PHOENIX – June 30, 2021
Patience is the name of the game for musical talent Dres Smuzic, singer/rapper, song-writer who’s signed to upstart, majority Black-owned Phoenix-based Nod Head Records.
She’s waiting to burst on the scene with a debut album, but before that, she says, she’s enjoying the moment — considering a major hurdle she’s jumped through to get there — and refusing to conform for the sake of success.
Along with more than a half dozen label mates, the 23-year-old will be featured in Nod Head’s compilation project with the iconic DJ Jam, known as the “Official DJ of the west coast” after years of working with Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre. The album will be released in the fall.
As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, the young artist is looking to continue blazing a path for people like her, who are trying to make it in the industry.
One of the major barriers for her as a gay woman, she says, is being able to showcase her art without having to succumb to the stereotypical need to appeal sexually to the opposite sex.
“It’s really about creating a safe place for her, and allowing her to show up at studio and be the best version of herself,” Nod Head Records CEO Tip Horne said.
Horne says that he’s benefited from Dres’ steadfast stance on being sexualized.
“It’s a shame that that’s what it takes for mainstream exposure. She’s so talented. And I know that if she was willing to dress provocatively, she’d have signed a deal way before she met us,” said Horne.
Listening to Dres’ music, it’s not hard to tell that she’s not only clever, but is the type of artist who shows, rather than tells.
“I like to mess with the (listener’s) brain,” she says.
In label mate Angelica A.D.’s debut single, “Possibilities,” also slated for release this fall, in which Dres features, she spits a bar:
“You wouldn’t think it till you do it. It’s better to find out than to lose it.”
On the surface, it would seem like she’s trying to convince a straight woman to explore with her.
Rather, she says, she’s allowing her muse to figure it out for herself.
In addition to being a singer and hip-hop lyricist, she is a musician who’s played in orchestras and enjoys playing piano, violin and guitar.
She credits her father, who is big on poetry, for cultivating her love for words.
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