We recently had the pleasure of attending the Treble Tuesday launch party, and met Freakquencee, one of the artists who performed that night. Immediately what struck me, was Freakquencee’s style and flow which is a combination of spoken word, rap, and r&b. It is nothing short of a musical experience. Freakquencee noted that her sound is “something to learn from, grow from, share and take with you.”
When we asked Freakquencee why she chooses to express herself through spoken word, she told us exclusively that “spoken word allowed me to find my voice and power for the first time. I think emceeing and spoken word is one in the same. Before I realized I was an emcee, I was first a poet.”
The struggle for success has been all to real for Freakquencee. As a queer, black woman, who is also a rapper, she often feels the need to prove herself as a musician. Within the industry, “Women have somehow gained a bad rep, so whenever I’m performing for a new crowd I feel like before I open my mouth, I’m either expected to not be able to rap, to rap about my sexuality, to not be able to stand in the same ring as my male companions or something other than that. I like the element of surprise though.
“I also feel the need to not care most of the time. I feel like my biggest battle is with myself and I have all the sport I need competing with myself. I’ve addressed every issue and problem I have ever encountered with music. Music is my power. I think that’s how I’m able to put so much feeling into my lyrics. Whenever I felt people weren’t taking me serious I put it into a song.”
By being visible and growing as an artist, Freakquencee is trying her best to bring about the change she would like to see within the industry. She wants to see a shift in the message behind the music and more protection of artists. “The way business is handled between artists and industry professionals. As artists the industry will never be anything without music. Somehow and somewhere down the line the industry made artists feel and believe that we need them.”
That is why her collaboration with Treble is so important because it gives the creators more power. Treble strives to be the IMDb of the music industry. It is an app that allows you to view the whos who of the industry and can connect with them through the app. Making it a one stop shop for an artist on a budget.
Freakquencee found herself involved with Treble after meeting Matt Bond, the founder and CEO of Treble Music. It started where they would bump into each other at industry events like “The Cozy Market” presented by ORG. When they first started talks of having Freakquencee on board, she was surprised at how connected Bond was with the underground artists as he recognized her in their first meeting. “We talked for a bit about how he heard of me, he gave me a code to use when signing up for the app. Of course, a lot of things happened in between and it was probably a year or less later when I stepped into their old apartment to perform and landed a show with them at Jump into the Light, a virtual reality studio in Lower East Side, NY.”
With strong lyrics like “Whether you’re running from drugs or you’re running from trauma, or you’re running from home and all that mess with your momma, or you’re running from cops, all that shit with your pops, maybe you’re running from life but it all has to stop. Can’t keep running away, keep you feet on the gravel you can’t keep running away… can’t keep running,” from her song “Running Away”. It has an ebb and flow that could characterize the song as lofi hip-hop, but with the lyrical intensity of “This is America” by Childish Gambino. With whatever she is performing, Freakquencee brings a rawness and freshness to her music. She bares her soul and tells the tales of her past. A main theme of her music, is addiction and her Mother’s drug addiction has affected her not only as an artist, but as a daughter.
“Due to my mother’s drug addiction, I never got to know my mother the way I had always wanted to. We were never fully able to build a relationship even to this day. A lot of the music I’ve written over the years have been songs about our relationship, my experience with having her absent most of my life, words the two of us may have shared and even sometimes how, all and all, I just wanted a bond with her.”
“I give people the truth of my reality and hope that they will and can learn from my experiences. I hope that they can connect to the very real situations I write about and I hope that, like me, they too can push forward and continue to live, learn and grow. My music says if I’ve been through it and I am still here today spreading my peace and my story you can do it twice as better.”
We had a long talk after that about Freakquencee’s whys, and why she chooses to be sober. “That’s hard to answer.” She said to me as she furrowed her brow, “I can fall quick into addiction just like anyone else. Whether it was in my home or in my city. I grew up in an environment where most the people in my community had a close or distant relative that suffered from addiction. In a way it all helped me to find a different path.
“[I would say for anyone seeking sobriety to] remember it is a journey, be kind to yourself, let people in, let someone in, it is okay to need support, be it from a relative, friend or stranger. You are never alone, there is a whole community of people that feel your story and whether you see us or not this story isn’t yours alone. Take it a day at a time.”
Freakquencee could very well be the phoenix the industry needs. With her new approach to rap and her deep connection to the sober community, from the outside looking in, she appears to be the full package. To follow Freakquencee’s journey, you can follow her on Treble and Instagram, @Freakquencee. And be sure to check out her sober motivation playlist on Soundcloud.