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Godessa
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The all-female rap trio Godessa of Cape Town, South Africa became official in February 2001 under the leadership of Shameema Williams who had been trying to form a female rap crew since the early 90's. The aim was to find a group of women who had a true love and understanding for the Hip Hop culture and could simultaneously utilise their talents to speak about the reality and positivity of life in South Africa.
The following info is from their official bio. Contact the manager to book the group or to obtain more information.

Members
Shameema Williams AKA Lady of Shame AKA Da MIC Mistress (manager/lyricist/emcee)
Eloise Jones AKA EJ Von Lyric (lyricist/emcee/assistant producer/vocalist)
Bernadette Amansure AKA Burni AKA Missing Link AKA Eve of Destruction (Lyricist/emcee)

Producer: Grenville Williams of Firing Squad and Nine



Philosophy
"Godessa is derived from the word Goddess and the ancient Egyptian city, Odessa.

Based on three Egyptian goddesses - Nefertiti, Isis and Maat. We drew our inspiration from what they represent.

That is (see the logo:)
The eye - knowledge
The onk - fertility
The sign of libra - balance and justice

The circles and triangle combines these symbols because together we possess these abilities. We also believe that these qualities make the best leaders.

We are young women growing up in a society where glamour is vastly becoming a measure of success. Rolemodels are not women of character like the ancient goddesses or modern leaders from Mother Theresa to Patricia de Lille to Rosa Parks. They are radio and television personalities, models and singers that portray very little that is a reality in our lives. We would like to present an image of success that is not based on scantily clad bodies and make the youth aware of issues that could change their lives. Our lyrics are proudly based on what we have or people we know have experienced. Only time will prove that if we are given the opportunity to exhibit our abilities, we can have a positive influence on the children that especially our government has such high hopes for".

Past performances
1) World Aids Day - Hiv Hop concert (Princeton High School, 1 December 2000)
The second concert of its kind broadcasted live internationally on radio and television hosted by Bush Radio in conjunction with Radio Netherlands, VOA and BET International. A host of hiphop acts such as Brasse Vannie Kaap, Mr Devious and Godessa wrote and performed songs relating to AIDS and the way it affects life on the Cape Flats.

2) UCT Crime Awareness (Beit Room, UCT, 12 February 2001) Campus security co-ordinated an awareness program for orientation week at the university.

3) Overspray (Boogaloo's Skate Park, Century City, 25 February 2001)
Promotion for a documentary for E-TV and Big World Cinema. It focuses on South Africa's greatest graffiti artists Falco and Sky-One and their respective crews.

4) Breaking space (Drum Cafe, 7 April 2001)
A 16 hour hiphop jam paying homage to the finest breakdancers in South Africa

5) Sharp (Jameson Plaza, UCT, 17 May 2001)
An organisation on UCT campus run by the students dealing with Aids awareness

6) June 16 (Good Hope Centre, 16 June 2001)
A host of local performers invited by the Cape Town theatre lab gathered at the Good Hope Centre to celebrate Youth Day.

7) Support... (The Jam, 3 August 2001) Firing Squad, a local reggae band

8) African Hiphop Indaba
The hiphop indaba is a 4-day event that celebrates the four elements of hiphop (breakdancing, apping, dj's and spraycan art) with competitions, performances and battles. It is hosted by Black Noise and sponsored by Arts and Culture, Mnino and Puma. Apart from performances we also recorded a song for the compilation which will be available next year. Godessa performed at the:
Sisters in hiphop, 9 August 2001 @ Bzaar
DJ Battle, 10 August 2001 @ The Jam

9) Gender and trade network in Africa (Cape Technikon, 18 August 2001)
Cape tech public meeting and debate on the WTO and globalisation

10) Black August Tour
Black August is a black conscious movement in the USA, which uses hiphop artists to spread awareness and consciousness. Revolutionary artists like Dead Prez, Talib Kweli, Black Thought from the Roots and the Coup performed in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town with supporting acts like Bongo Maffin, Black Sunshine and Godessa.
Venues:
Princeton high, 5 September 2001
Westend (Galaxy), 6 September 2001

Godessa appears on the following recordings:
"Tomorrows heroes" directed by John Fredericks and David Toscoe for Otherwise. Sponsored by the Dept. of Arts and Culture. A documentary focusing on two young men from the Cape Flats bout their lives in prison, on the flats and as gangsters.

"Overspray" produced by Big World Cinema
A graffiti battle betwene SA's greatest artists, which will be screened on E-TV, 18 June 2001

"Globalisation" produced by Big Noise Films in the USA In November 1999 the World Trade Organisation held a gathering at the WTC. A mass of protestors put a stop to the gathering. The documentary follows these events.

"Heal the hood" is a Black Noise compilation sponsored by the Dept. of Arts and Culture. The song featured is 'Hard to the core'.

Who is Godessa?

EJ VON LYRIC
Real name: Eloise Jones
Born 29 August 1978, Portlands, Mitchell's Plain
- Previously member of a crew called Neophytes
- Worked with Ready-D on mix tapes aired on Good Hope, Bush and YFM
- Performed at the YAA2000 in conjuction withBush Radio and Radio Netherlands
- Part of the supporting act for the Dead Prez concert held at the Jam recently
- Backing vocalist for D-Louw
- For a short period performed with POC at festivals and concerts in South Africa as well as a week of workshops and performances in Norway.
- Represented Godessa in a HIV seminar and workshops. Performed in Tanzania and Netherlands for NIZA

BURNI
Real name: Bernadette Amansure
Born 15 June 1977, Steenburg
- Backing vocals for a song recorded for a youth documentary sponsored by Molo Songololo
- Currently recording with local artists for the release of a compilation cd in 2001
- Club performances since 1996
- Poetry appears in an anthology titled 'Millenium Moment'

LADY OF SHAME
Real name: Shameema Williams
Born 5 October 1978, Cape Town
- Recorded and wrote the title track for a youth documentary sponsored by Molo Songololo
- Artist in residence invitation on Robben Island - poetry can be found at the island's museum
- Performances since 1997 for Human Rights, Youth and Women's day in and around Cape Town
- Red Rituals Cape touring production in which she performed her own poetry with Mavis Smallberg, Lueen Conning-Ndlovu and Dheela Khan
- Co-presenter of the Headwarmers show on Bush Radio in 1998
- Club performances to a variety of audiences since 1994
- Occasionaly employed as a creative writing facilitator, Polsmoor prison, Hawequa, Faure and various areas on the Cape Flats.

Contact details:

Manager: Shameema Williams
Postal address:
22 Worcester Road
Walmer Estate 7925
South Africa
Tel. 021 447 4454
fax 021 691 6742
E-mail: [email protected]

Publicist: Peter Abrahams, tel. 6910576
Booking agent: Benedict, cell 082 590 8551

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