MIF & Unity Radio’s ‘Hip Hop Hustle-Hers’ July 4th @ Festival Square, Water Street, Manchester M3 4JQ
On Hip Hop’s 50th year anniversary, MIF & Unity Radio, in partnership with One Education, Beat Bazaar, and Manchester Hip Hop Archive come together to amplify the female voices within Hip Hop by shining a spotlight on strong women Hip Hop entrepreneurs from music, fashion, media and entertainment. The women who have, and continue to, play significant roles in growing and sharing Hip Hop within communities through DIY culture and entrepreneurship, often overshadowed in an industry and society in which male counter-parts steal the spotlight.
‘Hip Hop Hustle-Hers’, – coming together as strong women role models from across the culture, raising awareness of the challenges women in Hip Hop have faced over the last 50 years, providing visible role models for the next generation of young female Hip Hop artists and entrepreneurs to be inspired.
On August 11th, 1973, Cindy Campbell, along with her brother Kool Herc, decided to hold a ‘Back to School’ party in the recreation room at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue, West Bronx, to raise money for new school clothes. Cindy, a graffiti writer and B-Girl, who happened to have a brother who was a DJ, produced hand written invites to promote what is now considered the most significant and important event within Hip Hop history, giving birth to the ‘Block Party’ culture, at which DJ Kool Herc is recognised and credited as being the first DJ to use two turntables for ‘Breaks DJing’ providing the repetitive beats for Break dancers, and Rappers, which formed the basis of Hip Hop music and marks the very beginning of what is now globally recognised as the biggest listened to music in the US and has become a multi-billion dollar global industry.
Bringing together this special line -up during the 50th year anniversary off Hip Hop, in collaboration with Unity Radio, is the Manchester Hip Hop Archive education leader and also the founder and director of Beat Bazaar, Ottilia Ordog. Directing an organisation which provides music making opportunities, international projects, events, training for young people and the community, Ottilia has been contributing to Manchester’s music scene for the last 22 years. She has worked as a drum and bass promoter, a studio manager at Gorse Hill Studios, an artist manager managing grime and breakbeat acts such as RAW -T ( Manchesters first Grime Crew) and Backdraft. Ottilia was also a radio presenter on Unity radio for 10 years, bringing fresh talent through such as Lady Ice as well as the likes of MC Tunes.
About the artists / musicians / brands
MC and vibes queen, OneDa, has been carving out a career as a leading female rapper for almost two decades. Originally part of the ‘Batz ida Belfry’ duo with Envy, OneDa has extensive collaborations spreading her skills across a wide range of genres with Manchester Jungle, Grime, Dubstep and Hip Hop legends including Virus Syndicate, MC Trigger, and Mr Scruff. In. 2023 Oneda was nominated for Mentor of the Year at the 2023 Northern Power Women Awards for her work on the Arts Council-funded HERchester project, a talent development program championing female artists.
Lady Ice, an established Old Trafford rapper celebrated for her lyrical ability having performed alongside the likes of Bugzy Malone, Toddla T, Annie Mac, and being a regularly featured BBC Radio 1Xtra artist. Lady Ice finally broke through nationally after appearing on the BBC 3 Rap Game, destroying her male counterparts and rivals with punchy and hard hitting bars and clever metaphors. Lady Ice represents the raw elements of rap music, with honest and hard hitting powerful messages.
Manchester’s Envy began her career in 2006 and had her first single release in 2008. Envy carved out her own niche in the predominantly male British Grime scene with several show-stealing appearances on ‘The City Is Ours Music Mixtapes’ before releasing her solo album ‘set yourself on fire’ in 2010 later collaborating with Oneda as a formidable Manchester female Rap duo. Envy’s direction shifted following the launch of Unity Radio 92.8FM in 2010, going on to be the face of Unity Breakfast alongside DJ tango, and developing out her long lasting media career.
Veba, will be DJing on the night. Veba, a one-woman, music-machine- wizard, made her name as the voice behind Rae & Christian ( Manchester’s Grand Central records, born form the Hip Hop vinyl store Fat City) before paving the rest of the way providing lungs for Yesking, Nightmares on Wax and Groove Armada.
In this collaborative performance, the string players performing are current members and alumni of MYSO – Manchester Youth String Orchestra. Supported by Kate Moran & Kelly Prause. MYSO exists to provide ensemble training for young string players in a fun and friendly environment. MYSO provides a variety of performance and collaborative musical opportunities facilitated and run by One Education Music, the lead delivery partner for Manchester’s Music Hub. With projects like Women in Hip Hop ‘Hustle-hers’ we aim to inspire, encourage and facilitate young people in Manchester to learn about and enjoy music in all its forms.
Mandy Wigby is a key figure in the creative music ecology of Manchester and beyond. She is a Manchester based musician, composer/producer and works under the aliases Architects of Rosslyn with Howard Jacobs & The Wig. AoR have worked on many multi-media projects and live cinema performances. As The Wig, she channels her love of dancehall/ DnB/ and primal rituals into her work with artist Kerin AKA Che3kz. They both share a love of hypnotic rhythm and big pulsating bass, lyrically delving into the personal and political, with the dancefloor and women’s voices being at the heart. Mandy has worked alongside hip hop artists in various roles: as a sound engineer/producer with Strategy ( Broken English ) on Chanje Kunda’s “One Voice” Ep, a keyboard player with MC Buzz B in Lionrock and also on many hip hop, grime and r&b sessions as a sound engineer/producer/ musician at Gorse Hill Studios, where she also mentored young musicians and producers.
Kemi Gbadebo is a young Manchester based Hip Hop fashion designer inspired by 90’s streetwear, and continuing to explore this aesthetic in sustainable approaches through her ethical street wear brand Gbadebo. Winner of BBC 3 ‘the drop’ with collaborations with Adidas originals, North Face along with collection designed with Flannels, Kemi creates sustainable clothing with the intent to help minimalise the waste produced in the fast fashion industry by taking said waste, alongside recycled and sustainable fabrics to create fresh new garments.
Gbadebo want to help lead the industry into a more sustainable and ethical future, in turn making recycled fashion more accessible as a whole.
For more info head to https://factoryinternational.org
Listen back to LMG’s Interview with The Manchester Youth String Orchestra