46°
UMass Boston's independent, student-run newspaper

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

3-4-24 PDF
March 4, 2024
2-26-24 PDF
February 26, 2024
An inside look at Bobby B. Beacon’s insides. Illustrated by Bianca Oppedisano/ Mass Media Staff.
Bobby's Inside Story
February 26, 2024

Meet Hollywood Superbad

Keonnia Grant is a 22 year-old talent studying Sociology at
UMB.

Keonnia Grant is a 22 year-old talent studying Sociology at UMB.

Amongst our diverse student body, we can find talent of all sorts. Some of it is shown on the athletic fields, some of it in the classroom, but the majority of people never outwardly display their passions. For instance, who knew that we had our very own female rapper? Well, we do, and her name is Hollywood Superbad, Hollywood for short, and she can spit beats. The Boston-bred twenty-two year old has been rapping for about eight years, but started taking it seriously when she was nineteen.

When asked how she got started, Hollywood responded, “It’s in my personality. I enjoy the art of writing and rhyming, as well as performing.”

Well, she’s certainly no stranger to performing, as she has displayed her rapping prowess all over Boston in venues such as the All-Asia in Cambridge, the Strand Theater at a ‘talent off,’ and Roxbury Community College. Some of the lyrics she drops at these venues, taken from Hollywood’s song “Shoot Out,” include “Any time I’m on a track/ click clack pull it back/ it’s a shoot out and I’m coming for the beat it’s a wrap/ I’m a murderer/ killin’ any beat that may appear/ wanted all over the map/ they’ve been wanting me for years.”

Hollywood writes her raps about feelings and observations, as well as sometimes from a more commercial angle by keeping things “catchy and fun.”

Eventually, Hollywood wants to move to somewhere easier to make it big writing and performing in the rapping world, like Atlanta or New York. She believes that “despite the commercialization of rap, Hip-Hop is a way of expressing yourself, and whether that’s lyrically or commercially, it’s still art.” You can see her own unique lyrical style with an excerpt from her song “Freedom of Speech”: “I think that life is a dream somebody pinch me/ lookin’ in the mirror at the person God made me/ wonderin’ what it is that he want me to be/ maybe a doctor, a lawyer, or maybe a MC, whatever it is, but bet I’m a conquer at it/ got the heart of a lion/ fear nothing/ love zion.”

She is inspired by the like of Lauryn Hill because of the meaning behind her songs, and by Lil Wayne because, she says, “He goes hard. I respect his work ethic. He’s constantly in the studio writing and coming up with creative ideas of setting himself apart.” Along with rap and Hip-Hop, Hollywood also dabbles in R&B, reggae, and rock. She has channeled this love of music with two friends she met in 2010, Sincere and Calauge, and they have recently formed L3zarok Entertainment. As a collaborating entity they produce diverse, “feel-good music all ages, races can listen to, but we add our flair to it with the beats we choose, and the melodies we make. We have fun in the studio, so we want people to have fun when they hear it.” They most recently recorded a song named “360.”

She is also currently working on a mixtape including multiple tracks of her with other artists, which is projected to be complete by December. You may think that focusing so much energy into her music career along with school would be more than enough to handle, but Hollywood is also part of the UMB Women’s Basketball team. She’s been playing basketball since she was twelve. While on the court she may be Keonnia Grant, but on the stage she becomes Hollywood Superbad, whom Grant described as an alter ego. She says, “I don’t rap as myself.”

Hollywood’s life motto is “My fear is not taking that chance.” Because of that, she eventually wants to make it big in New York or Atlanta, but for now you can find Hollywood at open mike performances around the Boston area and in Rhode Island. You can also check out L3zarok’s Facebook fan page “L3zarok Ent,” which has recordings by Hollywood and information about the trio. If you’re an aspiring rapper or musician as well and would like to collaborate with Hollywood, her email is [email protected]. Also, come watch her on the basketball court: first women’s basketball game is Nov. 16!