It's always fun for me doing these interviews when I can sit down and talk to someone from my hometown of Savannah, GA. It's even more rare to speak to someone that I've known for a while. I've known Quanna since high school, wholly unaware of how skilled she is an emcee. But having listened to her EP Q ad nauseum I am affiliated and I respect the skills. I caught up with Quanna and asked her a few questions to get a better idea of her and her music.
LUCIUS: Firstly, I have to thank you for taking the time to do this interview.
QUANNA: No problem.
LUCIUS: How is 2014 looking for you musically? Are you expecting and/or working for bigger things in 2015?
QUANNA: 2014 has been a really good year for me. I've finally started gaining real fans and support aside of my family and close friends. I got a chance to perform in Austin, TX during one of the biggest music festivals, South By Southwest. I released a new project Q. 2015 I plan to do more performances and press. Start opening for bigger artist, really get into the industry
LUCIUS: Speaking more on your goals and what you did this year, how satisfied with it are you? That is to say, are you pleased with what you are doing musically this you?
QUANNA: I'm definitely satisfied with what I've done. Some of my accomplishments are unheard for a girl outside of NYC with no backing. Musically I am pleased that I released another project. Especially one like Q- that shows growth and gives the listener an idea who Quanna is. However, that's only a small piece of where I'm going.
LUCIUS: So we're both from Savannah. I love seeing your rise because of that. But I have to ask: why start building your brand in New York?
QUANNA: I decided I wanted to do music while in Atlanta. I was in college at CAU and though I love Savannah to death, I knew I wanted to expose myself to more. My original plan after college was going to California to pursue modeling, acting and music. But the transition was too expensive so my mom suggested NY. Me and my best friend Johnell moved that summer of 2011. NY has been a blessing. I'm perfect for this city. A beautiful disaster.
LUCIUS: Does or did the change of scenery have an effect on your sound?
QUANNA: I'll have to say no because I've always been a fan of hip-hop overall. When I speak you wouldn't know I'm from the South even as a kid people would say you speak different. My sound is progressive so I'm always open to new ideas but I kinda know what I want to sound like and that's no specific genre. I'm influenced by a lot of sounds mostly R&B and soul music.
LUCIUS: For those who are unfamiliar with your sound, give us a description of it in your own words?
QUANNA: I have a hood intellectual sound. My beats are usually smooth with a deep 808, my flow can be very sing songy but my lyrics usually inspire emotion.
LUCIUS: So tell us about the current project, Q. What was the process of creating this one?
QUANNA: I basically starting recording after having writer's block for almost a year. I was in a rut and so to get myself out it, I had to get to the start. Right before that I was kinda heartbroken by this guy. Once I realized what the issue was, I started to address those and some others that I had been suppressing through my poetry. The more I wrote, the more they became songs. When I started recording I was just doing songs so I wouldn't get rusty. Eventually it turned into me wanting to give my supporters an idea of who I was in a nice project. So since all the songs I was producing at that time were about early dating interactions I left it there.
LUCIUS: What would be your favorite track off of Q?
QUANNA: "Hurtin" is my most favorite track because the first verse is part of a long a poem I wrote. The beat was simple but deep and so were the words.
LUCIUS: Is there a least favorite track from Q? If so, why?
QUANNA: "Hurtin" because it really didn't sound 100% the way I wanted. That's my baby.
LUCIUS: I ask this to a lot of the people I interview so bear with me: what or who influences your music?
QUANNA: Outkast, Lauryn Hill, Anita Baker, and Camoflauge.
LUCIUS: Right now, what is your favorite verse that you've spit or written?
QUANNA: The first verse of "Focus" was dope. I'm kinda just realizing all the great things I can do with my voice so I feel like I used variety in that verse.
LUCIUS: What's your personal opinion on hip-hop and the state of it as of now?
QUANNA: Hip hop is in a transition state right now. More women are coming up and the quality of rappers is definitely getting better. The world is crazy right now, especially the U.S. with all the police killings, Ebola and etc. So I think hip-hop is definitely reflecting that.
LUCIUS: Anything that you'd change? What would you keep?
QUANNA: I would add variety to the female rappers because we're all different. There's definitely more stories to be told. I would also like to see more culture in the movies and on tv like the 90s hip-hop was way more versatile.
LUCIUS: What are the long terms goals with your music?
QUANNA: I'm aiming to be one of the too artist of our time. I will have Grammys. Through music I plan to do a lot of things such a writing books, acting, and starting my own businesses.
LUCIUS: Any last shout outs and final words?
QUANNA: I just want people to understand that I'm just an young black girl trying to change the world. In my own way.
LUCIUS: So where can readers and listeners keep up with you?
QUANNA: My website is quannathemc.com. I'm on social media under quannamc, that's including SoundCloud. My Tumblr is quannasjournal.
LUCIUS: Thanks again. Enjoyed talking to you.
QUANNA: No problem. Anytime