Saturday night I witnessed something very refreshing. I witnessed the powerful energy of a female MC by the name of Ana Tijoux of Chile. After being touted as one of SXSW’s darlings, her debut U.S. tour brought her to Chicago to play Martyr’s with her second solo album named 1977. The title represents the year she was born.
She has a very interesting story. She was born and raised in France because her parents where on political exile during Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship. She took to French hip hop in her early teens and began rapping in French. After the dictatorship ended, her family moved back to Chile where she discovered Chile’s deep underground hip hop culture. After learning to rap in Spanish she soon joined various hip-hop bands until finally joining a band named Makiza.
I first heard of Ana in 2006 after I heard her flow on Shure Endorser, Julieta Venegas’s hit “Eres Para Mi”. After finding her name in the album credits I googled her and heard her online. The more I heard her the more I couldn’t stop listening.
So, finally after all this time… I witnessed her talented flow first hand. Martyr’s size and intimacy was perfect for a show such as this. The crowd was diverse, but I still felt as though I was surrounded by family. I like that about hip hop shows like this. Through poetry and music they tell stories that unite, empower and by looking over the packed house, it gets everyone’s head bopping in unison… Very cool!
All I have to say is that all the hype she has been receiving after her presentations at SXSW is very well deserved. She is far from Chile but I’m sure that the love she has been receiving in the states is making her feel right at home. After all, as they say in the streets, she is dope! There is no doubt about that.
After the show I spoke to her and her Tour manager about a possible endorsement deal with Shure. They seemed very interested especially since she told me her favorite mic is the SM58. She is not joking either, she is holding one on her album cover.
More on the endorsement soon…