Ana Tijoux On Being A Female Rapper And Other Things You Might Not Know About Her

The famous French-Chilean musician spoke to us about her secret abilities, her bad habits and comparisons with Lauryn Hill.

Macey J. Foronda

1. What made you decide to start rapping?
Well, I started because I’ve always loved writing. Then, because my mother worked in France as a street educator with immigrant children… And well, all those kids were rappers. It wasn’t anything cool, I just started because of my mom’s job.

2. Rap is generally a man’s game. Is it difficult, even today, to be a female rapper?
I think that machismo mentality has changed. I am sure that before there weren’t many female writers, or journalists, etc. I also don’t think that women have been able to take over all careers like men have. And I think it’s the same thing with rap. It’s a generally male dominated area. I don’t know… sort of how they depict women as meat in music videos and whatnot. Thus, I think what happens with rap isn’t that different from what happens in other careers. Every day there are more women who are willing to take a chance. I am sure the same thing happens in the metal and punk genres.

3. What has been the hardest song for you to write?
It goes by season, but right now I am thinking of the song “Río abajo” from the new album. Because the producer already had the music done and usually we work together as a group. So it was hard to get into it.

4. What can you tell us about your newest album?
My biggest goal with this album was to rescue Latin American music. I feel that with rap and all this new and modern music, there is way too much information and too many new genres that have been created. Thus, I started listening to older music that my parents would listen to. Music that excites me and in the same way it interests me to recover all that instrumentation of latin American music in general.

5. How do you feel about being compared to Lauryn Hill by the media?
Well, the media always tries to compare you with someone so you can be placed somewhere. Obviously I love the comparison with Lauryn Hill, but we have nothing to do with each other. I say this with the outmost respect. We have different lives, we live in other countries and our quality of life is different. But I feel like the media always feels the need to compare you with someone else, don’t you think?

Macey J. Foronda

6. Who would you like to collaborate with in the future?
I don’t want to say a name. Because sometimes you might encounter an artist that you admired, and then you get a not-so-happy surprise.

7. Chile or France?
Chile.

8. How was growing up in two different cultures?
Tough.

9. Why?
When you’re a teenager, it’s tough. When you are older you have a better sense of your identity and who you are, so it’s easier to take things head on. But when you are younger, it’s tough because in the process of building your personality.

10. Do you have a hidden talent that nobody knows about?
Yes! I know how to put a spoon on my nose and it stays. I can also put a spoon on my cheekbones.

11. If you could travel in time and meet one person, any person, who would you like to meet?
I would like to meet God. If there is a God, I would love to ask him so many questions.

12. What is one thing that angers you?
Photographs and seeing people that waste their potential. Seeing someone that could truly shine, but because of their lack of professionalism or vision, they waste their talents by not using them.

Macey J. Foronda

13. If you could be a teacher, what subject would you teach?
None, I would be the worst teacher.

14. Do you have a hero or someone that inspires you as an artist?
Yes, there is a lot of people that have touched my life in so many wonderful ways. But I am going to be a dork, and say my grandma. I love her 84 year old woman advice. She says things to me like, “life goes by fast, so be happy.” Things that are very simple, like out of a bad self-help book. But it is so different when someone that loves you for who you are tells you them. And I love looking into her eyes and seeing every single one of her wrinkles. It is like a story that takes life and it inspires me tremendously.

15. What is one thing that you always keep in your fridge?
Dijon mustard and Nutella.

16. Do you have any bad habits?
I have a ton, like eating Nutella at night. I also love watching cooking shows! I don’t know what I get out of them, but I can’t stop watching them. I get hooked!

17. If this was your last day on earth, what would you like to eat?
Couscous.

18. What is the most important lesson you have learned in your life?
Nothing lasts forever.

19. Day or night?
Dawn.

20. Favorite drink?
Coffee.

Macey J. Foronda

21. When was the last time you lied?
Just now, when I said coffee. haha!

22. Would you rather stay home and watch a movie, or go out to a party with friends?
I would rather stay home and watch a movie.

23. Summer or winter?
Summer.

24. Favorite band?
Arctic Monkeys.

25. Favorite movie?
Goodfellas and Once Upon a Time in America.

26. Sweet or salty?
Bittersweet.

27. Favorite insult?
Son of a bitch.

28. Who is the last person you texted?
I can’t say.

29. What do you think of social media?
It’s insane.

30. What is the most important thing for you?
My children.

Macey J. Foronda

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