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Rising Star Marieme: “Music is the most powerful medium to me; I use it to try to help people and myself navigate through emotions and try to understand the whys”

In my mind I’m already starting a movement. In my manifesto I say “Music is the gateway to draw worlds, their sound waves have the ability to bend energy, change ions, captivate and lift the soul. Through music, I’ve become an architect of sound; Building fortresses with words and melodies, allowing you the listener to […]


In my mind I’m already starting a movement. In my manifesto I say “Music is the gateway to draw worlds, their sound waves have the ability to bend energy, change ions, captivate and lift the soul. Through music, I’ve become an architect of sound; Building fortresses with words and melodies, allowing you the listener to navigate through your emotions and unlock your unconscious mind.”

My goal with music has always been to bring us to a better place. I think the way to do that is through individual work and self evolution. Music is the most powerful medium to me and I use it to try to help people and myself navigate through emotions and try to understand the whys.

I strongly believe if we don’t treat ourselves right, we won’t treat anyone right. The work starts at the micro level, we need to understand ourselves and be compassionate to ourselves before we can begin to do anything! Self Love Revolution.


I had the pleasure to interview Marieme. Marieme (the artist moniker of Marieme Diop) was influenced by the iconoclastic greats who created their own lanes: Erykah Badu, Dusty Springfield, Aretha, Nina Simone, Billie Holiday, Lauryn Hill, Sarah Vaughn. What sets Marieme apart, however, is both her combination of a bold, expressive multi-octave voice and her individual perspective as a socially-conscious world citizen. Six months after Marieme was born in the African nation of Mauritania, her life changed forever. When war broke out between Mauritania and her parents’ native Senegal, Marieme and her family were forced to escape. Her father, a top executive at a major electrical company in the region, was stripped of his livelihood. Before the war, the Diop family had a large home with staff and two cars; after, they were left with nothing. Marieme and her siblings went to live with their aunt in Senegal while her father and mother moved to the United States, settling in New York City’s Bronx neighborhood. It would be five years before they would be able to bring the rest of the family together again. The resulting move would foment an identity crisis that Marieme would turn into a powerful, essential theme in her musical vision. Her true musical emancipation, however, would come with her discovery of self-possessed iconoclasts like Lauryn Hill and Amy Winehouse. A fan of manga, animation, and cosplay as much as music, Marieme created a fantastical performing persona whose chameleonic shifts suggest David Bowie. She even makes her own distinctively glam outfits herself . “This is a big leap,” she says. “It’s all been slowly marinating and cultivating, evolving into something complicated but exciting. Thankfully, now it’s cool to be multi-dimensional. I really imagine a better world in my songs, and I’m proof music can do that. Music changed my life, and I want to help it change other lives, too.”


Thank you so much for joining us Marieme! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

Thank you for having me. Ahh Music, I’ve always loved it, it’s been my escape when I was being bullied in school, and my real when I needed to express myself, it’s always been apart of me. It’s interesting though because I grew up in religious settings where music was not played. I don’t know how it found me, I tried hard to push it out because I knew it wasn’t the path my elders wanted me to take and would be ashamed of. Knowing that led me to be very self destructive, because when I sang I felt guilty. but how can something that makes me feel so guilty, bring others so much joy and inspiration. It took alot of resilience and rebelion to brake out the mold i was expected to fit. to be a good Muslim Women, and strive to be a doctor, engineer, or lawyer, in that order. I came to the conclusion that I have to follow my heart and that nothing else mattered. I can’t make anyone happy but myself and so I jumped in and never looked back. I moved to LA two years ago and got a publishing deal wit Universal within a month of recording “Leave” with Producer Andy Rose, the lead single from my self titled Debut EP released last year. I wrote Leave two days after moving to LA, the Lyrics are “I’ll leave tomorrow, before you wake, I just need to save me, before my heart breaks, I still believe in Love and the time that it takes, but for now, we are better off alone” It was the first song I had to write to release all my trauma and be able to do what I need to with music. letting go of fear led me here! I’m here!

Can you share the most interesting story that occurred to you in the course of your music career?

Hmm, being 5 feet away from Aretha Franklin. That was the biggest highlight of music for me. so a while ago I was suppose to sing Happy Birhday for a Civil Rights figure. I didn’t end up singing, i’m sure because Aretha Fraklin showed up, which is understandable. When the Queen walks in you sit down! I wish i spoke to her but i didn’t even know if I could approach her. but that moment changed me, to see someone like Aretha in person was amazing. I was trying to siphon her powers! R.I.P. Queen.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

I’m getting ready to release a music video for my song Ask for help, coming out May 17!. I’ve been working on a Senegalese project with amazing Senegalese artist, which i’m really excited about, I released a music video a few weeks ago for the first single from that project called “Fi moy Senegal” which means this is Senegal and it’s been reacting so well that we’re going to release it worldwide in June, i’m proud to sing in my native tongue and share it with the world! I’m also working on my debut Album which will be out sometime early next year, in the meantime i plan on releasing a song that is very dear to my heart called “Stack it up” before the end of summer! So more music and performances in cities all over the world!

Who are some of the most interesting people you have interacted with? What was that like? Do you have any stories?

I met Forest Whitiker when I read with him for a role! i was soooooooo nervous! it was my first audition ever and here I was reading lines with Forest Whitiker. I didn’t get the part but I’m surprised I did not fuck up as much as one would think given how nervous I was.

Meeting quincy Jones was amazing, he probably won’t remember because I had an afro then, but I was freaking out because it’s Quincy Jones. Quincy Jones! we talked about Senegal, Youssou Ndour, and me being a scorpio! Qincy Jones!

George Acogny, the brilliant composer is one of my favorite people to hang out with in the world, he’s given me so much advice and is always connecting me with people out of the kindness of his heart. he treats me like family which is very important to have in this industry, and the conversations are out of this world. when ever I describe him to people i’m like ” you know those people that are just that guy, he’s that guy” the best!

Which people in history inspire you the most? Why?

The thing about the inspiring people in history is that i don’t think they knew the impact they would make on the world! They followed their hearts and stood firm in their believes!! That is what stands out to me the most, with that in mind I think the people who’ve lived their lives this way the best are Mohamed Ali, Nelson Mandela, and Nina Simone!

How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?

I want to do so much for the world, i think by singing and the subject matter of my music i’m on the road to bringing goodness to the world. I could sing about anything but I chose to sing about Love, Understanding, and Empowerment. So my success is directly tied to the evolution of the people who listen to my music.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

In my mind I’m already starting a movement. In my manifesto I say “Music is the gateway to draw worlds, their sound waves have the ability to bend energy, change ions, captivate and lift the soul, through music, I’ve become an architect of sound.

Building fortresses with words and melodies, allowing you the listener to navigate through your emotions and unlock your unconscious mind.”

My goal with music has always been to bring us to a better place, I think the way to do that is through individual work and self evolution. Music is the most powerful medium to me and I use it to try to help people and myself navigate through emotions and try to understand the whys.

I strongly believe if we don’t treat ourselves right, we won’t treat anyone right. The work starts at the micro level, we need to understand ourselves and be compassionate to ourselves before we can begin to do anything! Self Love Revolution.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

Go at your own pace, you don’t have to do things the way everyone is doing it, learn from it but be yourself. You won’t burn out if you’re true to you’re self, being fake is what’s exhausting!

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

  1. Trust in your instincts always! sometimes you can get lost in whats popular and might think that that’s what you have to do in order to succeed, but trust in yourself, trust in your dopeness, because only you can bring what you bring!
  2. Only I can make my dreams come true! it takes a village to make things happen, you need a team that you trust. But I made a mistake of getting a team and taking a step back. but you cant ever take a step back you are driving the boat!
  3. Everyone is trying to figure things out too! I moved to LA thinking that I knew nothing about the music industry and it was true i knew nothing about the industry. But that’s only because I went in thinking that there was a set way of doing things! but there isn’t really, the industry is constantly adapting to the changing world, and that’s what you have to do also! that’s it!
  4. Only the music matters! make it your priority, partying doesn’t get you anywhere really. do it after you’ve made the music, then party, but focus on the music! I use to party a lot and speaking over music at clubs is not networking, I lost days trying to recover my voice after partying, when I should be able to sing at the drop of a hat.
  5. Don’t take anything personally. whats for you will be for you, it’s never the end! I use to take things very personal and avoided putting myself out there out of fear of rejection, no more! if i’m not in the game, I can’t complain!

I have been blessed with the opportunity to interview and be in touch with some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she just might see this, especially if we tag them 🙂

Oprah Winfrey, I actually have a song called “Ask for help” on the Iyanla Vanzant show that is on the OWN network.

I want to meet Oprah because she is a force!! As a black woman, seeing her achieve everything she has achieved despite her upbringing, is incredible. I’ve always looked up to her, I feel like she has a good compass. I always use to imagine being interviewed and singing on the Oprah show like I use to see Beyoncé and Celine Dion do, that was one of my biggest dreams and was devastated when her show ended. I would actually invite my mom along because she loves her just as much.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

Across all platforms you can find me at @mariememusic 

One more note! Always choose LOVE

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