When it comes to the genre of hip-hop music in India, most people just seem to know of the few Bollywood male celebs and their songs, but this International Women's Day, let us get to know some wonderful women who have made a mark with their talent and creation in the world of hip-hop music.
Here are some women who chose to break the mould and worked hard to achieve their dreams and do something that they are truly passionate about. These female rappers (femcees) and break dancers (b-girls) from India are truly inspiring and worth knowing about this Women's Day.
Deepa Unnikrishnan aka Dee MC
Deepa Unnikrishnan, also known as Dee MC, is a rapper, singer and songwriter from Mumbai. She has been actively contributing to the hip-hop scene in India and so far has five music videos. Her channel has gained audiences from across the country as well as on an international level. Her tracks are a mix of RnB and hip-hop and often reflect her personal style.
Deepa aims at creating songs that have a message for everyone. She also became the first female rapper to be nominated for the City 91.1 Freedom Awards for her song 'Talk My Way.' Currently, she is focusing on her work and on improving her rapping and singing skills further.
"My family members were reserved before as I was a teenager when I started so wasn't allowed to travel alone for shows. But they're super supportive now," she told International Business Times India.
Check out her song Chaar Logo Ki Baatein right here:
Nickitha Hepzieeba aka Femcee Nicki Ziee G
Nickitha started rapping in high school as a hobby, but later decided to make a career out of it.
"As a female rapper I have faced many ups and downs, also politics especially among guys. They just never seem to let us grow into this field," Nickitha told IBTimes.
She has done various shows and events and even dropped some tracks of her own. She has collaborated with various other rap artists and her mixtape is set to be released soon.
This bold femcee is pretty open about her sexual orientation and is proud to be gay. Admitting that she is blessed to have a supportive family she said: "Yeah, I don't mind talking about it, I' am a lesbian! My family has been supportive ever since. My dad is pretty much open minded and so is my mum. They are super supportive and encouraging."
Though she is often told that rapping is not a "real job," she is happy that her parents are on the same page as she is and they even help her financially in producing her songs.
Shalima Kacchap aka B-girl Shal
Shalima, popular known as b-girl Shal, resides in Gurgaon, Delhi. She was inspired to start break dancing by guys flaunting some impressive moves on TV shows and movies. She tried re-doing these moves, starting with a somersault, and was overwhelmed when she realised that she could do it well.
She formed a girls' crew called Crystal after she started going college in the city of Vizag, Andhra Pradesh. The name signified the aim and vision of the crew members, who were freestyle break dancers.
She even choreographed steps for other students representing the college in fests and competition. When the crew first competed with another crew, they were unaware of it being a boys' dance crew, but their performance was highly appreciated by the public. They were spotted by an event organiser who provided them with ample opportunities and mentored them.
Shalima preferred not telling her family about her performing at shows and taking part in competitions as she did not want them to worry about it.
"I always was a good student and my family did support me in my extra and co-curricular activities, but they never wanted me to choose it as my profession," she told IBTimes.
"At a certain point of time I thought my parents were right, I continued with my further studies to make better life for myself and thought of carrying on with my hobbies and passion later," she added.
While she has a day job now, she still regularly dances and helps people who approach her for choreography.
Ambarin aka Bgirl AmB
Based out of Mumbai, Ambarin is known as the first Bgirl from India who is a part of a popular crew called Roc Fresh Crew. Seeing her skills, it's hard to believe that she was never an athlete and never planned to become a Bgirl. She was very studious and loved sketching and had aspired to get into fashion design.
Bgirling garnered her attention when she saw a video of breakers and poppers, which left her amazed.
Though she initially had fights with her family when she was travelling for competitions with her crew, which had only guys, her financial independence aided her in pursuing her passion and fulfilling her dreams. When she was 17, she took tuitions and taught sketching and various subjects to children.
"I approached my parents with my graduation result, with the news that I wanted to be a Bgirl," Ambarin tells us. "They didn't approve of it due to various reasons. I couldn't blame them completely; they were clueless about
"They didn't approve of it due to various reasons. I couldn't blame them completely; they were clueless about hip hop, and dancing isn't a stable choice of career, financially. Being a professional dancer wasn't considered 'suitable' by many people in society," she told redbull.com.
She loves her crew and considers them to be her real family, which has always been very supportive.
"I became quite the rebel, and evolved from that obedient student that I once was, to fulfil my dream," she said.