“Laugh now, cry later”, says the Oaxacan Brotha.
“We were born to die”, says the White Brotha.
“You Only Live Once”, says the African Native Sista.
When you’re forced to live life on the edge, you know what it is; Trap or Die
Imprisoned by a system designed to oppress, eliminate, buy, sell or trade the Melanated and the poor, survival depends on creativity and innovation. It’s that rich n*gga/poor n*gga/house n*gga/field n*gga/still n*gga situation, where one’s excellence still faces stereotypes and all-around hatred no matter how hard the black womb/man works to achieve success. If anybody knows the ups and downs of what it’s like to teeter the tightrope between life and death with the men who are stuck in the rat race, it’s women like Nstasia. Her music is an aspect of the black womban’s story in America. It’s symbolic of the diehard love and confident support that a real woman provides regardless of circumstance.
Trap or Die is about the love, loyalty, risks, and heartbreak that a faithful woman endures while standing in the gaps for her man. Societal norms founded upon white American standards often lock most Brothas out of work opportunities that White Privilege reserves for those willing to conform to it. In the trap, the Brotha faces gang violence perpetuated by systematic oppression and the daily fear of a run-in with dirty cops that are out to round as many slaves into the Prison Industrial Complex as they can. Once the brother has a record, it’s nearly impossible to get employed. Next are one’s environmental factors, which affect productivity. One is lucky if a job offers benefits and is close to home, where most businesses would rather not operate if they weren’t liquor stores, churches, or fried food shops. The negative surroundings of addiction, physical health hazards, and scarce resources leave people desperate with limited options. Therefore, those who have never dealt with institutionalized racism, systemic oppression, or the glass ceiling of Corporate America will never fully grasp the struggle of the struggling unless it is the black womban because she is the child, the child bearer, the lover and wife of the black man and can see their battle from every angle.
Nstasia is that classic Womban; still a lady – but probably with a pistol in her garter belt and a No. 2 pencil for all a’those who be testin’ ! She’s the one who says “if you got me, I got you // Top down we screamin’ trap or die”. She has an alternative style of fashion exhibiting a varietal that exists in black America outside of the stereotypes that parallel the way a woman looks with the way a woman is. The song is dreamy and the vibe is like fishtailing a canyon highway on a sunny day in a getaway cruiser headed for the beach.
imagery courtesy of: superselected.com
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