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Sunday, May 17, 2009

I Medina Interview

This interview was filled with lots of laughter.  I really enjoyed talking with her and learning more about her and I am sure you all will too.


I MEDINA PEACFUL EARTH:  I Medina Peaceful Earth is my name.  Let me break down my name, cause my name is a large aspect of who I am.  I am a warrior who fights for peace and am also striving to be an environment for growth and development for everyone who is around me.  So that's who I strive to be and live out everyday.  In terms of what I am about, I am an artist, a poet, an emcee, I am a lover of the youth and am dedicated to their growth and development, I am a program manager, I am a sister from Berkly California, we have a lot of pride in the Bay.  Everywhere we go, we represent.  Although Pittsburgh has been good to me, got a show hometown love.  I am, you could say a visionary for my budding lifestyle company, Refined and Fly.  Refined and Fly advocates modesty and magnificence for women and girls.

SLP:  Where did the inspiration for Refined and Fly come from?

IMPE:  Well, I am also a proud citizen of the Nation of Gods and Earths, and in my culture and my way of life women are considered to be Earth because women have a lot of different qualities that are symbolic to and similar to the Earth.  We bring forth life, we nurture, we assist in helping things grow, a child grows inside bodies just like sunlight is shone on the Earth and seeds are planted there you have trees that come up, life is brought forth.  Women within my culture have a certain style of dress.  How it is implemented varies, however we wear whats called three fourths, and that symbolizes the Earth being our twin in that 3/4 of the Earth is covered in water, so we cover ourselves with 3/4 to show modesty, to show respect, to represent another standard of beauty and positivity for a woman in this society.  Some people would called wearing three fourths as representing refinement, and representing yourself as a self respecting woman.  I embrace that concept and that way of life and with that, I embrace wearing 3/4.  I had to change things in my own wardrobe, I had to be more original in how I dressed so with that, I wanted to be refined, I wanted to wear three fourths, but I wanted to be fashionable and look cute and be fly.  So the concept came from that  whole experience  of my growth and development and really learning how to put my outfits and accessories together being a woman in this way of life and knowing that just because I choose to dress modestly does not mean that I'm not going to look cute.  There is a misconception that if you choose to dress modestly that you have no sense of style.  With the concept of Refined and Fly I waned to disprove that misconception and promote the idea that you can be a modest dressing woman and still be fashionably.  You got to be able to rock 3/4 not just wear it!
SLP:  Right, rock it...where is Refined and Fly now, and where is it going?  

IMPE:  Refined and Fly has apparel.  Primarily shirts that say Refined and Fly on them.  I sell the shirts when I am performing at different events.  People order the shirts from me.  Buttons are coming next. Right now, I am building the brand and promoting the concept.  Its a new frontier for me, I have never owned my own business.  So that is where we are now.  I would like to have a fashion show and showcase different designers out there who make cloths for the modest woman in mind.  I'd like to have a photo exhibit where we have sisters that embody the concept of refined and fly who actually look like QUEENS.  I'd like to do workshops and programs with young girls.  That is the larger vision of Refined and Fly, it could go a lot of places, but those are the things that I am thinking of now.

SLP:  How much are the tea shirts, and where can people get them?

IMPE:  The tee shirts are $20.  You get two for $35.  You can get them by emailing me at  I mail shirts to people across the country, that would just be an extra $3 or so for shipping.

SLP:  Cool, I rock my Refined and Fly tee all the time.  You write a blog regularly as well.  What do you write about in your blog?

IMPE:  The blog is called Refined and Fly.  Its been up on blogspot since 2006. The address to it is,  Its really about whatever I want to say.  It is multi faceted.  It might be about the way women dress, or about relationships, or even youth programing.  Its my thoughts, and social commentary on a lot of different subjects.

SLP:   Writing is a great creative outlet...tell everyone about I Medina the artist.

IMPE:  OK, my performance name is Angel Eye.  I started when I was 17.  I have always kept a journal.  I would right my thoughts and different things.  Then in high school I took a poetry class, and my best friend was writing poetry and she inspired me to started writing.  Then in college, as a freshman that's when I really  started rapping.  I mean I wrote some raps when I was eight, and thirteen, but actually calling myself a rapper and performing, that started when I was seventeen.  I started with a group with a real deep name, this was in San Hose, it was called D.E.A.T.H. Organization.  It was an acronym for, Deities Elevating and Teaching Humans.  So it was me and two guys, and we performed in the Bay area for a while, basically until I moved to Pittsburgh.

SLP:  How did you come up with your stage name Angel Eye?

IMPE:  Angel Eye has always represented to me to be like a messenger delivering pertinent information, to your third eye.

SLP:  Oh, I can see that, I like that.  Well Angel Eye, I am hearing mix tape buzz...whats going on with that project?

IMPE: long last, seven years in the making.  Well, I'm not just an artist, I don't just do music.  I have been kinda distracted for a couple years doing community work, you know, trying to mold the two aspects together.  However, sometimes we need to be focused on one thing.  I am still not focused on just one thing right now, I am still multi tasking, however I am more focused on getting this done.  So the mix tape is called Eye Witness.  The name Eye Witness is a play on Angel Eye of course, but is talking about the things that I see, and the things I hear and the things I experience in reference to original people, the struggle of the people across the planet.  Then it is also about rhyming, about me having fun, and about relationships.  It has a few of my group members from the crew RXC, Living Proof, Sha King, CI, otherwise known as I Majestic.  Its almost finished, I got like three more songs to do. 

SLP:  Projected release date?

IMPE:  First week of June.

SLP:  When the CD is finished, where can we get it from?

IMPE:  When I have shows, I will have them.  I can also be hit up at the Refined and Fly gmail address. You can hit me on my myspace page, at  I will have snow caps up there so if you want a song you can get it.

SLP:  I am sure everyone would like to get a copy...any shows coming up soon?

IMPE:  Right now on the calender is a show in August.  It is for the Ladies in Hip Hop festival in Philadelphia.  I may also be performing at the Nation of Gods and Earth yearly Show and Prove event in Harlem New York, that's in early June.

SLP:  Thank you for taking time and coming to share yourself with SpotlightPittsburgh.

IMPE:  Sure. Peace.

Peace and Power to sister I Medina!  To find out more about I Medina and to find out when you can catch one of her shows, do follow her on twitter


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