#BlackAltBae: Sad Heaux the Goddess

I think I first came across Sad Heaux the Goddess on Instagram and started following her with the intent to research her more thoroughly at a later date. But when I saw a clip of one of her videos, "later" became a serious issue of "now." I immediately had to follow her on every platform and add her music to my library.

It was an absolute delight to complete this interview with her on January 31st, 2023.

So how long have you been in music and how did you get started?

Well I’ve been into music ever since I could remember. My and my father would spend so much time listening to R&B and jazz together. I wrote my first song at age 5, and we have tons of family videos of me doing performances at home. I also I have musicians on both sides of my family. On my mom's side I have a lot of family who rap, sing, and/or produce. On my father's side we have a proud history in the jazz genre. My great-great-grandfather was actually a part of the Southern Syncopated Orchestra, which is the jazz band responsible for spreading jazz music around the entire world from 1919-1921. My other great-grandfather played Sax in the US Army’s jazz band during World War II. So both my personal history and my family history with music instills so much pride and motivates me to keep going.

How did you choose your name?

I came up with it back in 2018. It was honestly kind of a joke but not a joke at the same time. I have a sense of humor where I joke about the bad things in order to feel better about them. So for me, I’ve dealt with depression since I was 10 years old. It definitely has been a roller coaster, but I've come to feel as the though the word ‘sad’ has been stigmatized in a way to where people run away from accepting that feeling. Which I think isn’t healthy. It important to acknowledge that you’re sad sometimes and it’s okay. If sadness didn’t exist, how would we know what happiness or joy is? So putting ‘Sad’ in my name was kind of a form of radical self acceptance. The ‘Heaux’ part pronounced like ‘hoe’. I got the idea from the tumblr era where everyone was an ‘art heaux’. So instead of an art heaux, I’m a Sad Heaux. And ‘the Goddess’ got added on later for two reasons. First because I felt like the name was incomplete, and second because for years I’ve always been complimented by being called a goddess. I’ve been told I carry goddess energy so I stuck with it. I also have “the Goddess” tattooed on my chest. 

Your voice is excellent; very sweet, very haunting. Are you formally trained? 

Thank you! I am not formally trained. As a kid I actually wasn’t the best singer but throughout my childhood and teens, I would listen to some of my favorite artists and try my best to imitate their vocal techniques. One of my favorite artists to imitate is Amy Lee from Evanescence. All throughout high school I would practice and practice until I could hit every note along with her.  I also take a lot of inspiration from some of my favorite pop-punk style singers like Parker Cannon of The Story So Far and Dan Lambton formerly of Real Friends. 

Do you play any instruments?

I play the guitar. I taught myself how to play when I was 15 years old. I can’t read music but I can teach myself new songs from chord charts.

So, you dropped your EP BlastOFF! last April. I saw a clip of “SkipMyMeds” some weeks ago and had the same reaction I had when I heard clip of “Falling” by Shola Aurora—my world stopped. I had to stop whatever I was doing to find the full song. Weeks later, it has stayed with me. BlastOFF! has all these deceptively cheery sounds and samples that you’ve combined to create a melancholic album. What was the underlying inspiration?

BlastOff! Is a very important EP for me because it is a reflection of the healing and growth journey I had been on for a couple years at the time. 2020 I got out of a terribly toxic relationship, I lost a baby, and I lost myself. 2021 I nearly gave up. Yet, through all the misery, these chaotically joyous songs were still able to be made. Each song helped me love myself, understand myself, and l find myself again. I like to think of this EP as my form of radical inner-child healing. 

First, let me say I am so sorry for your loss. I wouldn’t wish that experience on anyone, and I’m genuinely impressed with how you channeled it into your music.

Thank you so much! The first song I ever wrote with my guitar was actually about the loss of my father, and I won my high school talent show with it. Ever since then, it’s just been so much easier to put how I feel into words. 

I noticed that despite your “sad” sound, your lyrics are refreshingly defiant. What’s your writing process?

Every song I write is just a reflection of what I’m feeling, or how the beat makes me feel. Typically I’ll find a beat that resonates and expand on the feeling I’m getting from it. Other times if I feel like I need to get something off my chest, I’ll find a beat that resonates with what I’m feeling in that moment. 

I remember reading that it took you ten months to create this wonderful little masterpiece. Who all did you work with and how did you pull it off? And where was it recorded?

So this EP was never actually planned, it sort of just happened lol I bought a tiny microphone on Amazon that I thought was super cool, and I decided to see how it would sound if I recorded a song with it. I used an app on my phone called BandLab, and I free-styled "GetTfOffMyLawn" that same day. I was honestly so impressed and excited that I could make something so good on my phone, that I kept making more and more and more.

So essentially, this entire EP was recorded on my iPhone 11pro. My beats are all bought from YouTube, and I made the cover art myself. I was able to get features from MKVirgo on “BlastOff!” and Kamilah Official on “DontLookUnderTheBed” (who is actually my younger sister). And the “SkipMyMeds” music video was shot and edited by the amazing ShotByT.

You recorded an album on your phone? With beats bought from YouTube? People can actually do that? I knew I was old, but DAMN.

Yes! I used an app called BandLab! It’s free and super easy to use! My sister gave me some really good presets they have made the quality come out amazingly!

Your family is truly blessed because your sister also sounds amazing! She’s got a set of pipes on her.

Thank you! Two of my other sisters can sing as well! My younger sister actually just released yet her first single called “222” by Vinah on all platforms! I definitely recommend that everyone check it out! My older sister also raps and sings, you can check her out on IG under @DejBae.

Speaking of collabs, talk to me about Keydrip. Your songs together are super catchy.

Keydrip!!! Keydrip has become one of my best friends in the entire world and believe it or not, we’ve never even met in person. I met her while doing talent shows on this live streaming app called Yubo in late 2021. The first song we ever put together was “If Pillows Could Talk” and we were both shocked at how well our voices sounded together. Ever since then we’ve been going hit for hit! We call each other music twins because there’s literally no one else either of us have met who connects musically like we do together. She’s all the way in Tennessee while I’m in Cali, but we hope to meet this year and do some shows together! I’m so grateful to have her in my life and we have some amazing music coming soon! 

I feel like you’ve created a signature sound here. Which artists and styles inspire you?

It’s hard to specify only because I feel like each project is inspired by a different artist and/or style. I really love finding new genres and taking inspiration. The BlastOff! ep is very inspired by Hyperpop Genre and specifically Yameii Online. I discovered Yameii Online in 2021 and I swear it was the most satisfying sound I’ve heard in a long time! It inspired me to make music that made me feel that good, and then came BlastOff! My next project is definitely a deep dive into a younger me. I’m listening and referencing a lot of the rock, pop-punk, post hardcore, styles that I really loved as a teen.

You dropped an EP almost a year ago; is a full-length album on the way?

Right now I have a lot of stuff I’m sitting on a deciding whether or not I want to drop another ep or put out a full length album. Right now it’s looking like it will most likely be an Ep, but that could change in the near future! 

So you grew up listening to jazz, and now you listen to a lot of alternative music styles. Who are some Black alt artists you recommend?

I definitely wanna recommend some a few artists! MK Virgo is a friend of mine who is featured on my song “BlastOff!” He makes a super dope hyper/trap style of rap that will really start a mosh pit! I also really love an artist I found recently named Gaptoothv4mp! She makes amazing hyper pop music, I like listening to it on my way to work in the mornings! Another friend of mine named King Ku, dropped his EP “HellBoy” on all platforms last summer and it is absolutely insane. He used some dark/creepy style beats with a menacing rap flow that just makes you wanna rage! “Hellboy” was the perfect title for it!

Got any performances lined up? How do you enjoy performing live?

I have a couple shows lined up and I plan to book some more in the spring. Right now I’m working with a group called The Good Fun. The host these really cool art/vendor/music shows that are so much fun! February 22 I will be doing my second performance with their collective in San Francisco! You can find the tickets for that show in my Instagram Bio! I'm also performing at a black queer art show at the end of the month. I’ll be doing a set to help close out the gallery that opened back in December!

I absolutely love performing live. I always tell people the stage feels like home. Whenever I perform, I never wanna get off stage. I could honestly be up there forever. It’s funny because I feel more comfortable on stage than I do socializing in regular life.

What are your plans for the future overall?

My plans for the future over all are to continue doing what I’m doing! Networking, performing, writing, and doing what makes me happy! I truly believe that as long as I keep to doing me and being me, then everything will work out in the end. I’ll attract the right supporters and the right team with time, as long as I keep focused on me and my music.

Sad Heaux, thank you so much again for doing this.


Popular Posts