Some people just have that star quality about them, and Myra is one of those people. Regina Tucker, which is her real name, pulls you in, but keeps you at a distance. She is friendly and funny, but with a certain je ne sais quoi. We met Myra in the studio, where she was working on a new project. She had just come from an other interview, and we ask her what else she’s working on these days:
A lot of different things! I’m working in the studio a lot, with people in other artistic genres than myself. Being able to have some input there is really cool, in film and stuff like that, and live shows. Just in general working with music, further developing myself as an artist. It doesn’t always have to be something concrete, just finding… how should I phrase this… a direction for myself.
And what does everyday life look like for a rapper?
It’s very varied! I usually walk out the door pretty early and come home very late. I’m the happiest when I can just spend a whole day in the studio. But then you also have interviews, and you have to write a lot of mails… It’s really just a regular workday, like for most people. But I think I have a tendency to never turn it off when I’m home. If I get an idea, I always get my phone, writing it down and stuff, like for example on the bus. So it’s just difficult to take a break from that sometimes.
When and how did you start rapping?
I started writing texts, or poems, quite early in my childhood, listening to Bjørn Eidsvåg. Weird, right? I love Bjørn Eidsvåg, but I haven’t heard back from him… Just kidding, I haven’t been in touch with him; I just really like his music, haha! I really liked his texts when I was around 10, and then… I found Nicki Minaj on YouTube when I was around 13-14, listening to her mixtapes made me feel tough, because she was a current, female rapper at the time. I mean, you had Foxy Brown, MC Lyte , Lil’ Kim and all of those, but they weren’t current artists at the time. So having a female rapper to listen to made me think, “I could do that,” and I started writing rap lyrics. I wrote a bit in English, but I feel more poetic in Norwegian.
Nice! I was actually going to ask about that: rap has been a very male dominated genre for so long, but there are more and more female rappers doing it big these days. Do you have any favourites we should look out for now?
There’s a really young girl who released a song this spring, from Bergen, her name is Luna. “Jeg er lei” is the name of the song, I really like it. And just female artists in general who take big steps. Linda Vidala is doing really well, Bængshot is her song for example, so cool, and she got King Skurk One in on it. I like that women can take up space naturally, without it being some kind of competition, we’re just here and it’s nothing more to it than that we’re working hard, just like everyone else. There’s room for everyone!
And you personally, where do you find inspiration for new songs?
From a lot of different things, some things I talk about may have happened… or I’m talking to someone. And I find a lot of inspiration in life, in people and in God. I think it’s really cool that everything’s created for a reason, and just the fact that we’re all so different… Let’s say there’s a group of people, we all complement each other, have weaknesses and strengths. Like that you’re good at interviewing or making a website, something I don’t know anything about, but that we can meet here and inspire each other.
We continue talking about how that’s how The Doyennes was founded too, two people with different interests and backgrounds who met at an after party, and realized they had similar interests after all, and could use their differences to their advantage. Myra chimes in:
Yes, I think that’s so cool and so fun! That instead of feeling like you’re not enough, it’s like “I bring you in on it and we’re meant to do it together!”
"So having a female rapper to listen to made me think, “I could do that,” and I started writing rap lyrics."
Definitely. Besides meeting new people and finding inspiration in that, what’s the best part of your job?
It’s doing what I love, even in hard times. Working in the creative industries isn’t always easy, but to be able to work with so many talented people, get inspired, and constantly develop yourself… That’s something I’ve noticed: I’ve been able to develop in different directions the whole time, open my eyes to new things and starting to love new things! Also being able to incorporate old experiences and combine so many different periods of my life. Nothing is irrelevant for creativity!
You first entered the spotlight in 2016, with the song “Hold an”, and you just had a concert at Parkteateret with Lars Vaular amongst others. How does it feel to have done so well in such a short time?
It’s very surreal! And at the same time, it’s going so fast that it’s hard to process it. Other than that, it’s become a pretty natural part of everyday life, I think it does that when you’re living and breathing it. It’s nice; the coolest part is being able to spend time with creative people. I mean, everyone’s creative in their own way, but it’s about being able to be so, freely and unbothered. That’s freedom, and I’m really grateful for it. It’s not a given.
Do you have a specific goal, or are you more of a person who takes things as they come?
Myra starts laughing, and explains why:
Shit, I really don’t have a specific goal! This head of mine… I’ve been thinking about it lately: it’s like cleaning. I’m the kind of person that can start tidying up in one place, and then I start in another place, and another place, and it ends up looking worse than when I started! But, I’m beginning to incorporate that into my everyday life: to start something and then finish it. I mean, it’s really fun to always do new things, but I want to finish things, complete them.
We chat a bit about how sometimes, you have the people who always want to do new things and have lots of ideas, and then the practical people who can take one of those ideas and actually finish it. Myra says she wants more of that part in her life. Looking at what she’s been able to accomplish thus far, it seems like she’s already getting quite good at that! As we’re interviewing her, she’s on a short break from working on a song for the new Norwegian/ Urdu film by Iram Haq, What Will People Say. But what does Myra herself listen to these days?
I listen to a lot of gospel! That’s my number 1! I can have gospel music on at home the whole day. It creates such a nice atmosphere, such God-given, strong voices that just give you the chills! So I listen to gospel, but I also like hard rap, and SZA at Top Dawg Entertainment, and Norwegian music. I listen to Lars (Vaular) a lot, but I don’t really think about the fact that it’s him when I listen to his music, I work with him and he’s so insanely creative, and that creative version of Lars is just one of a kind.