With the Puerto Rican parade coming up in a week, its a reminder of those who have made impacts in entertainment or the world at large. But the vast majority of music talents are usually under the mainstream radar, but the streets do not lie, and when you talk about Puerto Rican female rappers, Mala Reignz is on everyone’s lips. But she is so much more. She is a brand.
Mala made an adjustment and worked her music and at the same time became a business woman. The creation of “BadGirlsRule” is the result and she has seen the benefits and she is not stopping now. LatinTRENDS spoke to Mala about her business, new music projects, and why bad girls rule.
LT: Tell us a little about Mala Reignz and why you are now an entrepreneur in addition to your other talents?
MR:Well, I’m a rapper/writer/performer and host out of the Bronx, NYC. I have been performing for about ten years building my brand along the way. Most people know me for my records “Hey Love” and “Make You Smile” which were featured on MTV and the Source Magazine.
Being an entrepreneur is a natural part of the entertainment business. You have to have several hustles to keep afloat. The game has changed alot and there isn’t as much money for artists..selling records alone just won’t cut it.
Many artists are branching off creating merchandise to sell. For years I had been rocking my Bad Girl Chain during performances and interviews as a way to brand myself. The interest in my chain from women and girls, and, even men, grew so much that it became evident that I should release a line of necklaces for the public. It definitely didn’t happen overnight, but I am proud to say that you can now purchase your own Bad Girl Chain online at www.badgirlreignz.com.
LatinTRENDS: You renamed the site. Why the change to your main site and what direction are you envisioning?
Mala Reignz: The site needed a little revamp. I was already gearing up for the release of my new video “Genie In A Bottle” featuring J30 and wanted to make the entire experience a new one. New video, single, and photos and in addition to the store, my own new line of necklaces. It was long overdue and I’m happy with the facelift. The site is cleaner and more appealing, I feel.
LT: You have mentioned the product that you have been promoting. When did it become your symbol and why is it so popular?
MR: It all stems from my name, Mala, which is Spanish for “Bad Girl.” My last name actually happens to be Malave and as an early poet I shortened it to Mala and made it my stage name. The name caught on quick and soon everyone was calling me Mala. I knew it was time to brand. First I printed up Bad Girl Tees with my logo, a little black silhouette with ponytails and evil eyes. The story behind her is she was once a paper doll who broke away from the rest of the pack and became an individual.
Usually, when you don’t follow trends or what society expects from you, people tend to view you as bad or misbehaved. I think it means you are being true to yourself.”
LT: What is your view of women who expose themselves to attain a title and gain fame at the price of changing what nature provided them? Your take on what a Bad Girl is quite the opposite, is it not?
MR: That’s just what a Bad Girl is, an independent woman who handles her business. Her way. She is a silhouette because ANY girl can be a “Bad Girl.” You don’t have to fit a particular dress or pant’s size, you just have to he bold enough to be comfortable in your own skin. Confidence is true beauty and intelligence is hella sexy!
Today all we see are images of women barely dressed with their bodies done calling themselves “Bad Bitches” and its not just on T.V. It’s on the internet, party club flyers, in records, everywhere. It’s no wonder our young girls and women are so affected by these images that more and more of them are getting plastic surgery to alter their bodies. I want girls and women to know that you can be “bad” by just being you. It has a positive message and looks super cute dressed up or down.
These chains are a representation and a reminder that the ‘Baddest’ chicks are the ones who get an education, empower themselves, raise their children, have an opinion, support themselves and their families
LT: You are a music performer initially but you have expanded into these other areas. Why is that important and should more women look to brand themselves accordingly?
“Its important to expand any business. I am an artist but that actually makes ME a business. I sell myself, my creativity, lyrics, voice, and image
MR: But what happens if I lose my voice or I get sick? I need to make sure that there are things set up to continue to bring income even if I cant make it to work. The Bad Girl Chainz are a venture that I hope will flourish into something great. This is only the beginning.”
LT: Tell us about the rest of your products you put up for sale and the significance of being a businesswoman.
MR: First and foremost I sell my music. I take time to construct lyrics that make sense and are catchy and intelligent. Whenever I release a new project, I make it available on my website first before any other site to drive traffic my own way which increases sales. This is a tactic I’ve been using for a while. I also have the Bad Girls Tees I mentioned earlier as well as Mala Reignz posters.
And of course, there’s the Bad Girls Chainz. They come in black, gold, red, blue, and pink and are adorned with authentic Swarovski Crystals. All of these things are significant to being a businesswoman because they take careful planning and execution. I have to also market all these products on social media. Its a 24-7 job but you know what they say. If you dont want to work 9-5 be prepared to hustle 24-7.”
LT: Bring everyone to speed on your latest projects. Tell us what we should be looking at now and what we should be expecting next.
MR: This past April, I teamed up with good friends and fellow artists, J30, Sstyles, and Chuck Mathis on a collaborative EP called “One Way Ticket.” SStyles and Chuck are out of Toronto so you will notice a little twist of styles in there and J30 always brings the heat not only as a producer and rapper but also as an R&B singer. The project is sick!!!! This year I also plan to begin recording my first official album. I am still promoting “Mega Reignz” in the interim and there are a string of videos that has accompanied this mix tape.”
LT: Why do Bad Girls Rule?
MR: Because we just do!! Ain’t nothing better than a Bad Girl who knows what she is doing. She’s unstoppable!
Mala Reignz EPK http://ow.ly/s8cs3
The Calm before the Storm EP available on itunes