A Conversation with Shy’an G

Shy’an G talks "The Reset," the Bay Area, and the importance of versatility in hip hop.

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PHOTO COURTESY OF SHY'AN G
  • Photo courtesy of Shy'an G

On Jan. 25, rapper, poet, producer, and Bay Area native Shy’an G celebrated the release of her newest project, The Reset. The EP features five deeply personal songs, two of which Shy’an G produced herself.

I got to speak with her on the phone on Friday a few hours before the release party to talk with her about her thoughts on versatility for women in hip hop, creative inspiration, and her hopes for the new project.

Shy’an G was born and raised in Berkeley where she started writing poetry and raps at the age of 9. When she was 15, she moved to Oakland where she became more involved in music production and performing.

With a style and voice completely unique to her experiences Shy’an’s sound could be described as socially conscious rap with a heavy emphasis on lyricism and storytelling.

When listing her major influences, names such as Lauryn Hill, Outkast, Rhapsody, Talib Kweli, Erykah Badu, Mac Dre, and Flying Lotus were among the many names to come up. Another major source of inspiration for Shy’an G’s creative process is her parents who are both visual artists. “My parents are so visually creative I feel like I can apply that to my music,” she told me. “I do my best to create an illustration in people’s heads when they hear my words.”

When asked about the project title, The Reset, Shy’an G described the process of “resetting” as a meditative and reflective process. “To reset is to take a step back, breathe, and proceed with intentions to do something better and on a new level.”

And Shy’an G has remained true to the process of growth and evolution that she raps about on The Reset.

“In The Reset, I sealed the deal with getting personal, especially “From Now On”. “From now On” is kind of like a diary, from the way people have described it to me.”

“From Now On” is the fourth track on the EP and one of the songs that Shy’an G helped produce, alongside another one of the Bay Area’s few female producers, Money Maka. Other producers featured on the EP include M6, Yajj, and ManiOnThisThang.

Her commitment to contributing to the versatility of women’s style in hip hop inspires listeners to take an authentic approach to creative expression. “I want to present an alternative, I got love for all of my Black sisters out there winning I just want to the media to know that this does not have to be the only image that is projected” she said. “I hope that people can share this project and listen to it as much as possible with the intent of listening to an artist and not just a female artist.”

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