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Published on April 10th, 2020 | by MuzikScribe


Sweet Tee: Long Time Coming

Now let’s hop right into your latest single, “I Ain’t Doin’ Love” — Tell me about this particular track? How did it even come to fruition?

Pudgee Tha Phat Bastard is working with me on this project, and we talk. “I Ain’t Doin’ Love” comes from the idea of knowing your worth, and that it’s okay to take a break. We thought it was a great concept, and we got it done.

It’s your first new release since 2017’s “TYT,” but even longer if one considers your first and only proper full length studio LP, ‘It’s Tee Time’ — That said, why such a lengthy delay between records?  

F.Y.I., that is not my record 2017’s “TYT”; my last full out release was in 1995, “What’s Up Star.” Each time there was a break in my career it stemmed from a record deal gone wrong, which led to a hiatus until a new situation that was worth it came along.

In having said this, are there any current plans in place for an official sophomore collection?

I am working with (Pudgee) on a new release. COVID has swayed the time line of everything, but we are working on the completion of my official sophomore collection.

And if so, what all exactly can be expected from your eagerly awaited second solo outing?

There is a good collection of songs so far. COVID has stopped production, and we are just writing now until we can get back in the studio.

How then does this new solo material either differ and / or compare to previous Sweet Tee selections?    

My first album was some time ago, so there is going to be a difference in the sound because of time. I have evolved with time, and the new project is going to reflect where I am as an artist today.

All of that being said, what all have / had you been up to, both personally and professionally speaking, over the course of the past thirty plus years?  

Doing shows with my peers has never stopped. I obtained my Bachelor’s degree, and I am currently an Assistant Director in a drug treatment program.

In ‘95, you re-emerged under the moniker Suga with the song “What’s Up Star?,” produced by Deric “D-Dot” Angelettie and Ron “Amen-Ra” Lawrence, taken from the soundtrack to The Show documentary  — Why did nothing else materialize from this then working relationship with Def Jam?  

I was signed to JMJ Records and “What’s up Star?” was supposed to be for my album, but Def Jam wanted it for the soundtrack album The Show…and before my album could be completed JMJ lost his deal with Def Jam, so by that point I asked to be released from the who deal. I did not know at that point if I would ever record again.

There’s were even talks of a new album tentatively titled ‘Queen of QNZ’…

This is not me.

Switching gears here, how has not only the industry itself, but even more-so you as an individual, either changed and/or evolved since your whole inception into music?   

I  was a young girl when I started rapping, so rap helped raise me, it helped to develop me, and is a part of my being. When the rap industry began I was there, so I am part of the mold.

Longevity, what do you attribute yours to?  

For me, it is not something that I can just turn off. I feel like it is built into my DNA. Whether I ever put a record out or not, a beat or an instrumental can’t just play without my mind automatically trying to put a rhyme to it, and I’ve come to realize that that is never going to change.

What do you want people to get from your music? 

I always wanted people to just hear my music. There is a different feeling in each song that I do.

Are there a(any) hidden meaning / message(s) in any of your music?  

No, not really, my music is transparent.

As a lyricist, where do you actually draw inspiration from? 

I draw inspiration from the music itself. When I hear something that I like, it speaks to me and I use my creativity as a rap artist to bring songs to life.

On a more serious note, are you happy with the current state of Hip Hop? And, even more specifically, where exactly do you fit in when it comes to today’s trending sound-scape?     

Yes, I think that for the most part I am happy with the current state of Hip Hop. It had to grow; it had to evolve from the beginning stages, and I think it’s pretty good. With anything there will be things you like and dislike, but that’s okay. Then and now, I never thought about how to fit in. Some of the biggest songs in the world did not fit it. The song “Happy” didn’t fit in, “Old Town Road” did not fit in…they were miles ahead. That is always my goal. I do constantly evolve my rap cadence because I will always study music, and I am always focused on trying to take the lead.

Do you have any other outside / additional aspirations, maybe even completely away from music?  

I am a writer and I have screenplays that I would like to bring to life, and children’s books that I am working on.

What has been your greatest career achievement(s), at least thus far anyway?   

Seeing my image hung in the National Museum of African American History and Culture. It really hit home for me when I went to an event and someone I grew up with said to me, “We were all playing together as kids and now your face is in the National Museum of African American History in Washington DC, where all of our history is documented, I am so proud of you.” He put his hands on my shoulders and looked me in eyes and asked me, “How does it feel?” I told him I was honored, happy and proud to be there and we talked about it, but when I walked off it hit me like a ton of bricks. This is a great career and personal achievement.

What’s an average day like for you?

I am an Assistant Director of a drug treatment program, so I go to work and it is strenuous at time dealing with the population that I deal with. My job lets me alter my time any time I need to for “Sweet Tee.” They understand and embrace her as well.

Please discuss how you interact with and respond to fans… 

I still do shows, and they are always fun. People always come out to have a good time. I am on my social media, @sweetteethemc, and I respond to them.

What is your favorite part about this line of work? Your least favorite? Why? 

I love being creative and making music, meeting a lot of people, traveling. What could be the least favorite part of this is your personal life being on front street. Before the internet it wasn’t such a big deal, but now it is terrible how people can just create fake stories, post them, and it could affect how your fans look at you. And also everybody has ups and downs, but I feel like it’s for you to tell your own stories.

What advice would you have for someone wanting to follow in your footsteps? 

If you want it go for it, but make sure you have a “B” plan. Follow the blueprint athletes use; you would be surprised the degrees some of the athletes have. It’s a back-up plan. You even can have a small business…you have heard the term “Starving Artist?” You don’t have to starve to be an artist.

“It’s My Beat,” featuring DJ Jazzy Joyce, is a bona-fide Hip Hop classic — How did this song actually come about? Who came up with the concept? And, please describe for me the overall studio vibe on that fateful day? 

One night I was a club in Manhattan where I met Hurby Luv Bug, and he expressed interest in working with me. I went home that night and I wrote “It’s My Beat.” I rapped it to him on his answering machine, and sung the base line to him. He picked me up the very next morning, and we created the song. It’s was a great day. That song alone landed me my deal with Profile Records. Jazzy Joyce is an incredible female DJ that I saw playing in the park one day. I asked her to be part of the camp, and I went back in the studio and added a fourth verse to the song with her name in it.

Lastly, what’s next for Sweet Tee? 

I am working on an album release, ‘Jewelry Box,’ coming soon. The pandemic is probably altering timelines for everyone, but it’s coming soon.

Is there anything I left out, or just plain forgot to mention?

Follow me @sweetteethemc, and look out for my album 2020, ‘Jewelry Box!’

Any “closing” thought(s) for our readers? 

You only have one life, “FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS.”


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