I was introduced to Fee Tha MC, born Fe’Eska Howard, like we are exposed to most art nowadays - social media. With an influx of women breaking into the hip-hop industry, the next mainstream hitter is only a post away and I can thank the world of ‘X’ for the introduction to the rapper from Monroe, Louisiana.
Being a plus-size woman in an industry that has historically judged a woman’s physical appearance against her success comes with obstacles. Fe’Eska’s foundation may have been set by her mother, who Fee affectionately refers to as Lisa Black. But, the confidence that beams from her lyrics and her visual aesthetic was a personal achievement that the ‘Feenix’ performer credits to loss and growth.
“My mom passed away when I was 17. So I had to step into the role of being my own adult. At a very young age, she passed away right before my graduation, right before my 18th birthday,” Fee expresses. “I had to step out of that childlike self that I had. For years, I’ve had an adult mentality, because I’ve been my own adult. This confidence grew for me about six years ago. By the time I was 19, I was dominating my life.”
The strength and edge to the tone of Fee Tha MC’s music is what draws the crowd. As she raps, “Phat, pretty and paid, that’s a PPP, b****es need a loan, they can’t f*** with Fee,” in Hustlah, featured on Lisa Black, listeners can feel the authenticity and the audacity behind her words. It is a ferocity that is required to stand out amongst such a rise of talented women in rap. Howard plans to climb the ranks by reintroducing the genre to an era that fans of hip hop yearn for.
“The bar I’m setting for myself is also a bar I’m setting for female rap,” Fee The MC boasts. “No shade to the girls. But, I don’t want to always hear about who has the best c*****e or who has these big a** diamonds on. None of that is important to my day-to-day life. I’m living in a one-bedroom apartment and getting this 9-to-5 check.”
Fe’Eska speaks to a desire for relativity from our favorite performers that she experiences as a fan of music. Fee’s playlist is rooted in an artist’s ability to connect. Musicians such as Anita Baker and Mariah the Scientist are in heavy rotation which is reflected in the young rapper’s idea for an intriguing collaboration in the future.
“My top pop artist of all time is Meghan Trainor. Of course at one point in my life Meghan was all about that bass and that treble and I loved that. That is one pop artist that I would love to turn out a song with,” the Louisiana artist declares.
“I know that everyone would be expecting FeFe to come on the song and be like a rapper. But, I would like to come on the song with a different energy. I think people have lost sight of what a feature is.”
Tapping back into the foundation of the craft is always at the forefront of Fee’s mind. During the conversation, she would reminisce about how creative the game once was. The era of true remixes where artists would introduce a completely fresh set of verses instead of keeping the original verse in place and surrounding it with features. Fe’Eska’s career is rooted in an underground hustle that aligns with the raw grind associated with growing and glowing as a new act.
Fee Tha MC does not shy away from the journey ahead of her. She knows the amount of work required to meet the goals she has set in place. Whether Fee is stepping out self-styled to hop in front of the camera and let off bars for an organically-grown social media following or belting out freestyles in her bathroom to find a vibe, her enterprising mentality is the guiding light.
“I know I have to put the time and energy into where I see myself. It’s a manifestation. It’s working towards that end goal. I can see myself at BET winning my very first hip-hop award in a year and a half from now,” Fee professes. “I do set a bar for the Grammys, but my first award will come from BET. And I’ll have on a big, beautiful purple gown.”
The focus is now on securing visuals to accompany her song releases to give the audience something they can put their eyes on. The path is clear. Equipped with her mother’s spirit and an affinity for music that streams through her veins, Fee Tha MC is ready for the ride. The only question remaining is if the Southern rapper is here for “a good time” or “a long time”?
Fee pauses as she contemplates her response.
“I’m here for a good, long time. How about that?”
Check out Fee Tha MC on Instagram and stream her album Lisa Black below.