Out Artists on the Rise

Hanifah Walidah

"I was at a house party, and someone mentioned how much easier it is to meet people at them." This conversation was the genesis for Hanifah Walidah's most recent accomplishment, the music video of her new single, “Make a Move,” of which she is both the star and the director. The video was made over a two-day shoot in Brooklyn, featured an all female cast and crew comprised of 30 women of color, and is set to appear on Logo. It will be accompanied by Keep It Movin', the documentary of the two day shoot, currently a work-in-progress. "I really feel we've made herstory," says Walidah.

Spoken word/hip-hop artist Walidah has been involved in New York City's music, poetry and theatre scenes since 1994. Over the past twelve years, Walidah has worked with numerous artists including the Brooklyn Funk Essentials and The Crystal Method. In 2004 her "hip-hopera" Adidi—The Untold Story featured Saul Williams, Mums the Schemer, and music from Earl Blaize of the Antipop Consortium.

This past year Walidah was the musical director for hip-hop adaptation of The Wiz, which she also scored, and is touring Europe during the summer, as well as performing at the Celebrate Brooklyn Festival in Prospect Park with the reunited Brooklyn Funk Essentials.

Any trials and tribulations for being out and female in her career? Walidah states that she has earned nothing but respect from her peers.

She is also preparing for the fall release of her upcoming sophomore album Once Upon It Is. Her website suckaforlife.com features up-to-date info on her upcoming performances and releases.