One of the first to ever do it..Ms. Kelis Rogers. I’ve been an obsessive fan since 1999’s “Caught Out There.” I was with her when she had pink hair and a chin-and-a-half and I loved her senselessly. She’s been a style icon and music renegade since I was old enough to care about either so she will forever rock my world.
Brief run-down: Born and bred in Harlem, Cablasian (Black, Asian and some Puerto Rican but she still counts as a negro), ran away from home as a teen, I think played the violin, broke in the biz with the synth-happy Neptunes (allegedly dated the Pharrell, not sure how true that is) and now married to Nasir Jones. Been inspiring left-of-center negro girls for over seven years now.
Now, I am still a fan of Mrs. Jones’ Kimora-Meets-AFI fabulous ghetto queen look but as far as a black hipster template, it’s all about early Kelis. Her debut Kaleidescope features early Neptunes and Clipse collabos, chunky, luminous synths and lyrics about motherfuckers and Mars. It rocked on too many levels. Her second album, Wanderland, was only released abroad and features some of the most dynamic Neptunes-Kelis tracks ever.
Now girlfriend’s dropped some weight, doesn’t call Pharrell anymore and sings reject Ciara songs. WTF, my love, wtf? I’ll always remember in her blue-haired mesh-shirt, graffiti-pants, dressed-like-she-eats-paint glory.