Q+A Natalie Stewart


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Photo: Phylicia Ghee

Natalie “The Floacist” Stewart has moved beyond her seven-time-Grammy-nominated duo, Floetry, to embark on a new solo album, Freedom, which is due out soon. Recently featured at the fourth annual Serafemme Queer Women of Color Music Festival Weekend in Los Angeles, the U.K.-bred Floacist is a creative force, expressing herself through music, slam poetry, writing and even the tattoos on her body.

I noticed that your tattoos depict powerful mythical symbols.
Yeah, so you got Medusa at the top, Kali in the middle and the mermaid. I just feel really close to mermaids—mermaid ancestry and all that business.

I read that you wrote a screenplay with Angelina Jolie in mind to play the lead.
You know, if it’s going to happen you got to see it first, and that’s who I see for the role. I feel like Angelina Jolie is one of my spiritual sisters. I look forward to meeting her. I am a performing arts kid, I’m a poet, I’m a writer, I’m a floacist—which is kind of bringing all things into one. So I’ve been writing plays and books and movie scripts, and performing them, forever. Even when I was just writing them for my family, and then I was writing them for people at school, you know. So, yes. I have the next 10, 15 years of my life—15 is kind of in focus right now. Yeah, going to take the Will Smith walk, the divine feminine version.

Are you thinking about crossing over to acting?
Well, yeah, very possibly so. I will definitely experience it all, but if you’re a performing arts kid you’re experiencing it all whether [or not] you’re doing [it] all. So even if you’re doing music videos, you’re experiencing movies. Not that shooting a music video means that you can shoot a movie. I don’t mean that.

What about your new album? I noticed that you passed it around and that you’re going against the grain as far as what people have been told they can do with music.
Well, I have just started my own label, Spirit Mother Music, and I have a pre-album, which is called The Offering, and it’s free—10 tracks—it’s my version of a mix tape. And then Freedom comes out at the top of 2009.

It definitely seems like you’ve gone through a transformation from what your previous group albums were. Now that you’re coming out as a solo artist, you really seem like you’ve gained some enlightenment.
That’s good. I mean, I definitely have got some enlightenment. Embellishments though, you know, they’re just embellishments. Life is life, time is time, days tick by and I came to America with Floetry when I was 21, and now I’m 29.

It’s like a rebirth.
Definitely, I am reborn. Again and again and again.

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