On Wednesday the 19th of October, rapper Tinuke released her debut mixtape, H.E.R. She’d been working on this tape for about a year; and spent a lot of time trying to find “meaning and purpose”, because it was “very important to [her] that [she] felt great about what [she] was bringing to the world.
The tape’s release date doubled as the birthday of Tinuke’s father; and this was no coincidence, but a calculated gesture of honour to her dad.
H.E.R is an acronym for Having Exreme Rage; and Tinuke’s rage here was triggered by personal experiences (such as “betrayal from close ones”) and societal oppression – patriachy and anti-blackness, particularly. “Why is the world so damn harsh to blacks?,” she questions rhetorically on Track 6 – Never a Slave – which could rightly be said to be the song that perfectly capures the mixtape’s general sentiments. Tinuke turned her rage into inspiration and channelled it all through her music; declaring, again on ‘Never a Slave,’ “i’ll never be a slave to you // and i’ll never be a slave to whose // trying to control how i feel.”
H.E.R mixtape is available (below) on Soundcloud: