Jean Grae

Music Showcase

SXSW Live Shots
Photo By Gary Miller

Jean Grae

Venue, Friday, March 14 It was about time for a female MC to show 'n' prove at SXSW 03, and Jean Grae did just that. Representing the sole female pheromones to touch the stage, the thug bitch seemed prepared to flip the script on a showcase headlined by a trio of Def Jux masculinity. Backed by co-Flower Mr. Len dropping DJ beat science on the double decks, plus discman and Mastermind Kimani adding verbal emphasis, the stage was set for the non-Ashanti, anti-sex kitten to quiet any skeptics for her solo buzz. Unphased by a low stage in a sea of male majority and her own live-performance hiatus, the hooded, tatted vixen instantly interacted with sharp freestyle exchanges that built quick connections to the entirety of the packed Venue. Dropping jaws from the get-go with quick wit and crass and foul-mouthed composure, the pint-sized natural beauty/X-Woman demanded respect for her unladylike style, spewing out eloquence with an unapologetic air. Grae pushed a punchy flow with continuously hard-hitting lyrics before becoming a mind reader full of mellow moods and "dirty mixes." Unleashing new material from her new, indie Attack of the Attacking Things, Grae combined all aspects of her tough-edged strutting sensuality; she had three flows, "one for the brain, one for pleasure, and one for real pain." Highlighted by "Love Song" and "No Doubt," here's hoping that all three of those flows flow into the bosom of hip-hop.

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