Rapper of GARIFUNA Descent, TONI STEELZ / @ToniSteelz / ToniSteelz, Wins Best Female Rapper of The Year at the 2014 Underground Music Awards in New York City

 

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Times Square, New York — Female Rapper of Garifuna Descent, TONI STEELZ, wins 2014 Best Female Rapper of The Year at the 2014 Underground Music Awards.  The ceremony took place at B.B. Kings Blues Club and Grill in Times Square, New York City on SUNDAY, September 21st 2014.    

B.B. Kings Blues Club and Grill in Times Square, New York City.

B.B. Kings Blues Club and Grill in Times Square, New York City.

Toni Steelz was awarded Best Female Rapper of the Year while competing against 5 other female rappers (Spazz, Tamara Bubble, Noname Gypsy, CoCo Band, Ms Kandi Rapper and Divine Law a.k.a. DVL).  Winners of each category were determined via online voting by the general public.  Voters were able to vote every day.

Toni Steelz, 2014 Female Rapper of The Year at Urban Music Awards.  Photo from Facebook.

Toni Steelz, 2014 Female Rapper of The Year at Urban Music Awards. Photo from Facebook.

TONI STEELZ won an Underground Music Award as part of a duo (BlackSteelz) in 2009.  She was also nominated for an Underground Music Award as part of a group in 2004.  Below is exclusive video of a LIVE performance her song “Bitter”. Here she is working with local musicians in an attempt to musically expand her reach as an artist.

In 2013, Toni Steelz released her solo album “Just Me”, which not only includes the rap songs, “Google Me”, “Roccin It” and “Sure Shot”, but also features a few songs produced by Garifuna American Music Producer D-Sorce Cayetano.  1

Here is her soundcloud profile.

Here is the music video for the Toni Steelz song “Roccin It”, featuring Team Traffik

Formerly known by the rap name, N’Finite, TONI STEELZ was the only female member of the now defunct five member group KRUSADAZ.  Beginning with winning Amateur Night during a High School Series at the World Famous Apollo Theater in 1995, TONI STEELZ has performed at various music industry showcases throughout the New York City area.

Readers of Beinggarifuna.com remember TONI STEELZ as the Host, Producer and Programmer of the “It’s A Go” Hip Hop Radio Internet Show.   She was also  featured on the Garifuna Legacy song, “Punta Rock (Hip-Hop)” on the 1999  Garifuna Legacy album “The Dynasty: Hated By Many, Loved By Many More”.  Garifuna Legacy was a Punta Rock band that was an offshoot of the VERY popular and pioneering Garifuna boy-band Garifuna Kids.

Garifuna Legacy Album Cover, "Hated By Many, Loved By Many More".

Garifuna Legacy Album Cover, “Hated By Many, Loved By Many More”.

Below is a recap of the 2011 year for the It’s A Go Hip-Hop Radio Show.

Toni Steelz has gone on to be a correspondent for pioneering music video show VIDEO MUSIC BOX as well as for EastBrooklyn.com.   Below is an interview with rapper Talib Kweli as he visited the ARTs East New York site in the East New York section of Brooklyn.

In 2013, The New York Daily News reported that TONI STEELZ was part of a tribute by pioneering music video show VIDEO MUSIC BOX to Female Rappers, Queen Latifah, Missy Elliott, MC Lyte and Lauryn Hill at the Bronx Museum of Arts for Women’s History Month.  It was entitled “All Hail The Queen: A Tribute to The Women in Hip Hop” and TONI STEELZ performed her song “Sheroes”.    2

In addition to being a solo rapper, TONI STEELZ is also part of a rap duo called BlackSteelz, which consists of her and rapper EMF BLACK, one of the few (only?) male-female rap duos in hip-hop history.  Below is music video for the BlackSteelz rap song, “We Out Here”.

As presented by Urban Thresholds Enterprises Inc, The Underground Music Awards is a national Award Show for Independent Artists, Producers and Songwriters.  This award show was created to acknowledge and honor the achievements and contributions of top unsigned and independent music artists within the urban music scene.   3


Created in 2003 by Urban Threshold Enterprises, Inc, the goal of this unique Music Awards Ceremony is to bring together music professionals, artists, DJs, fans, media outlets and more to network, build relationships and celebrate the culture of independent urban music.  Past Winners of Underground Music Awards include, MIMS, Nicki Minaj, Cory Gunz, J Cole, Freeway, Killah Priest, Lil Mama, Remy Ma, Styles P, Papoose, Saigon, Lumidee, Fred The Godson, Lupe Fiasco, MOP,  and others.

Pioneering Rappers are also honored and celebrated at The Underground Music Awards.  Past Honorees include, Ice T, Naughty By Nature, EPMD, Slick Rick, DMC from Run DMC, Grandmaster Flash, MC Shan, DJ Red Alert, DJ Kid Capri, Kool G Rap, M.O.P., Ralph McDaniels, Cormega, DJ Kay Slay, DJ Envy, Producer Marley Marl and many more!

ABOUT The Garifuna People


The Garifuna people are people of African descent (in other words, Black people) whose ancestry can be traced to Africans mixing with Carib Indians and Arawak Indians on the Eastern Caribbean island of St. Vincent.  From this fusion of race and ethnicities in St. Vincent Island, a distinct culture and language arose.  They are noted for being one of the few (only?) peoples of African descent (again, in other words, Black people) in the Americas to have maintained aspects of their ancestral culture and full use of their ancestral language for everyday use over the course of hundreds of years.

After being defeated in war with the British on St. Vincent in 1796; 1004 men, 1779 women and 1,555 children for a total of 4,338 people (mostly Black Caribs, as the Garifuna people were then known) were captured and taken to Baliceaux, a small island, a rock, basically, off the coast of St. Vincent.  This took place from July 1796 through February/March 1797.  About 2,000 Garifunas died of a mysterious and very infectious fever while living on Baliceaux awaiting their fate.   4

In early March 1797, the remaining Garifunas were loaded onto the HMS Experiment and other ships.  Once they were rounded up, the convoy were taken to a Bequia, which is another island off the coast of St. Vincent. They proceeded to go to Grenada to get water, then Jamaica for refueling, then finally Roatan, Honduras, arriving on April 12th 1797.

Finding much of Roatan unliveable, the Garifuna people petitioned officials representing Spain and it’s government (which controlled much of Central America at the time) to be allowed to move to the Honduran mainland.  Upon being allowed to move to the Honduran mainland, the Garifunas settled many towns and villages along the Caribean coast of Honduras.  They also migrated to the neighboring countries of Guatemala, Belize (then known as British Honduras) and Nicaragua over the years.

If you find the BEING GARIFUNA Website helpful and useful, please DONATE. Every dollar donated helps keep this website in operation.  Donations are accepted through the PAYPAL website, so potential donations are SAFE and SECURE. 


Toni Steelz, 2014 Female Rapper of The Year at Underground Music Awards.  Photo from Facebook.

Toni Steelz, 2014 Female Rapper of The Year at Underground Music Awards. Photo from Facebook.

Notes:

  1. https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/just-me/id680681473
  2. http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/bronx/hip-hop-show-video-music-box-celebrates-women-history-month-article-1.1288658
  3. http://www.undergroundmusicawards.com/
  4. Nancie L. Gonzalez, “Sojourners of the Caribbean: Ethnogenesis and Ethnohistory of the Garifuna” pg. 21

Comments

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One thought on “Rapper of GARIFUNA Descent, TONI STEELZ / @ToniSteelz / ToniSteelz, Wins Best Female Rapper of The Year at the 2014 Underground Music Awards in New York City

  1. I am sooo proud of you Toni Steels, as a little girl very Jolly be sitting on the stairs on Georgia Ave with your sisters and brother. You made baby girl keep the Aspiring , you brought it keep bringing it one love sweetie Garifuna Wageya habaheesani suwada.

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