Yo! Majesty want you to get your ass on the floor. Well, the grammar there might not be entirely correct at this point, as what was once a duo seems to now be a solo act. In 2007, Yo! broke into the club rap scene like a Christian lesbian rap duo to be reckoned with, the Tampa natives' juicy rump pumper of a single, "Club Action," remixed and re-edited and re-jiggled to death like a Hollywood starlet's face. Every hipster DJ in the fricking world had that jam in the front of their crate ( wait, who are we kidding -- we mean iPod). But now Shunda K gets all the club action to herself as partner Jwl B. is in the clink on assault charges.
When CityPages.com heard this bummer (days after The Election), we hit up Miss Shunda over e-mail to see what we should expect this Monday at the Triple Rock, now that the outspoken Yo! is one woman down. Here's what she said:
GN: Are you nervous to finish out this tour as a solo artist, without your girl Jwl B. to back you up?
SHUNDA: I'm looking forward to performing the whole album all by my damn self cause I ain't scared!!! I'm working on perfecting the show with my dj, DJ Orion, and my dancers, Apollo & Shiva. But whoooo...you can imagine da emotions. I'm stayin focused on da mission, to show da world what real love is all about through my life, being a living example of how blessed one really is when following the footsteps of da Lord no matter what. All odds are against me and people feel I am unworthy to be who I say I am and am striving to be, but I have to keep it movin on they ass.
See, I've learned to keep my eyes focused on myself and what it is I'm to be doin' instead of worrying about what da next man is doin'. You can spend all ya life worrying bout da next, but I am somebody too and I have a responsibility on dis earth too...dat's wassup!!!
GN: OK, now let's get the Obama question out of the way: How did you feel when we as a country elected the first black president on the 20th? Where were you?
SHUNDA: I felt great as I already knew dat Obama was da grace and mercy of God being shown on America for da good people dat still live here, like myself, not mention a man for da world!!! Obama got da whole world on lock, we all got his back!!!
I was in Dublin, Ireland on election day and wrote dis track in London soon after, check it out "Sometime It Takes...Rainy Dayz'. [Editor's note, Shunda includes this track for our readers at the end of this post].
(Shunda K.on the left, Jwl B on the right)
GN: Your song "Club Action" was alllll over dancefloors in 07/08. I lived in Chicago at the time and it was played at every DJ gig I attended, I think.
SHUNDA: Yea, dat's a blessing dat "Club Action" did as good as it did considering it's over 7 years old since being recorded (but it's really 11 years old as my artist Blaque Pop wrote da hook in 1998)! I created the name Yo! Majesty in 1998 as I was an aspiring basketball great and really feeling dis rap shit! It was me, Pop, and his cousin Spider J. We had a lil' group and wrote like 5 or 6 songs, "Club Action" being one of them.
GN: What happened to the rest of your crew, then?
SHUNDA: Things really wasn't poppin' for us so everybody kinda went they own way. In 2000, I met Shon B and we decided dat "Ya" Majesty could be a group. From there we met Jwl B in 2001 and all 3 of us came under the "Ya" Majesty brand. Now, it seems dat Yo Majesty is being restored back to me...all glory be to God.
GN: Tell me a little bit about your lifestyle when you're not touring. What do you like to do when you have, say, a free couple hours?
SHUNDA: I never have any free time, man. I do, however, make time for my wifey Tedra. I'm planning on marrying her ass in Connecticut sometime next week. :)
Aside from dat, I have a few artists I manage and am getting ready to release some solo stuff including a mixtape: "The Best Eva Written...Outkased." I take like 20 Outkast intros and am [rapping] to the heterosexual peoples on morale', integrity, child rearing, independence, everything you can possibly imagine. The project features my artist JERZY.
So, the mixtape, a Shunda K album "The Most Wanted...Cause So Many Niggas Fronted", and a 3rd cd featuring Shunda K acapellas and original production from up&coming producers will be presented in a 3in1 cd realease available for download at www.shundak.com dis Spring!
Donations will be accepted!!
GN. A lot of people are saying that with this new political era, club music and hip-hop might start to mature a bit, and we'd see more "conscious" stuff coming out ... Do you feel that? Would we ever see Yo! rapping about poliics and the conflict in Darfur, etc, etc?
SHUNDA: Hell to da yeah its 'bout to get real real for a lot of these elementary wiz kids...lol! Yo Majesty is already rapping bout political shit, like on "Break Bread." Shunda K fin'a take ova da world like da Jerry Curl, baby!!!
GN: What is one of the wildest nights you've had while on tour and can you
indulge us in what it might have entailed?
SHUNDA: We were in Canada and we decided to sleep in da car instead of getting a hotel. Before everybody went to bed, we decided to smoke a blunt and right before it was gone, da damn police start knocking at da window and shit 'bout to take ah nigga to jail. To make ah long story short, we had already hid da green in case somethin' like dat happened, and before I let my peoples open da door I hide da blunt behind my ear.
They ain't find SHIT!!! (After dis get's published I'mma have to come up with a new scheme though...lol)
DOWNLOAD IT: SHUNDA K'S "SOMETIMES IT TAKES RAINY DAYZ"
YO! MAJESTY performs Monday, Feb. 2 with Natalie Stewart of Floetry, Desdamona, Alicia Leafgreen and DJ Agent Orange at the Triple Rock, 629 Cedar Avenue, Minneapolis