NoShame Describes Being Transgender In Battle Rap World
The rapper says, "I'm introducing the Battle Rap culture into the LGBT community and at the same time I'm introducing the LGBT community to the Battle Rap culture."
In the latest edition of the Dirtbag Dan Show, transgender battler NoShame described her male-to-female transition and how her identity has been received within the Battle Rap community. While on the show, she also detailed her recent battle against Michael White released earlier this month.
While the AHAT platform filmed the battle initially, they chose to poll audience members to decide whether or not to release the footage on their main channel. “They have the like ‘next channel,’ it kind of promotes up-and-comers, and they were kind of going back and forth if they wanted to put us there or on the main channel,” NoShame said while speaking to Dirtbag Dan and Caustic. “I think it really had more to do with the crowd and—I hate to say it—Michael White’s performance really than anything else. I’m glad they made the decision that they did because what it ultimately did was open up doors for me I would have never had opened up otherwise.”
Still speaking on the AHAT promoted event, NoShame spoke about her gratitude for the opportunity, adding that while she isn’t a fan of her opponent’s style, she has no issues with him outside of the ring. “I didn’t like his style or whatever, but I hung out with him that day," she said. "I don’t have any problems with him at all. I think he’s a cool person. I think he’s funny. I think he’s hilarious. To be honest, I wished the crowd would have given him a little more of a chance to do his thing...I will say this: I had pretty much two options to battle, and really Michael White is my best option. So Michael White stepped up and he took the battle and he was the lamb. And for that I thank him because I could be battling Daylyt this July. I got a message from him today.”
Asked about the possibility that AHAT initially withheld the footage as a function of poor quality and a loud audience instead of her own identity as a transgender, NoShame agreed, adding that she hopes to face-off against opponents that prioritize bars over gimmicks moving forward. “I can’t argue with that at all and that’s exactly what I believe happened,” she said. “Here’s the thing, I know that you did ultimately end up watching our first battle...Michael White did the gimmicks. If I don’t get put on the main channel, this was gonna continuously happen. I’m never gonna get a bar-fest if I have to continuously go up against [gimmicks].”
NoShame Speaks On Being Transgender Within Battle Rap
“The twenty first, it will be three years since I [started] hormones,” NoShame said of her male-to-female transition. “A little bit before then I had discussed it with my current wife, a couple years before that, before we got married, and then I kind of repressed it back again. I tried to man up. I was trying to do what everyone expected me to do. To put it in words, man, I’m just not comfortable in my own skin. So I just found a way to be comfortable, and to be honest, I’m cool with looking kind of like a dude, you know, whatever, everything I do I’m cool for. Once I got on the hormones, I was straight.”
Speaking on the possibility that her participation could open the doors of Battle Rap to the LGBT community and vice versa, NoShame explained how she presents herself differently within the Battle Rap scene than she does elsewhere. “Currently I’m not talking like I do on a daily-basis or when I’m at work. When I’m out in public and I’m not in the Battle Rap world, I talk like a female," she said. "I act like a female. To be honest, most of the time I get [people saying] ‘Ma'am.’ I know that’s hard for people to believe ‘cause it’s like they see me rapping and they just see this big, tall motherfucker there with a deep voice. It’s hard for them to picture me being dainty, but that’s what actually happens. When I go into the battle world, and I’ve had people tell me this, like, ‘We wouldn’t have accepted you if you came in dainty. If you would have came in light like that we wouldn’t have accepted you.’ I knew that going in because I’ve been in the battle culture, I knew what had to be done and I knew how it had to be done.
“To be honest with you, my ultimate goal is just to open up some eyes...to bring Battle Rap into the mainstream,” she later said. “If LGBT people accept it, really I think it’s kind of like the last crusade, if you could open that door and get Hip Hop to realize it’s alright to bring that in, they could see the revenue that would be generated...It’s an awareness both ways. I’m introducing the Battle Rap culture into the LGBT community and at the same time I’m introducing the LGBT community to the Battle Rap culture. Really man, what’s sad is they’re both about struggle. They both are rooted in struggle. It’s really the same story. It’s sad to see it divided ‘cause it really should harmonize very well together.”
NoShame's Battle against Michael White is available below.