Saturday, August 25, 2007
Foxxjazell-Rapping Towards Success
"If people are ready for white rappers, then they are ready for me,"
22 year old Keva Jackson, AKA Foxxjazell is determined to prove that people are ready for a transgender rapper. She's part of an emerging GLBT hip-hop scene that has been around since the late 80s, but has only recently appeared on the radar screens of the larger GLBT community thanks to Alex Hinton's 2005 Pick Up The Mic documentary that was broadcast on LOGO last October.
The Birmingham, AL born mocha skinned beauty dreamed of stardom from an early age, but was advised by her hardworking parents to choose a more 'logical' career such as nursing or teaching. After graduating from high school at 17 with honors, she bought a one way bus ticket and headed west with less than $20 in her purse.
After arriving in Hollywood the 5'10" Foxxjazell modeled for a while. She became disenchanted with it and set her sights on achieving her life long dream.
Foxxjazell also has her sights set on a much higher goal as well. She wants to become a role model for other people struggling with the transgender issue. She also desires to be a voice for the transgender community.
She told LA Daily News reporter Phillip Zonkel in a February 2007 interview that the decision to be open about her transgender status wasn't an easy one.
"In the beginning, people didn't know what to make of me when I sang at nightclubs," she says. "You're more accepted if you stay in your box, a drag queen who lipsynchs.
"I'm not a drag performer. I rap with my own music."
Foxxjazell's style of blended dance music with hip-hop is increasingly getting her attention. She was recently interviewed on the Tyra Banks Show and has built a following in California. Since the thug-life genre of hip-hop is crashing and burning right now the time may be right for her and other GLBT rappers to push to fill that hip-hop void.
"I want to go mainstream," Foxxjazell says. "I have something strong to say that everyone can relate to - 'Be Yourself.' "