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Lisa Mercedez

Lisa Mercedez

Because of cooperation with big names like Stylo G and Ms Banks, Lisa Mercedez could easily settle in the Britain Dancehall-Scene. Her latest achievement: Supporting Nicki Minaj on her UK Tour! But Lisa Mercedez is more than just a Dancehall-Star. Rapping on grime or reggae beats is no challenge for her, and no matter which genre, she never neglects her Jamaican heritage. „I can jump on any beat. I’ll jump on a Hiphop beat or a grime beat and you can still hear that Jamaican sound coming from me.“

Lisa Mercedez was born in 1986 in Kingston, the capital of Jamaica. She had no relationship to her mother, so her father raised her alone until he died in 2002. Short time after this tragic event, she decided to change her life and emigrate to London. Three years later, at the age of 19, she began making music and invented her stage name, which should remember her father: Lisa because that’s the nickname he gave her and Mercedez as a memory of something her father loved. At times of life he always talked about a Mercedes W201 Model, she remembers. His love for this car got stuck in her mind, so she decided to make it part of her new stage of life.

Once she has settled in London, she got to know labels like § Beat Records and Up-Tempo Records. Because of her contact to Stylo G, she became the first and only female member in the Warning Crew. After being a part of this collective, she released her first single as a solo-artist in 2014. Immediately afterwards she made a break with her career, which made her fans worry, she could have ended her time as an artist. In 2017, however, she appeared back on the screen with her mixtape „Boss Girl Circle (BGC)“. Parallel to this and some other releases, Lisa Mercedez decided to finally leave the Dancehall-Underground. In the following month, she designed her sound specifically for British radio and performed various times with Covers or Freestyles on all relevant channels in the country. Her plan was working and already in February 2018 she officially achieved the breakthrough with a slot at the Wireless Festival. As only one out of three female artists in this line-up, Lisa Mercedez became part of an international discussion about the women’s quota at music events. She herself said: „As a woman we have to work ten times har das the guys to make it and I’m really happy that all the females coming through right now are killing it.“

It wasn’t until this year that her name reappeared in the headlines. Christianly raised, Alicia decided after her father’s death to convert to Islam. Even then, she emphasized that her faith should not influence her love for dancehall.  However, the more successful she became, the more she turned away from her religion – until this year. On Instagram she announced she converted to Islam again. On her Instagram posting and a music video in whose intro she quoted the Koran, hate messages and even murder threats quickly followed. She then publicly expressed her deepest misunderstanding and proclaimed that she wanted to continue to reconcile the music and her faith. She admitted that she had made mistakes and she wanted to learn being a better person in the future, for example by wearing a hijab and dressing less revealingly. „I do try my best to dress appropriately and cover up more […]. I used to wear skimpy hot pants on-stage but I’m covering up more now. I’m wearing my headscarf where I can. I’m still learning, practicing and trying to do the right thing but I’ve just reverted, it’s going to take a while.“

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She has already released four singles this year and others are supposed to follow. There was also talk of an album in various media. What exactly awaits listeners and if Lisa is changing more, because of the religion or to break out of the underground, will turn out in the future.

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