THE VOICE OF WESTERN SYD CITY YOUTH HAS BEEN TEAMED WITH SUBURBAN GROOVES AND LONG-STANDING LOCAL MC FEM FATALE, MC TREY FOR DUETS VOLUME 1.
MC TREY interviewed 14:00 AEST – Thursday 19th November, 2009
For Street Press Australia & Rip2Shredz Press
Words by RIP NICHOLSON
Images provided by Music Feed
This inspiring hip-hop project brings emerging artists with renowned signed MCs who laid out their pen to paper skills and mentored the artists in sessions – the outcome of which resulted in a duet with seven unsigned rappers. 3D took a call from leading community activist and coordinator of this project, MC Trey, real name Thelma Trey Thomas, to break it down and get the low-down on the first Duets volume.
Seven young spitters playing one-on-one with some of the nation’s most bonafide hiphoppers, bringing in the likes of Maya Jupiter, Astronomy Class’ Ozi Batla, MC Ney from Last Kinection with the famed Mr. Zux on the boards put it down in lessons to further the next generation in our-thing, boosting these sometimes underprivileged aspiring proteges with a leg up over competition.
“Thankfully there’s a very tight-knit community in Australian hip-hop,” said Thomas who has pooled in such a wealth of talent for this indie project to compliment her own invaluable time and effort. “Everyone kinda knows each other and I’ve worked in it for a few years now.
“Recording an album with Maya recently, (Foreign Heights, 2007) when I told her about the idea she jumped straight on board. Her most recent work as one part of the trio, Foreign Heights was split between DJ Nick Toth and Maya Jupiter (who is residing in L.A. working on her international release.) Sealing the Duets compilation, a remix track by one of our foremost hip-hop beatsmiths – Chasm stamps it solid Oz. “He was helping to promote the album, he called me and asked to come on-board.”
Over 13 years since the Projectiles demo CD, Thomas’ career has seen the release of numerous recordings and two well-acclaimed LPs. Headlining sold out East Coast dates throughout the country, her passport is inked worldwide in tours across New Zealand, US, The UK and Japan and bumped heads on stages with hip-hop’s most elite: Run DMC, Naughty By Nature, Michael Franti, The Roots, Talib Kweli, Mos Def and so the list continues. As a strong community activist, the veteran rapper has been involved with youth services for over a decade strong coordinating music programs for at-risk and disadvantaged young people.
Western Sydney-based arts and media group, the Information and Cultural Exchange (ICE’s) Urban Music Project, Suburban Grooves teamed with Trey, whose given gifts in rhyme-slanging rap were workshopped around the country, now lands herself in a position to give real opportunity to these promising ICE artists on these recordings.
“I’ve been working with the young people for a few years and I thought it would be good idea for them to get that one-on-one mentoring thing happening. Because it’s not easy for anybody to get into the music (business) these days,” notes Thomas. Now with such positive reinforcement their West Sydney voice will be heard and surfed over radio waves.
“Oh a few of the artists are getting national airplay and that’s a pretty big deal for them! And for any artists really. It keeps them motivated and inspired to just keep going and that’s why I’m working with them.” Thomas says adamantly before hinting on hopes of gaining momentum for the MCs on the road.
“I have toyed with the idea of touring this group of artists off the EP, nationally. So you never know.” Maybe support slots along the East Coast for her next LP promo could be a viable avenue. However the solo path, is stepped aside while this project can run it’s own track.
“I’ve been working on (the next album) for a while, but I’m looking to put that out next year. Once this EP gets out there and the young people get to get their own names out there, then I’ll get back to writing more songs.”