sunchild: Protista, peace and welcome to the Consciousness Lounge, please introduce yourself and can you tell us a bit about how you came about choosing such an interesting alias?
Protista: Greetings to the people of the Consciousness Lounge. I am Pro- tista, – Protista [adj], is a biological term, meaning ‘Kingdom of diverse plant life’, derived from the Latin term (noun) .-Pro-tozan, which basically plays a host to a large variety of different forms of growth to multi-cellular organisms. Namely, the Protist (singular form), the promotion of consistent growth to various plant life-forms. So taken, I’m quite keen on the Earth and Plant-life, I guess Protista’s central. Hypothesis captured me from the very beginning. The overall meaning, and of course, what it is l stand for. Strength as one, as well as for others, diversity, variety, life as a method for progression and growth..
sunchild: Can you tell us a bit about what you do and how you got to where you are at the moment in terms of your career?
Protista: Well, first and foremost I consider myself a messenger. The spoken word being my portal, I fell in love with the written word early in my high school years, started drafting poems, short stories, reading into different subject matters, I loved the gentle delivery of poetry, but I needed more edge, hence today, I am what they call a female MC performer, vocalist, hip hop activist. What got me to this point in my career was basically attending open mic sessions, music industry conferences, live shows, with nothing more than pure ambition, determination and an active hunger for a certain type of recognition.
sunchild: Do you consider yourself to be conscious and what do you think constitutes consciousness?
Protista: I would consider myself conscious. What constitutes consciousness to me, is being able to bear a general awareness of self. Firstly, surroundings far out of your comfort zone, where you come from, where you going to, forward movement, overstanding, world politics, paying attention to culture, comment, conflict, showing a general interest, existence.
sunchild: How would you describe your style of music?
Protista: My style of music is what would be considered as ‘Conscious Hip Hop’, for this day and age. So, the main themes would be depth and soul. There is a definite mood to every tune, I thrive on keeping the original "boom-bap”-sampling factor in my music so that there’s an authenticity and dimension about it. I love old school delivery, when it comes to rhyming, elaborative commentary. I take a conceptual approach to every song.
sunchild: What does your music mean to you?
Protista: My music, for me, is something more than, just artistry. It was a calling one I could not ignore, if anything music is my driving force, everything I ever wrote, was deeper than what I could even come to fully know yet. It’s a learning curb every day, one which I always turn back to, the same place, only with way more lessons, experience, blessings. Music is for life!
sunchild: Do you perform very often and is there a big interest in the type of music you are doing?
Protista: The past year my performances simmered down slightly, as I was busy recording my debut album, but I’m back and better! People started taking note and the interest shown in me, and then the music has been overwhelming.
sunchild: What are your influences and what motivates you?
Protista: I think my main influence is life, all kinds, not just my own life, experiences, people, memories, dreams. My motivation would be living, growth, love, positivity, and reality. Pure passion motivates me.
sunchild: Do you have any other hobbies or interests or is music your be all and end all?
Protista: Art, cooking, dancing, writing, social involvement. The music has been a powerful outlet, for my personality too. Forever music!
sunchild: Are you signed to a label or are you independent and can you tell us about the struggles of trying to get signed in the industry?
Protista: I am currently, associated with and signed to an Independent Record Label called Scratch Beats based in Johannesburg as a solo act with an under, and above-ground following. Getting signed is not easy at all. The industry, in my opinion, looks for a specific product for a specific season. The industry is flooded with ‘so-called’ artists, for lack of a better word, who often aren’t worth the weight of their material.
sunchild: What do you think about music in SA does it have a future or are people still too involved with overseas artists, do you think there should be a balance, or loyalty to your own country first?
Protista: South African music has a future for Southern African traditional music. E.g. Afro-Pop, Maskandi, Kwaito, House etc. It’s probably seen as disloyalty, if music of foreign heritage, i.e. Hip Hop is performed in the exact way, an overseas established artist would portray. South Africans are slowly starting to strike a balance, but you will find that ‘under-hyped’, artists have a greater fellowship abroad, more so than at home. So it is difficult when you get to grip with only sixteen-years, of freedom and democracy and understanding how to make use of it. I would say I am an ambassador for Africa, my loyalty lies here, but do the African people on a whole, share interest or show supportive involvement, I’m not so sure?
sunchild: Where do you see yourself in the future?
Protista: Hopefully, my first album does well enough for me to continue recording a few more releases. I plan on pursuing music, purely for the sake of music, no cut-off times or any force. I want to be blessed to absorb so much more, when it comes to, organic music, producing, writing and working with other artists as well. In between my love affair with music, I intend on furthering my studies, at a reputable university, to obtain a degree in language, philosophy, journalism, and music.
sunchild: Where can people find about more about you and listen to or buy your music.
Protista: You can check me out on Facebook, on my personal page www.facebook.com/pro.tista Also check out my record label’s website www.scratchbeats.co.za for more info on when and where my album will be available.
sunchild: Do you have any up and coming gigs and where can people see you perform next?
Protista: I do have a few performances lined-up for the next two months mainly, in and around Johannesburg. Stay posted to the label’s website for further details on performances and venues.
sunchild: Any last words, comments or inspiration for the consciousness community?
Protista:Yeah, love what you do and do what you love. Make use of your God given talents and abilities. Stay real, and remember, complexity contributes to consciousness. Word, peace and 1 love.