitian decent they have to perform in Creole, though I would say it would be nice and I am sure our Haitian community would, appreciate seeing someone from our culture doing a bang-up job representing. But, the truth is, it’s not every Haitian person [who] speaks Creole. [Laughter] But needless to say, a good…“Sakpase” I am sure would help! [Laughter] Personally, I love mixing English and Creole and twist of French in some of my songs…that’s part of my Stichzophrenic sound. I’m not going to run away from being who I am, so why not showcase it when I can!
Kreyolicious: When was the last time you went to Haiti? What was the impression you had?
A few years ago…I was pretty young. I can remember saying to myself, “Wow, this is not what I see on TV. The beaches were beautiful.” I can remember thinking somehow, when I get older I am going to do my part helping better my land!
Kreyolicious: Will your fans eventually get a full album from you?
Yasssssssssssssssssssss [Laughter] My EP is almost done. #SoulSearching will be dropping later in 2016 and I just released my new single “It’s Really Love”. Check out the video on Youtube! It’s also available for purchase on iTunes and GooglePlay. It’s such a fun song about love and has been getting airplay, so it’s been really wonderful.
If I can say thank you Kreyolicious for your support to all my supporters’ thank you, thank you, thank you and please know that I am working diligently. I have been writing a lot of songs, not only for myself but for other artist and producers, performing and hosting, right now. Feel free to stay connected with me.