When we started this podcast, we set out with the intention of saying the words left unsaid about the world as we all experience it. As southern millennial artists we rarely heard our perspective in the mainstream, and we recognized that one subject that we haven’t talked about is race. It is one of the first things that comes to many people’s minds when they think of the south, but we needed to figure out a way to talk about it while still being true to our lived experiences. After all, the north is not immune to racism and it is teeming with it, especially when it comes to the socioeconomic conditions that many people of color are forced to live in.

Nonetheless, for this latest episode, we decided to get uncomfortable and say the words left unsaid about race relations in America. Race is threaded into the fabric of everything we do in this country. Ever notice that when you’re reading a news article, if you scroll down to the comments section there are racist comments, no matter what the subject of the article? Ever wonder why every time there’s a national socio-political issue, the subject of colonialism always comes up? We have to be willing to call a thing a thing if we are going to heal the racial hearts of the past, both within communities of color and between communities of color and the

In the episode, we will go deep into talking about our experiences of race from childhood to present, and we will discuss how white people and people of color can have uncomfortable conversations about race. After you listen, be sure to tweet us your thoughts on the best ways to have uncomfortable conversations.

In our latest episode, we’re talking about the little things and all the joy they bring, to quote India Arie. Lately, it seems like everyone is angry and outraged, but today, we are advocating for peace, love, joy, and beauty for beauty’s sake. This is not to say that we are championing tunnel vision, ignorance, and disengaging from the world around you. After all, this is the world to live in and we all share this planet together. But, sometimes, I think we all long for the days before news feeds.

To think that just a decade ago, our phones were simply phones and we were not subjected to 1,000 emotional reactions to every world event, big or small– it seems like the distant past. The wonderful thing about the democratization of communication channels through social media, blogs, podcasts, and video on demand platforms is that it has made our world so much larger. We now know what people who live 10,000 miles away from us are eating for dinner and watching on television. We can stay connected to friends and relatives whose faces we haven’t seen in years, and we can make new connections with people whose existence would have never otherwise occured to us. Our news feeds have made us global citizens.

At the same time, information is coming at us rapidly and vapidly. Everyone’s vying to report it first and everyone is vying to be the first to react, with the hopes of being the voice of the people, with dreams of going viral. But, what that has done to us is put us in a constant state of sorting. We are sorting, hashtagging, listing, and following in order to make sense of the world around us. As we type this blog post, the news has just reported a mass shooting at a country music festival in Las Vegas, where 50 people have been pronounced dead and others are wounded. Prepare for the incoming of comments about how the world is going to hell, think pieces about gun control, opposing think pieces about how it is more important than ever to preserve our second amendment rights, and the inevitable hashtag #PrayforVegas.

Unfortunately, the more that we sort our information, the more we are trying to sort each other. We’re trying to force each other into categories that we can easily understand and digest, however, living things are more complex than the way they color their worlds. And, sometimes we can feel guilty for wanting to feel joy at all. How can I need a break? How can I be happy when children in ______ are without ______? What can I do to make the world a better place?

The answer is in each one of us. Angry people can start a movement, but they can’t finish one. At some point, we all have to look inward and figure out what makes us happy, what we value, and who we love, and choose that each and every day. So, let’s talk about joy. Tweet us and let us know what brings you joy. Share your images of experiencing joy with us on Instagram. #JoyisWoke

Let the church say Amen! In the latest episode of the podcast we are talking about religion and spirituality. We met at church, grew up in church, and stopped “going to a place called church” in our twenties. In fact, we’re not the only ones, and many traditional religious institutions have seen a decline in young people attending. So, what is the cause of this? Outdated religious doctrines? More ways to stream church? Disbelief? We’re saying the words left unsaid about millennials and religion in the south, gender roles in church in the south, the lessons we learned from going to church, and where we are now in our spiritual practice. Take a listen and be sure to tweet us your thoughts @unbasicpodcast, and share your spiritual journey with us!

After the whole SHEther beef between Remy Ma and Nicki Minaj, we started thinking about women in hip-hop. As 80s babies who grew up in the 90s, we grew up during the Golden Age of women in rap music. In this episode, we’re taking a walk down memory lane and discussing the women rappers who were also role models when we were growing up. We are also digging into the state of women in hip-hop today and hopefully introducing you to someone who might become your new favorite MC. Below we’ve listed the names of women rappers who have influences our culture. Be sure to tweet us @unbasicpodcast and let us know which female rappers are spitting new flavor in your ear!

Angie Martinez
Azalea Banks
Briana Perry
Charlie Baltimore
Da Brat
Foxy Brown
Iggy Azalea
Jean Grey
Lil Kim
MC Lyte
Missy Elliot
Naeemah Supreme
Queen Latifah
Rah Digga
Salt N Peppa
Yani Mo

This episode is geared toward those who are looking to take their creative careers to the next level. Earlier in year, we did an episode called “Unleashed” as a part of our New Year’s resolution series about finding joy in your career, while you are on the journey to fulfilling your purpose. In this episode, we’re debunking the myth of the starving artist and encouraging you to turn your creative hobby into your creative business. We’re telling our personal stories about time management, finances,  and calling inspiration to you.

Remember: “Ideas are a divine invitation and the work itself is a reward. It’s a reward because of the way it changes you, not necessarily because of the way it changes the world. At the end of a creative encounter you will be different than you were before, and that in itself makes it worth doing.” – Elizabeth Gilbert

In this episode, we start out by keeping it light with a discussion about 2 Chainz’s Pink Trap House (which has since closed and is moving) and Jay Z’s new “4:44” album. Then, we segue into saying the words left unsaid about stereotypes of toxic masculinity in the African American community, depictions of black men in the media, and how to empower and support black men, while still preserving the souls of black women.

We’ve also issued a challenge to the world. For the next 100 days, tell someone that you love them and that they are worthy. Say it in person, say it on social media, say it on the phone, say it in an email, say it everywhere! SPREAD THE LOVE! 

For the past couple of weeks Atlanta rapper 2 Chainz has been causing traffic jams in the west midtown neighborhood. As a part of the promotions for his latest album Pretty Girls Like Trap Music, he painted a home pink, put a hoopty in the front yard, and painted the word TRAP in black capital letters on the front. People from all over Georgia and the southeast have been driving to Atlanta to see this monument of trap music’s integration into pop culture.

For those who are unfamiliar with trap music, it is a subgenre of rap that emerged from drug houses during the era of the crack cocaine epidemic. The music is meant to be motivational– to encourage those who are making, weighing, measuring, and bagging drugs to work faster and harder to earn more money. During the 1980s and 1990s crack cocaine wreaked havoc on communities of color, leading to the incarceration of black men and women. Literally, a generation of children were left without parents and lived in dire poverty because of drug addiction.

So, it’s a bit conflicting to see the glorification of trap music and the dark realities that it narrates. The black community has not recovered from the splintering of the black family perpetuated by crack, and black people have not forgotten the government’s hands-off approach to helping black people. We’re reminded every time we hear about a white person’s life being saved by a Narcan shot after a heroine overdose. Yet, on any given Sunday, there are more people at the trap house than the church house.

That said, the pink trap house is also a genius guerrilla marketing scheme, and it is not the fist that the rapper executed to promote the Pretty Girls Like Trap Music album. 2 Chainz hosted a group workout class where attendees participated in a 45-minute workout while music from the album played. At the end of the class, they passed out pink yoga mats. As of last weekend, a pastor has started having church in the backyard of the trap house and says he wants to find ways to help those people who are still caught up in the trap house. This is a righteous cause, especially since Atlanta has the widest income inequality gap in the country. Less than 5 miles from the extremely gentrified west midtown neighborhood it has never been more visible.

How do we reconcile the popularity of trap music as the beat of the club, the gym, and rush hour traffic, but also as the rhythm of oppressive socioeconomic circumstances? Is it empowerment or exploitation for a rapper to capitalize on the popularity of trap music in order to make money off of the white people who download it? Tell us what you think by tweeting us @unbasicpodcast with the hashtag #pinktraphouse.

I’m too fat.

I’m too skinny.

I wish my boobs were bigger.

I wish my hips were smaller.

We spend so much time lamenting over the size of our thighs and for women of color, often we lament in the dark and alone. Issues with body image, eating disorders, and disordered eating are often seen as “white girl issues,” but many women of color grapple with these same internal conflicts. Yet, no one ever talks about it until now.  Haze and I have very different experiences of living in our bodies, but we both know what it is like to look in the mirror and feel let down. We also know what  it looks like to be inching toward victory and have that glimmer of internal light that comes from healthy eating and exercise. In short, we both know what it is like to have some level of happiness and self-worth hinged upon body weight.

In this episode of the podcast, we’re getting undressed and talking about body image, weight, healthy eating and the historical exploitation of black women’s bodies in the media. We are breaking the silence. It’s time to get naked and hopefully get healed.

We’ve been away for over two weeks and so much has gone down in the world. From Muslim bans to the GRAMMYs we are saying all of the words left unsaid about current events. We’re talking about the “Cash Me Outside” Girl, Hurt Bae, the Remy Ma/Nicki Minaj “ShETHER” dis track, and everything that has gone down in the meantime and in between time. We also have a new #QTNA (questions that need answers) segment where we dissect national and world politics. Give us a listen and tweet us your thoughts @unbasicpodcast.

The Academy Awards are Kelundra’s favorite television event and Ashlee Haze indulged her by doing an Oscars live cast. I (Kelundra) used to have a tradition of waiting for the Oscars to come around and then spend the year leading up to the following year’s awards watching the movies that won the previous year. Nowadays I just watch the movies that I have an inkling will be nominated, and this year I managed to see La La Land, 13th, Hidden FiguresFences, and Moonlight. And, Haze watched all of the animated and short films. We watched the entire a show, from Justin Timberlake’s opening to Halle Berry’s wig to Gary from Chicago to the La La Land/Moonlight mix-up, and we’re breaking it down.

Photo from Getty Images.