Stunna Girl is the new hottest female rapper on the scene, putting on for Sacramento, California in all facets of her life. She states, “Sacramento is not the Bay actually. We’re our own little people, our own city. We’re 2 hours from the Bay, everybody confuses us.”
When it comes to her bars, her personality, her rawness, her entire aura, there’s nobody you can compare her to. Hailing from humble beginnings and overcoming multiple run-ins with the laws, the West Coast spitter is here to prove that you really can make your dreams come true if you work hard and stay passionate.
You may recognize Stunna from her standout single “Runway” going crazy on TikTok, leading to the viral #RunwayChallenge. With over 3 million videos on TikTok, 5.4 million streams on SoundCloud, and 25.6 million streams on Spotify, fans are pretty much begging for her forthcoming EP titled Hannnn.
When it comes to her mindset, she’s striving for that #1 spot. Flaunt caught up with Stunna via Instagram Live to discuss her upbringing, going viral on Facebook, new single “Like I Said Tho,” goals, and more!
What was the household like growing up in Sacramento?
It’s really gritty out there. It’s a little rough, really like any other city. We all have our different circumstances.
Where are you located now?
I live on the East Coast, I moved to New York about a year ago.
Being a West Coast girl, what made you want to move to New York?
A lot of my business I was dealing with at the time was done over here. I felt when I was in California, I was getting a bit off of track. I had to make the move.
How do you like it so far?
It’s nice, it’s quiet. I handle my business. I’m moving back though, moving back to LA.
Your dad taught you how to record at 8, then you rapped at age 12. What was Stunna Girl like then?
The 8-year-old me was eager to learn how to record. In my household, my mom would sing and my dad rapped. 8-year-old me wanted to learn how to do music. I was always trying to be in his space in the studio. I was an adventurous little girl. I was very tough at that age. I was more of a tomboy, I’d be with my brothers most of the time. I was really smart. [chuckles] At the age of 12, honestly I was wild. That’s the first time I got involved with the law, I was already off the hook at 12.
How often were you getting in trouble?
A lot. I was a fighter and a partier. I was really rebellious at that age. I got out of that phase at 19. Around that time is when I had actually recorded my first song.
When did you realize music could be a career for you?
Actually when I was incarcerated really. We had to do these career plans. Every day in my cell, I’d be rapping and singing to myself. It was therapy. When I’d come out, everyone would say “wow you have talent.” I already knew that because prior to that situation, I was already going viral on Facebook and in my city. I knew I had talent, but I didn’t know what I’d do when I got out.
How long were you incarcerated?
It was 3 years. I got out when I was 17.
What did you learn from being there?
I learned I never want to go back there, there’s better stuff to be doing. Obviously that wasn’t somewhere I wanted my life to end up at.
Talk about going viral on Facebook? What videos were you posting?
Around that time I was 12, it was a little rapping video. It was hot in my city. When I got out, I did some more. They’re getting lots of shares, then went viral. It was me rapping in my car, freestyling on beats. I even did beats on my chest. [laughs] It was real raw and uncut.
When did you come up with the name Stunna Girl?
I got it around the time I was 12. I’m a Stunna: real flashy, get money. I always stood out, that’s where I got the name.
You mention your sister’s reaction to the music, what’s your relationship w/ her?
I love my little sister but right now, she’s with me and she’s on my last nerve. I told her to go play her games. She wants to be down here giggling, all on my Live.
How old is she?
She’s 12, we’re about 10 years apart. They’re visiting me, I kidnapped her from my mama. [chuckles]
How have you been adapting to the quarantine life?
I’ve still been grinding through it. Honestly, everything really is shut down. They don’t really enforce the stay in the house rule I see on the news. It’s true, nothing’s going on out here. I want to go to the store, go shopping. Buy some makeup, but I can’t do that. I want to get a massage, can’t do that.
Have you picked up any new hobbies or interests during this time?
Watching Netflix, because I don’t watch Netflix. I don’t even like watching TV honestly. I don’t watch TV at all. It seems now I could sit through a series, but I have to take it by doses. The last documentary I watched was the Beyoncé one, where she’s getting ready for Coachella. Besides that, I’ve been trying to get in shape.
Are you working out at home?
I am. I started training with this girl named Ebony, she’s worked with a lot of legendary people. She did Beyoncé’s “Single Ladies.” She’s really legendary. I’m in a hardcore training boot camp with her, it’s intense. She’s getting me in shape and getting me ready.
What sets you apart from other female rappers?
My voice is unique first off, I don’t sound like nobody. My versatility range is crazy. I could give you street Stunna, real gritty. R&B Stunna, soulful. I can go mainstream, I can do whatever. I got all the flavors, and I execute.
“Like I Said So” is a banger. Bring us back to that studio session.
I was at Quad Studios, a studio right in the middle of Manhattan. It has bright lights all around. I was on the top floor, we had the top suite. It was packed in there. That day I had actually freestyled it before we recorded it, like how I started. It was really lit in there, we were lit.
Do you usually freestyle or do you write?
I usually freestyle honestly. I do punch-ins. Writing for me, I have to sit down and write something. Normally I go into the studio, listen to the beat and come off the top of my head.
What inspires you the most?
Honestly, my mom and my family. Our circumstances were crazy. We got through it all so that’s inspiration to me. Our struggles.
Best memory from the video shoot?
How creative I was.. I was outside, the police came fucking with me. My car scene, I liked how creative I was. I went and bought lights for my living room, decorated it and put lights everywhere. Best memory was seeing what I could make out of the mud. [laughs]
How’s it feel to have “Runway” hit a million on Youtube?
It felt like an accomplishment, like any of my other songs I hit a million. It was an accomplishment for sure, but that one was a little bit different because the numbers did skyrocket. I was proud of it. I knew it was going to do what it’s going to do when I recorded it.
Most people, it’s usually the songs that they don’t expect you to go up that goes up.
What’s funny is when I recorded the song, everybody in the studio did not like it. They never outright told me they didn’t like it, it’s like “oh what’s another song you made?” I’m like “I love this song.” I always remember I had it sitting in my archives. When it was time to put my tape together, I knew for sure to put it on there. I always believed in that song. The only thing was I sat on it for a long time. When my tape dropped, it blew up 5 or 6 months after. I didn’t want to shoot a video anymore because I was onto my new music. When it did blow up, it brought back that first initial feeling I had for it. That’s my only problem, I started sleeping on the song a little bit. When it did blow up, I knew it was going to do that.
What was it like seeing the #RunwayChallenge go up on TikTok?
It was beyond my expectations, they’re so creative. When I made the song, I expected people to be making these walking videos, but their creativity was amazing. Surreal moment.
Are you on the app?
I made an account a few months ago. I actually don’t even know how to really use it. I see my little sisters, they’re watching videos on how to make a TikTok and that’s how people execute it.
How do you create a vibe in the studio?
I grab me some Henny, some 1942 Don Julio. My favorite juice is probably some cranberry or pineapple juice, then I turn the beat on. I do what I do.
Favorite person to follow on IG?
I’ll have to say my mans. He raps. You might know him, he’s underground coming up. He’s right in the midst of finna go up.
Who is in your Top 5?
Jay Z, Dr. Dre, Sade. I love her. I like Lady Gaga. I like Donnell Jones. [laughs] I love his music.
Talk about your journey to Epic Records.
At the time, every label was trying to pursue me. I was about to be in a deal with another label, I had backed out of the deal. When you get a deal, the labels fly you out and put you in the studio. Before that I was in the studio with the other label, they’re like “Epic sent you a song.” It was a song by Miles Morrison, featuring Yo Gotti. It was unique, I wasn’t signed with them but they had presented this song. When I backed out of my deal, they came like “we want to fly you out.” I went, they took me to a label. The day before that, I ended up finishing the song, it’s called “Go Out.” I thought I was going to be on the hook, but they actually said “put a verse on there.” I had to come up with a verse on the spot. The next day, I went to my meeting with Sylvia Rhone and she understood me. She understood my culture, my sound. My A&R’s too Zoe and Jen, they’re great. They knew my sound and the beats I needed, it was a perfect match.
Zoe has French Montana right?
Yes she does. She knows my music, I didn’t even have to tell her. She’s gon’ bring my beats.
What can we look forward to music-wise?
I have 2 tapes coming out. I pushed one back because of great opportunities, things I’m going to surprise my fans with. In the meantime, I created another tape while on quarantine For The Wait. Going to shoot a couple of videos for it. I’ll be dropping it very soon, sooner than you think.
I feel like you have a crazy feature in the works.
On this tape, no. I actually don’t even need features. The other tape I pushed back, a lot of big names were trying to get on certain songs. Nah, I’ma to let them drop and let ya’ll get on the remix. I want to see what I can do first, I know what I can do. For the album, I’ll have features.
Who’s your dream collab?
There’s plenty of people, like Drake. I like him. People of that stature, I like his movie. Of course, my favorites from my Top 5: Lady Gaga, Jay Z.
Goals for yourself at this point in your career?
To be #1, be on top like I know I can be. I’ma be a triple threat so I need to execute this dancing lifestyle that I’m getting into. I want to be an all-around performer, mold myself into the artist that I can be. Since I have the opportunity to be that, I’m taking advantage of it.
Anything else you want to let us know?
Everybody out here if you haven’t yet, go download “Like I Said Tho,” like I said tho! My new mixtape finna drop.