Philly is the move for this upcoming weekend for more reasons than one. Roots Picnic was already the highlight until YesJulz announced 1amVibes in Philly happening that night. Needless to say, me and my girls will be present to participate in the turn up. I suggest you check out her site for the upcoming 1amVibes near you.
I was first introduced to YesJulz early this year when a friend of mine showed me some very controversial tweets. Granted these were tweeted in 2011 and 2013, but they put a sour taste in my mouth. I won’t sit on a high horse and claim I’ve never tweeted anything controversial or offending towards other people. I have and I will admit that. The humanity of Twitter is getting a look into other’s thoughts, no matter what the content.
However, watching her climax as a social and marketing beast within the rap world, I was a little confused at how her speech of black women could be so careless at any point in her life and how or if this sentiment has ever changed. The tweet where she claims to be a black woman in Taz’s Angels is especially troubling because it suggests black women to be a persona that can be appropriated, which perpetuates the skinning of black female humanity and its value. I don’t mean to get too deep but What is a black woman? Just ass and tits? Of course not. Shame on 2013 Julz.
I questioned her consciousness and sincerity necessary to actually achieve the work of changing perceptions of rap culture and the youth, which is saturated in black art, performance and expression. Rap culture was misunderstood before its birth. It is boxed as a genre solely about female exploitation, criminal activity and capital, but rap culture is more. Rap culture is about leisure, self-determination, climbing the economic ladder, breaking racial and economic oppression, while disrupting Western and Eurocentric ideologies. Rap culture is freedom. I think this is why we (youth, collectively) rage so hard to it.
As a Southerner, fan and advocate for Southern style rap combined with her expertise of marketing and extraordinary entrepreneurial intelligence, I believe YesJulz, at the very least, has a solid understanding of what rap culture means to all youth, specifically youth of color. I think this is the passion that pushes her work. She creates platforms to give opportunities to rising artists. Her and her team consistently release a #NewMusicMondayz playlist featuring mainstream and underground artists of different genres. #1AMVibes is all about artists joining the public in a harmonious turn up. She also manages New Jersey artist, 070 Shake, which has gained much popularity due to Julz’s marketing genius (And of course Shake’s musical genius). Julz’s image (fashion brands, hairstyles, hosting style, party structure, etc.) carries the aesthetic of blackness. To me, it’s clear she appreciates and values that aesthetic and as long as it is respected then I am in full support.
I’ve moved past those tweets and now look at Julz as a business. When I think of her I think of Jay Z’s legendary line “I’m not a businessman, I’m a business, man”. Her growth is inspiring; there is no doubt about that. Her ability to receive and most importantly, retain attention and hype is what’s remarkable. She does all of this by just being herself and being accessible. Julz can see that people yearn for accessibility and to be so close to the ones they admire. She feeds and nourishes that craving in her Snapchat and Twitter. This is how she is able to form and build relationships with all of her followers and that’s exactly how she captured me.
Whether it was obvious or not, I was being shady asking her how she felt about the white face in Young Thug’s video. At that time I had only gotten to know her from the infamous tweets so I decided that the question was fitting. I expected no reply or possibly a subtweet about how “people always make everything about race” and whatever bullshit people like to say to dilute racism and inequity but her response, as simple as it was, impressed me. Simply, responding was impressive and unexpected.
After this I followed her Snapchat, looked up interviews and reviews, and binged researched. Who is YesJulz? Where does she come from? What is she about? Below are some videos that gave me more of an insight into Julieanna Goddard’s journey to YesJulz.
So how do I feel about her now? I consider her a role model for young entrepreneurs. She is smart, strategic, proactive, and personable. Also, it doesn’t hurt that she is gorgeous. As a young entrepreneur myself, seeing her success is compelling and influential. I’m intrigued by her work ethic, youthfulness, drive, and her service to young children in need. #HashtagLunchBagMIA I have the utmost respect to those who give back. She marketed herself so well that this skeptical black woman (talking about myself) purchased a ticket and convinced her friends to rage at 1amVibes in Philly. I’m excited to see her work in person and in progress. I just wonder how accessible she will be as she moves farther up.
Stay tuned for a 1amVibes review from a first time rager. #GoodVibesOnly