Hello hello everyone and welcome back to MKQ blogs! Thank you all for continuing to be apart of season 3!! This interview I am featuring today holds a special place in my heart. This person and I have been friends in the scene for a few years now and each time I get an opportunity to hang out and trade with her, I feel so lucky. She is an avid raver, an amazing Kandi kid, a kick ass shuffler, and a kind spirit. Today I have the honor of featuring Harpy!! 1. Tell me a bit about yourself: Where are you from? What’s your background? My name is Jasmine, I’m 26 years old from San Diego, CA. I was born & raised out here, this is my home. Outside of going to festivals/concerts, some of my hobbies include playing video games, working out, collecting loungefly, collecting funkos, watching shows/animes, shuffling, exploring new things & just living life day by day. I currently work as an EMT so my schedule can be hectic as I try to get into my dream career in firefighting. I can’t always make events because of it, but when I do I enjoy every moment of it. I’m also the co-owner of Melanin Ravers. We are coming up on 4th anniversary with the page! 2. How did you get into and how long have you been in the rave and EDM scene? I’ve been a fan of the music since around 2000. I was 5 years old. I remember hearing “Blue by Eiffel 65” on the radio & I fell in love with the sound. I didn’t know what it was, I just knew I liked it. My dad also had a CD called Digital Bass by Bass 305. That was also another intro to the sound. I didn’t attend my first event until late 2015. The first show I attended was Odesza when they were on tour at the Shrine Expo Hall in Los Angeles. My friend who was my college teammate at the time had an extra ticket to the show. She found out I liked the music but never went to an event yet. She gave me the ticket for free and took me with her. It’s an experience that I personally won’t forget. Then a few months later I got to attend my first festival, EDC Las Vegas 2016. From there, the rest was history lol. 3. What is your rave name and how did you get it? My rave name is “Harpy”. I consider it an unofficial rave name due to it not being given to me from someone else. It’s based on my usernames that I’ve had over the years on social media. I would bounce between HarpyLady, DjHarpy or DeejayHarpy. My username was based on the fact that I create music for fun & as well as one of my favorite cards from an anime called “Yu-Gi-Oh!” was the “Harpie Ladies”. Because of that when I would go to events, people would say “oh you’re Harpy!” & it just stuck. I just accept it as my rave name at this point. 4. What’s your favorite genre of edm/favorite artist? My top 3 favorite genres are Trance, Drum N Bass & Hardstyle. Now that doesn’t mean I’m limited to those three genres. I listen to it all & will vibe out to whatever if it sounds good to me. That’s why I love festivals like EDC because it gives me a chance to listen to anything. I can bounce from genre to genre & still have a good time. 5. What does being a Kandi kid mean to you?  Being a kandi kid gives me a chance to be creative and express my creativity. I view it as art. There’s always something we can do with the start of a single bead. Also, I love making people’s day by giving them their first piece at events. 6. How did you learn to make kandi and how long have you been creating it? I started making it in 2016. I knew about kandi for years but I never made for events until I started going to them. I started off with singles that I took with me to EDCLV because I wanted to trade. When I got there, I saw all the cuffs and perlers that people made & it inspired me to want to make bigger pieces. I made it my goal from that point to learn how to make cuffs, perlers & masks. Youtube was my best friend when it came to learning how to make kandi. I went through a bunch of different videos until I found the ones that were the most helpful to me. It took a lot of trial and error but eventually I got the hang of it. 7. What is one piece of advice you would offer to a new rave who is entering the scene?  My biggest advice to someone that’s starting out is to go into it with an open mind. There’s going to be a lot of things going on that it can be overwhelming. If they go into it with little to no expectations, then they might have the best time of their life. 8. What is one misconception you think that is made about ravers today? One of the biggest misconceptions is that people assume we can’t enjoy this music or these events sober. There’s always going to be those people that aren’t & that’s fine. But this music can very much be enjoyed as is. Drugs/Alcohol aren’t always necessary. Majority of the shows I attend, I go sober. Drugs aren’t my thing and I rarely drink. If I drove, then I don’t drink at all. Since I like the wander solo most of the time, it’s a safety thing for me. I always find it funny when people ask me “are you rolling?” & then they’re shocked when I say I’m not. I let the music give me energy. Now my responses aren’t to disrespect those that choose not to be. I’m simply saying that not everybody that goes to these things are intoxicated & I wish more people outside of the scene would understand that. 9. How do you feel about kandi being a commodity that is sold for purchase? This can be a tricky topic for a lot of people. I would be a hypocrite if I said I was against it. Mainly because I’ve done it, mainly to rebuy supplies that I use to make kandi. Most kandi kids will tell you that this can be an expensive hobby. Me personally, I’ve spent thousands of dollars in supplies for me to make pieces that I end up trading. I look at kandi as a form of art. In some cases, people create their art to sell them. If someone is good at their art then I don’t have a problem with it. The only time I’m against it, is if someone took the time to make a piece specifically for you only for you to turn around & sell it as if you made. I don’t think that’s a cool thing to do. 10. Do you ever think there is an appropriate time to trade away kandi that was once traded to you? When I attended EDCLV in 2016, I accidentally traded off a single that someone gave me. It wasn’t until it was on the other person is when I realized the mistake. But I also didn’t have the heart to ask for it back because they loved it. After that, I keep all that’s given to me. I think that If you get to a point where you feel like it would be loved by someone else, then I think that would be the time to trade it away. I feel like that’s better than throwing it in the trash. 11. How long do you think kandi making culture will be around for? All things will keep going as long as there are those to keep it going. It’s like a language for example. The language will die out if nobody teaches it. I feel like kandi will continue to be around for years to come as long as there are those that will continue to make it and keep trading them. 12. There’s a stigma that states to be an ideal rave girl you must look at certain way. What advice would you give to new women interested in rave culture on how to remain confident and comfortable in their own skin regardless of the stigma My advice is to try not to give into peer pressure & wear whatever you think you’ll be comfortable in. You don’t have to follow the current fashion trend to “fit in”. Personally, I’m not comfortable in going to events with just pasties & a thong. Because that’s not where my comfort level is. I love wearing skirts, leg wraps, fluffies, sports bra’s, rave bra’s, etc… That’s what I’m comfortable wearing. Letting things come naturally overtime is the best thing you can do for yourself. In terms of body size, you don’t have to be skinny to be part of the scene. It can be disheartening for people if all they see is skinny individuals all over social media. “Sexiness” comes in all shapes, sizes, and skin tones. That’s why I will always show support to others that are willing to break the stigma & stereotypes. 13. Here at Rave Talks we stress the importance of Women’s Safety. I wanted to know what you think can be done to ensure attendees safety from the perspective of those who have a platform in EDM. If you see someone that looks like they need help, help them out. Or find somebody (ground control or medical team) that can help them out if you personally aren’t willing to get involved directly. Sometimes all it takes it for one person to do something in order for change to happen. 14. Do you feel like the culture surrounding EDM has changed? Why do you think that’s happened or hasn’t happened?  Since I started in 2015, based on my experience, I believe it definitely has changed. In some ways for the better & in some for the worst. As a black raver, seeing more and more black people at events makes me happy. I love that for the culture since there are those who think we don’t rave. They think its “white people’s” music even though black people heavily influence our scene today. But that in itself is a separate conversation. For the better I love seeing that. For the worst would be people that attend these events just to harass women, stealing from those or causing fights. Yes, there are those individuals in every scene. It doesn’t mean that it doesn’t suck. From a safety standpoint, I would hope that it doesn’t get overrun by people are there for the wrong reasons. 15. Where do you think rave culture will be 20 years from now?  I think that it will continue to grow just like it is now. There will be those that weren’t old enough to attend these events that’ll finally have the opportunity too. Along with people getting into djing and able to showcase their music. Fashion wise I can see some of the older styles making a comeback. I still see kandi being a thing too. Regardless on what it ends up being, I feel like the one thing that will remain the same is the love that people have for the music. 16. So what’s next… when you have the time what’s the next big Kandi piece you’ll be making?  That’s hard to say lol. I always try to do something different or “level up” my projects. I try to not to repeat the same ideas if I can help it. I love making cuffs more than perlers so it might be cuff related. We shall see what I end up creating! It was honor Harpy to see you at EDC and all the amazing Kandi you created. You always give me so much kandi inspiration and push me to up game. I appreciate you so very much and thank you for taking the time to allow me to interview you. Make sure you all check out Harpy and Gaelle’s Instagram @MelaninRavers. They do an amazing job promoting Black Ravers. As always follow us on our Instagram @ravetalks_ and on Facebook Rave Talks and also subscribe to our newsletter. Make sure to tune in to our first three episodes of season 3 found anywhere you get podcasts… we have some amazing giveaways and special treats still to come so stay tuned. I love you all… MKQ out ☺️

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