We met up with upcoming hip hop artist Heesun Lee as she prepared to grace the stage at the Diamond Lounge in Annandale Virginia and got the word on her current activities and her hopes for 2017!
So Mrs. Heesun, for the fans that don't know, would you mind giving us a little introduction of yourself and some backstory?
Heesun Lee: Yeah, uh my name is Heesun Lee. I'm from Statten Island, NY. I'm a rappper, poet...just trying to change the world one day at a time. Hopefully doing that through my music. I like to speak and rap on very positive and uplifting messages that can really help, especially young women. There's so few messages out there that are really encouraging them in the right way and proper way. So, just trying to do that and break stereotypes at the same time.
2016 is almost over. If you were to summarize this year in one song, whether it be your own song or just another song you listen to, what song would you use?
Heesun Lee: I guess it'd be one of my songs called Beautiful Ashes. I have an album called Beautiful Ashes, but there's a song on there called Beautiful Ashes, and this is pretty much where I was this time last year and where I am this year throughout 2016. I was going through a lot of changes in my life, and this year I came out with an album, my second daughter was born. Just a lot of things happened meaning that I was starting out in this place where it's like "Can I achieve this?" and "Will I be successful in this area?" And here I am today, about to wrap up the year, and I just showed myself that through my faith and through God, that I was able to get through everything. That's what Beautiful Ashes is about.
Was there anything in particular this year, whether it be personal or music wise, that you struggled with, or was your greatest achievement so far?
Heesun Lee: I think musically, and personally, just trying to juggle both aspects of my life because I as always signed to a label so I always had someone helping me muscially but this was the first time I was independent and on my own. I've been doing music for a very long time, and this is the first time I've done everything on my own. At the same time, my second daughter was born so I was juggling so much at the same time. I had to kinda prove to myself that I was able to do it on my own (with God of course).
What are you hoping for in 2017?
Heesun Lee: Well, my album dropped in October and have been getting very good feedback on it. I've been able to perform ever since it dropped, so in 2017, I'm really hoping it will just EXPLODE with more. People hearing it more, get my message out there, be able to travel more. I think that's what all artists want, to be able to get exposure every chance they get. Every year they get, make it better than the last one, so hopefully I can reach more people.
In a social aspect, what's been the most memorable experience with your fans?
Heesun Lee: Because of my whole transition, I think with my fans, it showed no matter what I was going through with my career, they did stick by my side. I had a lot of setbacks because of my transition and people were still loyal, still waited for my album to come out. They showed a lot of support. It just proved to me that this is really what it means to be an artist. That even though you're at your lowest times and you feel like you can't make it, you have those fans out there who will encourage you, and show you that you are valued and that people are waiting, listening to your message. It's very important, because sometimes it feels like you're just rapping to yourself. So, it felt good to know that my fans were sticking behind me.
How do you feel about performing at the Diamond Lounge tonight?
Heesun Lee: I'm excited! My manager, Christian, is from the area so I come to Virginia a lot. Every time I come it's great. I feel like this is my second home now. I've never performed here (Diamond Lounge) so it's gonna be exciting. There's a really great line-up, so I'm hoping we have a great turn out and hope people will like my new songs.
Heesun Lee: Just be encouraged. Get my new album, Beautiful Ashes. Especially to all my ladies out there, whatever you're going through, I strongly encourage you to check out some of my songs, my messages. It's very uplifting. It could help you through whatever you're going through so stay strong, stay encouraged, and keep doing it up!
We're excited to see what 2017 holds for Heesun Lee! Check out the MV for hr single I'm With You, featuring Sam Ock and be sure to purchase her album Beauty For Ashes which is available for purchase on Amazon Music, Itunes, and CDBaby!