Seventeen-year-old rapper Terra "Lady Te" Twymon is a very big deal and an even bigger secret. She just might be the Motor City's most lucrative export since that white kid from 8 Mile. Presently unsigned, she rocks the mike with a style and presence that's the perfect blend of sass, class, polish and great songwriting--no easy feat considering she writes all her own material and co-produced her debut album Terra-fied.
Lady Te's LP is bouyed by the irrepressably catchy first single "Ponytail," a fly jawn's homage to the hairstyle. While a tad similar to Lil Mama's hit single "Lip Gloss," it has an attitude and charm of its own.
As an eight-year veteran in the music game, Te's no stranger to the shadier side of the music industry and its politics. "'Ponytail' was on the battle of the beats here for two weeks and they had to retire it," says Twymon. "They play two songs back to back every night and people call in to decide which one's the best. I won against Bow Wow's 'Shorty Like Mine' and all these songs, and once they retired it, they took it out of the rotation and wouldn't play it anymore. It's all about politics. They want you to pay under the table, but we're not feelin' that. We're on the grind too."
Undaunted, she remains upbeat and extremely focused. "Of course I'm gonna stay positive," she says.
She has reason to. Her audience knows no bounds. "I've performed in front of a lot of people, mostly at 21-and-over clubs," Twymon says. "They love it, and the teenagers love it too. But my biggest market is the little kids. They go bananas. We're trying to market me to Disney and Nickelodeon. I can be soft, but at the same time I come hard."