Continuing with the theme of all things black and gay this week in anticipation of the kick off of the 12th Annual Atlanta Black Gay Pride, my attention shifted towards Miss Aisha, a young Atlanta-based female rapper who at first glance seemed like an unusual choice to be profiled on this site until I heard her single “Boys Kiss Boys”.
The title of the song alone is enough to either turn the average music listener off or just enough to entice them to hear exactly what this in your face rapper has to say lyrically on the subject.
Born and raised in New Orleans to a conservative family, Miss Aisha, who identifies as a heterosexual woman admits she didn’t always have the “live and let live” attitude towards gays and lesbians and would often judge, until being exposed to gays during a stint in the military after high school and later as an exotic dancer in New Orleans pre- Hurricane Katrina.
The inspiration for “Boys Kiss Boys” came after Miss Aisha read Terrance Dean’s book Hiding in Hip-Hop and out of her real life experiences with men who on the surface appeared to be completely heterosexual but enjoyed all of the pleasures commonly associated with gay sex.
Given the rampant homophobia that exists in mainstream hip-hop, the demonization of black gay men by the straight black community, and the purported lack of eligible men for black women, one would expect Miss Aisha to be on the defensive and less than kind to boys who kiss boys, but if Katy Perry can have a #1 Billboard hit where she croons “she kissed a girl and she liked it” then Miss Aisha can defy the angry & homophobic black woman stereotype and do the same. And boy does she ever!
While Perry’s delivery may be sweet and demure Miss Aisha’s flow is raw and uncensored.
I know that boys kiss boys
And I like when boys kiss boys
The world don’t understand
So they call them faggots
People what’s happening?
“I write from the heart and I would never write a song bashing somebody for who they are, because at the end of the day we’re all people”, says Miss Aisha who has yet to perform the controversial song live before an audience.
“Our community can be so judgmental”, according to Miss Aisha. “I lost a male friend of three years after he heard the song. I think he was afraid of being singled out and labeled a punk for being associated with me, but I had to write what I felt.
It took Miss Aisha only two days to pen the song and the final result is an explicit call for us to stand firm in who we are and to respect the differences that make us all unique, but in her own unique style and with just the right amount of profanity laid over an amazing beat.
The messenger may look a little different, but the importance of the message being delivered through a genre that reaches millions of people can change hearts and minds. Don’t you think?
Listen to Boys Kiss Boys here (NSFW)
Visit Miss Aisha on Myspace here
More about Miss Aisha:
She has been a rap artist for 8 years, and released a project online in 2007 titled "Gucci Girl Fly." With little promotion, she had success as an ITunes Indie Artist having 3 of her album's tracks on their Indie Top 10 Music Chart. Her musical inspiration came from her aunt Barbara George, who was an accomplished songwriter and performer in the 1960's with her BMI Award Winning Song, "I Know." The song, "Boys Kiss Boys" was produced Atlanta's own The Beat Squad – www.thebeatgame.com