Rising Stars of Rap: Pearls Negras

Three young women gesticulate towards a camera, rapping a cappella in Portuguese, so in their element they don't notice the hundreds of eyes on them following their every step, hanging on their every word, in admiration of their raw confidence. While most won't understand them, their message could not be clearer:

We are women, we speak our minds and we will sing and dance wherever we want.
Who is this trio who've been making so much noise on the international scene? Crane.tv met Alice, Mariana and Jennifer, aka Pearls Negras, a female rap group from Brazil on the London-leg of their first European tour.


At first glance, the hard beats seem to be in direct contrast to their appearance. But they are, in fact, the perfect match. Their sound is trap-intense and base-heavy, the lyrics sometimes beyond their age, their look daring, confident and sensual. With a clear idea of who they are and what they stand for, they defy prejudice within seconds of being on stage.


Inspired by their north American idols, such as Nicki Minaj, Ciara and Drake, they got involved in a youth programme a few years ago, taking their first steps in performing at the Nós do Morro theatre company and school under the instruction of Jecki Brown, who is now their music producer.

All three grew up in the Vidigal favela of Rio de Janeiro, in a country perhaps better known for traditional genres such as Funk, Samba or Pagode. Pearls Negras are trailblazing female rap in Latin America, something that's widely missing in the southern hemisphere.


Long gone are the days where women were merely background accessories to rap videos. "Women can handle rap too, we're standing up for women's power." We're certainly glad they're doing so in our hemisphere as well. Welcome to modern Hip Hop.

Text by Ruth Amelung for Crane.tv
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