By Byaruhanga Felix (@TheNinjaFelix)
The Sphynx is one person you can’t fail to acknowledge when it comes to Ugandan hip-hop. She’s one whose works on a microphone you can’t ignore and her efforts in supporting Ugandan rap such as organizing one of he “Hip-Hop family” parties or contributing to our Event’s section of our site can’t be underplayed. Since last year she’s tried being consistent either with her individual releases or featuring on projects whose reception has been remarkable such as the All Female cypher. This week she released a new track that features the Ginsu titled Pound For Pound (download it here). we decided to catch up with her to discuss the creation of the song, femcees position in the Ugandan rap industry, beef and her feature as a rapper.
Thanks for doing this interview. To start off, you’ve been releasing a lot of projects since last year at the same time featuring on major ones. Your effort Could all this be a lead up to a huge project like an album or something?
Last year, I think I only featured on the Female Cypher, that was fun to do, and an eye opener that we needed to do more. The cypher opened more doors for us and people realised that we have quite a number of females doing this. People who didn’t even know I rapped got to know it too because the song was given alot of airplay. I took time out to just write and reassess my career from then on, that’s why you do not hear anything from me for about 8 months when I released Broken and Fe=MC2 which are singles from my Mixtape. So, there… That’s my project this year, a mixtape.
Let’s jump into your latest release #PoundForPound. I have listened to the track and I must say it’s incredible but explain the collaboration part of it. Why pick Ginsu to work with on this one?
I didn’t pick Ginsu, hehehe.. We just happened to be in studio that night, when Samurae was playing all these beats, next thing you know we are writing and jumping in the booth
We’ve seen you guys release two joint projects so far, also a couple of tweets talking about studio sessions you’ve had together should we expect a joint project like an album, mixtape or EP?
I think, Ginsu and I work well together, so we find ourselves in situations where we end up on songs together. “I’m Coming” “Super Cypher” “Pound For Pound” All these song were a result of us being in the same place at the same time. I teamed up with Ginsu and Agee and we are working on an EP produced by Koz N’Effect. We will be releasing details of this very soon.
Getting back to Pound for Pound, depending on who is listening to it they may interpret it differently but is it a diss track?
No. It is not. No particular target, we were just rapping. I know people think it was a response of some sort, but it might interest you to know that we recorded before what is believed,we responded to. So, everyone can calm down.
While we’re still talking about dissing and all that would you engage in beef as a rapper?
Depends on if the beef is worth it.How juicy is the steak, I’m cutting into?! But for me to write a 16, targeting anybody hasn’t happened yet, don’t know if it ever will, I’m not taken up so easily… If it does, I know it will be necessary.
Briefly walk us through the creative process of this song. How did it go from being an idea to it coming to life?
We did not plan on recording that day. We had gone to just chill and have a few drinks with friends, you know. A nice chill Sunday Turn up! Sam walks back into studio and plays beats, I was typing things, verses and hooks came after that. That was like 3am, and we just didn’t want to leave without doing something constructive. We didn’t have a particular concept at the time but later on, things were adding up on their own. Pound For Pound is generally an assessment of the skill of fighter regardless of their size. Relating that to our verses I’m just saying I’m dope, regardless of the hate or of how you feel. Ginsu is just promising to pound anybody who messes with her. There a lot other things in those verse that will make sense to you as the year unfolds.
Looking at UG Hip-Hop in general, would you say the femcees are in their rightful? In your opinion are they respected & appreciated?
I believe respect exists, But we will not be where we should be until we claim it. It is something I believe can only be achieved if we work at getting it, just drop the excuses and take what you feel should be yours. So,no. We are not in our “rightful” place.. But that’s about to change, real quick
As one of the faces in UG Hip-Hop, what needs to be done from a strategy point of view to see UG hip-hop realize its potential on a global market?
What needs to be done is not much of a strategy. It’s pretty simple, for us to go global we need to support our own. I think Nigeria has been a great example in the last 5yrs. We can only hope the same for Ughiphop.
I understand you’re are part of the House Ov Stone collective anything going on or happening? Any project we should expect?
Nothing tragic, if that’s what you mean. House Ov Stone is still standing.
Lastly what’s the feature for Sphynx?
The future for Sphynx is a blindingly bright. A lot planned this year, only Cleo can stop me now. I have completely morphed. I can reveal one thing though, Malika is a formidable force.