Crew Grrl Order in CRUNK Magazine
by Erin Evangela Gannie
Crew Grrl Order (Retina, Lady Payne and Cleo Jones) are a trio of empowered women ready to bring back whets been long missing from the rap game. The She-Movement is in full effect and its mission is to empower women and flood the industry with females that are about their business.
Crunk: Is there a meaning behind the name of the group? Who came up with it?
CGO: Chuck came up with the name. It's starting a new world order of women, sticking together in hip hop, supporting one another. There are a lot of underground females that aren't being heard. As a movement of sticking together and having a method, we can say something because we 'spit' as well as the guys do.
Crunk: Since you all were originally solo artist; what's it like going from solo artist to a group?
CGO: (Lady P) You have different personalities and attitudes. But once you learn yourself as a woman and know who you are, you will not have a problem within that group because you know your position.
(Retina) I think it's a learning experience on dealing with women. People always say that we (women) can't deal with each other, but actually we can.
Crunk: When people found out that the group was linked to Chuck D; did they assume that you would come out being seriously political?
CGO: Yes, in the beginning they did but we squash that quick.
Crunk: What's the difference between the first album B-Girl Stance and the second album All Bets Are Off?
CGO: (Lady P) With the first album, we allowed Chuck to be a big part of it, producing, etc. With the second one we do a lot of our own writing, we put this together, we did everything ourselves. We had different producers (Whitfield Payne and Ernest Robinson), featuring artist (MC Lyte, definitely want to give a shout out to her), (Retina) In the last CD, Chuck gave us ideas and topics to talk about, they weren't political, they were more like topics he thought women should speak on. With 'All Bets Are Off' we decided that we are going to run the show.
Crunk: Did the group ever feel pressure to follow the same 'sex sells' formula as some female artist has done?
CGO: (Lady P) No, because of who we are dealing with. If I get out there and do that I am not going to feel good about myself. I am not going to respect myself and no one will respect me.
(Retina) You have some females that only do it for the fame but really it isn't something that they chose to do. If I have to make music an present myself in a way that my kids will be embarrassed to see it, then I can't do it.
Crunk: There are no female rap groups out right now, or female rap artist out really now, the group has the She-Movement, and the album out. How does the group feel about that?
CGO: (Lady P) We need more women on board and for them to understand that there is a place for them. Hip hop is male dominated, so we are going to try to bring it back.
(Retina) We would love to see a million female acts come out this year. We have to get the support of women. The only way we are going to get women in hip hop is women have to support other women acts.
Crunk: Do you think that women have ever gotten the credit their due in hip hop?
Crunk: I am sure there are plenty of females that look up to the group and get inspired. How important is it you the group to be role models?
CGO: It's important to us that a mother can be able to listen to our cd with her daughter. We also do motivational speaking; we go around speaking to teenagers and help prepare them for life and things to come.
Crunk: How do you think CGO will change the rap game for females?
CGO: We are trying to open the door for more groups to come or even a solo artist. We have a message to bring, and our message is the She-Movement. Let's all unify.
Crunk: Where can fans find more information about the group and the album?
CGO: www.slamjamz.com, www.myspace.com/crewgrrlorder. Both albums in stores now at Amazon.com and Target.
Shout out to Cleo Jones whom was under the weather at the time of interview.
To read more pick up the current issue of Crunk Magazine