Southern-born singer Mahoganee is a known name around parts of Washington DC, known for her diva-fly outfits and her passionate work within the community as a motivational speaker and mentor to young girls in numerous programs throughout the Washington DC area. Mahoganee has performed in venues across the world, and Liberated Muse was lucky to have had Mahoganee participate in many of our events as a performer, featured in our Capital Hip Hop Soul Fest in 2009.
When she moved back south in 2010, many of us in the Washington DC were devastated to learn that she was no longer in our immediate midst. But, her work as a community activist and international singer continues. She is currently on tour, promoting her second CD The Chrysalis Stage and has been featured on numerous projects of other artists, including One Common Folk's recent CD compilation, Voices of a Movement: Volume I.
In our fourth Q & A for our Capital Hip Hop Soul series, Mahoganee shares with us a little about herself, including what her triumphs are and how music can make the world a better place. Read and be sure to leave a comment below.
Liberated Muse: You have been performing for some time now as an independent artist, undaunted by the challenges some indie artists encounter. What do you say contributes to your success as an indie artist?
Mahoganee: I contribute my success to an unwilling desire to never give up. Never take no for an answer. There's always another way, you just have to find that person willing to help you to get to it. Never burn your bridges as you may have to cross them on your way to eating a slice of humble pie. Most importantly my family, they keep me humble, and are always there to support me.
Liberated Muse: How do you define your sound? How do you think your audience describes your sound?
Mahoganee: I define my sound as "Lauryn Hill with a twist of Minnie Ripperton and a cup of Janis Joplin. I think my audience will describe my new sound as a big Southern pot of the best gumbo you ever had.
Liberated Muse: If you couldn't sing tomorrow and you had to change careers, what would you turn your efforts toward?
Mahoganee: I can't imagine not being able to sing but if I had to I would teach others about what to do as an artist in the beginning stages of your career with regards to an online presence as well as finding places to perform on your own. I'm also a blogger, organic coffee distributor, songwriter, philanthropist and I've just started a CANcer Campaign (C) IAMToo. As long as I am working for myself being an entrepreneur I'm happy.
Liberated Muse: Name three artists you would love to work with and tell us why.
Mahoganee: Lenny Kravitz- because he absolutely rocks on stage and plays a guitar like no other. I love guitars so having the opportunity to perform with him on one of my songs or his would definitely rock my world. Michael Buble'- because he sings like an angel and croons like crazy. Donny Hathaway- because he was a musical genius & I would just relish in the moment of being able to learn from him. His voice is like liquid diamonds oozing down your body while floating. Simply Amazing.
Liberated Muse: How do you think music can change the world for the better?
Mahoganee: I think music can and has changed the world. Quincy Jones stated that Hip Hip has such an influence on our society today that it can change the educational system in one day by infusing it into their lyrics. That's a powerful statement and I believe that what we listen to within our music is in our psyche whether we realize it or not so if your child is constantly listening to Beethoven then they will appreciate classical music, if he or she listens to Gucci Mane or Lil Wayne then they will be influenced by this also. We must feed our intellect as well as our bodies and do the same for our children. Music is the one thing that will always bring everyone together.
Liberated Muse: Tell us something that probably few people know about you.
Mahoganee: I think few people know that I have been performing for 20 years and I despise beans (all kinds, pinto, green, red, etc) *laughs*
Visit Mahoganee on Facebook here to get up to date info on her new projects, current tour stops and other online profiles.
-Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman