90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Hip Hop Artist Dessa Doesn’t Fit The Mold

(Courtesy of Kelly)

Thirty year-old Dessa has been making waves, both as a solo artist and as a member of the Minnesota hip-hop collective Doomtree.

Her 2010 CD “A Badly Broken Code” was critically acclaimed and she just released her latest release “Castor The Twin.”

Dessa doesn’t fit the typical mold of a rap artist- she’s white, female and from Minnesota.

“At the beginning of my career I worried about it a lot. I wanted to make sure that I seemed credible… that I was paying the respect that’s due to the music that was largely innovated by another culture set.  And then, ten years in, you worry about, ‘is this song good.,” Dessa told Here & Now’s Robin Young.

Dessa also says that female hip-hop tends to either try to outdo male hip-hop in misogyny or puts women on a pedestal, and that neither of those alternatives appeal to her.

She says she doesn’t want to confine herself to rap, she sings on both of her CDs. A former student of philosophy at the University of Minnesota, Dessa finds that music gives her a wider audience than academia.

Guest:

  • Dessa, born Maggie Wander, music artist

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

April 23 10 Comments

Iconic Images From Rock And Roll Photographer Henry Diltz

Crosby Stills and Nash, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, the Doors, the Eagles, all became his friends and subjects.

April 23 22 Comments

Police Shooting Of Tamir Rice Still An Open Wound In Cleveland

Five months after the 12-year-old was shot, Peter O'Dowd visits the neighborhood and speaks with Tamir's mother, Samaria Rice.

April 22 6 Comments

Saving Food Scraps From The Trash To Make Better Meals

Are you throwing away your broccoli stems and peach pits? Food writer and cookbook author Eugenia Bone says don't.

April 21 Comment

Photographing Armenian Lives Around the World

Photojournalist Scout Tufankjian started the Armenian Diaspora Project to explore what it means to be Armenian.