Recently I got the opportunity to talk to @BlackWolfBrass about her career, oppression as a black gay American and her life.
Thanks for doing this interview with me. First of all tell me how you identify yourself, sexually or otherwise?
I identify as gay. I’m gender-non conforming in presentation. I’m biologically female.
Every day is a new day – to experience something that you enjoy or dislike – and what you enjoy may change and that’s OK.
Tell me about being a musician and how you got involved with music.
I started with piano lessons at the age of six. I had the opportunity to select an instrument in elementary school and my mother wanted me to play the violin. As a foolish child, at 10 I thought the violin was too ‘girly’, and my mother and I agreed upon the cello. However, in the back of my mind, when I first saw a trombone, I knew that’s what I wanted to play – despite my agreement with my mother.
When I went to school, on the day that we were to select our instruments, I went through the motions and said that I was going to play cello. I was fitted for a cello, and my instructor was excited that I was tall enough so that I could play a full size cello. But my instructor noticed that I was not excited and I was asked why. I said that I didn’t really want to play cello. My instructor asked, “What do you want to play?” and I said, “Trombone.” The look on my instructor’s face was one of surprise and to this day I still laugh thinking about it. My instructor took me to get a trombone and put me in the brass class rather than strings. I was completely ecstatic. When I came home with a trombone, my mother was disappointed that I went outside of our agreement. But, she let me play it and both of my parents made sure that I kept up with the instrument. When I got to middle school, which is when I really fell in love with music – when I really started to listen to what you can do with music. On summer breaks between grade years, I would miss the sound of students warming up before orchestra started. In middle school, that is when I decided that I would make my life about music.
Being a musician is hard yet is also one of the most rewarding experiences. I am drawn to things that I can I trust. Music never lies, only people. You get out of it what you put in.
The feelings that it arouses within – in my experiences in life are unparalleled. It’s a vehicle to voice your anger, your disdain, your love, your excitement, your soul and when you can share that with another in a music making experience, you reach a whole new level of communication that keeps you vying for more. When you get to share your musical creations with an engaged audience, you create a bridge – a direct path of communication that words are too limiting to adequately describe what you’re sharing. Generally speaking, I am a very technically concerned person. I have learned what I need to technically and I still continue to learn so that I may be able to express sensitive issues concretely. As a musician I get to allow what’s going on internally to be expressed externally. And that’s why I’m a musician.
Now as a musician, I use music as a vehicle to express the trials and tribulations that I have undergone to help me achieve my open, self-assured place that I think will be beneficial to others. I do this in my solo project called Black Wolf.
How can we as a society address oppression in minorities?
It’s difficult to say because it’s an internal issue which people need to address and internally it’s different for everyone. Being open to being challenged and pulled outside of your comfort level is a start for everyone.
How can we address the lack of role models of diverse backgrounds and promote visibility of minorities as a society?
They are out there and they simply just need to be asked.
By speaking to these people with strong characters. And asking them to share their opinions and thoughts.
You have achieved so much but what would you like to achieve in the future?
I have a lot more to accomplish as a musician, as an athlete competing as a bull rider, as a developer do I dare dream of combining them all?
My hope with my life is that I can help people see the bigger picture in themselves and in others. There is so much that we all have to share.
Thank you for doing this interview with me I always ask at the end what positive message would you like to give to my followers?
You’re never going to change the world by being like everyone else. It’s not an easy trek, challenging the thoughts of people daily. Good things come to those who take the time to figure out their strengths and weaknesses. And learn what it is to respect yourself, and only when you can respect yourself can you respect others. I promise that it will be a difficult journey and respecting others is not going to be easy, but when you can good things will come, and bad things will come, and those bad things will be learning experiences that will make you stronger and those good things will be worth the effort.
Always set your goals to be better. take the time to enjoy what you have when you have it, there is good in everything.
Follow on Facebook: @BlackWolkElectric
Follow main photographer on Facebook: @thecowgirlcamera