What comes to your mind when you hear people discussing hip-hop music in Indonesia?
In a flash of a second you’re probably gonna think of the young world-class rapper Rich Chigga, the mainstream Young Lex, or the veterans Iwa K and Igor Saykoji.
Hip-hop music industries may be dominated by men both in Indonesia and in the global world, but at this point we’re gonna introduce you to this uprising female rapper.
Ramengvrl while performing at one of the biggest music festival in Indonesia, We The Fest 2017
Her name is Putri Estiani Soeharto and she performs under the alias Ramengvrl (read: Ramengirl). Ramengvrl comes from the love of expressing herself through words, she had like 10 diary books documenting her life from junior high school. One day she was really stressed out with all things happening in her life and then she converted her poetry into music out of her depression. She only recorded it with a webcam mic and the next thing we know, she was hailed as the next big thing in Indonesian hip-hop.
When she’s being asked about what kind of message she was trying to address, she answered that she’s not in the phase of getting the message out to the people who listensto her music, she genuinely wants to express herself. She’s just being honest.
Honesty is a very rare virtue these days because everyone is competing to be impressive, to be liked by everyone, to meet with the society’s standard about what’s good and what’s trending and forces us to become someone we’re not.
By being honest, we would be more likely to be happy, successful, and fulfilled. The fear of failing won’t get in our way, because it’s never done to please others, it’s who we are, it’s what we want. As stated in Medium, honesty also could take you to places you want to go faster, even to places in life that you have never dreamed of. And it’s proven that honesty could lead to satisfying outcomes, just like Ramengvrl who got featured in ‘New Artist Spotlight South East Asia’ by Apple Music in December 2017.
Another inspiring thing about this 26-year-old woman is that doesn’t want to be labeled as anything, because she thinks that label will only limit herself.
In the far future, she’s seeing herself doing music project that isn’t hip-hop.”I’m actually pretty experimental and the tracks that I’ve released are just like 20% of my mind,” said Ramengvrl.
That’s why she doesn’t feel comfortable being labeled as a rapper, even though she does rap. She told Vice that she’s just a musician striving to express her own worldview. And that expression coincidentally sounds a lot like hip-hop. “I make music and I use rap as a method of self-expression, coincidentally the medium was rap,” she added.