Interview by Kindred
Kindred: What makes you come alive?
Adeta Marie: Well, first of all, when I wake up in the morning… I’m just playing. Let me stop. I know what you mean.
In regular, normal day to day life, everything is mundane. Literally. The only time I really come alive is when I’m around creation and people who create some form of art. I like being out in nature, too.
Anytime I’m around some type of creative process, I get inspired by things and think, “Hey!… Wow… That’s kinda cool.”
Kindred: Where are you from?
Marie: Kansas City. Born and raised. When people look at me they’re like, “Oh… I wouldn’t have guessed that…”
I get that question at least ten times a day. People ask me where I’m from and I’m like, “Negro… down the street…”
My Dad’s side is Caribbean though.
Kindred: When did you become aware of music and creativity?
Marie: As a kid, I’d always be in the church. My dad had me and my sister in choir, listening to older music. But I didn’t gravitate toward becoming my own individual in music until I got older. I was usually in the shadows. Not sure why that is.
Through my own research, I listened to a lot of jazz and older stuff that people my age didn’t. A lot of J-Pop, weird French pop,… I gathered inspiration from many different areas. Having a parent that listens to eclectic things, half the stuff he listens to, I don’t even recognize. My dad put me on to that.
Kindred: What was the first album you bought?
Marie: Let’s see. It was a B.o.B. album. Not gone lie, I really liked B.o.B. when he came out. B.o.B. Presents: The Adventures of Bobby Ray. I had it for about a month until my Dad scratched my shit up because it was explicit. He was like, “Wow… Why did you bring this secular music into my house?”
In my head, I was like, “Damn, bitch. I did just buy that with money I do not procure that often. I spent this money… and now you fuck up my shit?… It’s time to fight.”
I was so irritated.
We couldn’t listen to secular music. I had to sneak-a-geek to get regular shit. As a teenager, you sneak-a-geek to do wild things. But no. I’m sneak’n a geek to buy a fuck’n cd…
After I bought that album, that’s when I got into French Pop, J- Pop, and all this other stuff. My dad realized how weird his kids were when he found out more of what we were listening to. He was like, “How did you find this stuff?”
In my head, I was like, “Youtube, bitch .. You don’t get on that?”
Kindred: You grew up in Church?
Marie: Yeah. It doesn’t look like it, does it?
My Dad is just a guy who likes God, I guess. He likes religion and was just… being there. I grew up in a strict Christian household. The only way I could express myself was through music. But even that had restrictions. So I would do research at school, talk to my brother,… whatever I could because once I was in the house I could only listen to certain ‘PG-13’ type things. Growing up in that environment forced me to explore so many realms the average American wouldn’t unless it was a part of their family culture.
Kindred: Did you have to sing any in church?
Marie: They asked me as a kid, but I was so shy and reserved I’d ask my big sister, who can sing. I sort of lived through her. She’s always been bold. I just wasn’t feel’n it though. I was gonna die up there. I couldn’t bring myself to do it. Something in me was like, “Nah… What if they talk about me?”
I was a *baby back bitch* as a kid. Not gone lie.
It’s cool to see how my sister and I have sorta traded places in life. I asked her, “Why don’t you make music?”
She said, “I don’t want to do that. It’s cool that you do that”. She’s into tech now.
Kindred: Seeing the boldness of your sister during childhood, were you inspired by it as an adult to perform open mics?
Marie: No. Performing my first open mic is just one of those things where I just had to. Idk. I guess, in the back of my head I was inspired, but in the moment, it wasn’t something I thought about too much. I was just like, “You know what? I’m here. I’m going to be nervous regardless until I’m to the point where I’m not.”
I’m all about progression. If I’m ever not nervous, that means I’m not progressing. I would often talk to her about it and show her my music. She’d be like, “Oh my God! That’s so good.”
But you expect your people to say that. I have high regard for her opinions. I ask her, “Should I do this? Should I not?”
She said, “Honestly, you gotta go with your gut. Whatever your gut says, regardless of if you’re scared or not, you just do it.”
It took me about two or three years after she said that for me to be like, “You know what… fuck it.” I wrote a song and performed it.
Kindred: What was your first open mic?
Marie: The first was at Awaze’s One Mic Stand event. It was December 2019. I remember it was cold outside and was about to leave when they called my name. I was like, “Ah… Dang. I gotta go up there now.”
Even at the last minute I wondered what I’d gotten myself into [seeing how] I basically went up because I couldn’t leave in time. People wouldn’t have ever [known my artistry]. It happened for a reason.
I performed “FWM” and was hella nervous about that one because no one can really relate to it. Well, in the aspect of wanting to beat someone up, [they can]. But other aspects? People would think, “Size thirteens? DAMN! That’s a big ass bitch!”
That was my thought process behind that.
Kindred: Where do you draw musical inspiration from?
Marie: I gather inspiration from jazz. Billie Holiday. Etta James. These types of people I got tons of inspiration from. Nowadays, I’m focusing on what ‘the sound’ is today. Masego, Smino, J-Pop… I’m really chaotic so it’s hard to tell where I pull from. It’s a mixture of everything. I also don’t like being compared to anything. That’s another reason for having so many inspirations. You can’t pin it down. It’s just what it is in it’s form when it’s presented.
Kindred: What creative head space are you in now?
Marie: The old Adeta has a slower vibe and all the songs have lessons that I’m not in anymore. I was [creating] more from experiences in that time. [For instance], ‘Addiction’ gets into why I was so dependent on someone. I was trying to give people life gems to take with them.
Now I’m just like, “Hello. My name is Adeta. I’m that bitch. Nice to meet you.” That’s how I’m coming now.
The newer stuff sounds more jovial. I mean, I’m not saying I’m a happy ass bitch right now but that’s just what I want to hear. I want to hear happiness in the beat. They heard about my struggles. Now it’s a whole different mindset.
Kindred: Where are you in the process of your new project?
Marie: It’s still in the beginning stages. I have a concept of how I want it to sound like. I’m trying to find someone that can make the sounds I’m hearing in my head. It’s a process of getting all the pieces of the puzzle together. The first piece of the puzzle will be released sometime this month.
Kindred: What is it like communicating with producers?
Marie: I’ll send a song I want sampled to the engineer. I tell them, “First of all, this gone be J-Pop. Don’t judge me bitch. Um… turn up.”
He’s like, “Well, what do you want it to sound like?”
I say, “I want it to sound like I can both sing and rap to it while also feeling like a nice spring day with my bitches, drinking mimosas.”
I have to think of situations for people to associate with feelings. Having weird explanations [for the engineers] seems to always work.
Kindred: Have you had the chance to perform live?
Marie: No. I’ve been featured at open mics before but nothing outside of that. Performing is another level of artistry as well. That’s something else I’m working toward.