Atlanta femcee LightSkinKiesha has released her highly anticipated summer mixtape Act UP SZN. On behalf of LA Reid’s HITCO Entertainment, this release is her biggest coming on of the year. As she is known for her larger than life personality, this rising superstar’s hard work is finally paying off. She is having a HOT GIRL summer, and is ready to show the world why her music deserves to be heard.
I had the pleasure of catching up with Kiesha for a quick interview, as she candidly discusses the inspiration behind ACT UP SZN, doing the BET Awards and why she is a superstar. Check it out below.
RESPECT: Can you describe your BET Awards experience?
KEISHA: It was an incredible experience. On Friday, I performed at the BET Experience for the first time, on the Women in Hip Hop Stage. It was an honor to be included and recognized for something that major. It meant so much to me, so I was and am definitely overwhelmed with thankfulness.
As a young girl, I watched the BET Awards faithfully, but never thought I would be performing. The energy was amazing this year. In my opinion, BET was much better this year than last. Mary J. Blige and Missy Elliot’s tributes were amazing. Definitely a highlight of 2019.”
RESPECT: Give us a brief timeline of 2019 for you? What’s up next for you?
KEISHA: Well, this year was one of the best years for my career. I performed at Rolling Loud and Birthday Bash this year. It was insane. I was featured on Trina’s latest album, which was huge for me. I am so thankful for her having me apart of that. It’s Trina, I grew up on Trina. So to be featured on her first album after six years was a huge deal. The ‘On His Face’ music video is now on YouTube and available on all streaming platforms.
I am getting ready to release my latest project, Act Up Szn. I am really excited because this tape rides. That’s just that on that. We are going to do a lot of acting up this season. I do not want girls to forget that. Coca and I are also working on a joint mixtape together, so stay tuned for that. We have some dope visuals coming for Act Up Szn along with features that include Kash Doll and Miss Mulatto. Other than that, I plan to just keep elevating. I want to do it all. Acting, modeling, the whole damn nine.
RESPECT: What is the inspiration behind your upcoming project Act Up SZN?
KEISHA: The inspiration is me. I went viral from a video I made saying “Act Up Szn” about two summers ago. It seems like everyone wants to scream ‘Oh, we’re acting up. Its act up season.” They are under the impression that it means, “let’s go out here and hoe out”. But in reality, I want girls to understand that it means that we’re here to boss up. It’s a movement.
I feel like as a woman, men get in their zones where they act a certain way. So this gives us women the change to prove that we can act up, too. We can keep that exact same energy. We’re going to boss ourselves up. This project is about knowing your worth, not taking bullshit, and empowering other women.
I’m not telling anyone to do hoe shit; I’m telling you that you can do whatever you put your mind to without a man in your corner. Having a man is beautiful, especially is he’s doing right by you. But if he isn’t, it’s time to boss up on his ass and handle your business. I always stand up for us women out here in the world. The female species is a powerful thing.”
RESPECT: What makes you unique as an artist?
KEISHA: I don’t give a fuck. (Laughs) What people don’t get is that I have a real personality. I’m so down to Earth and really goofy. I sometimes forget and have to realize who I am. I am so humble to the point that I sometimes forget that people know me. I will catch someone staring at me and I won’t even realize. I’ll be like “Why are they staring at me?” and Coca will be like ‘did you forget you’re LightSkinKeisha’.
I always speak my mind and no one can take that away from me. No one can tell me what to do or what to say. I’m from Atlanta, which has a wave of female rappers. To be a main rapper here doing major shit is necessary. I will continue to represent that. My city deserves it. People need to understand that I am just me being who I am.
RESPECT: How do you balance your relationship with rapper, Coca Vango, who’s signed to the same record label as you?
KEISHA: It is easy. That is my best friend. Aside from being my boyfriend that is my literal BEST friend. The fact of the matter is that Coca and my situation isn’t new. We’ve known each other. He watched me grow up and has always really been there in my life. We’ve always had a good relationship before the music.
It’s like I’m in love with my best friend. We keep each other afloat and sane. He keeps me grounded. We’ve been through the same situations in life. He is a Gemini and I am a Virgo, which is crazy because people wouldn’t expect for us to get along and be so compatible. But trust me, we do. We connect on a whole different level.
We give each other advice to the point that we’re real soul mates. We dated other people, but finally realized that the love of our life was right in front of our eyes the entire time. If people could buy this love and happiness, they would. It’s so genuine.
RESPECT: What is your biggest accomplishment?
KEISHA: I’m most proud of Birthday Bash. Since I was a young girl, I dreamt of performing at Birthday Bash. If you’re from Atlanta, you know how big Birthday Bash is. It’s what Summer Jam is to NY, so to be apart of that is ‘unfuckingbelieveable’. I was just a little girl from Decatur. Who knew that I would be performing at big ass stages in front of the whole damn city?
On top of that, I was blessed enough to meet the mayor. Her name is Keisha, too. When I met her, she said to me “You are always in my Google notifications.” She knows who I am. That popped off my year. That’s crazy to me that I got to perform for my city like the Queen of Atlanta, I am. I’m happy and so blessed.
LightSkinKeisha’s Act Up SZN will be available for streaming on July 26th. Until then press play below to stream her latest visual “Believe Dat”.
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